Feeding Babies

Breakfast, Feeding Babies, Gluten Free

PEANUT BUTTER BANANA OATMEAL CUPS

oatmeal cups with peanut butter and banana

I do love breakfast. I enjoy the ritual of warm coffee with a glug of coconut creamer, first thing. The first hot sip, just creamy enough; two hands wrapped around my mug. It's not the caffeine, I like decaf just the same, it's just the ritual. I appreciate that there are less choices food wise, a narrower expectation, so when I make avocado toast with everything bagel seasoning, an over easy egg and fresh tomato for a month straight, I don't tire of it. Nothing else sounds better, so I'll take the usual.

 The kids don't feel quite as romantic about morning rituals. How do they come out the gate so raring to go? Curran can start the toast while I cut some fruit, and get an egg going for each of them.  We'll do loaded green protein shakes if we're on the go, breakfast sandwiches if the avocados need to be used, homemade waffles and pancakes with goat yogurt, honey and seeds on the weekends, and they inhale chicken breakfast sausages like they may not have a chance to eat for the rest of the day. The littlest isn't keen on a bowl of oats, but if they come in muffin format, it qualifies as a pastry and it is met with enthusiasm. Because some mornings I just can't with the buffet. Especially with school mornings coming up next week, it will be nice to have something easy. 

I started with this baked oatmeal ratio and changed a few things to make them more portable. I added some chocolate protein powder and peanut butter so the little pucks taste like a treat... relatively speaking. I can see these going so many directions - stick with the berry profile, you could add pureed pumpkin or sweet potato for more vitamins and fiber, or chocolate chips! Because who doesn't love a breakfast with a wee bit of chocolate? So while I thought these were just going to be for the kids, they're perfect to grab en route to the gym, or for anyone getting out the door quick in the morning. Anyway, hope these are helpful! 

peanut butter banana oatmeal cups

PEANUT BUTTER BANANA OATMEAL CUPS

Makes 12

Someone will ask if you can use muffin liners, and I think so, though I haven't tried. I use this muffin tin and with a little coconut oil, things pop out no problem. I find that liners, with a semi wet batter, just steam and stick together. I used just one egg here so they are tender and delicate, ours still stayed together well enough to eat like a muffin. They could take a second egg if you want them to be more solid. Also, if you want more of a porridge texture, warm one up with almond milk and mix to combine. Add berries, fruit etc. from there. 
Protein powders we like: Ora Organics, Amazing Grass, and if you don't care if it's plant based, Lean Pro Matrix. 

INGREDIENTS

2 large, very ripe bananas, mashed
1 egg
2 Tbsp. coconut oil, warmed
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup smooth, natural peanut butter
1/2 tsp. sea salt, adjust based on your peanut butter
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
2 cups unsweetened nut or regular milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 scoop of chocolate protein powder (optional)
2 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
1 scant teaspoon baking powder
1 Tbsp. flax meal, optional

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat the oven to 350' and grease a muffin tin.

In a large bowl, combine the mashed banana, egg, oil, maple and whisk well to combine. Whisk in the peanut butter, salt, cinnamon, nut milk, vanilla and protein powder. Stir in the oats, baking powder and flaxmeal and let it all sit a few minutes. 

Distribute the mixture between the tins, should leave you with 12, about 2/3 full (they don't rise). Bake for 20 minutes or until you press on the center and it is tender, but not squishy wet. They will continue to set as they cool. They are fine at room temperature for a day, then keep cups stored in the fridge for up to a week. 
 

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Dessert, Gluten Free, Chocolate, Snack, Feeding Babies

DATE + SEED BUTTER COOKIES

Date & Seed Butter Cookies . Mixer

I'll try to do another lunchbox post in a few weeks, as I get ready to send both off to preschool (tear! but also yay!). These would be a perfect addition, but I suppose they are a nice summer treat as well, while we're enjoying the last couple weeks of it. I personally can't wait to get back to a regular routine, while still having the beach weekends, warm nights, watermelon and corn. September here is my very favorite. 

