Fun with Food!

Welcome to Fun with Food! This site was designed to help parents and caregivers find, share and ask about fun foods for your selective toddler!

As a speech-language pathologist specializing in pediatric feeding and swallowing disorders, I encounter many children who have experienced negative associations surrounding food. These children often have accompanying oral motor feeding difficulties and sensory processing difficulties--making eating a very stressful experience instead of an enjoyable one.

This website will hopefully serve as an "idea place" for meals as well as questions and support from other parents and caregivers. Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

‘Tween “toddlers”---Twoddlers?

Twoddler food!  This is the first grouping of a hopeful growing list of ‘In between” puree and table food stage for all of our babies, toddlers and older children who are wishing for grown up food but not quite ready with their oral motor feeding skills. Just remember that you will need to be very aware of allergens in these recipes and check with your pediatrician or dietician before introducing ingredients that have not yet been introduced. I will include store bought and homemade. Think soft on inside and texture on outside, like McCains Potato smiles :)


Homemade soft Nuggets

Tasty Veggie patties

Bread Lovers Beware

The Sweeter side of Protein

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Five Signs that Your Toddler May Benefit from Feeding Therapy

5 Signs that Your Toddler May Benefit from Feeding Therapy Thank you Melanie Potock from for the very helpful information. Please spread the word!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Cinnamon Pumpkin Banana yummalicious waffles--gluten free version

These turned out so good!
2 cups Gluten Free Bisquick
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/4 cups milk
1 cup canned or puree pumpkin
1 mashed ripe banana
2 tbsp. maple syrup of your choice
pumpkin pie spice and/or cinnamon to taste
1 egg

mix together and make into delicious waffles!!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

FPIES--What is it and What are the signs?

What is FPIES?

" FPIES is a non-IgE mediated immune reaction in the gastrointestinal system to one or more specific foods, commonly characterized by profuse vomiting and diarrhea. FPIES is presumed to be cell mediated. Poor growth may occur with continual ingestion. Upon removing the problem food(s), all FPIES symptoms subside. (Note: Having FPIES does not preclude one from having other allergies/intolerances with the food.) The most common FPIES triggers are cow's milk (dairy) and soy. However, any food can cause an FPIES reaction, even those not commonly considered allergens, such as rice, oat and barley. A child with FPIES may experience what appears to be a severe stomach bug, but the "bug" only starts a couple hours after the offending food is given. Many FPIES parents have rushed their children to the ER, limp from extreme, repeated projectile vomiting, only to be told, "It's the stomach flu." However, the next time they feed their children the same solids, the dramatic symptoms return.

     - See more at:

The FPIES Foundation,, is a wealth of information on all information FPIES related.  The Foundation lists some of the following important questions to ask:

 Has your child experienced severe episodes of vomiting after eating infant cereal and/or first foods; or drinking formula?

Do you question whether or not a specific food or foods may be contributing to your infant’s worsening symptoms of periodic vomiting, chronic diarrhea, reflux and/or failure to thrive?

These symptoms may indicate a need to speak with your child’s doctor about an FPIES evaluation.

Please read the following recent news story featuring a family whose son faces many challenges associated with FPIES, including a new intolerance to their ever trusted formula, Neocate Junior:

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Avocado Cakes with banana and basil

Avocado Banana Basil cakes

What you'll need:
1 avocado
3 or 4 basil sprigs
1/4 banana....puree.
rice krispies or panko crumbs
  1. Mix in 1/2 cup crushed rice krispies (gluten free) or panko crumbs (and a pinch of salt if you'd like!)
  2. Form into little patties and place in a hot pan drizzled with olive oil on your stovetop.
  3. Carefully flip (they will be softer than the panko variation) after about 4 minutes and cook until golden.
  4. Puree a few strawberries (we used a few frozen, thawing berries) drizzle on top..or not...and enjoy!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Down Syndrome

