Feeding Babies

Feeding Babies, Gluten Free, Dessert, Snack

OATMEAL BREAKFAST COOKIES

breakfast-cookies-01.JPG

We have this “breakfast cookie” recipe going out to our Cooking Club members this week and I wanted to put the recipe here too. The feeding babies section is a crowd favorite, and my kids plow through these. Healthy-ish, grab n’ go, and what not - that’s what ya’ll seem to love about the kids recipes I’ve included around here. It’s tough to find a cookie or muffin that hold together that are both gluten and egg-free, but these work. Report back if you make them, or let me know what you changed. I love seeing your photos!

Our son turned FIVE this weekend. It felt like a big birthday - every increment of five does to me for some reason. My mom always made a big deal of birthdays and I thought it was so fun - I love making him feel like the star of the weekend and the one to make all the calls. We packed the weekend with Legoland, camping with cousins in San Clemente, rocket launching in a field, Chuck-e-Cheese with grandparents, meals of his choice, sprinkle cupcakes etc. etc. It sounds like a lot because it was :)

I feel like we were chin deep in both baby and toddler-hood at the same time for the past few years, and seeing Curran now as an almost-kindergartener is wild. Like we’ve been treading water, and now we can swim. He is thoughtful and emotional and smart and empathetic - LOVES his dad, lights up with the company of friends, is ALWAYS the first person to wake up in the morning with a full tank of energy, very into building things, collector, can recall specific memories in full detail from way before I thought was possible (“remember when I choked on that frozen mango?”…you were one, how do you remember that?!?!). He has figured out that throwing clothes in the hamper is quicker than folding and putting them away which I find both annoying and clever - for some reason it’s a nod from toddler to kid - those little things that feel different.

Curran and I had a tough time with each other during his 2-4 age because he is pretty sensitive, and it would touch on an insecurity of my own - both of us then upset, neither bringing calm to the situation. I thought I was self-aware enough to not ride my toddlers emotions but I did… do, sometimes still. He’s better lately, and I am too, far from perfect, but it feels like we’ve grown in that area together. Perhaps that makes me sound like an immature parent, but little refines us and highlights our weak spots like our own children. Anyway, finding a better rhythm with him has been so special. I used to want time to speed up, I didn’t want to tread water anymore, but the swimming? Now I want to stop time! Curran and I have put together more lego sets in the past four days than I care to have floating around the house but he LOVES them, both the building and the company, so bring on the Legos.

-

SIDENOTE: Hugh made a short pdf of quick food photography tips which is now available on our SHOP page. For a limited time, it is available for $1.99, which will be the best couple bucks you’ll spend this week. It is not a full photography course, but the concise and simple tips will absolutely make a difference in the way you capture your food. I’ve learned so much from Hugh, and this guide boils down the handful of important things to think about when you take and edit a photo of your food. Let us know if you have any questions!


OATMEAL BREAKFAST COOKIES

Makes 18 small

These are delicate, as there is no gluten or egg helping to bind them. If you are looking for something to pack in a lunchbox, and can tolerate eggs, add one in to the mashed banana step to help make them more sturdy. Raisins feel slightly more virtuous, but chocolate chips feel slightly more delicious. Take your pick. Keep them small either way.

I do not usually stock quick-cooking oats, but you can blitz old-fashioned oats in a food processor for a similar texture, or I’ve used Seven Sundays muesli with success (Target or Costco sell the big bags). If you need these to be nut-free, I have a report that sunflower butter works fine.

Ingredients

1 medium, extra extra ripe banana, mashed
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. cinnamon 
1/4 cup coconut oil, warmed
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup smooth, natural nut butter (almond, cashew, peanut)
2 Tbsp. chia seeds
1 1/2 cups quick-cooking oats (or old-fashioned oats you’ve blitzed in the food processor a few times to get smaller bits)
1/2 tsp. baking powder
3 Tbsp. flaxmeal
1/2 cup raisins (chop if they’re jumbo), or mini chocolate chips

Instructions

In a large mixing bowl, combine the mashed banana with salt, vanilla, cinnamon, coconut oil and stir to combine. Add the maple, nut butter, chia seeds and stir again until smooth. Let the chia seeds absorb for a moment. 

