4 Fun Food Play Ideas

Whether your child struggles with picky eating or not, food play is a great way to create positive experiences with a variety of foods. Food play is important for many reasons:

  • It allows for the child to interact with foods outside of mealtimes
  • It encourages development of fine motor skills
  • Food play helps to support sensory processing
  • Above all, it provides positive experiences with food, without making the child feel pressured to eat it!

Here are 4 fun ideas to get you started:

  1. Spaghetti search: Cook some spaghetti noodles and color it with food coloring. Place the pasta in a big bin. Hide toys inside, and encourage your child to find them under the noodles!
  2. Broccoli painting: Place some paint on a paper plate. Provide some raw broccoli, and show your child how to dip the broccoli tops in paint and stamp on paper to make a beautiful painting.
  3. Food faces: Draw or print an outline of a face on a piece of paper. Laminate or place the paper in a protective sheet. Using a variety of different foods, help your child give the face eyes, a nose, hair, a mouth, etc.
  4. Scientist: Using a couple of different yogurts or smoothies, have your child play scientist by mixing them together in different quantities to see what color comes out!

More Tips & Tricks

If your child does not want to touch the food, provide them with a paintbrush, spoon, tongs, or other utensil. Make sure to avoid forcing your child to interact with foods!

Is your child struggling with feeding skills, such as picky eating, chewing, managing liquids, or any other mealtime-related skills? Contact Chicago Pediatric Therapy & Wellness Center at 773-687-9241 to set up an evaluation with one of our feeding specialists.