I saw these on Dana's site a few weeks (months?) ago and haven't stopped thinking of them. We make nearly the exact ones, without the oats, and I figured it may be nice to have these in the repetoire here for all the nut-free people either by way of school rules or allergies. I generally prefer peanut butter to sunflower seed butter, but 'tis the season of lunchbox prep. 

Date & Seed Butter Cookies . Rolling
Date & Seed Butter Cookies . Dipped in Chocolate

DATE + SEED BUTTER COOKIES

Makes about 20-24 cookies

Recipe barely adapted from these and  Minimalist Baker

I make these pretty small so I can pack them in a lunch box, or use them for vegetable eating negotiations without bracing for a sugar high. They should be kept in the fridge as they fall apart and the coconut oil melts at room temperature. I'll make them without the cocoa dip for packed lunches to avoid the mess.
 

Ingredients

cookies:
1 cup pitted dates
1 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 cup unsweetened seed butter
1 Tbsp. chia seeds, optional
pinch of salt
pinch of cinnamon

chocolate glaze:
3 T. coconut oil, to a liquid
1 Tbsp.. maple syrup
3 T. cocoa powder
 

Instructions

Put the dates and oats in a food processor and pulse a dozen times until well chopped and sticky. Add the seed butter, chia seeds, pinch of salt and cinnamon, and pulse a few more times. If mixture looks dry and crackly, add a splash of water or coconut oil, and pulse again until combined.

Line a plate with parchment paper. Roll the mixture into small, tablespoon-ish, sized balls. Press the centers down with the tins of a fork, cross hatched if you wish. Refrigerate for an hour or overnight.

 In a small bowl, stir together the coconut oil, maple and cocoa powder. Dip the cold cookies, halfway, into the cocoa mix. Replace them back on the plate and refrigerate again to chill. Keep them stored in the fridge until ready to eat. 

Date & Seed Butter Cookies . Sprouted Kitchen
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Feeding Babies, Entrée, Snack

FEEDING BABIES: TODDLER VEGETABLES EDITION

toddler_vegetables_01.jpg

My most frequent request is for more feeding babies posts. The consensus being: carbs, cheese, meat are no problem for their kids, but there is concern over vegetable consumption. I don't really feed babies specifically any more, but we are still not quite all eating the same thing. I am feeding toddlers, which comes with both more options and more negotiating than babies. 

Another tip I am trying to implement, which I picked up from my sister in law, is to keep snacks after lunch to a minimum. Aren't we more apt to try new things with an appetite? She only offers veggies and hummus between lunch and dinner and I've been trying to do that. If they are not hungry for that, then they can't really be *that* hungry. No bars, crackers, string cheese, or whatever your kids' most requested snacks are. When I keep throwing snacks at them in that 4-6 window when they're asking for food and I'm trying to hustle back from an afternoon activity and get dinner together, they eat about one bite of dinner because they are not really hungry. They don't want to try new things or even sit at the table. The goal is to have them come to the dinner table hungry if you want them to eat what you're eating. Do you have any other good tips? 

Some of these "recipes" seem silly to write down, but I understand that some of us, especially with tasks outside of our wheelhouse, like to just be told what to do. Below are a couple things that my kids are into lately, and sides we adults enjoy eating too.  Roasted cauliflower with tahini sauce? Yes please. Forever.


VEGGIES AND MONSTER HUMMUS

Makes about 2 Cups

Cut and prep this in advance so it's ready in the fridge when wee ones start asking you for food. The hummus will keep about 5 days before the color begins to brown. When you see how silly easy it is to make hummus at home, you can use it as a base for all sort of vegetable add ins: a cooked beet, jalapeno cilantro, roasted red pepper. I also love the one made with red lentils from Near and Far.

