When it comes to mealtime, children with autism may have sensory issues that make it difficult for them to eat certain foods. These sensory issues may include being sensitive to certain textures, smells, or tastes. Here are some meal ideas that are sensory-friendly for children with autism:
- 1) Soft Foods: Many children with autism prefer soft foods that are easy to chew and swallow. Some examples of soft foods include mashed potatoes, yogurt, oatmeal, scrambled eggs, and pureed soups.
- 2) Finger Foods: Children with autism may prefer to eat with their fingers rather than using utensils. Finger foods such as chicken nuggets, fish sticks, veggie sticks, and fruit slices can be appealing and easy to eat.
- 3) Mild Flavors: Children with autism may be sensitive to strong or spicy flavors. Mild, simple flavors such as plain pasta with butter, grilled chicken or fish with no seasoning, and fresh fruit can be a good option.
- 4) Simple Meals: Children with autism may feel overwhelmed by complex meals with lots of ingredients or textures. Simple meals such as grilled cheese sandwiches, mac and cheese, or plain pizza can be an easy, comforting option.
- 5) Smoothies: Smoothies can be a great way to incorporate fruits and vegetables into a child’s diet. They can also be customized to be sensory-friendly by adjusting the texture and flavors to suit the child’s preferences.
It’s important to remember that every child with autism is unique and may have their own preferences and sensitivities. It’s essential to work with your child and their healthcare team to develop a meal plan that is tailored to their specific needs and preferences. With patience, creativity, and a little trial and error, you can find meal ideas that work well for their child with autism.