8.19.2014

toddler meals | week 3

This week marks Week 3 of my new series on Toddler Meals! My focus is to create simple and healthy meals that are nutritionally balanced but easy to prepare for busy moms. All the meals can be modified to your child's preferences and are meant to be a starting point for getting creative and having fun in the kitchen. They are all meals that Olivia loves to eat and that I feel good about serving.

The past two weeks can be found below. Enjoy!
Week 1 || Week 2

breakfast || banana wedges, pear yogurt + toasted PB&J strips

+ One of the most quintessential meals from my childhood was a peanut butter & jelly sandwich, always on white bread with the crusts cut off. My grandma Bea had an antique metal mold that would form my PB&Js into the neatest shape and they seriously made my childhood [along with Sesame Street and Goodnight Moon of course]. Early into motherhood, just days and weeks after Olivia was born, I remember eating PB&J on toasted English Muffins at 2 in the morning between her feedings. They always bring me back to the most special times and this breakfast recreates the classic combo +


the how to ||
      » peel & slice a ripe banana into wedges that are age-appropriate for your child

      » PB&J strips can be made on any bread or toast you have on hand, but I find that when the bread is too soft and the peanut butter is extra gooey [as it should be], it can be difficult for little mouths to eat, so my favorite way to serve it is on a toasted english muffin; it is sturdy enough that it's easy for V to eat but still soft  and oh so delicious; simply toast half an english muffin until lightly browned; cut in half; spread your child's favorite jam or jelly on one half [real raspberry preserves is our go-to] & your child's favorite nut butter on the other half [old home crunchy is what we love]; cut into thin strips or tiny pieces if your child is younger

      » serve both alongside your child's favorite yogurt; we love Stonyfield Farms YoBaby and YoToddler brand and the Peach + Pear set is V's current craving!

lunch || deconstructed egg salad sandwich + avocado

+ Can you tell we love english muffins in our house? They are something we always have on hand, just like hard-boiled eggs. On any given day, we have 2-3 dozen eggs in our frig at once because we eat them so often; egg-salad is one of our all-time favorite foods and can be made in no time at all with just a few simple ingredients; this version is kid-friendly and since I first gave it to her last weekend, Via can't get enough! I serve it alongside a buttered english muffin and creamy avocado slices; this is one of those lunches that I eat right alongside V cause its just that good +


the how to ||
      » Cut a ripe avocado in half and remove the pit; scoop one side out and cut into slices or small cubes

     » Toast half an english muffin, butter it and cut in half again; if your child is younger and cannot bite 'off' something, just cut it into bite sized pieces using a serrated knife     

    » Hard-boil eggs [I do this ahead of time on Sunday nights in a big batch for the week ahead] & let cool; finely mince celery and red onion [we grill our red onion to create a more caramelized, mild flavor and it adds so much to the salad]; using an egg slicer, cut egg into small pieces for salad; mix with celery and red onion in a bowl; add small dollop of kid-friendly mayo [our favorite here] and mix until combined; season with S+P to taste if desired and serve!

snack || grapes + cheese

+ Everybody knows that grapes and cheese just pair so well together; when I'm hungry but just need a little something instead of a full meal, I often grab a handful of fresh grapes [red or green, whatever we have in the frig] and a slice of sharp cheddar cheese, so one day I thought: Why not offer the same snack to Via? The creamy richness of the cheese is perfect alongside the sweet and juicy grapes; cut into wedges or appropriate-sized pieces for your little one and serve them up in a fun way that allows your toddler to graze while playing after naptime +


the how to ||
     » cut your child's favorite kind of cheese into bite-sized pieces [we love horizon organic colby or cracker barrel sharp cheddar]

     » rinse fresh grapes well [buy organic whenever possible because grapes are one of the top crops for pesticides!] and cut into age-approrpriate bite-sized pieces 
     
dinner || simple chicken lettuce wraps, brown rice & sweet potato cubes

+ Dustin and I eat a lot of lettuce wraps -- as in, every single week and usually more than once a week! Lettuce wraps are a great way to eat a healthy and veggie-packed dinner that is also gluten free! Crunchy and crisp butter lettuce is the perfect vehicle and I modified our favorite lettuce wrap recipe to be kid-friendly and the best part is that it only requires a few simple ingredients: olive oil, chicken, S+P and lettuce! Serve it alongside brown rice and your child's favorite baked or steamed vegetable +


the how to ||
     » Peel sweet potatoes and cube; steam in a medium sized stock pot for 6-8 minutes or until tender

     » Cook brown rice according to package; our absolute favorite here
               It comes frozen but the rice is fully cooked with 3 bags per box; I prepare 1/3 bag in coconut oil in a stock pot over medium-low heat and add liquid aminos for flavoring without all the icky chemicals found in regular soy sauce as a side for Olivia, or one full bag for the three of us / it's ready in about 5 minutes with no fuss and so much flavor]

     »  Prepare Lettuce Wraps: I make all of our chicken together and then remove Olivia's before adding our lettuce wrap sauce since it's a bit too spicy; in a large stock pot or dutch oven, heat extra virgin olive oil on medium heat; add chicken breasts [cut into 1-2 inch pieces]; sauté both sides until chicken is cooked through; add S+P or chopped cilantro; serve in a lettuce cup if desired or chop the lettuce and the chicken into age-appropriate pieces to be finger foods; nix the lettuce altogether if your child isn't interested [it's the thought that counts, right?]

I hope these meals make their way into your home and satisfy your hungry toddler! 
I'll be sharing more meal ideas next week!

2 comments:

  1. Hi Megan! Thanks so much for sharing these. It's been giving me such great ideas. I have a question for you though. Was Olivia ever a picky eater? A lot of these food Savanna has tried before but then I hadn't given it to her in a while so when I tried again, she won't try it. She hands it back to me and just says "no". Do you have any tips?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Olivia is amazing! Seriously! (And so are you) The yummy food she will eat, never ceases to amaze me.

    ReplyDelete


Back to Top