Healthy Recipes for Picky Eaters (2024)

Published: by Lyndsey Piccolino · This post may contain affiliate links

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If you are trying to feed picky kids and you're on a hunt for healthy recipes for picky eaters - look no further! I've rounded up 31 of the best easy, simple, and healthy meals for fussy eaters. Each of these easy meals is delicious, filling, and nutritious, and is approved by even the pickiest eater!

Healthy Recipes for Picky Eaters (1)

It's not just toddlers, kids, and babies that are picky eaters - adult picky eaters exist also! If you've ever struggled to help feed your family nutritious and healthy foods that they will want to eat, you are not alone!

I began this blog to share healthy recipes for picky eaters that my family enjoyed. There is nothing more frustrating than setting a grocery budget, planning family dinner ideas, shopping, and making meals just to have no one eat them!

That's why you'll find kid-friendly and healthy comfort food recipes right here! Check out these 51 healthy recipes for picky eaters that I've collected from our archives and friends across the web!

What Can I Cook for Picky Eaters?

These recipes are tried-and-true family easy dinner favorites that will help to make mealtime easier, no matter how picky your eaters are.


Kids will love this crispy chicken!

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Crispy Panko Chicken in the Air Fryer

It has the perfect texture, thanks to the air fryer and panko breadcrumbs. Perfect for sensitive taste buds.


Make a simple and healthy dinner with these thinly sliced chicken breasts and a side of sweet potatoes, like these sweet potato slices.

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Oven Baked Thin Sliced Chicken Breasts

This recipe is so versatile and can be customized with your favorite seasonings.


This delicious and easy meal will have your family racing to the dinner table!

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Turkey is not just for Thanksgiving! This juicy meat is great for even young kids, thanks to its great texture and flavor.


Basic ingredients, smooth texture, and great flavor make this one of the best kid-friendly meals.

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Best Slow Cooker Turkey Meatballs Recipe (Gluten-Free)

Meatballs slow-cooked in tomato sauce are simple and can be eaten alone or with a side dish of green beans.


You won't have to cook separate meals with this recipe! Everyone will love this easy chicken recipe.

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Pancake Chicken

Another crispy chicken kids and picky eaters will love to try.


This recipe is great for hiding veggies like zucchini or carrots.

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Easy Air Fryer Chicken Burgers (Make From Frozen!)

Serve these burgers with sweet potato fries, or french fries.


This Instant Pot recipe is perfect to make on a busy weeknight.

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Instant Pot Chicken Tacos

Make taco night easy with this 2-ingredient taco recipe.


Homemade pizza is easier than you think! This recipe will be a hit!

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Homemade Flatbread Pizza

Making pizza at home is a fun activity to get picky eaters involved in cooking! They can help make the dough and choose the toppings.

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3-Ingredient Crock Pot Ground Beef (Crock Pot Taco Meat)

This basic taco meat recipe is perfect for making plain tacos for picky eaters.


The perfect recipe for taco night! Use black beans for a vegetarian version.

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Easy Baked Walking Taco Casserole

Top with sour cream, creamy avocado or guacamole, and your other favorite taco toppings!

This simple meal takes only 5 minutes to make. Perfect for snack time or a quick meal.

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5 Minute Easy and Simple Cheese Quesadilla Recipe

Add in some ground beef or plain chicken for some extra protein.


Cheap and quick to make and customizable by adding in the toppings you want!

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10-Minute Air Fryer Naan Pizza

This is one of our go-to meals for busy weeknights.


This hearty soup is the perfect meal for chilly nights.

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How to Make the Best Easy Chicken Pastina Soup Recipe

Pro tip: separate the ingredients for picky eaters with texture issues.


This basic protein can be cut into small pieces for picky toddlers.

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Easy 10-Minute Air Fryer Chicken Sausage

You can follow this recipe using pork sausage too.


Homemade chicken nuggets are surprisingly simple to make and taste delicious!

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Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets

Chicken nuggets are one of those staple kid-friendly meals. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce.


This slow cooker hidden vegetable pasta sauce has the vegetables all blended up in to it, so you won't even know there are there. 5 different vegetables, easy to adapt, vegan, and freezes well too.

It can be difficult for most of us to get enough vegetables into our diet, but it's even harder if you don't like vegetables at all. This hidden veggie recipe is one of the easiest healthy recipes for picky eaters because it hides the veggies so well!


Make these for a simple snack or an easy meal!

