Toddlers: 12 - 24 Months

not enough protein

My 16mo old will not eat the protein choices i give him. Any ideas on any others. I havent given peanut butter yet. I make him black bean and chicken roll ups. He will only eat a bite or two and thats it.  He wont eat beans by themselves. He wont eat the beef in veggie beef soup. He spits chicken out. The gerber meals I try to give him he will eat the mashed potatoes or rice but when he feels the texture of the meat he spits it right out. He wont eat the soft chicken sticks or turkey sticks. Can I give him protein baby shakes?

Re: not enough protein

  • My son likes soy butter, it's sold next to the PB, I got it because my daycare doesn't allow nuts. Also he loves hummus. He also likes these Morningstar Farms soy-based "chick'n" nuggets. Other than that, the rest of his protein is from milk & cheese, he's not really into most meats. 
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  • What about grilled hamburger? My LO loves hamburger cut up with a tiny bit of ketchup. Also, peanut butter is a staple for us. He loves pb toast or even just eating it off the spoon. 
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  • Greek yogurt, eggs, cheese, peanut butter. What about tofu?

     My DD has some of my smoothie when I make them. It has milk, greek yogurt, protien powder and some sort of fruit in it. She loves it.

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  • My DD is also picky with meats, but here's what she will eat in the protein department.  Also it usually takes mulitple exposures for her to finally eat a new food.

    -  eggs
    -  beans (sometimes)
    -  hummus on toast
    -  finely shredded chicken mixed with apple sauce or pasta sauce (I usually put cooked chicken breasts in the blender for a few second then freeze single servings)
    -  ham (i buy the low sodium nitrate free kind)
    -  avocado (i think this is a protein source?)
    -  nut & soy butters
    -  cooked tofu cubes
    -  sometimes stewed beef (finely cut up)
    - sometimes chicken fingers if she can "dip" them in something (e.g. yogurt, pureed fruit or veg)
    -  cheese and greek yogurt
    - starting to eat  bit of ground beef mixed with sauce or rice

    I would be hesitant to give a baby an adult protein shake....

  • It just occurred to me this weekend the reason LO won't eat very many meats and veggies is because he can't chew them enough where he feels comfortable swallowing...maybe that's the case here.  We just gave him PB last weekend and he loves (albeit very messy). He also likes eggs, and mashed beans. He'll eat shredded beef or chicken, I think because they're smaller softer pieces.

    Have you tried hummus or greek yogurt?

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  • image hfuhr22:
    What about grilled hamburger? My LO loves hamburger cut up with a tiny bit of ketchup. Also, peanut butter is a staple for us. He loves pb toast or even just eating it off the spoon. 

    Oh and my little guy likes meatloaf...because it's easy to eat.

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  • We have luck with meatballs, yogurt, meat loaf, pulled pork, cheese and grilled cheese and turkey sandwiches. 
  • They don't need a lot of protein, and it doesn't have to be in the form of meat.

    Nuts/seeds (you could start with almond butter or sunflower seed butter if you don't want to try peanut butter yet) are good.

    Beans are good.  (Leave the chicken out and see if he'll eat them.  My daughter prefers them whole, not mashed.  She LOVED hummus when she was your LO's age.)

    Lentils are good.

    Cheese/yogurt/milk is good if he can tolerate dairy.

    And whole grains are good too - brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa.

    And I found that just giving her the grilled chicken we were having, cut up, and ketchup to dip it in was all she needed. 

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  • image MisN:

    My DD is also picky with meats, but here's what she will eat in the protein department.  Also it usually takes mulitple exposures for her to finally eat a new food.

    -  eggs
    -  beans (sometimes)
    -  hummus on toast
    -  finely shredded chicken mixed with apple sauce or pasta sauce (I usually put cooked chicken breasts in the blender for a few second then freeze single servings)
    -  ham (i buy the low sodium nitrate free kind)
    -  avocado (i think this is a protein source?)
    -  nut & soy butters
    -  cooked tofu cubes
    -  sometimes stewed beef (finely cut up)
    - sometimes chicken fingers if she can "dip" them in something (e.g. yogurt, pureed fruit or veg)
    -  cheese and greek yogurt
    - starting to eat  bit of ground beef mixed with sauce or rice

    I would be hesitant to give a baby an adult protein shake....

     

    MisN - you are a GREAT cook for your lo.  You gave me tons if ideas!!! :)

  • I haven't eaten red meat in 20 years. You'd be surprised at how little protein you actually need, and how much is in other food. Yogurt, cottage cheese, eggs, peanut butter chick peas hummus are all super sources. Try a smashed chick pea avocado sandwich! So good cold. Like egg salad consistency. Load up on the veggies, too, you should be good.
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  • I was worried about the same thing!  I asked my doctor and she said that yogurt (especially greek, because it has TWICE as much protein, eggs, and also beans were plenty for him.  He loves ALL kinds of beans.... rinsed well, right out of the can.  He especially loved black eyed peas for whatever reason.  I get the organic BPA free kinds (usually--goya organic are the cheapest!) and just give him those.  Worth a shot! 

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  • DD loves Hummus, sometimes if we are at a restaurant that serves it she dunks her whole hand in the bowl! She also really loves meatballs!
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  • I was worried before I read all of the responses!  My DS also does not like the meat textures and will spit them out.  So I load him up on eggs, greek yogurt and he loves his PB! Thanks for all the other tips PP's!
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  • Mine loves hummus, quacamole, cheese in any form, yogurt, almond butter, meatballs or meatloaf (turkey or beef), tuna (in the form of macaroni and t or t. melts), rotisserie or roasted chicken, chicken nuggets (I buy "healthy" ones or make them) and fish sticks.

    He used to eat steak, ham, and pork but refuses now. 

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  • DD won't eat turkey, chicken, or meat unless its ground meat (meatballs or meatloaf).  She also liked ham at thanksgiving.  She used to eat eggs twice a week for dinner, but lately it's a once a week for lunch and she doesn't care for it much.  I have to say our new food is hummus.  She LOVES hummus.  I give her veggies to dip in a bowl of it, but literally she just scoops it into her mouth and only eats a little veggie.  I think it's a bit much but she loves it.  I also plan on trying some tofu recipes.
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