Make it easier to feed your toddler with our favorite recipes for 1 year olds. With ideas for each meal of the day, breakfast through dinner.
Recipes for 1 Year Olds
I know firsthand how hard it can be to figure out what to feed a one year old. They suddenly are more aware of the world around them and can handle more textures—but often, they aren’t quite up to eating all of the crunchy or chewy or mixed textures of “kid food” yet.
That’s not to say that we can’t serve them much of the same food we eat, only that we need to pay attention to how easy things are for them to eat and allow time for them to continue learning to eat a range of textures.
This is often a very common time for parents to see changes in how the child eats as compared to when they were a baby. It is not unusual for a one year old to eat less food than they did as a baby—the rate of growth often slows during this year as compared to babyhood, so a child may naturally be less hungry.
One Year Old Feeding Tips
When a child does not eat every food we offer, this does not mean they are picky or that you need to take any drastic steps. But you may:
- Start with smaller portions to limit food waste.
- Look at the volume of milk (any kind) the child is drinking. If they aren’t very hungry for food or they only want foods that are very easy for them to eat and they are drinking more than 24 ounces of milk a day, it may be time to consider moving much of that milk intake to meal time (rather than in separate bottle feedings). You can also play around with the timing of offering food and nursing or bottle feedings.
- Remember that a 1-year-old is MUCH more aware of the world around them than a baby is, which manifests in all sorts of new opinions and preferences. This happens both away from the table and at the table. Food preferences are not necessarily a sign that anything is wrong, but could be a sign that your one-year-old is more in tune with their own power in their ever-evolving world. We shouldn’t expect them to eat the same as they did as babies. Their understanding of their world is totally different.
- Consider your emotional reaction to a meal that went differently than you expected and try not to project onto your child if possible. (An example would be trying not to label a small child “picky” as that will only scale up your anxiety and may build in a set of negative feeding connotations for a child who is simply a different eater than we expect.)
- Try to avoid comparing one kid to another—either in real life or comparing your child with one you see on social media. The context of your life matters and the environment in which you’re feeding your family is different than everyone else’s.
- Sit with the kids during meals as much as possible so you can model how to eat a range of foods.
- Continue offering a range of foods even if they don’t always want to try them. A small serving is an option here to limit food waste.
- Consider trying the Division of Responsibility as a way to reduce mealtime pressure.
- Know that there is a giant range of “normal” in how little kids eat.
- Remember that there are no magic 1 year old recipe, but a lot of great options to feed our kids.
And maybe most importantly, always remember that feeding a family is a lot of work. You’re not doing it wrong.
OK, now on to some easy-to-make and easy-to-eat recipes that are delicious options to make for and share with your one-year-old.
Breakfasts Recipes for 1 Year Olds
Below are some favorite, easy breakfast recipes for younger toddlers. All of these could be served at a different time of the day, of course, too.
Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal
Made with just a few wholesome ingredients, this Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal cooks up fast and easily—which is exactly what you want in a breakfast! (PS: I love it just as much as my kids do.)
You can double this recipe to make a larger batch to warm up and serve throughout the week.
Quick Scrambled Eggs
Learn how to make eggs in the microwave (so you don’t even need to dirty a pan!) in less than 1 minute. These fluffy scrambled and soft-boiled eggs are perfect for busy mornings!
You can season the cooked egg with a little salt, butter or cheese if you’d like, but it’s very good as is. See the Note about the heat setting when cooking in a microwave.
Egg and Cheese Mini Muffins
These Mini Egg Muffins with Cheese and Veggies are a go-to for quick and easy toddler breakfasts on busy mornings. These savory muffins are packed with nutritious ingredients and are so quick to bake up—and they work so well to make ahead!
These soft breakfast egg cups are packed with protein and vitamins—and can be made ahead of time! Add any veggie you like, whether carrots, butternut squash, broccoli, or spinach.
Blend up a fruit or veggie with an egg for the fluffiest, easiest, healthy pancakes for kids. These 2-Ingredient Pancakes use one simple method for all 4 flavors and are a perfect baby pancake or toddler pancake!
This makes one small batch which will be 1-2 little-kid-size servings. To make more, simply double the recipe. These are delicate pancakes with a texture that’s sort of custardy like French toast. They are NOT like regular pancakes in that they are not super bready. Which is to say: Be gentle when flipping them. I broke a few the first time I made them! See the NOTES for the flavor variations.
