Sample Menu for a 3-Year-Old

Sample Menu for a 3-Year-Old

Do you ever wonder what other people feed their kids? I know I do, because when you are the sole person responsible for feeding your kids breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks every single day, it’s pretty understandable that one may run out of ideas or need a little inspiration from time to time! Below is a sample menu for a 3-year-old. This is simply an example of what one mom (me!) feeds her son. This is by no means a comprehensive list. I try to mix up the food options as much as I can so that it encourages healthy nutrition and an open palate.

Check out the What a Good Eater! cookbook for fantastic ideas on family friendly meals, more sample food schedules by age, healthy snack ideas by age, and meals ready in about 30 minutes or less for busy parents.

7:30 AM: Breakfast is Served!

Examples of breakfast options:

  • Steel cut oats with vanilla, cardamom, and nutmeg (Sow Your Oats recipe from the What a Good Eater! cookbook)
  • Plain yogurt (sometimes with a teaspoon of almond/peanut butter mixed in for protein and to keep them full longer)
  • Cereal with milk (Raisin Bran, shredded wheat, etc.)
  • Eggs, toast, and a slice of cheese (typically scrambled eggs, Poached Eggs recipe from the What a Good Eater! cookbook, or fried eggs)
  • Blueberry waffles (sometimes with almond/peanut butter and fresh berries on top)
  • Pancakes (typically on special weekends)

Drink: Milk or water in a cup

11:00 AM: It’s Lunch Time!

Examples of lunch options:

Options to serve on the side of the lunch course:

  • Diced fruit (avocado, pear, berries, watermelon, grapes, peach, apricot, plum, tomato, mango, etc.)
  • Diced vegetables (brightly colored bell peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, etc.)
  • Cottage cheese
  • Hummus with unsalted pretzels
  • Cheese
  • Olives

Drink: Water or milk in a cup

3:30 PM: Snack Time!

Examples for snack time:

  • Diced fresh fruit (apples, plums, berries, oranges, kiwi, etc.)
  • Dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, blueberries, etc.)
  • Apple Cinnamon Sticks
  • Whole wheat crackers with cheese, peanut butter, or almond butter
  • Cheese (try all kinds – gouda, cheddar, mozzarella, goat cheese, etc.)
  • Cottage cheese
  • Unsalted nuts
  • Unsalted pretzels
  • Diced vegetables (bell pepper, cucumber, broccoli, carrots) with salad dressing for dipping sauce
  • Cookie (We love moderation!)

Drink: Water or milk in a cup

5:30 PM: Dinner’s ready! 

Note: If we’re cooking dinner at home, our kids are expected to eat what the family eats for dinner, and we rarely make exceptions. When possible, we try to include a protein, whole grain, and/or vegetable in the meal.

Examples of dinner options:

Options to serve on the side of the dinner course:

  • Vegetables (roasted carrots, sweet potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, bell peppers, spinach, kale, green peas, etc.)
  • Sauerkraut (an excellent probiotic for kids packed with fiber and nutrition!)
  • Whole grain (farro, bulgur, barley, wild rice, brown rice, etc.)

Drink: Water or milk in a cup

Do you like this sample food menu? We have more like it! Check out our cookbook What a Good Eater! for baby & toddler recipes with healthy herbs and spices to add flavor and broaden your baby’s palette, now available on Amazon! If you enjoyed this post, sign up to receive our newsletter for other great ideas on feeding your baby, toddler, and family.

About Amy Godiwalla

Amy Godiwalla is co-author of the What a Good Eater! cookbook, available on Amazon. Amy and her husband, Shaun, live in Denver, Colorado, with their two little boys. When Amy is not feeding little mouths or inventing recipes, she enjoys hiking, yoga, snowboarding, cooking, entertaining, traveling to the mountains, sipping hot chocolate at ski resorts, and wine tasting.


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  1. 1

    This says it all in a nutshell! Great recap for menu ideas for the day. Even though I’m not a young ‘in, I bet I’d be so healthy if I stuck to these options! Great job!

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