creative dinners for a fussy eater

Keeping everyone happy at dinner time can often be a struggle when cooking meals, especially if there’s a fussy eater in the audience!  It’s easy to stick to the same meals on rotation and feel frustrated and restless that they just won’t try anything else.

But it’s important to remember you are not alone; around 90% of children go through a lengthy stage of being a fussy eater – it is perfectly normal. It can help a fussy eater to be a part of a pleasant and calm mealtime, so it’s a good idea to think of some colourful and fun recipes that might distract them from the actual food.

Here at Tiny Dining, we fully understand this, so have compiled this blog with 5 easy and creative dinner ideas for your fussy eater.

5 Easy and Creative Dinners for your Fussy Eater

Cheeseburger Cups

creative cheeseburger cups for a fussy eater

A great recipe for both home mealtimes and party foods! Cheeseburger cups are a great dinner for a fussy eater because you can combine any veggies you like – or none. And they’re a fun miniature version of meals they might have at a restaurant or a party, so it’s offering up positive associations, making them more likely to eat and enjoy it!  

Servings: 5
Total time: 30 min


  • 450g Ground Beef (or veggie alternative!)

  • 6 Burger Buns (chopped in half)

  • 2 tbsp Brown Sugar

  • 5 tsp Worcestershire Sauce

  • 60g Cheese of your choosing

  • Mustard

  • Ketchup

  • Pinch of Salt and Pepper


  1. Pre-heat oven to 200°C (400°F)

  2. In a large pan, cook beef over medium heat until there’s no pink – then drain

  3. Stir in the ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and mustard

  4. Remove the pan from the heat and leave it to the side

  5. Mould each bun into a greased muffin baking tray (you can use cupcake cases too)

  6. Spoon the beef mixture into each cup

  7. Top with cheese and bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown and the cheese has melted

  8. Serve with sauces, chips, veggies, or beans!

Tip: you can freeze these cheeseburger cups for your fussy eater to have another time. Simply let them cool fully, place them in a container and freeze! Ensure to defrost thoroughly before reheating.

Home Made Chicken Nuggets

chicken nuggets for a fussy eater

Now what tiny diner doesn’t love chicken nuggets? Whether eating them at home, at school, or at a party they are just fun and delicious! They’re suitable for your fussy eater because chicken nuggets are bound to put a smile on anyone’s face and create a fun atmosphere for dinner.

Servings: 6
Total time: 40 min


  • 500g Chicken Breasts (bite sized chunks)

  • 256g Flour

  • 2 tsp Paprika (optional)

  • 5 tsp Garlic Powder

  • 5 tsp Onion Powder

  • Pinch of Salt and Pepper

  • 3 Eggs


  1. Grease a large pan over the heat

  2. Mix your flour, salt and pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder in a shallow bowl (pasta bowls are great)

  3. Whisk the eggs together in a separate bowl

  4. Coat your chicken in the flour bowl, then into the eggs, then back into the flour

  5. Fry the chicken nuggets in your large pan until golden brown – cut through to ensure there is no pink

  6. Remove the chicken nuggets with a slotted spoon (you can drain them on kitchen paper if needed too)

  7. Serve with chips, veggies, beans, or anything you like!

Tip: these make for great starters, mains, and sides depending on what you want to serve it with for your fussy eater!

Eggs in a Basket

eggs in a basket for a fussy eater

The simplest recipe of them all! Eggs in a basket is ideal for your fussy eater because if they love eggs, they will take in lots of protein while enjoying a fun design, like the more traditional toad in the hole. It’s also super easy to make so when you’re on a tight schedule- you’ve got an easy, healthy recipe to fall back on for lunch and dinner.

Servings: 1 (make as many as you wish!)
Total time: 10 min


  • 2 slices of Bread

  • 2 Eggs

  • 1 tsp Butter/Oil (for greasing)

  • Pinch of Salt and Pepper (optional)


  1. Use a cookie cutter to cut out your favourite shape in the centre of each slice of bread (or do it free handed!)

  2. Butter 1 side of each piece of bread, including the cut-out sections

  3. Heat your large frying pan over medium heat and grease

  4. Place your bread, butter-side down in the pan

  5. Crack one egg into the hole (or crack into a dish first then pour in)

  6. Cook until the egg is golden on the bottom (around 1 to 2 minutes)

  7. Flip it over to cook the other side

  8. Serve and use the cut-out sections to dip in the yolk!

Tip: add ham, cheese, mushrooms, or any other treat that will make your egg basket even more delicious for your fussy eater!

Baked Ham and Cheese Quesadilla

quesadillas for a fussy eater

This is a great recipe for those fussy eaters because it’s pasta and cheese in a sandwich! Tiny diners tend to love anything you put in a sandwich, and mac and cheese in a sandwich can be a fun and messy way to get them to eat a meal! It’s ideal for both lunch and dinner.

Servings: 4 (make as many as you wish!)
Total time: 17 min


  • 4 Tortillas

  • 100g Cheese of your choosing

  • 230g Ham (thinly sliced)

  • 1 tsp Milk or Oil (for brushing top)

  • 100g Tomatoes and Onions (diced, optional)


  1. Pre-heat oven to 200°C

  2. Arrange greaseproof paper onto a baking tray

  3. Place 2 tortillas on the tray and evenly top with ¼ of your cheese

  4. Add the ham and rest of the cheese (and any other toppings you’d like)

  5. Place the 2 other tortillas over the top (like a sandwich)

  6. Brush the tops with your milk or oil and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until browned

  7. Cut the quesadillas into the size you like and serve!

Tip: add any other ingredients that you love as well, so you can enjoy it alongside your fussy eater.

Create Your Own Pizza 

pizza for a fussy eater

Who doesn’t love pizza? This is a great, easy recipe for your fussy eater because you can tailor it to their needs and they can help with the preparations. Choose the toppings they love for a dinner that will go down a treat!

Servings: 1 Pizza (6 slices)
Total time: 45 min




  • 150g Self-raising Flour

  • 135g Natural Yoghurt

  • Pinch of Salt

  • Or, buy prepared dough.


  • 50g Chopped Tomatoes

  • 1 tbs Sundried Tomato Paste (tomato puree)

  • 135g Mozzarella

  • Whichever toppings you’d like!


  1. Pre-heat your oven to 200°C

  2. Mix the flour, yoghurt, and salt in a bowl until you have a soft dough consistency

  3. Kneed out into a rectangle – don’t spread it too thin (approx. 25 x 13cm)

  4. Place a greaseproof sheet on your baking tray, followed by the dough

  5. Mix together your chopped tomatoes and tomato paste in a bowl, then spread over the dough – leave yourself a crust

  6. Scatter the mozzarella slices across your base

  7. Add any other toppings you’d like (cook any raw meat or veg first)

  8. Bake for 25 minutes, or until golden brown and the cheese has melted

  9. Cut into slices and serve!

Tip: if you don’t finish it all, cold pizza makes a great lunch for the next day! And easy in a packed lunch box for school.



We hope this has given you a few ideas for some quick and easy, creative dinners for a fussy eater! Remember, being a fussy eater is just part of their development, exploring their environment, and asserting their independence.

Even if you try any of these examples and don’t make any progress, don’t feel deflated, it’s important to just keep persevering and you’ll both get there – or more so, they’ll just get out of this horrible phase!

You’re doing a wonderful job.

As always, thanks for reading,
Love Poppy and the Tiny Dining Team