This week I am featuring Down Syndrome and specifically Sara Rosenfeld Johnson's "Oral Motor Myths of Down Syndrome"  Please check out the links below for some great educational reading!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Thanksgiving tips for the problem eater

It's about that time of year again.  A time when most of us look forward to getting together with family and friends to give thanks and fellowship together while grazing through all of the mouth watering options...your mom's favorite dressing, hot rolls, pumpkin pie, turkey, ham, green bean casserole.  But to the problem eater his worst fear may be Casserole!  Casserole!!!  Ahhhhhhhh!  That scary stuff that's all mushy with disgusting chunks mixed in to the very same dish!  He gags just thinking about it.  All of the sweet smells mixed with the savory turkey drippings...sounds like heaven to me but to the child with sensory processing difficulties or anxiety in general this sensory explosion of sights, smells and happy chatter could be his worst nightmare.  So what can you do to help reduce the anxiety and adapt your childs environment this Thanksgiving?  I've compiled a list of suggestions that may be helpful.  I will add additional links and resources to the bottom of the page as I come across them.  Feel free to share links and leave a comment if you have something you would like to contribute to the topic!

Food and Environment

Include a few simple food options that your child can enjoy.  A cracker and cheese tray, a bowl of favorite fruit,

Consider having these foods on a separate table for all to enjoy.  This creates a 'safe space' without additional distractions,  but still allows for everyone to partake in addition to giving a fun little buffet line for your little one to cruise through. 

Divided plates can be helpful!  I've seen children completely refuse all food on their plate (even if a favorite was there) if it was paired with too many options or servings too large. When the child felt less overwhelmed with only 2 or 3 choices and much smaller servings spaced out he began picking up food to eat.  Some children are very visual and for this child divided plates can be helpful, that or just keeping the portion and # of foods on plate in mind.

Kids table?  Well I for one always looked forward to the kids table!  My brothers and I went through phases where we felt priveleged to be at the kids table and times when we felt shunned as we grew older!  Now, even in our 30s, we long to be at the kids table together again!  Having a separate, smaller table for a smaller group of people or even a "kids table" can be helpful in reducing environmental distractions such as the large casserole portions and smells as aforementioned.  (I just wanted to say "aforementioned" because I cannot for the life of me think of a time I have ever used that in my vocabulary :) )

Don't use Thanksgiving as a time to ask your child to try new foods especially if he is already worried that you might.  Sometimes kids will have a totally random moment when they decide to pick up that piece of food and try it and it may or may not happen on this day.  He wants to enjoy the holiday also and just because the rest of us focus on the meal we cannot expect it to be the focus of his day.  Which brings me to my next suggestion

New Traditions:

Consider starting new non food related traditions! 

A game of charades, maybe a different interactive game such as Cranium (We have the new Disney Cranium on our Christmas list this year!) for both kids and adults to enjoy.

An  nature scavenger hunt outside or a planned scavenger hunt with clues

Gather around and share with others those things for which you are the most thankfu or talk about "favorites".   For my oldest daughters birthday this year we blew up a beachball and wrote in fun questions on each panel.  "What is your favorite movie character?"  "What is your favorite color?"  and so on and so forth  

Family movie

When you and your child have these fun moments to look forward to with others Thanksgiving can become less about the anxiety surrounding the food and more about a happy time you can all share together!

The adaptations do not have to be obvious.  You wish for your child to feel a part of the Thanksgiving gathering but you do not want to place the expectation for him to do just as everyone else does just for the sake of enjoying the tradition the way you or others expect him to.  In most cases it is Others by the way  "Just try it!" " Youll love it!"  "How can a kid not like pie with whipped cream?" know you have heard it all before but on this particular day it is not uncommon for both parents and the child to dread the comments, the judgement they fear they may feel.  I say this to the families who are just seeking help for their child's feeding concerns or who may feel alone in these thoughts.  I'm here to tell you that you are not and that its ok that everyone else around you does not fully understand the complexity of mealtime. 

Additional links: