Let me start by saying I didn't always have picky eaters. My first born would pretty much eat everything that was given to her from a young age on. Both baby food and mealtimes were quick favorites. From the moment I noticed her first tooth, I couldn't shovel enough food into her. It started with Cheerios, and we quickly moved onto fruits, veggies and meats. You name it, she ate it.
My second born was a little more challenging. The mush on the spoon, pretend airplane approach never really worked with her. I don't ever recall getting a drop of baby food in her mouth, but things took a turn when we moved onto solid foods. She was more apt to try stuff, and not like it. I never worried too much though, just like her big sister she has always been labeled as "healthy", and has ranged in the 90th percentiles for both height and weight.
I'd say age two has been the turning point for both of my girls. While my youngest (age 2) has attempted to try and like more foods, my oldest (3 1/2) has pretty much given up on trying anything. For the past year and a half she has been living off of grilled cheese sandwiches, milk, fruit and everything that makes up the chocolate food group. My youngest lives off all of those as well, but with her you can add some meats and a few other things into the mix. Just the other morning she really disgusted her big sister by saying she wanted "more chickens" for breakfast. She was referring to scrambled eggs. (The reason she knows that scrambled eggs come from chickens is because my oldest said this to her a few weeks back, "Yuck. I can't believe you are eating baby chicks." Thankfully, the true reality did not phase my two year old.) This is exactly why my oldest is a picky eater. . .
The very day that she associated some of the foods she ate as being animals, was the day she stopped eating them.
If you tell this kid we are having chicken for dinner, you will get this response, "You cannot make me eat birds!" The same goes for Turkey. It got really bad when she learned that chickens lay eggs, and figured out that those scrambled or fried eggs on her plate are "baby chicks". She will NOT eat baby chicks. She will not eat steak, because she knows it's a cow, I'm not sure who told her, but it wasn't me. However, she will eat cheeseburgers. As a matter of fact, she ate one the other day when I gave myself a break from cooking and took my kids to Burger King. (My husband had been gone for all of two hours into a four day business trip, and I caved and brought them to a fast food joint for lunch.) She happily sat and ate her burger (which I'm not even 100% sure if it's real cow) with a huge smile. The real kicker was when we were leaving and I informed my kids that this was a special treat, and that I would indeed be cooking for the rest of the week . . . My oldest said this to my youngest, "Charlotte, put these into your pocket. We'll just have them for dinner." These = ketchup packets.
So a tip for all the parents out there with picky eaters . . . you can always smother the crap out of everything ketchup packets.