Disclosure: This is a collaborative post.
Eating more fish is a great way to improve your diet. Depending on the variety of fish you eat, you’ll gain protein, healthy fats, and a host of vitamins. However, many parents will find that they face an uphill battle in their bid to get kids to eat their fish.
Thankfully, there is no need to start waving the white flag just yet. Here are five top tips that can help you regain control of the situation.
- Focus on textures
A lot of children won’t tuck into a salmon fillet or sea bass. So, you need to look at ways of creating fun textures. Coconut shrimp is a particularly great option as the breadcrumbs give a satisfying crunch. Even the shrimp itself won’t have the same texture as fillets of flatfish and other seafood. The fact that kids won’t even think of the dish as fish will make a world of difference.
Besides, the variety can improve your enjoyment of fish food too.
- Make it fun
A child’s opinion of foods before they approach them can have a huge impact on whether they’ll eat it. So, adding a little fun to the recipe for success can be telling. Fish tacos are a great example of making it enjoyable as kids get to make their own food. It can also be a good way to introduce more vegetables into their diet. This gives you an even greater incentive to try it.
There are plenty of similar ideas that can be implemented. So, take a look online
- Lose the fish shape
Seeing a fish head on the plate can even make some adults feel queasy. Therefore, any hope that your child will happily eat a full fish or even a fillet may be a little ambitious. You can find many ways to create child-friendly fish dishes. After cooking a fillet, you can remove the meat and cut it up before mixing it with mash or veg. Or you can use shape cutters to make fancy designs. They’ll love it.
Aside from the new shapes, it’s a great way to make the fish taste less potent.
- Go safe
If you are trying to get your kids into eating fish for the first time, opting for a bland-tasting fish might be best. Moreover, you may find that substituting another meat for fish in their favourite dishes also works well. They may not even notice that you’ve made the change if there is consistency in other aspects of the meal. Once you master the first step, you can slowly introduce additional dishes.
It might take a few attempts to get this right, but it’ll be worth it.
- Incentivise with a tasty dessert
When all else fails, use dessert as the key to encouragement. Whether your child loves chocolate goods or tasty caramels doesn’t matter. The promise of their favourite dessert after eating their main meal can work wonders. It’s likely that you may have to bargain with them by saying something like “eat half of the fish”, but it’s still a great way to get them eating fish. Many kids will come to love it.
And if they don’t, at least you’ve given it a fair try.