Spinach Muffins with Banana
These Spinach Muffins with Banana are a super healthy and yummy toddler or big-kid breakfast or snack. Each bite is packed with nutrients from greens and fruit—and the interior is so moist that even babies can enjoy these easy blender muffins!
These store well, so you can make them ahead of time and pull them out of the fridge to serve. (Post updated October 2019)
You can make these on the stovetop or as sheet pan pancakes by baking them in the oven. These pancakes are fluffy and so versatile. And so yummy! You can make them in almost any flavor you like.
With just a few ingredients and the option to make these on the stovetop or in the oven as a sheet pan pancakes, these Yogurt Pancakes are versatile and so yummy!
Coconut Chia Pudding
Transform simple ingredients into nutrition-packed Coconut Chia Pudding. It’s a perfect kids breakfast or snack that parents will enjoy, too!
I like to use canned full-fat coconut milk for the best flavor and creamy texture, though you can use “light” coconut milk if that’s what you can find at your store.
Baked Oatmeal Cups
These easy Baked Oatmeal Cups are an ideal way to serve oatmeal to babies, baby-led weaning style, and to toddlers who like to feed themselves. Oatmeal as finger food with much less mess? Yes please!
Transform plain oats into a yummy and easy to eat finger food with this baked oatmeal recipe. You can double the recipe to make more if desired.
Cottage Cheese Pancakes
Made with simple ingredients, these nutritious Cottage Cheese Pancakes are a healthy breakfast for kids you can make in under 10 minutes! They’re loaded with protein and healthy fats—and are also fluffy and delish.
These 4 ingredient pancakes are packed with nutrients and are so yummy. Double the ingredients to make a larger batch to feed a family of four as this recipe is on the smaller side.
Snacks for 1 Year Old
Choosing, making, and packing snacks for a toddler can feel like a full-time job, so these options may help since each is easy to store and serve.
(You may also like my favorite Store-Bought Snacks for Kids, too.)
Made with a nutrient-packed ingredient list, these tender Baby Muffins are a perfect first muffin. They are easier to chew than a regular muffin, have three kinds of produce, are added sugar free, and they boast a solid dose of healthy fats—exactly what the littles need!
These are deliberately very moist (and moister than regular muffins) to ensure they are easy for baby to chew and swallow, so expect that from the interior. If you’d like to make them sweeter for older kiddos, add ¼ cup sugar to the batter.
This yummy toddler smoothie method is simple to blend up and even easier to customize for breakfast or snack time. It’s a perfect smoothie for kids since it’s naturally sweet, loaded with nutrition from fruit and veggies, and tastes great! Plus: The one master recipe can be varied in 10 easy ways.
Learn to customize yummy smoothies for your toddler by starting with one simple recipe, then adjusting based on which fruit and veggies you’d like to use.
Homemade Granola Bars are one of my go-to toddler snacks. They’re super easy to make, require minimal added sweeteners, have a texture that even babies and younger toddlers can chew, and store SO well. And you can make them allergy-friendly as needed!
We like to have these granola bars as a snack or toddler breakfast with milk or a smoothie—and they’re an excellent lunch box component too. You can make them plain or choose a flavor to add!
Soft-Roasted Cinnamon Chickpeas
This roasted chickpeas recipe is an easy and delicious way to add nutrition to your toddler’s diet. These are soft roasted to ensure they’re easy for the kids to chew, and they have a sweet-salty flavor that’s super yummy. Yay for easy toddler snacks!
If you start with dried beans in this salty-sweet snack, make sure to cook them until they are very tender. If making these for a kiddo under one, use maple syrup instead of honey or skip the sweetener all together.
Sugar-Free Banana Muffins
Mix up a batch of these easy-to-make Sugar-Free Banana Muffins to share with your baby or toddler come breakfast or snack time. You don’t need any special ingredients and they are super moist and flavorful. (There’s a vegan option too.)
Super moist and easy to mix up, this easy banana muffin is added-sugar free. They’re really flavorful though, and are easy for one year olds to eat if diced up.
With just a few simple ingredients and a crazy-easy method, this Animal Crackers recipe is a favorite kids snack to make and share. You can make them big or mini in whichever shapes you prefer!
If you use larger cookie cutters, you may need to bake on the longer end of the baking time—and mini cookie cutters on the shorter end. This makes a relatively small batch, so double it if you want extras to last all week!
