Hello, my name is Ashli...I'm the mother of the world's pickiest eater. My two-year-old doesn't like certain colors, textures, smells, looks, consistencies or even the names of certain foods. It's nearly impossible to get him to try something he's never tried before.

I'm not exactly sure when it all started...I think he started his picky ways when we stopped feeding him applesauce and rice cereal and he started giving him foods with various textures. He wasn't a fan.

I decided to use our time together in quarantine to break him of this habit. It's been tough, but my tricks are working. We're getting him more involved in the cooking process. It's fun for him to put the toppings on his own pizza, or help make muffins with me in the kitchen. He's more likely to 'try' something new if he's helped make it.

We are sticking to a very strict eating schedule. He gets three meals and two snacks a day. We've eliminated milk and juice from his routine outside of meal time.

We're saying no to toys, TV, games, etc. at the table when we eat. We used to scramble to put a show on our phones for him while he ate to distract him into eating mindlessly. It worked but only for the food he already liked.

So, I decided to be stealthy and start putting vegetables into food I already know he likes. Yesterday, I made carrot and zucchini muffins. My expectations were that I'd probably end up being the one to eat them because he probably wouldn't. 

To my surprise, he LOVES them. He asks for them constantly...and they're healthy. So, if you've got an insanely picky eater at home like I do...try this recipe. It worked for me, and I'm hoping it will work for you too! P.S. if your kid asks what the carrots and zucchini chunks are...tell them it's sprinkles. That's what I did.

Zucchini and carrot toddler muffins

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats (I put these in the blender and ground them up into a flour-like texture first because my son HATES the texture of oatmeal)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar or to make it extra healthy sub for 3/4 cup honey
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup of oil or to make it extra healthy sub for 3/4 cup apple sauce
  • 1 cup grated zucchini (use a napkin or towel to soak up all the extra juices)
  • 1 cup grated carrot (use a napkin or towel to soak up all the extra juices)

Directions

I started out by grating my zucchini and carrots. You'll want to use a napkin to squeeze out all the extra juice. You want the veggies to be moist but not super wet. In fact, you can collect the juices, save it, and add it to their smoothie for later. The juice is super healthy.

Then, I took out my blender and I ground up the rolled oats until they were a fine powdered texture.

In a large bowl, add in all your dry ingredients and set it aside. In your kitchen aide mixer add in all the wet ingredients and blend together. Once the wet ingredients are blended, add in the dry ingredients and mix it all together.

The texture is going to seem all sorts of WRONG, but trust me, it's supposed to be super dense and thick...like cookie dough. Use table spoon and scoop out the batter into your generously greased muffin tin. You can use muffin papers, but I didn't.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Bake your muffins for about 20 minutes. You know they're done when they're firm to touch or a toothpick poke to the middle comes out clean.

This recipe made 24 muffins for me, but I've got a smaller than normal size muffin tin at home. It should make you about 12 regular sized muffins. There's about 125-150 calories in my batch of 24. Double that for a batch of 12. These are meant to be a meal replacement for a quick breakfast on the go. They pair well with a cup of milk, berries or a small fruit smoothie.