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Apr 26, 2008 05:38 PM

Toddler Recipes anyone? Help me with meatloaf!

Trying to get my very difficult nearly 3 year old to eat some meatloaf...any good recipe ideas? Was thinking to put bread crumbs, ketchup, worcestshire, egg in it, and fresh parsley, salt, pepper...--wanted to make small 1 lb meatloaves to try it out, and then if it works out, slice it up, and freeze them for servings....

my son lives on the Dr. Praeger spinach and potato pancakes....and peanut butter cracker sandwiches, and he still loves chicken noodle in the jar and won't give it up...

have tried to turn him onto many things but he rejects all of them...except he does like some Thai food from our favorite place and he will only eat it there...

I also take chicken breast and bake it with portobello mushrooms, carrots and then puree it a bit with rice, and he eats that...I use a balsamic vinager and olive oil and fresh basil when cooking it....

I tried making him an orange marmelade with portobello mushroom chicken and he rejected it, though..thought he'd like the sweetness, but he didn't..but it was delicious...

so, I'm trying to come up with recipes that I can prepare ahead and then make little packages to freeze, so anyone can just take it out and reheat it for him...

the kid hates pizza, is afraid of pasta, hates anything with cheese, macaroni and cheese is a no go---

he loves garlic rolls, pretzels, coconut ice cream, and trader joes soy meatballs, and yogurt.

he also likes grapefruit, strawberries, grapes, and bananas...

Thanks for any advice!!!

so, please help with any good irrestible meatloaf recipes....

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  1. Here's my recipe which I can modestly say everyone always loves... except for my 5 year old, but he won't eat anything. If it's any consolation, it sounds like yours is a much better eater than mine.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Chris VR

      I have made Chris VR's meatloaf a bunch of times and it is good, but the last few times I made Martha Stewart's Meatloaf 101 just for a change (sorry Chris!) but I use all beef and no pork. My kids love it, but I am lucky in that my 3 1/2 and 1 1/2 year olds eat anything.

      I've also been meaning to try these "Diner Meat Loaf Muffins", but haven't done so yet.

      Also, not meat loaf but meatballs...I made these Cranberry Cocktail Meatballs recently and they were good and a little different from meatballs with tomato sauce, plus they are good to keep in small portions in the freezer.

      1. re: valerie

        We love the Cooking Light Diner Meatloaf Muffins! I've made them with beef or chicken and they turned out great and I love the fact that they cook so fast! I'm sure you could use the cooking directions and make your fave meatloaf in the muffin tins too.

        I have three kids 6, 3&1/2 and 2...and the last two are fairly picky, and meat/protein seems to be the hardest thing to get them to eat. My youngest, aside from liking fruit and the like also likes raw tomatoes, cherry/grape/whatever form..(surprised me since I never liked tomatoes as a kid).He'll also eat hummus and mild veggie chili, so he gets a fair bit of protein from beans. There are some things, like the tomatoes for instance, tha he didn't like the first 1-2 times but now just loves so don't give up on Thai takeout (vs having to eat there) But as Quine says, there are some things he just may never like... If he's not adverse to rice maybe try polenta or couscous instead of pasta, or even orzo which looks so similar to rice?

        My bunch also loves eating things they've picked out, baby cucumbers from the very personable "cucumber man" at the Farmer's Market for instance, they also love things that are meatballs are in regular rotation around here. I've also found that if you appear anxious and are too focused on them liking a new food the less likely they are to eat it.... but then maybe that's just my kids :)

    2. TAKE deep breaths! RELAX! He is a 3 year old, It is his job..his existance to be picky and all that as he absorbs hat he is learning around him.

      Your anxiety about his eating and what he is eating will definately make him rebel (that is also what a 3 YO's job is, learning self)

      Just because you like it doesn't mean he *ever* has to like it. he isn't gonna starve just because he isn't eating orange marmelade with portobello mushroom chicken or meatloaf or whatever. Let him learn what good,plain, fresh food tastes like (and what his preferences are). he will like some so much that is all he wishes to eat for each and every meal for months.

      Again, relax.

      1. since he loves the dr praeger spinach cakes, try mixing some chopped spinach into the meatloaf.

        1. My daughter is four-and-a-half (price of admission to this converstation).

          Your son likes: Dr. Praeger spinach and potato pancakes, garlic rolls, pretzels, coconut ice cream, Trader Joe's soy meatballs, yogurt, grapefruit, strawberries, grapes, and bananas.

          Pretty good. Don't worry.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Sam Fujisaka

            Mine is five. I agree with Sam and Quine above. Relax, let it go, and enjoy. I thought my kid ate well, but yours is impressive already.

            1. re: Sam Fujisaka

              Mine son is three - and I'm with Sam and Powella - that's not a bad list! If he eats soy meatballs why not try making meat balls instead of meat loaf? They also freeze well if you want to make it more convenient. Does he eats the noodles from the jarred chicken soup? Try serving noodle bowl with meatballs in it - my son loves that. He eats the soft vegetables, the broth, the noodles and the meat - all because we call it soup.

            2. the ingredients you listed sound like a pretty standard and tasty meatlof recipe. i usully cheat and go the lipton onion soup route when i make meatloaf.

              as far as his picky eating habits.......i have found that sometimes with my picky eaters its all about presentation. if he likes the soy meatballs, you could try reserving a little of the meat and make some small balls to bake along with your meatloaf. if it looks like something he already likes you may have more sucess. good luck!