They love milk as babies, but when they start on solids and start discovering other forms of nourishment, some toddlers start to leave their daily milk habit behind. Suddenly, milk is boring and not all that yummy.
This is a pity since milk is their main source of calcium, something that they absolutely need for growth and development. Milk also has other minerals, protein, and vitamin D. These are just some of the benefits of milk for kids. These nutrients are all essential for children to thrive.
You cannot just sit passively and hope for this milk-disliking phase to pass. They need the nutrients now, so how can you make your kids want to drink milk?
Toddlers can be very stubborn about their likes and dislikes, so you have to be extra convincing when trying to get them to give something a chance. One of the ways to deal with the power struggle over drinking milk is to make it better-tasting. Here are some ideas.
1. Add another flavor
This is not such an alien concept. You’ve probably already encountered pre-mixed chocolate or strawberry milk at the store. Other popular options are vanilla, mango, melon, and almond. The problem with them is that they might not be as fortified as the best milk for kids.
Try adding flavor to your kid’s regular milk. You can make sure that the source of added flavor is healthy and not artificial additives.
2. Make milkshakes
Milk and ice cream? That’s double dairy, so it has double the calcium and other good stuff. You can make it plain vanilla, chocolate, or strawberry. You can also be more inventive with the flavor of your milkshake. The important thing is that it has plenty of milk in its content.
3. Use milk for your smoothies
Smoothies typically use yogurt, but you can always make yours milk-based. Again, you can be simple and straightforward with your ingredients or you can come up with more complicated concoctions. Whatever appeals to your toddler works.
You can also add milk into the food that they like so they get some more of the milk without them having to drink it.
1. Cereal with milk
They get to spoon in some of the milk as they eat the cereal. The cereal also absorbs the milk so it bursts in their mouth as they crunch on the cereal.
2. Scrambled into eggs
If you add milk, cream, or cheese into your scrambled eggs or omelets, your breakfast is extra fortified with nutrients from dairy.
3. Milk-based treats
You can make plenty of desserts and snacks that have milk in them. You can freeze some flavored milk with bits of fruit in them and call it a healthy popsicle. You can get some cookies and teach your children how to dunk and drink. Laced with cookie flavor, the milk might become more appealing to your kids. There’s a sea of possibilities.
Sometimes, it’s all about the presentation. There are kids who can be convinced to try something if it looks fun. Here are some ways for you to serve milk in a more entertaining manner.
1. Silly straws
You can find cheap ones at a discount store, so you can easily buy a bulk of them. Just make sure that they’re made of safe material. The options are plentiful. They come in all kinds from simple spirals in attractive colors to fun glass straws that your kids can actually wear.
2. Snazzy cup or tumbler
Again, the options are pretty limitless. You can use a cup with a cute print or you can get something more involved such as a cup that’s part snow globe or lava lamp. There are also cups that change colors depending on the temperature of the beverage it holds.
3. Colored ice cubes
You can get re-freezable plastic cubes or you can just make some of your own. Get trays with special-shaped molds. Add a bit of food color in the water you’re about to freeze and you get fun ice cubes in a few hours.
4. “Margarita” rims
Wet the rim of a chilled milk glass and then dip in a bowl of colored sugar or sprinkles. Pour in the milk and you have yourself a far more intriguing beverage.
Milk Through the Ages
The most convincing tactic you may use though is to show your kids that you love drinking milk yourself. They can’t help but model their behavior after yours, so if you regularly drink milk, chances are, it’s going to end up as a habit for them as well.