rainbow pancakeAh breakfast, the most important meal of the day. When it comes to toddlers, however, it can also become one of the most frustrating meals of the day. You want them to start the day off right, but sometimes, nothing just seems right enough for them to eat.

At my house, the biggest problem is the dreaded rut. We get in the habit of putting a rotation of the same things on our kids' plates each morning -- Greek yogurt, cereal, fruit, whole wheat waffles, and some turkey sausages. After awhile I even get bored of making it. Fortunately, whether you're dealing with a picky eater or just want to add a little extra fun to your morning, there are plenty of ways to take breakfast and make it even better. Here are six fun things to try:

1. Cookie Cutters

Use fun shapes to cut out whole wheat toast, pancakes, or waffles.

2. Molds

Pancakes taste much better when they look like their favorite characters. Or just try free-styling it in the pan and see what you come up with.

3. Let Them Play With Their Food

Give them a bagel, pancake, or waffle and an assortment of healthy toppings, and let them create a masterpiece. Show them some picture of things like this bagel lion for inspiration.

4. Food Coloring Is Your Friend

Green eggs and ham, anyone? Add a few drops (natural if you like) to eggs, pancake batter, milk, and anything else you want them to gobble up quickly. It's especially fun theme out foods around the holidays.

5. Special Plates and Bowls 

Every toddler knows that things just taste better when eaten off of Elmo's face. It's amazing how excited toddlers get about a new bowl, plate, or utensil once in awhile.

6. Dinner for Breakfast

Lots of people do breakfast for dinner, but there's nothing wrong with flipping that tradition upside down. Grilled cheese on whole wheat, quesadillas, or even a turkey sandwich can make good, filling breakfasts, and kids will think it's crazy fun.

In what ways do you attempt to banish breakfast boredom?


Image via filipe.garcia/Flickr