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Air Fryer Chicken Tenders

Crispy chicken tenders are fun to eat with a delicious dipping sauce.


Air fryer homemade taquitos made healthy with shredded chicken and tasty ranch Greek yogurt dip!

These air fryer taquitos are a kid-friendly, healthy recipe that is great for picky eaters (and includes hidden veggies!) Make straight from the freezer to the table inless than 25 minutes!


A cozy and comforting bowl that fussy eaters will have no problem gobbling up!

Pasta is a great choice when getting fussy eaters to try new things! This recipe is simple and easy to make and even throw in a few veggies if you want!


These healthy chocolate zucchini muffins are made with simple ingredients, have no refined sugar and are dairy free. Super moist, fudgy and delicious with chocolate flavor, they will be a hit in your home!

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Healthy Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

An easy and seasonal breakfast, lunch snack, or even dessert that boasts hidden veggies and is homemade in just 40 minutes.


This healthy taco recipe is made with lean ground beef tossed with homemade taco seasoning and shredded fresh vegetables. They are an easy-to-make healthier version of homemade taco meat that the whole family will love.

Serve these healthy tacos for taco Tuesday or any night with your favorite taco toppings; they are not only quick but also full of flavor.


Healthy instant pot hamburger helper is an easy weeknight meal your family will love!

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Healthy Instant Pot Hamburger Helper

Made with ground turkey, cheese, noodles and spices, this homemade cheeseburger macaroni tastes even better than the box classic and will be a weeknight dinner winner!


This is one of the easiest healthy recipes for picky eaters to add their own toppings and even maybe a veggie or two! Use a ground beef patty or cooked grilled chicken for a different option.

Sliders are such a great appetizer for a game day party or a quick lunch or dinner option for your family. Below, we’ll outline how to cook sliders in the air fryer quickly and easily! They’re such a delicious meal!


The BEST juicy healthy turkey burger recipe you've ever had! Quick to prep and ready to grill inless than 10 minutes!

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Healthy Turkey Burger Recipe

The most delicious moist spinach and feta turkey burger recipe made with no egg!


Creamy, cheesy taco spaghetti is a great way to introduce picky eaters to taco flavors!

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If your fussy eaters like tacos then this recipe is a great way to introduce them to taco flavors using a generally loved meal - pasta!


Ranch meatloaf is a family favorite homestyle version much like Grandma's but better! This healthy recipe takes the classic version and elevates it with delicious ranch seasoning!

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Ranch Meatloaf

Delicious and easy to make on weeknights or for a Sunday dinner.


This Crockpot Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese has the perfect amount of creaminess and flavor that the whole family will love. It makes an easy vegetarian meal since all of the sauce ingredients can simmer in the slow cooker for the day.

With the addition of butternut squash and lentils, this mac and cheese packs a powerful nutritional punch for the ultimate healthy comfort food!


Air fryer chicken tenders - no breading, no problem! These unbreaded chicken tenderloins have a fraction of the fat and calories of the traditional version thanks to their naked coating and flavorful seasoning!

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Air Fryer Chicken Tenders - No Breading

Juicy and delicious, these healthy chicken tenders can serve as a family friendly main meal or in a salad or wrapin just under 20 minutes.


This simple recipe requires few ingredients and hardly any time. Better than takeout orange chicken ready in 30 to 40 minutes!

Paleo Chinese Orange Chicken made grain-free, soy-free, and refined sugar-free.


Pumpkin zucchini muffins are a healthy breakfast or snack recipe great for feeding hungry kids! Moist, fluffy and light, this is a an easy recipe to double and freeze a batch for a quick snack.

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Pumpkin Zucchini Muffins

Add in some chocolate chips for a little bit of sweetness with the perfect pumpkin zucchini combo!


Healthy protein baked oats is an easy breakfast recipe your entire family will love! Clean eating never looked so good with this delicious morning breakfast.

Healthy Recipes for Picky Eaters (32)

Protein Baked Oats

Easy to make as single-serve baked oats that taste just like cake for breakfast! Highly customizable with delicious flavor options. Quick to bake inless than 30 minutes!

Expert Tips for Making Kid-Friendly Dinners

Over the years, I've developed three strategies for cooking healthy recipes for picky eaters that have in turn helped my fussy eaters eat more broadly and be more open to trying foods.

