It’s all about the right balance

Now that your baby is one, they’ll be full of energy and eager to explore the world around them. To meet the needs of their busy lifestyle and support their rapid growth, toddlers require more nutrients relative to their size than we do as adults. But because their tums are tiny, it is almost impossible for them to meet their nutritional needs from three meals alone, which is why healthy snacks play an important role in a little one’s diet.                                                                                               

A day on a plate…

To strike the right balance of nutrients, toddlers’ diets should be made up of a variety of foods from each of the four food groups. Here is our guide to what a day on a plate should look like:

- 5 portions of starchy food. A toddler size portion of starchy food is: 1/4–1/2 baked potato, 1/2-1 slice of bread, 2-5 tbsp cooked rice, 2-5 tbsp cooked pasta, 3–6 tbsp breakfast cereal etc

- 5 portions of fruit & vegetables. A toddler size portion of fruit & veg is 2-6 carrot sticks, 1/2–2 tbsp broccoli, 1/2–2 tbsp peas, 1/4–1/2 baked sweet potato etc

- 3 portions of dairy. A toddler size portion of dairy is: 2-4 tbsp grated cheese, 1 pot (125ml) yoghurt, 100-120ml cow’s milk / breastmilk or formula as a drink etc

- 2 portions of protein.  A toddler size portion of protein is: 2-4 tbsp scrambled egg, 1/2-1 tbsp nut butter, 1/4–1 small fish fillet, 2-4 tbsp baked beans etc

Remember this is only a guide and toddlers' appetites vary from day to day and meal to meal, so always allow little ones to eat to their appetite.

We’ve worked with our nutrition team to create this handy weekly meal plan that is perfectly nutritionally balanced for toddlers.  We hope it gives you some fresh inspiration for nutritious meals and healthy snacks.