Easy Banana Cookies
With simple ingredients including ripe bananas for natural sweetness and rolled oats for fiber, these healthy Banana Cookies are a super yummy everyday treat to share with the family. They’re easy, delicious, and packed with nutrition. (Win, win, win!)
These are an easy whole grain cookie to share with the kids—they’re a great baby cookie! Try them for snack, dessert, or as a breakfast cookie
Dinner Recipes for 1 Year Olds
Dinner is often a struggle for this age group simply because they are tired—and you may have a kiddo who tapers their intake, with more earlier in the day and less at dinner. That is normal.
You can try adjusting the timing of dinner a little, offering some of the food that’s ready as you finish cooking it (I often put a kiddo in their highchair right in the kitchen with me so they could eat as I finished making the meal), and remember that this age is fleeting.
Here are some of our favorite dinners for one-year-olds.
Baked Chicken Meatballs
With simple ingredients and the option to add shredded carrots (which I recommend!), these are an easy meal component that stores so well.
Healthy Meatballs with Veggies
With three kinds of veggies and the texture and flavor that your kids expect, this Healthy Meatball recipe is a perfect family dinner option. And since the baked meatballs taste so good, the kids will be happy to see them on their plates. (Bonus: They freeze well, too.)
With the texture you expect from a traditional meatball, but added nutrition from three types of veggies, your whole family will love these.
Instant Pot Butter Chicken
Shredded chicken thighs made incredibly tender in a rich tomato sauce with hints of Indian spices…oh yes! This Instant Pot Butter Chicken is an easy family dinner that everyone at the table (babies on up) can enjoy.
Extra-Veggie Baby Pasta (with Iron)
Serve up a filling, yummy baby meal with this easy Baby Pasta. It includes a tomato-based sauce with extra veggies and beans blended in for an iron-rich meal perfect for lunch or dinner. Plus: The sauce freezes so well so you can have a stash of future meals ready and waiting!
Adding beans and extra veggies helps make this easy baby pasta satisfying, nutritious, and yummy. Serve it more or less saucy as you like. (You can even freeze the sauce for easy future meals.)
Cook up this cozy Alphabet Soup recipe the next time you want an easy meal that’s also fun! ABC pasta is a perfect addition to this kid-friendly soup—and you can tailor the veggies to the likes (or dislikes!) of your own kiddos. It’s so versatile!
You can use ABC pasta, orzo, pastina, or ditalini—or any other very small pasta shape in this recipe!
With an easy cooking method—minimal chopping and less than 30 minutes start to finish—this Minestrone is a favorite comfort food meal to share. It’s easy to adjust as needed for allergies and it is packed with yummy flavor.
With a streamlined method and a quick cooking time, this veggie-packed baby soup (that big kids and parents will also enjoy!) is filled with vegetarian protein and super yummy Italian flavors.
Chicken Noodle Soup
There’s nothing like a bowl of cozy, comforting Chicken Noodle Soup—especially when it’s one that’s easy to make in about 30 minutes. This version is quick to make and one of our very favorite family dinners to share.
This easy recipe makes a big pot of comforting soup to feed the whole family—babies, toddlers, and big kids included. The leftovers store nicely so you can enjoy it for a few days!
One-Pot Broccoli Mac and Cheese
With a super easy method that only requires one pot, you can have this easy Broccoli Mac and Cheese ready for family dinner—or a kids meal. It cooks in about 20 minutes and has a solid dose of nutrients and deliciousness.
The method on this recipe is streamlined to cut down on dish washing. Add the optional spices for more flavor if you like! Double it to make more.
Stuffed Peppers Skillet
With the classic flavors of easy stuffed peppers, but much less work, this skillet version cooks up in just 20 minutes for a healthy family dinner. And it has the added kid-friendly benefit of being served deconstructed to let the kids clearly see what’s in their bowls!
Easy Cheesy Rice
This Cheesy Rice recipe has four options to add in veggies and has been a staple of my youngest kiddo’s diet for the past year. It’s SO easy, versatile, and stores wonderfully in the fridge. And it’s downright delish!
Choose one veggie to add from the flavor options below according to what you have on hand or what your family likes best.
Baked Zucchini Fritters
Whenever we wind up with a pile of zucchini from the store or the garden, it’s time for all things zucchini. And this Baked Zucchini Fritters recipe is such an easy way to serve it up to the kids!
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