These are my tried-and-true 3 tips for feeding picky eaters:

  1. Try lots of different foods, many times. Try many different and new foods, many different times to find out what kids like.Once I found what my family preferred, I could make simple swaps to easy recipes (like making chicken burgers instead of turkey burgers) that keep things interesting, but not too much of a change.
  2. Try hidden veggie recipes. One of the easiest ways to hide veggies in your kids' food is by adding spinach to smoothies or sauces. Crockpot turkey meatballs or chicken taquitos are one of my favorite meals to hide veggies in!
  3. Try different forms of veggies and foods. Fun shapes often entice kids to try different or new food. Hence why zucchini fries are a popular choice!

Another strategy I've seen work is creating more choices for picky eaters. That is why an Aldi charcuterie or a simple charcuterie is a great plan for a simple meal where everyone can choose what they want!


How do I eat healthy when I am a picky eater?

Try making a list of the things you like and will eat rather than the things you do not like. Start with the basics of what you will tolerate and go on from there.

It also pays to give food a second chance that you may have not liked in the past. If you think one of these healthy meals for picky eaters looks yummy but you're just not sure - give it a try! Over time your tastes may change and you may enjoy them now.

If you've made this recipe, would you please leave a star rating and comment below on the recipe card? If you wantmore simple + delicious eats, please subscribe to mynewsletterand follow along onFacebook,Pinterest,andInstagram for the latest updates.

Healthy Recipes for Picky Eaters (33)

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5 from 5 votes

Instant Pot Hamburger Helper

Healthy instant pot hamburger helper is an easy weeknight meal your family will love! Made with ground turkey, cheese, noodles and spices, this homemade cheeseburger macaroni tastes even better than the box classic and will be a weeknight dinner winner!

Course Dinner

Cuisine American

Prep Time 10 minutes minutes

Cook Time 25 minutes minutes

Total Time 35 minutes minutes

Servings 8 servings

Calories 506kcal

Author Lyndsey


  • 2.5 cups shredded cheddar Monterey Jack or combination
  • 16 ounces sturdy pasta shells or cavatappi
  • 1 pound ground turkey can substitute ground beef also
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ½ medium onion diced
  • 3 tablespoon butter cut into small cubes
  • 1 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce


  • Using the saute mode, drizzle olive oil into the Instant Pot. Saute onions until translucent, about 3-5 minutes. Add ground beef or turkey, salt and pepper and other seasonings. Cook beef until done, breaking up meat and moving frequently. Once cooked, stir in ½ can of tomato sauce and Worcestershire sauce and remove meat to a side bowl.

    1 pound ground turkey, ½ medium onion, 1 teaspoon mustard powder, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon paprika, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 15 oz can tomato sauce

  • Cancel saute mode and add 16 ounces of sturdy pasta to the pot. Add four cups of water and cook on manual for 4 minutes. Once the cooking cycle completes, carefully quick release and stir noodles.

    16 ounces sturdy pasta

  • Add in butter and stir until well incorporated. Place meat back into pot.

    3 tablespoon butter

  • Add cheese and stir gently. Add milk as needed for a smooth, creamy consistency. Season pasta with salt and pepper and additional seasoning and remaining ½ can of tomato sauce if desired. Serve hot.

    2.5 cups shredded cheddar, ¼ cup milk


  • Make ahead: Make ahead to feed your family for a few days. When you make this cheeseburger mac ahead, add in a bit of milk when you reheat it for leftovers.
  • Storage: Store in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. Freezing not recommended.
  • Reheat: Add a splash of milk and reheat in the microwave until heated through.
  • To avoid burn warning, add in enough olive oil while sautéing ground turkey or beef to ensure you do not get the burn warning.
  • Stir in some sour cream or Greek yogurt for extra creaminess (and protein if using Greek yogurt!)
  • Taco version: Stir in some enchilada sauce to make a taco version. Crunch a few tortilla chips on top for some extra texture (or check out walking taco casserole!)
  • To make vegan: Use plant based meat crumbles, vegan cheese, vegan butter and oat milk if you need to make this recipe dairy free and without meat.
  • To make gluten free: Use gluten free noodles to make recipe gluten free.
  • Part of this recipe was adapted from Pinch of Yum's Instant Pot Macaroni and Cheese recipe.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 506kcal | Carbohydrates: 44.7g | Protein: 28.5g | Fat: 23.4g

Tried this Recipe? Tag me Today!Mention @cookathomemomma or tag #cookathomemomma!

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About Lyndsey Piccolino

Reader Interactions


  1. Holly

    How much kale do you add? It doesn't say in the ingredient list.


    • Lyndsey

      one large handful


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Healthy Recipes for Picky Eaters (2024)


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