Fussy eaters can be the bane of your life if you’re hosting a dinner party. Whether they’re fussy kids whose parents choose to give you an advance list of likes and dislikes, or adults who just sit at the table and pick. To help, we’ve got the perfect list of fail-safe meal ideas that will please even the most difficult of diners.
Start with the basics
Homemade baked beans are fun, easy to make and recognised by everyone. Buy a tin of haricot beans and add water, a couple of tablespoons of ketchup, a pinch of salt and pepper, some bacon, some vinegar and some sugar. You don’t have to go overboard on the dry ingredients – just a pinch will do.
Mix all of the ingredients together, place in a dish covered with foil and bake for around 40 minutes. Of course, you’re welcome to leave the bacon out of the recipe for a vegetarian take on this classic side dish.
Enrol the kids in the preparation process and they may just be more inclined to eat it. They may even tell other guests just how good the dish is because they helped to make it.
Keep it simple with fun and playful veggies
The number one rule when entertaining fussy eaters is to keep your meal simple. Everyone loves spuds, so add a touch of fun with McCain Smiles. Any fussy eaters will be so distracted by the joy on their plate that they’re unlikely to be looking at the accompaniments to the dish.
Most kids insist that they hate broccoli, but it’s probably only because they’ve heard their friends say the same thing. Try this quick and easy chicken and broccoli recipe in a bid to convert your diners.
Add some sesame seeds and peanuts for extra taste and you’ve got a fantastically easy dish, and maybe even a new broccoli fan.
Add a dash or two of colour
Jamie Oliver has a lot of children, five at the last count, and he does know a thing or two about fussy eaters. He suggests that simple, colourful recipes are the way to feed fussy eaters. Homemade burgers are a good place to start and you can always add a colourful salad to encourage your darlings to enjoy cucumber, tomatoes and other fresh and tasty veggies.
You could always go a step further by making some fantastic dips or inventive salads, as long as the plate looks appealing. Remember that we eat with our eyes as well as our taste buds.
A few more tips…
Encourage fussy eaters to get involved in the cooking process and you’re sure to have more luck when convincing them to try something new. If that’s not possible, it’s another good rule of thumb not to always tell your guests what they’re going to be eating in minute detail. When dining, keep things light-hearted and don’t be tempted to keep checking in on your guests to see what they’ve eaten. Let fussy eaters explore their plate at their own pace and you’ll find that many are more than willing to give things a go all by themselves.