When kids complete their 3 year, its the time for the mother to relax a bit as the kids are now all set to go to school. But at the same time new worries start lingering and one of them is the kid’s food schedule. After some research and suggestion from elders, I came up with a food chart & diet plan for my 3 year old kid.
My daughter is good in everything except eating. This is one and only one problem that I was facing after she completed her six month. My mother – in law consoled me by saying “when she starts to going school, a proper routine will set and she will learn to finish her food without saying much nodding“. It actually happened. 😀 At least she started finishing small paratha that I packed in her lunch box. Now her sleeping and food routine are finally getting better.
Diet plan for 3 to 4 year old kids :
- Morning Fruits:
- Soak almonds/munakka(dry grapes)/walnuts at night and give them after peeling it off.. Let me tell you what I do, I handed over 8-10 almonds to my daughter and ask her to distribute among us. She likes this idea and finishes her share easily.
- For morning time apple is also a good option. You can give two to three slice of apple as a finger food . kids can finish this while roaming here and their.
- Breakfast for 3 to 4 years old:
- After half an hour, give a small glass of milk with 2-4 biscuits(preferably wheat flour biscuits) or a slice of cheese or vegetable sandwich. You can add kesar badam mix powder to the milk to enhance the flavor and richness of milk.
- If the school is at late hours you can prepare upna/poha /idly/uttapam etc. for your kid before they go to school.
- Lunch box ideas for 3 year old:
- Full your kids lunch box with nutritional food or the good food which he resist to take at home. Because pre- school is a place where your choosy kiddo started to learn lots of things specially finishing the lunch box. And I know this is the most satisfactory part for a mother.
- Paratha and sabzi is best in lunch box. You can give a twist in the lunch box by putting different vegetables and different paratha (stuffed paratha with paneer or potato or mix veg) . Or you can try party paratha my daughter’s all time favorite.
Quick Tip: You can replace the menu of lunch box once in a week for a change with Poha/ upma/uttapam /sandwiches etc.
- Healthy after school meals:
- When your little one come from school, give them enough time to explain what they did in the school. Give your full attention to them. Check their lunch box in front of your kiddo, if they finished it properly show your good expression by saying, You are my good baby, I love u beta. But if some food remains in the lunch box make a sad face that is enough for your baby to understand that, you feel bad.
- Small glass of lassi/chaash/banana shake/or any other shake or half paratha with a bowl of yogurt(sweet or salted) is enough for your kid to get a nice sleep of 1-2 hour. Fresh Yogurt is one of the must food you have to include in your kids daily diet plan. Preferable time for giving curd is mid -noon when sun is in its pick. Avoid curd if baby is suffering from cold.
- Coconut water is good for the baby . Change the menu by bringing coconut for your little-one. My daughter started dancing when she saw coconut with a straw in it. She finishes the water as she wanted to have the cream inside it.
Quick Tip: In winters, if your baby is having cold you can replace curd with warm soup.
Read 22 home remedies for cold and cough in babies and kids.
- Afternoon nap & Evening snacks:
- After your kid wake up cherish there mood then bring a proper food for him. Rice or Roti +daal+any vegetables. Can add one or 2 slices of tomato. Don’t forget to add a spoon of home made ghee in daal or khichidi.
- After 2 to 3 hour give a small glass of milk with any nuts or fruit or a slice of wheat cake which they loves to eat.
- Dinner for kids:
- It is a good practice if mother take dinner with their kids, children feel good if their mother sit beside them and have their food with them.
- Roti(missi or plain)+sabji or dalia for the dinner.
- If your kid is a late sleeper as mine, give small glass of milk, can add a pinch of turmeric powder specially in winters.
Special Tips for healthy food habits of your baby:
- Indulge your child in family meals by encouraging him or her to select food from whatever is being served to the entire family, rather than making a separate “kids” meal you know he or she will eat.
- Encourage your preschool age child to track the colors of their foods . He will become more interested to have different vegetables of different colors.
- Try to have food with your baby. Eating with your child is a great way to bond and model healthy attitudes toward eating.
- Never bribe your child with physical things for finishing the food. You can encourage your baby to finish the food by saying , I will go for a walk with you or I will play hide and seek with you or other game which he or she loves to play with you.
- You can try milk and roti also. My daughter take it easily. Just take half bowl of milk and put small pieces of roti in it with a pinch of sugar or half spoon honey. This is also a healthy food as sometime the vegetables we prepared for everyone was not liked by our choosy little customer.
3 to 4 years baby food chart table:
|Time||Meal||Food for baby|
|7:00 – 7:30 AM||Early Morning||4 almonds(soaked overnight) or 2-3 slice of apple|
|8:00 – 8.30 AM||After half an hour||1glass milk(mix kesar badam powder to it) + vegetable sandwich/cheese sandwich / 2-4 wheat biscuits|
|10:00 – 10:30 AM||Lunch box||Paratha + any vegetable/poha / uttapam/upma/ idly chutney.|
|12:30 – 1:00 PM||After school hours||Soup(tomato,mix veg etc)/lassi/shakes/half paratha and a bowl of curd or any fruit of her interest(Opt for any one)|
|3:00 – 3:30 PM||After your baby wake up||Rice/paratha+ vegetables+ dal(give 1 or 2 slice of tomato) or vegetable khichidi|
|5:30 – 6:00 PM||Evening time||1 glass milk+a hand ful of nuts(almonds,pista,walnuts etc.) or any fruit. Avoid citrus fruits with milk like orange.|
|7:30 – 8:00 PM||Dinner time||1 fulka +vegetables(that is prepared for the family) + dal(optional) or (rice+dal+vegetables) or (vegetable dalia )or (milk and sweet dalia.)|
|9:30 – 10:00 PM||Late night||Milk with a pinch of turmeric in it.|
|Food to Avoid||Food to Take|
|Fried food, road side food, cream, mayonnaise, mutton, meat, fried chicken , packed food, chocolates etc.||Milk, milk products, green vegetables, fruits, yogurt, nuts, egg, chicken, pulses, home made ghee, whole grain etc.|
Note : The food chart I mentioned above is just a sample one. You can made changes in the food and timing as per your needs or what suits you more.
Mothers you all know well, kids of this age group is not so easy to handle specially when food come in front of them. So keep trying by making the food time a fun time or learning time for your kiddo.
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Please do share some different ideas or food recipes that you give to your kids as my daughter is 3.5 now.
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Very nice ideas as well as helpful for a mother
very good advice regarding my 3 years old baby
It was really nice to read a blog post. I have been a huge fan of your blog posts for many years. Thanks for always being there :