I Birthed Goats (Toddler Cuisine for Moms on the Go!)
I am the mother of two hungry, hungry hippos. I'm blessed to have two little girls who are not picky eaters and will try anything. It is very easy to get into a rut with toddlers. Before I had the girls (and of course you're the expert, even before you have children /sarcasm), I promised myself nothing processed, definitely no dino shaped chicken nuggets, and everything would be lovingly made at home.
Have you stopped laughing?
Of course, I try really hard to feed the girls a mix of fruits, meats, and veggies. My lovely friend Crystal from the blog Alan and Crystal requested that I write an entry on toddler cuisine.
Plain and simple, our girls eat the same food we eat. I will often send leftovers from dinner as the girls' lunch for daycare. However, here are some breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack options for you.
Breakfasts: frozen waffles and pancakes (the girls love apple cinammon and blueberry), any fresh fruit (winners in this house include bananas and Fuji apples), yogurt (our girls love Stonyfield strawberry banana or sweet potato and pumpkin), blueberry muffins (Betty Crocker, baby), oatmeal (ours like apple cinammon and peaches and cream), apple turnovers (slice an apple with an apple corer, wrap it up in a crescent roll, dust with cinammon and sugar, bake according to crescent roll directions
Lunches: Penne pasta and red tomato sauce, white chicken quesadillas, taco salad (ground turkey cooked with taco seasoning, shredded cheese, bits of lettuce, and soft tortilla strips), turkey pinwheels (soft tortilla, spread Laughing Cow cheese, a slice of turkey lunch meat, roll up tight and slice), homemade chicken nuggets (chicken breasts cut up, dipped in light butter, dipped in Italian bread crumbs, baked in the oven), veggie pizza (crescent roll dough laid flat, baked according to directions, chives cream cheese spread on top, finely chopped broccoli, black olives, and tomatoes on top.
Dinner: Any of the lunch options above (because usually these were leftovers), lasagna, black beans and chicken strips, chicken quesadills
Snacks: Goldfish crackers, Multi-grain Cheerios, string cheese, fruit strips (The girls love the 360 brand of fruit strips from Whole Foods), fruit and veggie smoothie pouches, roasted broccoli with parmesan, Nutri-Grain bars
We do let them eat lunch at daycare sometimes, and our daycare is wonderful about giving us menus, or providing an alternative lunch. Neither girl is crazy about red meat, and we don't force the issue. We know they are getting iron in their fortified soy milk and through their veggies. We also let the girls have mashed potatoes once a week when we have Sunday lunch at my parents' house.
Since we found out that our girls have a potential tree nut allergy, we are label-readers and we will not feed them anything that may contain tree nuts or made in a facility that handles tree nuts (such as granola bars). Our girls also drink organic soy milk due to Natalie's milk casein sensitivity. Our girls have had tons of sinus infections and ear infections. Cow's milk causes the overproduction of mucus, which can back up into the sinuses and ears. It's usually not a problem for most babies and toddlers, but since it is for ours, we'd rather make the switch than have to possibly get ear tubes. Therefore, we have made the switch to soy milk, and we are seeing a bit of a difference, combined with Claritin.
I would really be interested in hearing YOUR favorite toddler meal/snack options!