Every now and then we get a #kbcQuery in our very active facebook group about books that talk about picky eaters.
We’ve curated a list of recommended reads that help deal with fussy toddlers in all sorts of food matters, as shared by our members. Do feel free to add books that have helped you in the comments section and we’ll add it to this mega post!
Most books here are appropriate for 2-7 years. The book title will take you to amazon.in via our affiliate link.
Lulu’s Lunch – for 2-5 yrs (or even earlier). Everyone is crazy about this interactive book that encourages toddlers to eat properly. All of Lulu books are a super hit at kbc! Payal Chatterjee’s review got many many members to grab this book including Asha who doesn’t have a toddler!
Never knew a book can actually help me understand that exactly when does my child feel hungry. All thanks to Madame Lulu…she made our life much easier now. Madame Lulu doesn’t only include fruits and veggies in her spread but also fish fingers (a total hit with the bongs) and our all time hit spaghetti. If you are facing a fussy eater at home, if you want to introduce a food book to your child, if you want your child to love everything you eat, if you want your baby to know eating manners…. grab this savior
Green, Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss Preeti Seth says this book helped her forever! “My daughter is 9 years old now and she never says no to any food just by looking at it – all thanks to this wonderful book! A must read for 2-5 years age group!!!”
The Berenstain Bears and Too Much Junk Food (this series is recommended for dealing with all sorts of toddler issues).
Don’t put your finger in the Jelly, Nelly! Vichithra recommends this book for young toddlers who dip their fingers in food.
A book for picky eaters by Nick Sharratt. There is lots of junk food in this book with holes. Diya likes to insert her finger and turn the page to find which animal has caught her. If you put your finger in the jelly, you might upset a jellyphant.
Hugless Douglas and the Great Cake Bake for 1-5 years. If your childoo loves honey or insists on eating only sweet things, this book is for you!
I Will Not Ever Never Eat A Tomato (This is from the Charlie & Lola series and comes highly recommended!). This is an award winning book – it has got the Kate Greenaway Medal! Asha has this book as Aarini doesn’t eat raw tomatoes, but she bought it recently when Aarini was already a teen! WATCH SHANTANU AND ASHA’S READ ALOUD OF THIS BOOK, IN THE FB GROUP HERE.
In her words –
Charlie begins by describing what all Lola refuses to eat (comes down to everything – typical of fussy eaters). So Charlie gets creative and describes every piece of food in an exciting way. He calls carrots, “orange twiglets from Jupiter” – the page shows him in space eating carrots with an alien! Similarly peas are “green drops from greenland”….! In the end she agrees to eat up!! Such a wonderful way to engage fussy eaters and get them to eat :). I wish I had this book when Aarini was a smallie 🙂
Time to Eat by Penny Tessoni, a leading early years education consultant. This book is quite popular in our community and comes highly recommended for 2-4 years. All the books in her good habits series are superhits with our kbc childoos!
“Granville believed there was nothing good about fruits and vegetables. Who would want to eat them when there were such sugary, cakey, chocky wocky, goey options available?! His family tried to sneak in veggies and fruits in the junk he loved to eat but Granville would easily find them all. Being born in a family of greengrocers, he was a total misfit. But his family wouldn’t give up on him so easily and they soon come up with a master plan. Would Granville finally give in and try the broccoli or will all their efforts go in vain? The hilarious and funny story is surely going to encourage fussy eaters to at least try something new.
This book has immensely helped my very fussy eater. From a kid who only ate curd, rice and bhindi, he has now started eating little bit of noodles, biryani and cheese toast! And trust me it is a big deal for us.”
Just like the title, it’s a wonderful book to learn about different kinds of food. Starting with the basics like fruits, vegetables, and elaborating on foods for a particular place/occasion. Such a colorful book, amazing illustration, helps in improving vocabulary, perfect for little ones as well as growing up toddlers. Most of the content is bright pictures and their names, like a picture dictionary for food items. Emma learnt a great deal about food from this book. A must have for fussy eaters.
Feeling Hungry by Fine Feather Press Vichithra has this one!
Though I have come across some books on mealtime for kids, this one has my heart for its strategies and wholesomeness. This book is written by an early year’s consultant Dr Sue Robson. It has touch and feel animals. The book starts with how one feels hunger by tummy rumbling and tells the reader to wash hands before every mealtime. Then one has to gather stuff for eating like plate and spoon and eat without stuffing or guzzling. Then comes trying new foods and eating with the family. It ends with thanking the persons who have looked after you!
The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog! (from the famous & hilarious Pigeon series by award winning Mo Willems!)
Daisy Eat Your Peas by the award winning Nick Sharratt! Asha gifted this book to Asma owing to Ruhani’s love for counting things! Quoting Asma, “Nick Sharatt’s books have been very popular at our place and coupled with lots of interesting things to count and assertive Daisy who is very sure about her dislike towards peas, this book has become top favourite and have been read on the loop since it arrived.”
Give Peas a Chance: Book 2 (Dinosaur Juniors) by Rob Biddulph (32 pages). Rob Biddulph’s books are superhits with kbc childoos!
