3 reasons why you should let your child play with their food

3 reasons why you should let your child play with their food

If you feel like nothing is working with your picky eater, it is time to try FOOD PLAY.

Letting your child play with food does three things:

1. It takes away the fear of trying new foods.

2. Builds food confidence to try the food.

3. It makes food FUN  - and children learn best while having fun.

This is all backed by research and is a simple, yet effective way to help your fussy eater learn to like new foods.

As a paediatric dietitian and mother of two picky eaters, I have seen the magic of food play use it with my clients and at home!

This is how you do it:

  • Get a chopping board, child safe knife and fruit or veggie to explore. 
  • Without any expectation for your child to eat the food, sit down with them to do the activity.
  • Keep it simple. Don't make it about eating, make it about exploring and having fun.
  • Ask your child to describe what the fruit or veggie looks, feels, smells and sounds like. Let your child take the lead.


"Interacting with the sensory properties of food during tactile play may particularly benefit children who are food neophobic, going through a period of fussy eating or who are simply unwilling to taste new/disliked foods."1

Our Veggie Explorer FOOD PLAY kit contains 35 food play cards to give you the language and know how to do food play at home with your picky eater. This kit is designed to be used over and over again to explore new veggies or ANY food for that matter...

We also stock FOOD PLAY TOOLS to bring the FUN element to food play. Have a look at our online store here.

Have you tried food play yet? Leave a comment or question below and I'll answer it.


1. Niketsing et al. Current Obesity Reports (2018) 7:60–67


Important note - our products and advice are aimed at children aged 3 - 8 years and is not suitable for children under 3 yrs of age.




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