Friday, October 26, 2007

Shhhh..... Don't Tell My Son

I put carrots in his brownies. Why did I do such a thing? Because he does not eat many vegetables. He eats 3: corn, spaghetti sauce and ketchup.

He used to be an extremely picky eater. And I mean extremely picky. Down to the brand. For a couple of years he had about 5 foods, all brand specific he would eat. While this made grocery shopping quite easy, it made meal time quite the battle.

He is also on the Autism Spectrum Disorders. Picky eating and sensory issues are very common with kids on the spectrum. I had tried sneaking a variety of nutritious foods into his foods before, but the kid knew. He knew as soon as he smelled it. He knew as soon as his tongue was an inch away. Last year, as many of you know, we put him on the GFCF diet. His willingness to try foods increased immensely. He began eating a huge variety of breads, pastas, cereal, meats, dairy (well, substituted dairy) and fruits. He doubled his vegetable intake to 2 – form corn to corn and spaghetti sauce. But he’s still very hesitant to try other vegetables and won’t eat them.

I have heard much about Jessica Seinfeld’s new book Deceptively Delicious. So I decided to give it a try. Why not? What have I got to loose? His tastes are slowly becoming braver. Maybe the taste of vegetables won’t be so over powering in foods he likes now.

So, I gave him the brownie. “Uh, Mom, this brownie tastes different.” No, keep the creative ideas coming, it can still work! “Well, ummm, probably because I put more chocolate chips in it than usual – it might be, umm, more chocolately.” He takes another bite and thinks. “Yea, that might be it.” Then he finishes it and asks for another one.

VICTORY!!! My son has been tricked. He has eaten carrots and is still living. There has been no tantrum. No tears involved. And maybe over time from the slight taste of carrots in brownies he’ll grow a tolerance to the taste if I give him some on his plate.

Ummm. I wonder what other vegetables I can put in his foods without him knowing :)

Brought to you by The Parent Bloggers Network’s contest promoting Deceptively Delicious. Visit PBN to see how you can participate!


bombaygirl said...

I look forward to the day when my son will try new foods without wincing/pushing it away/crying, etc. Love the carrots in the brownies idea! Have you tried zuchinni? Its a big hit, especially since you can't taste it at all, and it makes chocolate cake really moist. mmmmmmmmmm!

Jozet said...

Oh yes! I have to second the chocolate zucchini cake! Any recipe should do, but you might want to grate it fine.

michelle said...

Even though your son is only 3, he might love being in the kitchen with you while you cook some of the family's meals... The experience can be very valuable for special needs kids. They get exposed to new textures, smells, tastes etc and it helps that they are doing those things with you...that you think he is valuable enough to help you in the kitchen! I teach cooking to children and often have children with sensory issues participating - they come away with a new set of experiences to draw from.

On my blog ( I have been talking about where to draw the line between honesty and getting our kids to eat well.

Take a peek and learn about some other ideas that might work that are less deceptive than what Jessica Seinfeld is promoting in this book...

shooless99 said...

hi there!My 5yo with classic autism is extremely picky.putting the carrots in the brownies is a good fruits or veggies here either.very upsetting to watch him eat the same darn thing day after am so right there with you.he goes to school and i pack him a lunch.this is painful cause its just snack food.i get embarrassed to pack it.look forward to keeping up with your blog. my dhs blog is i check on it as well.take care~lisa

SAHMmy Says said...

Congratulations! I've never allowed my son to choose his foods, but I'm sure I'd feel differently if he had special needs. Very creative! Good luck with future efforts :)

zdoodlebub said...

I feel you on this, too. I also say my Z's favorite vegetable is ketchup. I can't wait to buy her cookbook. I'm tired of fighting, but I still want the peace of mind that they are getting what they need.

(Michelle's idea is great, about kids helping in the kitchen. But my Z - totally has no interest in it and I've tried and tried and tried.)

Toni said...

Great idea. My daughter was an extremely picky eater until about a year ago so from ages 2-6, she survived on cheese and. Well, cheese.

I wish I had thought of stuff like this.

VDog said...

Loved your take on this! Don't know how I missed this one, too!

(I wrote on being the picky eater in my family, and hoping to avoid the same fate with my son.)