Eating out with kids that are picky eaters can be exhausting and intimidating. No one wants to go out to eat if they know their child is going to throw a tantrum in public over some vegetables! Eating out doesn’t have to be hard, try these 5 tips out next time you’re at a restaurant with a picky eater.

Get them a fun drink (soda, juice, chocolate milk, etc)
Ordering your child a drink that they don’t get to drink everyday can make the entire restaurant experience exciting for them. This way when their food comes and there’s some things they don’t like, they don’t just see a plate of “yucky” food in front of them. There’s at least one thing for them to be excited about that will help get them in a good mood to try something new.

Have them order their own food
Let your child look over the menu and tell the waiter or waitress what they want. Not only does this help your child feel more in control of the situation, it’s also a great opportunity for them to practice their social skills!

Let them try food off of your plate
Try offering a bite of food off of your plate to your child each time they go out. If they object, don’t force it! However, they might say yes and realize there is delicious food out there that they have yet to try.

Help them read the menu
Just like letting your child order for themselves lets them feel more in control, helping them read the menu and choosing what to eat can also help them feel more confident and excited to eat their meal. On the other hand, if you don’t let them help choose, it feels more like a chore to eat.

Bring snacks from home they can eat alongside their meal
Bring snacks from home for them to eat instead of an appetizer, and/or to eat alongside their meal. Just like the fun drink tip suggested earlier, this helps kids to see something familiar on their plate rather than being overwhelmed by all new foods being introduced to them.