As a parent, you may wonder what the best nutritious food options are for your 15-month-old. A well-balanced diet helps ensure optimal growth and development. In this article, we will provide some meal ideas that will provide your little one with the right nutrients to grow strong and healthy.
Calorie and Nutrient Requirements for a 15-Month-Old
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), a 15-month-old child should consume an average of 1,000 to 1,200 calories per day. These calories should come from a well-balanced diet consisting of:
- 45% carbohydrates
- 30% fat
- 25% protein
Breakfast Meal Ideas
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day as it helps to kickstart your little one’s metabolism. Below are some breakfast meal ideas that are perfect for 15-month-old infants:
Oatmeal with Berries
To prepare oatmeal, use one cup of water for every 1/4 cup of steel-cut oats. Boil the water and add the oats, stir and reduce heat. Cook for 15-20 minutes until the oatmeal is soft. Add berries to the oatmeal for some sweetness and nutrition.
Scrambled Eggs with Whole Grain Toast
Scrambled eggs are easy to make and packed with protein. Toast a slice or two of whole-grain bread and top it with a little butter or jam.
Lunch Meal Ideas
It is important to offer a variety of foods at lunchtime to ensure your infant gets essential nutrients from different food groups. Here are some nutritious lunch meal ideas:
Avocado and Cream Cheese Sandwich
Spread cream cheese on a slice of whole-grain bread and top it with mashed avocado. Add some sliced turkey or cheese for added nutrition.
Vegetable Soup with Whole Grain Crackers
Vegetable soup made with a mix of carrots, celery, peas, and potatoes is packed with essential vitamins and minerals. Pair it with some whole-grain crackers for a complete meal.
Dinner Meal Ideas
Dinner is typically the largest meal of the day and should consist of a balanced mix of grains, protein, and vegetables. Below are some healthy dinner options for your 15-month-old:
Baked Chicken Tenders with Sweet Potatoes
Cut chicken breast into strips and coat them with breadcrumbs. Bake in the oven at 350°F for 15-20 minutes or until cooked through. Pair it with some mashed sweet potatoes for a nutrient-packed meal.
Grilled Salmon with Green Beans and Rice
Grill a piece of salmon and serve it with green beans and brown rice. Salmon is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids that help with brain development.
Snacks are an important part of a toddler’s diet. Here are some healthy snack ideas to keep your little one satisfied:
Cut up your infant’s favorite fruits and mix them together for a sweet and nutritious snack.
Yogurt with Granola
Yogurt is an excellent source of protein and contains good-for-you bacteria to help strengthen your infant’s gut. Mix yogurt with some granola for a crunchy and tasty snack.
It is important to offer your 15-month-old a variety of foods to help ensure a well-balanced diet. Incorporating fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and dairy is essential for optimal growth and development. Also, remember to introduce new foods slowly and avoid offering foods high in sugar, salt, or empty calories. With these meal ideas, your little one is sure to love their meals and grow up strong and healthy.
What foods should I avoid feeding my 15-month-old?
Avoid giving your 15-month-old foods high in sugar, salt, or unhealthy fats like fried foods. Also, avoid honey as it may contain botulism spores that can be harmful to your infant.
Do I need to give my 15-month-old a vitamin supplement?
If your 15-month-old is eating a variety of foods from different food groups, a vitamin supplement is not necessary. However, ask your pediatrician to confirm based on your infant’s individual needs.
What should I do if my 15-month-old has food allergies?
If you suspect your 15-month-old has a food allergy, talk to your pediatrician right away. Your pediatrician may recommend seeing a specialist and may advise you on how to avoid that particular food.
Can I give my 15-month-old cow’s milk?
Cow’s milk can be given to a 15-month-old; however, it is best to stick to whole milk or 2% milk until the age of two. Always consult with your doctor to make sure that cow’s milk is safe for your infant.
How do I get my 15-month-old to eat vegetables?
Offer a variety of vegetables and prepare them differently to see what your little one likes. For example, some infants prefer roasted vegetables while others prefer steamed or raw vegetables. Also, try combining vegetables with other foods to make them more appealing. Finally, children often mimic their parents, so model healthy eating by eating vegetables yourself.
- American Academy of Pediatrics
- Nutrition 411