These sweet potato recipes for toddlers are so helpful in introducing new foods and flavors to little mouths.
As the parent of a toddler, you’re probably aware that toddler likes and preferences change so rapidly.
One day they’ll eat everything you cook. The next, they aren’t interested in the food(s) they previously enjoyed.
That’s why finding sweet potato recipes for kids that are colorful and fun can be helpful for introducing or even reintroducing sweet potatoes and other foods and flavors.
Research shows that it can take many times of introducing the same food before a child will even try it. So, set your expectations accordingly.
I find that not going into every meal expecting it to be a homerun can be grounding.
And when I’m introducing a new food, I always pair it with something familiar and just continue to expose my daughter, even if she doesn’t touch it the first 10 times!
But think about it this way – each time you put it on their plate, you are exposing them to a food.
You can serve foods in different ways (raw, baked, cut in small pieces, cut in finger shapes, paired with fruit, paired with another food they like, etc.) to help them become more familiar and comfortable with said food.
Sweet potatoes are naturally sweet, making them more attractive to young eaters. They also aren’t known to be an allergenic food, so they are usually safe for introduction.
But, if you have any concerns, always check with your doctor.
Sweet Potato Benefits for Kids
Are sweet potatoes healthy for toddlers? You bet!
A medium sweet potato contains around 100 calories, 4-5 grams of fiber, and is also high in Vitamins A and C, both of which are important for immunity.
Vitamin A is also involved in vision, and Vitamin C helps with skin, nail, and hair health. Remember that the nutrition facts panel goes by adult nutrition needs, so everything will be higher when you are considering serving size for a toddler or child.
My favorite thing about sweet potatoes is their high amounts of antioxidants, which can help reduce inflammation in the body and contribute to overall wellness. Many antioxidants have been linked to a reduced risk of chronic disease.
You know sweet potatoes are rich in antioxidants thanks to their bright orange hues. Usually, bright colors signal a high antioxidant content (red grapes, blueberries, tomatoes, etc).
What makes sweet potatoes for kids even more appealing is that they come in many different colors and varieties, all with slightly differing nutrition content. Depending on the region in which you live, you may find white, orange, purple, red or even yellow varieties.
Better yet, many of these sweet potato dishes for toddlers also have other fruits and veggies served alongside or with them, increasing the nutrient density even more.
How to Incorporate More Sweet Potatoes Into Your Toddler’s Diet
When introducing solids through baby led weaning, I have started with sweet potatoes for both of my children for the reasons listed above. They also have a great texture when cooked and mashed for babies, and they can be held as a finger food.
But, there are several other out-of-the-box ideas to incorporate them too!
Sweet Potato Snacks for Toddlers
Snacks are a great way to incorporate more sweet potatoes and vegetables, in general. They can be as easy and fun as you make them. Sometimes you have to get a little creative in getting kids to eat sweet potato recipes.
For example, consider mixing sweet potatoes into a quickbread or muffin recipe. Or, mashing it with onions in a ground meatball recipe.
Swap the Traditional Recipe for a Sweet Potato Recipe
These don’t have to be bland, but instead, are fun ways to serve sweet potato for kids. For example, burgers and nachos.
Swap out an all-beef burger or turkey burger for a sweet potato turkey burger. It’s still a burger and tastes similar, but it has so much more nutrition (and color!) with the addition of sweet potatoes.
Make your own nachos. Swap out salty, nutrient-void tortilla chips for sweet potato coin shapes. Let children choose their toppings, and once you cut the vegetables, let children decorate the “sweet potato nachos” with them. Choose different protein options (beans, chicken, beef, pulled pork) and see which they like best!
Serve Along with a Safe Topping
Most kids enjoy cheese, so having that as a “safe” topping can be helpful and mesh well with other flavors and ingredients in a kid friendly sweet potato recipe.
In the sweet potato nachos recipe above, the cheese melts over all of the other vegetables, and looks familiar to little minds.
Have a Fun Dip
Lastly, I tend to have fun dips as side options.
Some options I use include ketchup, hummus, guacamole, salsa or even ranch dipping sauce. These can be fun toppers and may help increase the chances of your little one trying something new, especially if they are familiar sauces to them.
Your whole family will love these fluffy, warming Chocolate Chip Sweet Potato Waffles. Use up your leftover mashed sweet potatoes in these breakfast or brunch waffles and serve them up with some fruit and maple syrup.
These no bake 5 ingredient peanut butter energy bites are a great on-the-go snack for kids. Made with oats, sweet potatoes, peanut butter, coconut and some spices, these sweet potato bites are everything you'd want in a healthy portable snack.
Sweet Potato Vegan Edible Cookie Dough is the perfect appetizer for your sweet tooth or for kids. This vegan cookie dough recipe is made with natural ingredients and goes perfectly with fruit, chocolate and graham crackers. Toddlers love it!
Frozen cookie dough bites made with sweet potatoes, garbanzo beans, peanut butter and maple syrup are the best homemade cookie dough bites. Just take them out of the freezer and enjoy these no bake cookie dough bites frozen!
This Gluten Free Sweet Potato Pizza Crust is a wholesome, gluten free and vegan pizza crust alternative that you can decorate with your favorite options. As a plant based pizza crust, it's full of flavor, fiber, nutrients and antioxidants and makes for a fun chance for kids to add the toppings.
This bright hued sweet potato beet smoothie is the best post workout smoothie recipe. Made with mango, beets and sweet potatoes, it's antioxidant rich, and helps replenish and restore your muscles to expedite recovery.
These easy ground turkey sweet potato burgers offer a delicious, flavorful twist on your original turkey burger. Sweet potato patties are chock full of antioxidants and can be made as a paleo turkey burger and gluten free turkey burger without the bun.
Sweet Potato Oatmeal Cookies are an easy snack that also work great as healthy breakfast cookies. These vegan breakfast cookies are made with whole grain oats, flour, sweet potatoes, spices and maple syrup.
Sweet Potato Mac and Cheese is the answer to your cheesy pasta dreams and great for kids. A mixture of whole wheat pasta, mashed sweet potato, cheese and kale make this savory sweet potato pasta dish a real winner.
These Spinach Sweet Potato Tots are a fun way to offer nutrient dense toddler vegetable recipes to your little ones. Packed with iron, Vitamin A, Vitamin C and carbohydrates, this veggie tots recipe is great for meal prep and the side to any meal.
Chocolate Chip Sweet Potato Bread is a healthy option for your sweet tooth! Made with sweet potatoes, whole wheat flour and oat flour, this bread is soft and fluffy and provides a healthy pre or post workout option.