baby

ROADTEST: 'I introduced 5 new foods over 5 days to my fussy toddler. Here's a very honest recap of how that went.'

Coles
Thanks to our brand partner, Coles

So, you know how toddlers spend half of their time lulling you into a false sense of security, only to rip the proverbial rug out from under you the moment a smug sentence like “he’s a great eater” slips out of your mouth? 

Welcome to toddler-mum life.

I have to admit, I personally found the journey of introducing solids more than a bit overwhelming, and just as I thought I had a handle on things, we entered the throwing-food-on-the floor-while-making-full-eye-contact phase. 

It was clear I needed to shake things up, let go of any and all expectations and try something new. So this week, I decided to take on the challenge of introducing 5 new things my fussy little monkey hadn’t tried before. 

Here’s exactly how that went.

Day 1: Savoury snack pouch.

Here we go!

Now, the CUB range at Coles snacks holds a bit of a special place in my heart because my introduction to it came in classic new-mum form. 

I was in my second parents’ group meet-up when my little one simultaneously spit up and had a poo-splosion through his onesie. I had no nappies left and one of my soon-to-be mum friends subtly slid a CUB nappy over to me and mouthed “you’re doing so well”. Naturally, we became fast friends and I’ve stuck with both her and the CUB nappies well into toddlerhood.

What I didn’t realise was that they also have a range of food pouches for people like me: budget-conscious, but wanting my bub to be eating quality, nutritious things. They’re perfect for when I don’t have time for meal prep and need something super convenient that covers all the nutritional bases, all while actually tasting appealing to a fussy toddler. Sign. Me. Up. 

We ended up starting our challenge a day earlier than I’d planned, because the leftover spanakopita I served my little one for dinner ended up entirely on the floor. I wanted to see if we could at least get something into him before bed, so I whipped out the CUB Organic Chicken with Sweetcorn & Brown Rice pouch. I needed something easy, healthy and tasty for him, but of course my toddler would be the judge of that last one. 

Image: Supplied.

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Image: Supplied.

This was his first time trying chicken because we’re a mostly vegetarian household, but I never want that to limit my child’s exposure to as many food choices as we can. I want him to grow up knowing that all food is on the table, literally! Having said that, I don’t love preparing meat, so this is a perfect way to give him the option without me having to actually cook it. Win, win. 

Verdict: Well, it worked! Very smoothly too. I loved the quality of the pouch, and it was 10/10 convenient so I know I have a new go-to when I need a meal with substance for him that won't break the bank (or steal all my time making). He actually ate most of it (a feat for him!), and had a great time smooshing his little hands into the bowl and moisturising them with the puree. Quite a visual treat for me, but I’m calling it a great success!

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Day 2: Homemade muffin

On day two, I decided to try my hand at one more Coles CUB moment, as he loved it so much, and integrate one of the CUB Organic fruit pouches into some muffins for easy snacking. This also came with the added bonus of making me look like a super-mum when I later caught up with a friend, and came to the rescue with a muffin for her hangry toddler, too. 

Pretending like I’m the kind of person who even knows how to throw these together like they do on Masterchef (hint: I absolutely am not! I consulted Google!), I threw in 1.5 cup self-raising flour, 1/3 cup rolled oats, 3 eggs, 1/4 cup maple syrup and around 3/4 cup of yoghurt (I just used a whole Coles CUB Organic Apple, Banana & Blueberry 120gm pouch), along with a 1/3 cup oil (we use grapeseed oil in our house, but you can use an alternative) and frozen berries (because fresh berries are going out of season, so all about that cost-efficiency!). 

Image: Supplied.

Am I… getting the hang of convincing him to like new types of foods?! He was hooked! I felt a bit clever repurposing a yoghurt pouch into a baked good (Masterchef… maybe do call me?) for that extra nutritious kick. This recipe was actually so easy, it’s officially going to become a weekly thing. Especially after my little one’s positive reaction to them. 

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Verdict: He cheerfully munched on his muffin that afternoon and my heart did a little happy dance.

Image: Supplied.

Day 3: Anchovies

Okay, this was a bit of curve ball, but I want to offer all foods, including those I personally find... a bit gross. Buuut, I know they're packed with some much good stuff for his little body! Protein! Calcium! Vitamin A! 

At least we can say we tried. It turns out my toddler shares my sentiments on tiny tinned fish, because the face he made when the slimy little thing reached his mouth was priceless. 

Verdict: Um, no thank you. 

Image: Supplied.

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Day 4: Blackberries

I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to introduce blackberries! What a hit. He absolutely smashed half a punnet and afterwards his mouth was covered in purple berry juice (very cute) and he looked like a happy little zombie who’s just devoured a human heart. 😂

Image: Supplied.

Verdict: Cute, and great success. 

Day 5: Olives

I am mad for olives and my own mum recently reminded me that this love started right at the beginning of my life. I was munching on them at 6 months old and I couldn’t believe I hadn’t introduced them to my toddler yet! 

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Well, no need for the blood test to confirm it: he’s definitely my child. The look of pure joy at the salty treat was such a perfect way to end my week of living dangerously at toddler mealtime. 

Verdict: that’s my boy!

Image: Supplied.

I loved this little experiment. It served as a beautiful reminder not to take the whole toddler food journey too seriously. I’m sometimes convinced that my little boy was put on this planet to purge the insufferable perfectionism out of me, and I love him dearly for it.

Honestly, I am bloody proud of how well it went. Of course, I’m not foolish enough to say that out loud in front of my child, the kid can’t form sentences yet, but he hears everything and WILL make me look like a total liar.

Shop the CUB Organic food pouches, exclusively at Coles and help your child discover new tastes, textures and aromas. Made from high quality, wholesome ingredients they contain no artificial colours or flavours.

If serving the food suggestions featured in this article to your child, caution is advised. Check for safety and choking hazards, and prepare foods in accordance to what's recommended for their age and developmental stage.

Feature Image: Supplied. 

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Coles
We're here to help you protect and care for your little cub as they play, learn and grow. Carefully developed with high quality ingredients and materials that are rigorously tested, the CUB range has been created to help savvy parents focus on the important, enjoyable moments. So from super-absorbent, comfy nappies through to nutritious baby foods and baby-safe accessories, you and your little cub can rely & trust our entire range. CUB feel good baby care. Exclusive to Coles.