Save Money by Feeding Your Kids Less

May 4th, 2012

Mon assiette vide - 2012-01-19

Ha!  Caught your attention with that title, didn’t I?

Before you speed-dial Child Protective Services, allow me to explain.  I’ve lamented before about the amount of food we waste at my house.  One response has been to take leftovers to work for lunch, helping to cut down on food that goes down the disposal.

But my children are also notorious food wasters.  Infamous, even.   I don’t believe in forcing kids to clean their plates — it fosters really unhealthy attitudes toward food and paves the way for a lifetime of poor eating habits — but I had begun to notice that they were leaving a shocking amount of food behind after each meal.

I took a step back to analyze our meals and I saw a flaw: I was offering too many choices.  My kids are fairly picky (Miss Mouse in particular) so I’d been resorting to offering them half a dozen food choices at each meal in the hopes of finding something they’d eat.  Miss Mouse would help herself to everything…and eat almost nothing.   Ditto for Buggie.  They’d play with their food — smooshing grapes onto the table, pulling sandwiches apart, and dunking their fingers in the applesauce — but not much was actually getting ingested and their dinner debris wasn’t particularly re-usable once they were done.

So I’m trying to cut back on their options.  I’ll put out either applesauce or yogurt, but not both.  I’ll offer a few bites of a single side dish, with promises to provide more if the original serving gets eaten.  And I try very hard to avoid getting out “extras” beyond what I had planned to serve.  By cutting down on the food we waste, we’ll save money on our grocery budget.

This post is linked up with Frugal Fridays at Life as Mom.  Stop by to see how other folks are saving money!

4 responses to “Save Money by Feeding Your Kids Less”

  1. Great idea! My kids leave a lot of food behind, too, I think I just give them too much to start with.

  2. Great idea! My kids leave a lot of food behind, too, I think I just give them too much to start with.

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