Everybody Cooks Rice (Picture Books) by Norah Dooley comes highly recommeded by Asma. In her words,
The book shows a sister hopping from house to house in neighbor hood looking for her little brother at dinner time and tasting rice made in different ways in each house and appreciating same rice eaten differently by folks from different regions. The book has 9 recipes at the end that children in the book tasted.
The Pancake Champ: A Bloomsbury Young Reader: Turquoise Book Band (Bloomsbury Young Readers). Quoting Achira, “Mona suggested this for Adu and it worked I would say. Pancakes can be made in many ways and that is what we learnt from this book. Result- he tried the fried rice on our anniversary dinner! He ate two spoons but that was a good start and made us immensely happy.
Books are magic! I won’t say my son started eating everything overnight but he has tried a new thing and that one step gives me hope he will be there slowly.”
What I Do with Vegetable Glue (recommended by our #kbcMember Apoorva Agarwal)
Carrots Like Peas: and other fun facts (Did You Know?) for 4-8 years
What’s Inside My Lunch Box?: A Lift-the-Flap Book (recommended by our #kbcMember Aditi Ahuja)
“For months I have looked for a book on Indian spices and vegetables, with little success – till I found this gem of a book. It checks all the boxes for me – it has information about all Indian spices including bay leaf, turmeric, cloves etc, along with all the other things that we use regularly in the kitchen like onions, spinach, cucumber, coconut, cereals, milk etc. The information about each item is in rhyme, and there is enough in the book to engage 4 year olds as well as adults! A very well researched book, that has been painstakingly simplified in terms of the language, so that kids enjoy and understand it.
The narrative is from the point of view of seven year old twins and their grandmother. The grandmother realises that the only way to keep the kids busy is to take them into the kitchen with her and tell them all she knows. So, she tells them everything she knows about each ingredient she is using, where it originated from, which dishes it is used in. There are limited pictures in the book, but the text was enough to keep my 5 year old engaged. Here is a small riddle from the book, guess the spice!“
“We are small black seeds
Sitting in a pod
Triangular and green
We have fragrance
That you wont miss
You add us to flavour
Your favourite sweet dish.
Who am I?”
Fish Potatoes: 1 (First of) for 4-8 years (50 pages)
Do Try This at Home Cook It – 20 yummy recipes for scientists of all ages, by Jon Milton and photographs by Stuart Cox, published by Macmillan Children’s Books (96 pages) – Pearl recommends this. Quoting her:
A fun packed recipe book designed for parents and children to have fun experimental cooking sessions together. The recipes are largely simple to execute together and also introduce a few fun techniques and science facts associated with them. Excellent for fussy eaters and can be used for years to build some memorable experiences together as a family. The goofy pictures of the ‘chefs’ are the highlight in this book for my boy.
A book for parents – Our Kid Eats Everything!
RELATED READS ON HEALTHY EATING
Healthy Eating with Zayn and Zoey (releasing on April 23, 2022). ONLY KBC MEMBERS HAVE A SPECIAL COUPON CODE KBC15 which will give you 15% OFF when you order directly from the ZAYN AND ZOEY website.
The Children’s Book of Healthy Eating (3-8 years) from the Star Rewards series that has reward stickers and is very popular with our parents & kids.
What’s For Lunch? (3.5/4-8 years) Let’s read and find out science. Quoting Amardeep, “it explains healthy foods – carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins, proteins, fats etc, in a very easy to understand way. It uses the plate segmentation- how much of your plate should have veggies, carbohydrates etc.”
Why do we eat? (Usborne Beginners series for 3.5-7 years) Divya has this and recommends it.
Look Inside What Happens When You Eat for 4-8 years (Divya has this one and highly recommends it!) “It explains what happens to food when we eat and explains about the different components of food (carbs, fat, protein, etc). It even has the food pyramid.”
The Magic of Healthy Food – Read & Shine (Magical World of Benny & Buzo). Arundhati has this and recommends it for 3 yr+. In her words:
Here Benny wants to eat pizza for dinner but his mother told him to eat the food she prepared for him. He doesn’t finish his dinner properly and goes to bed. There he brings out his magical dog Buzo, who can come alive with magic powers. Benny requests Buzo to get him pizza, burger and then ice-cream. While eating ice-cream his stomach starts to hurt and he requests Buzo to help him. Will Buzo help him? and how will he help him? Will Buzo be able to help Benny understand the ill-effect of too much of junk food? So, let’s read the whole story to find it out. The story is told in a simple language and the illustrations are very attractive and the price is also very affordable. The children will very well relate to the situation and understand it.
Superfoods for Superheroes – 72 pages for 8-12 years (as recommended by the pubisher)
OTHER RELATED READS:
Here are lots of books on “Tummy Ache” which talk about what happens when children don’t eating right! Includes popular book characters like Spot, Wally, Lily, etc.
Here is a list of books that talk about Toothache. These books tackle issues relating to what happens if you don’t eat right, brush right, look after your teeth etc. They feature books with popular characters like Bubbles, Dragon, Bear, Hippo, Gara, that toddlers adore.
Some books on being vegetarian:
Shout-out to our 13yo Intern-In-Residence (Aarini – The Chief Childoo) for posting this.
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