Got a picky spouse and wish they ate more foods? Here’s inspiration from my former finicky eater husband (plus picky eater husband recipes!).
I’ve heard from a lot of moms about their picky eaters–but sometimes those picky eaters are their husbands!
A picky eater husband can create more tension at the table. After all, how can you expect your kids to try a new recipe when your spouse won’t?
All hope is not lost! I asked my former-finicky-eater-husband to share 10 foods that he learned to like over the years, along with some picky eater husband recipes.
by Real Dad Nutrition
Some of you may remember that I, like Sally, am a recovering picky eater. Perhaps your spouse or partner still struggles to maintain an open mind and a willingness to try new foods.
To give you some hope, Sally has “volun-told” me to share with you the 10 Foods I Learned To Like (but would have politely refused at 23–an age that’s only significant because it’s when Sally and I started dating).
1. Salad: Sally goaded me into choking down a single leaf of lettuce drenched in dressing when I was 24 years old. It felt like eating paper. The next time, it was two leaves. Later, a tiny bowl. Patiently (like KGB agent) she built up my tolerance until I could handle an adult-sized portion. Two decades later – look at me, ordering a restaurant salad, all by myself. Even spinach. EVEN KALE. And here’s the simple vinaigrette dressing we make every week.
2. Peppers: Eating simple “starter” salads inevitably led to trickier territory: the fixins. While my all-time favorite fixin remains the unglamorous (and unhealthy) crouton, my overall lettuce-to-healthy-fixins ratio fluctuates to occasionally include a handful of chopped peppers, onions, radishes, carrots, maybe a cucumber slice or two. Also, my ongoing quest to concoct the perfect chili has taught me some valuable lessons about peppers. Like wash your hands after you handle a jalapeno.
3. Guacamole: At 23, I would have been hard-pressed to even glance at a bowl of guacamole, let alone eat it. Now Sally has to take the bowl away from me or I’ll eat the whole thing and ruin my appetite before dinner and then the boys are bummed because I ate all the guac (here’s the simple guacamole recipe we make).
4. Asparagus: This one didn’t happen until I had a kid old enough to notice that daddy wasn’t being served all the same food he was. Once again, I had to start small and gradually build up a tolerance.
5. Peas: As a child, I began each meal by carefully inspecting, separating, and banishing any green items from my plate. But now, give me a bowl of buttered peas? Okay, I admit I will not want to eat them (though could, if pressed). But throw those same peas into a casserole or Indian dish, and I will eat them without complaint.
6. Hummus: I cautiously tried a nibble or two in college, disappointed that it didn’t taste more like peanut butter. Now, I can eat it by the shovelful. Here’s the Hummus recipe we make.
7 Beans: There’s been notable, albeit mixed, progress on the legume front. I will scarf down bean-laden burritos, handfuls of edamame, and every last red kidney bean in a bowl of chili. But I still can’t handle baked beans. And lima beans take me back to an infamous, unsuccessful, childhood standoff I had with my parents over a single spoonful of them. I would fight that same fight today! Recipe we make with beans: Baked Turkey Tacos
8. Brussels Sprouts: Sort of. I’ll eat them if presented in the form of crispy roasted chips, but I still struggle with a full-on sprout (I vow to continue to try).
9. Exotic Grains (couscous, quinoa, etc.): Alternatives to white rice hadn’t yet crossed my mind or mouth at 23. Even though I, along with many American kids, grew up in a white-bread world, my personal transition to whole grains wasn’t difficult.
10. Berries: Growing up in a semi-rural area, I’d eat wild raspberries and blackberries that I stumbled on in the woods, but somehow they became invisible indoors. Now, you may not know this, but Sally is an addict. Her addiction is to blueberries and strawberries and sadly she has lured me over the years into her sordid (and sometimes seeded) world of mixed berries.