This is the third installment of my series on 5 ingredient dinners for fussy eaters. I am taking 9 recipes from readers on my Instagram, Parenting Picky Eater Group and Facebook page and giving them a Nutritionist’s twist on serving them up for fussy eaters. This rissole recipe came from Kimberley. Rissoles are a combination of vegetables and meat in a ball shape. These ones are baked, but they can be cooked on the stove top or on a BBQ too.

Making Rissoles

We made these for a hot mid-week lunch last week when the weather had finally started to cool down after a long Indian summer. We had some left-over to make a build your own burger dinner the next day. Kimberley’s tip is to include tomato sauce for her picky eater and I’m going to chat more about the lure of sauces and condiments for kids below the recipe. I did serve mine at lunchtime with steamed broccolini as it is a familiar food in our house. As you will notice, my tip in every family recipe is to include familiar foods at your meals, especially when introducing a new recipe. This means you aren’t finding your self grappling with the dilemma of “Should I send my kid to bed without eating their dinner?”

Kimberley's Rissoles
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Rissoles for a fuss free midweek family dinner. They are so versatile as they can be served with vegetables, salads, cous cous, rice or bread rolls.
Recipe type: Dinner
Serves: 12
  • 250g Beef Mince,
  • 250g Beef Mince,
  • 250g Sausage Mince,
  • 250g Sausage Mince,
  • 1 Grated Carrot
  • 1 Grated Carrot
  • 1 Grated brown onion
  • 1 Grated brown onion
  • 1 potato grated
  • 1 potato grated
  • 1 tbsp of flour (ok that’s 6 ingredients ….oops)
  1. Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Shape golf ball sized portions into balls.
  3. Toss them in flour.
  4. Add to a lightly oiled baking tray and bake in a moderate oven (180oC) for 1 hour (turning every 20 minutes).

The Lure of Sauce for Picky Eaters

Sauces and dips are a coping mechanism for handling new foods that some children absolutely love. They make new foods more familiar by having a similar taste. So, if whether it is having sauce on chicken, fish, hot chips, broccoli or meat pies, they start to have a familiar flavour. This coping mechanism means that children can control the food environment in a little way that doesn’t result in them demanding a whole new meal (and subsequently stepping on your mealtime responsibility of providing the “what”).

On the other hand, some children will see sauces as an additional learning input. They will find the extra inputs (visual “wet” appearance, oral motor skill to handle the wet, olfactory) coming from a sauce makes the food too difficult to process. They may not enjoy the masking effect of the sauce.

Another option would be to provide a “dry dip” (as per my tip in this recipe for fish, cauliflower and dukkah) alongside a “wet dip” to increase familiarity with wet dips.

Sauce Ideas

You don’t have to feel limited to tomato sauce when it comes to condiments with kids, here are some other options to improve the acceptance of variety which is the first step towards some more nutritious sauces in the future.

The 5 Ingredient Dinner Challenge

Keep on enjoying these recipes by participating in the challenge with this 5-Ingredient-Dinner-Challenge-1.pdf checklist (no strings attached). And tag me in your pictures when you participate!

5 ingredient dinner challenge for #pickyeaters by Play with

The other recipes in the challenge include:

  1. Mel’s Mystery Mince
  2. Sandy Feet’s Fish and Cauliflower
  3. Shiri’s Japanese Curry Chicken
  4. Elaine’s Tomato Pasta
  5. Caz’s Yoghurt Dough Pizzas
  6. Heather’s Nachos
  7. Amy’s Fish with Rice and Asparagus
  8. Tegan’s Lentil Bolognese
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