Ingredients

  • 5 ounces baby spinach or power greens mix
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas
  • juice of half a lemon, to taste
  • 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt and pepper
  • prepared carrots, bell peppers, Persian cucumbers, for dipping

Instructions

Barely wilt the greens, for just a minute, in a tablespoon of water. Set aside to cool.  Into a food processor, combine the garlic, tahini, chickpeas, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper and process until smooth. Tip in the wilted greens and blend again until fully incorporated. Taste for salt and pepper. Thin with lemon juice or water as needed. Store in an airtight container in the fridge. 

Serve with cut vegetables, crackers, or as a sandwich spread. 

Toddler Vegetables . Monster Hummus . Sprouted Kitchen

ROASTED SWEET POTATO WEDGES WITH HERBY YOGURT DIP

Serves 4

I like the taco seasoning from Trader Joes, it does have some sugar, but doesn't have a bunch of other junk in it. If you are looking to just pull from your own spice cabinet, a mix of cumin and chili powder will be great alternative. Rolling them in cornstarch or arrowroot powder first, helps create a barrier to soak up the potatoes' natural moisture content and ensure a bit more crispiness. Even a very discerning toddler will not notice, but I am adding this step because I like to eat them this way :) If you have leftovers, they are a perfect addition to a breakfast burrito with some scrambled eggs, greens and shredded white cheddar. 
A dairy free option for the dip would be to use one large, ripe avocado in place of the yogurt. 

Ingredients

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes
  • 1 Tbsp. cornstarch or arrowroot powder, optional
  • 1-2 Tbsp. avocado oil
  • 2 tsp. taco seasoning, see headnote
  • sea salt and pepper
  • 2/3 cup whole plain greek yogurt
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp. well chopped cilantro (or parsley)
  • pinch of salt and pepper

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 400'.

Cut the sweet potatoes into wedges, no more than 1/2" thick. Toss them in the cornstarch or arrowroot to roughly coat (optional). Drizzle with the oil, toss again. Sprinkle the seasoning, toss again. Spread the potatoes in an even layer , using two pans if necessary to avoid too much overlap. Roast for 25 minutes until tender.

While the potatoes are cooking, mix up your yogurt dip. Stir together the yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, cilantro and a pinch of salt and pepper. 

Toddler Vegetables . Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Herby Yogurt Dip . Sprouted Kitchen

EVERYTHING BAGEL CAULIFLOWER

Serves 2-4

The beautiful thing about cauliflower is that is doesn't have much flavor on its own, so it can go any direction. I let my kids sprinkle the seeds on and put this on their plate with a dollop of the tahini sauce or ketchup, when I'm in a pinch. It's also great mixed into some mac n cheese or into cooked brown rice and call it a complete meal. 

Ingredients

  • 1 medium head of cauliflower
  • 2 Tbsp. avocado or olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 Tbsp. everything bagel seasoning from Trader Joes or make you own*
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1 large clove garlic, grated/li>
  • 1 tsp. maple syrup
  • 3 Tbsp. water
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • tiny dash of cayenne
  • salt and pepper

* Mix 1 Tbsp. sesame seeds, 1 Tbsp. poppyseeds, 1 tsp. dried onion flakes, 1 tsp. dried garlic flakes, 1/4 tsp. sea salt and pepper.

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 425'. Break the florets off, away from the core of the cauliflower and cut the core into 1" pieces as well. Toss everything in the oil to coat. Sprinkle on the salt and bagel seasonings and toss again. Spread the cauliflower in an even layer and roast on the middle rack for 25-30 minutes, tossing the vegetables halfway through roasting. Remove to cool.

While the cauliflower roasts, mix the tahini sauce ingredients. Stir together the tahini, garlic clove, maple, water, lemon juice, cayenne and a pinch of salt and pepper. 

Toddler Vegetables . Everything Bagel Cauliflower with Tahini Sauce. Sprouted Kitchen


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