Farmer’s markets are back up and open where we live, and mostly everywhere right now. And we just love the market season for so many reasons! If you are a parent of a little one (especially a picky eater) getting out to a farmer’s market with your little(s) could be a big help in introducing them to new foods, teaching them about where foods come from and once you are back home, getting them to try out some of the new finds you picked up!
We make it a habit each weekend to visit at least one farmer’s market, though lately, we have been going to two or three. Our entire family loves the experience, and we love that our kids get to be exposed to so many fresh foods up close. I have found that when little ones get to touch and choose different foods and be such an integral part of the selection process, it really helps with mealtime success later on at home.
Each weekend we let our oldest two kids (ages 3 and 4 years) choose at least one new-to-them food from the market, with the understanding that they will be trying it at some point throughout the weekend in a meal or for a snack. Last weekend, between the two of them, they chose green plums, duck eggs and a salt and pepper cucumber. Week to week, these new-to-them foods may not always result in a new love for the foods chosen, but exposure is key! And with continued exposure to new foods, you are not only broadening your little one’s palate, you are also making them a little more adventurous around food overall, and that is something that may very well stick with them for a lifetime!
Here’s a challenge for you: If you do not regularly visit farmer’s markets, try and get to one this week. And while you are there, let your little one(s) choose some new-to-them foods, and take the opportunity to talk with them while at the market about farming and where food comes from, etc. If you are able, even stop and shake hands with a farmer, and let your kids meet first hand, someone who is helping bring food to others. These little moments can be huge when it comes to trying and accepting new foods and getting excited about meal times. Our kids love farmer’s markets and have come to get so excited over finding (and trying!) something new each week. So grab a bag and some comfortable shoes, and head on over to a market nearby. You may be surprised at how much a different shopping experience will excite your littles; I know it sure does mine!
And if you are interested in a great, farmer’s market friendly recipe, see our breakfast skillet recipe below! You should be able to find everything you need locally and this skillet is perfect for the weekend!
Farmer’s Market Veggie and Egg Breakfast Skillet Recipe
- Sweet Potatoes, 3
- Candy Onion
- Green Onions
- Grape Tomatoes
- Chicken Eggs
- Zucchini, 3
- Olive Oil
- Parsley (optional)
- Salt & Pepper
- Preheat oven broiler on high.
- Cut your sweet potatoes and zucchini into bite-sized pieces and season them as desired. I drizzled them with olive oil, salt and pepper, and, on the sweet potatoes, I added a little bit of smoked paprika. Set them aside.
- Slice up a candy onion, the small shallot, some green onion, and mince a few cloves of garlic. Set aside.
- Cut a handful of grape tomatoes in half and drizzle with just a small amount of olive oil and then season with a little salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Saute the sweet potatoes and zucchini in a large skillet pan for 6-8 minutes until slightly fork tender, then add onion, shallot, and garlic.
- Continue to cook in skillet until the onions soften and garlic is fragrant, then add in tomatoes and cook until they too are softened – then remove from pan.
- Transfer your skillet contents to an oven-safe dish, spreading evenly, and sprinkle with parsley, if desired.
- Crack as many eggs as you wish over the top and place the dish in the oven, under the broiler, and cook until desired. We cooked 6 small eggs, and to get them over easy it took 3 minutes in the broiler – they cook fast, so watch them closely!
- Serve & Enjoy!
POST BY LUNCHES + LITTLES
Lunches + Littles focuses on quick, healthy and fun meal options for little ones while sharing practical tips & tricks on how to make meals enjoyable, all the while keeping things simple. A lover of colorful plates, and an advocate for getting kids in the kitchen, Lunches + Littles is also a great resource for parents of picky eaters, parents looking for healthy family and toddler recipes and those mamas (dads too!) who are short on time. A mantra of sorts: Making meals fun doesn’t have to be hard! With 3 little ones (3 and under) it can’t be! Follow @lunchesandlittles for all of the above… And more!