Stir in the oats, baking powder, flaxmeal, raisins and let the mixture chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350’ and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment. 

Roll the dough into balls of about 2 Tbsp. worth of dough. Arrange them on the baking sheet with a little space between, give them a gently press down, they don’t spread much. 

Bake on the middle rack for 12-13 minutes. Remove to cool completely - they’ll hold together better once cooled. 

Store in an airtight container. Cookies will keep for three days. 

breakfast-cookies-02.JPG
Print This Recipe

Bread, Breakfast, Gluten Free, Feeding Babies, Snack, Summer

GLUTEN FREE ZUCCHINI MUFFINS

gluten free zucchini muffins

Loves! I posted about this zucchini loaf/muffins I've been working on over on Instagram and you were like hungry little wolves insisting that I post the recipe asap. So, here we are, a few weeks later, which is as asap as it'll get around here. 

Because most of the cooking I do is simple assembly and layering basics rather than advanced skills and technique, the dishes I write for work *usually* turn out by the second time I test them. I can often run this success rate with baking by just tinkering with other recipes and changing the flavor profile. However, I have made about 8-10 rounds of zucchini carrot muffins, all edible, but certainly not eligible to post on the internet with my name on them. I tried to make them maple sweetened (too much moisture), all almond flour (too heavy, also wet),  I squeezed the moisture out of the veg and still, resembling a frittata more so than a muffin, and so on. I mentioned in this peanut butter oatmeal entry a couple weeks ago that my kids are all about baked goods, so I will not rest until I can pack vegetables in them!

I'm not going to say what we have here is perfect but I am happy with where they are and I need the tweaking to just be done. I have a painter friend who says sometimes she just needs to call the piece finished. Lacquer it, take a picture, and move on, even when she knows she *could* keep working on it, because she can end up ruining it instead. I listen to podcasts of entrepreneurs who suggest to put things out there; let people see them and use them and respond, instead of keeping your project quiet, hoping you get closer to perfect. So, if you do make these, tell me what you did or what you would change. I love chatting about food in this space with ya'll, so if you have tips, share them with others in the comments.  

gluten free zucchini muffins - shredded zucchini

GLUTEN FREE ZUCCHINI MUFFINS

Makes 10

I have used super fine brown rice flour in a baking before and many of you noted that it is a bit tricky to stock. I buy it here, but there are alternatives. If you do not need these gluten free, simply use unbleached all purpose flour in its place. I would still suggest using the almond flour or meal in combination, as it keeps the muffins more tender. These are on the low end of the sweet scale, if you want them more of a treat, add a few more tablespoons of sugar. 

The timing is written for 10 muffins, and I find their delicate nature is best in that format. You can bake the batter in a greased loaf for closer to 45 minutes, sticking a toothpick in the center to make sure it isn't too wet.
This muffin tin is my favorite forever and ever.

Ingredients

2 eggs
1/3 cup avocado or coconut oil
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup buttermilk or plain yogurt

3/4 cup almond flour
3/4 cup superfine rice flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup cane sugar
1 cup grated zucchini, about 1 medium/large
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chunks

turbinado sugar, to finish, optional

Instructions

Start by grating the zucchini (I do a blend of small holes and large holes on a box grater because I can't decide). Preheat the oven to 360' and grease a muffin tin. 

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs, oil, vanilla, vinegar and buttermilk or yogurt, until well combined. Add the almond flour, rice flour, baking soda and powder, salt, cinnamon, sugar and stir until combined. Add the zucchini and chocolate and fold it in.

Fill the muffin tins about 2/3 full (they don't rise much) and sprinkle turbinado sugar on top, if using. Bake on the middle rack for 18-20 minutes, or until golden around the edge and a little tap on the center bounces back at you. 

Remove to cool completely. Keep covered at room temperature for 2 days, or in the fridge any longer than that.

A split and toasted muffin is the best muffin, but straight out of the hand is delicious too. 

gluten free zucchini muffin
Print This Recipe

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. 
 

Print This Recipe