Let's Become an Investigator

Fueling Healthy Kids: Module 3

a person and a girl eating food.

In module 3, we will use the information we have gathered from step 2 to develop New food trials for the client. New food trials, as previously mentioned, are designed to specifically expose a patient to foods or food groups that are lacking in the diet. We want to make it fun and interesting. It is also important to make this a designated time of the day, away from meal times and focused on exploration, not caloric intake.

In this stage it is also important to encourage and grant the most autonomy as possible for the child. While you as the parent ultimately will decide the foods we will trial- I recommend providing a few ideas you are ok with, and allowing the child to choose the one to start with.

Once a food is chosen, it is best to offer that food in a variety of ways, I usually recommend three different ways. This allows a child to explore a food in a variety of textures, temperatures and combinations. It makes conversation around the exploration easy and further encourages autonomy as the child now has the ability to choose the way they prefer the most.

Use the magnifying glass, placemat, and possibly try a special plate that is designated for food trials. Remember that in new food trials exploration is acceptance. This includes playing with the food, exploration of the texture, the way it cuts, mashes, pulls apart etc. Try exploring things like clean paint brushes to "paint" butter, or other condiments on the new food.

This stage might get messy, but similar to the importance of play in the preschool setting, the importance of exploration with new foods is important in broadening a palate.

family playing with food.


Carrots Shredded Sautéed, with a bit of honey Dipped in Ranch
Apples Various types (fresh) Homemade applesauce Cut into strips with various toppings,
i.e. peanut butter, cheese, cinnamon, etc.
Grapes Various types Frozen Raisins
Spinach Freshly chopped with dressing,
like a salad
Sautéed, with olive oil Baked into spinach squares
Beef Ground beef patty,
like a hamburger
Cooked ground beef with marinara Steak in age-appropriate bites
Broccoli Broccoli & cheese Roasted broccoli Raw broccoli
Avocado Sliced Mashed into a simple guacamole served with hard-boiled egg
Sweet Potatoes Baked with butter
and brown sugar
Sweet potato fries Mashed sweet potatoes
Fish Shellfish with ketchup
or cocktail sauce
White fish with a light butter Baked salmon
Cauliflower Raw with various dips Roasted cauliflower Puréed cauliflower
Pasta Various types Various dipping suaces Combination food, such as lasagna

What's Next? 

It's time to take what we've learned in Module 3 and create a plan. Follow the link below to learn how to put this plan into practice.