Let's Eat!

Getting children to eat healthy is not always an easy task; so here are a few books and resources that will make this topic a bit easier to swallow, for both children and parents.  

Too Pickey! Jean Reidy

Too wrinkly, too squishy, too fruity, too fishy! It's lunchtime, but our fussy little boy does not like a single item on his plate. What is a boy to eat? Reidy's playful rhyming text is once again brought to life by Leloup's stylish bold art. Parents (and children) will love the hilarious antics the boy goes through, and the reassuring joy at the end of all that kitchen-table drama.

Jake Goes Peanuts Michael Wright

He would not try tomatoes or a single Brussels sprout. And if he tasted something new, he'd spit that thing right out. Jake is a picky eater. Everything new makes Jake's list of foods he doesn't like. Everything except peanut butter. Jake loves peanut butter. Does the whole family have to eat peanuts for every meal? Peanut butter pancakes? Even peanut butter pot roast?! Will Jake ever try something new? The answer will delight children and their (not-so-picky) parents!

Harry Hungry! Steven Salerno 

Harry's gonna MUNCH, and CRUNCH, and eat everything in sight! Blueberries are a fine snack for some babies. But not this little guy. Harry is hungry! His tummy grumbles and rumbles. Momma asks him to wait just a minute. But Harry can't, Harry won't. Off he goes to munch the flower bed, the neighbor's house, the school! Will nothing stop this hungry baby? Steven Salerno's entertaining illustrations and spirited story transform a universal experience into a feast of fantasy that readers of all ages will relish.


Chew, Chew, Gulp!  Lauren Thompson 

New York Times bestselling author Lauren Thompson and acclaimed illustrator Jarrett J. Krosoczka show readers the joys of eating in this bright, rhythmic book that's perfect for the youngest chompers and gulpers. Every page features kids devouring their favorite foods, accompanied by bouncy rhyming text and a corresponding label for what's being eaten. Crunching, munching, gobbling, or guzzling! There are so many different ways to eat, each one more fun than the last!

The Kings Taster Kenneth Oppel

The royal chef takes Max the dog, the royal taster, on several international journeys to find a dish for the land's pickiest king.

Night of the Veggie Monster  George McClements. 

When just a single pea touches the lips of this determined vegetable hater, an enormous battle of war and peas begins. But our hero doesn't just cry, whine, or refuse to swallow. He turns into a VEGGIE MONSTER! That is until... gulp! He accidentally swallows the pea, and realizes that maybe vegetables aren't so bad after all. At least until broccoli night comes around. With inventive mixed-media illustrations and a short, snappy text that combines a child's dinner-time drama with a hilarious parents'-eye-view, George McClements has created a wry and funny story that just might inspire a few veggie monsters out there to give peas a chance.


I'd Really Like to Eat a Child  Sylviane Donnio

A scrawny little crocodile wants the opportunity to bite off more than he can chew. He's tired of bananas; today he'd like to eat a child. But he's smaller than he thinks, and the little girl he chooses for his first meal puts him in his place; for she picks him up and tickles his tummy! The little crocodile is going to have to eat a lot of bananas and grow a lot bigger before he can add children to his menu! Simple yet hilarious artwork brings this droll story to life.

Princess Picky Marjorie Priceman

Princess Nicki has perfect posture, wears perfect princess attire, and has perfectly memorized every chapter of "Manners for Monarchs," but she refuses to eat her vegetables. From Caldecott Honor recipient Marjorie Priceman comes a droll, playful story about a perfectly picky eater.

Kid Friendly Cookbooks

Pretend Soup and Other Real Recipes: A Cookbook for Preschoolers & Up Mollie Katzen

This book includes twenty child-tested recipes including such delicacies as Counting Soup, Chewy Energy Circles, and Polka Dot Rice. Each illustrated recipe offers the child chef the opportunity to count, measure, mix, assemble, and most important, have fun. Designed as do-together projects, with the child as chef and the adult as assistant, these kitchen adventures will give children confidence in their cooking skills and inspire a life-long healthy relationship with food. With Salad People and a little time in the kitchen, budding chefs will cheer: "I like it because I made it myself!"

Kids Cook 1-2-3: Recipes for Young Chefs Using Only 3 Ingredients  Rozanne Gold 

Over 100 easy-to-follow recipes that contain only three ingredients while being kid-friendly and healthy.

Learning About Food

 Where Does Food Come From?  Shelley Rotner

Examines where favorite foods come from and how they begin. Fruits, grains, vegetables, dairy, nuts, sugars and salt are examined. This book is geared to a younger audience and thus,does not cover the topic of meat. 

What the World Eats Faith D'Aluisio

Older children might like to examine the world around them through a closer look at what people eat. Cultural geographers Menzel and D'Aluisio visited 25 families in 21 countries to create this fascinating look at what people around the world eat in a week. Meet a family that hunts for seal and fish together; a family that raises and eats guinea pigs; and a family that drinks six gallons of Coca-Cola a week.

Parent Resource


Food for Thought : Ideas for Parents of Preschoolers  Barbara Farner ; University of Illinois Extension.

We can!: Ways to Enhance Children's Activity and Nutrition National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Recipes for Healthy Kids  Challenge.gov.

Choose My Plate USDA