Saturday, September 14, 2013

What the heck do I feed my baby (toddler)?!

(Did you see my IG and Vine videos of Lemon with this piece of steak?  Ridiculous!)

I recently posted a picture (a picture of text) on Instagram asking my IG mamas to give me some ideas of what I should be feeding Lemon.  I wanted to know what their little ones' favorite meals were.  I'm not talking favorite items, but I was looking for meals that I could make for Lemon.

I recently found this printable and used it this week to leave for Ashley, our nanny, so that Lemon was eating something different every day for breakfast and lunch.  For dinners we usually go with organic ground beef with spaghetti sauce (won't eat gf noodles or lasagna all of a sudden), gluten free mac & cheese and then some veggies like peas or corn.  She also likes black beans and avocado so sometimes she gets that for dinner too.  Until recently she wouldn't eat any other meat, even grilled chicken, but last night I got her to try some wild caught fish and she's been really into chunks of chicken lately.  I just felt like I was at a loss for what to make her and she really doesn't eat what we eat because we usually eat a meat and veggies and she can't chew up steak or pork chops.  She also hasn't been into any of the veggies I've cooked like broccoli or brussels sprouts.  I hate having to make two separate things - for us and for her - and I felt like I was just shuffling around the same old things all the time and she was getting bored and so was I.

Lemon never really ate baby food and has been eating chunks of food from about 8 months until now.  But these two teeth really hinder our chunks and solids like crackers and chips are tough, as well as meat, because she can't really break them apart.  I wanted some meal ideas that she could try and that maybe we could eat too so I wasn't making two different dinners.  Coming home from work and cooking is hard enough but having to do it twice (or cut things up) is such a pain.

Well, after my post, I got SO MANY great ideas I thought I'd compile them here for other mamas to use.  Lemon is 14 months and is gluten free, so I will be modifying some of these recipes and you can too if your babe has some food sensitivities as well.  I will do my best to google the things mentioned and included links of their are some.  If you have some meals that you make that your babe loves as well, please include them in the comments below!

First, here is a picture of Lemon's breakfast/lunch menu I made this week.  This is pretty typical for these meals, while we are at work, and next week I will probably just shuffle them around.  We also have some gf waffles we use as well and the hash browns are awesome (from Fresh n' Easy and look like McDonald's hash browns!).  The muffins I made from gf Bisquick and all of the food Lemon eats like fruits/veggies/lunch meat is organic.

And here are some IG mama suggestions:
  • Cottage cheese with chia seeds sprinkled on top
  • Egg muffins in a mini muffin pan:  Mix egg white (and yolk if you want), almond milk, chopped veggies and your choice of seasoning and bake at 350.  Can do a broccoli/pesto version or a veggie/tomato sauce version too.
  • Avocado slices, refried beans, dried apple slices
  • Garlic seasoned quinoa
  • Smoothies
  • Banana slices with peanut butter
  • Miso soup with tofu
  • Hummus with pita bread, carrots, veggies
  • Stews with potatoes
  • Rice and beans
  • Dried fruit
  • Quinoa
  • Yogurt
  • Sweet potato fries
  • Kale chips
  • Almond butter on apples or bananas
  • Steamed carrots
  • Tofu
  • Anything they can dip
  • Pancakes with jam
  • Scrambled eggs
  • Celery sticks with almond butter and raisins
  • Quesadilla with guacamole and sour cream
  • Hummus and steamed broccoli
  • Mashed potatoes with chicken or beans
  • Turkey chili
  • Tuna
  • Grilled cheese (with avocado spread or veggie puree)
  • Blueberry pancakes
  • Turkey sandwiches
  • Quinoa muffins with mixed chopped berries
  • Peeled zucchini strips sprinkled with nutritional yeast
  • Omlettes
  • Toast with butter
  • Quinoa pizza bites
  • Pigs in a blanket with crescent rolls wrapped around (cut franks in half)
  • Applesauce and yogurt as dips - like chicken and applesauce.
  • PB&J or PB& applesauce
  • Cheerios, Life, Chex (Chex is gf and the vanilla kind is amazing)
  • Waffles with applesauce
  • Pasta with pesto (instead of tomato sauce) or with butter and cheese
  • Squash mac & cheese - veggie pasta and throw in some peas!
  • Whole wheat pancakes:  1 cup whole wheat flour (could sub gf flour here), 1 tablespoon brown sugar, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon sea salt, 1 egg, 1 cup coconut milk, 1 cup blueberries, 1 tablespoon coconut oil (and optional shredded coconut for garnish).
  • Diced chicken with veggies and scrambled eggs, add brown rice and gf soy sauce (genius!).  
  • Oatmeal and fruit (make it dry so they can pick up some drops of it)
  • Cutting fruit with cookie cutters (amazing), sandwiches too, eggs
  • Chicken porridge with some veggies
  • Meatballs with sauce or gravy to dip
  • Mushroom risotto
  • Egg pancakes with sauce
  • Mini turkey meatballs with spinach (or kale) and cheese with a side of pasta
  • Quesadillas with black beans and sweet potatoes (genius)
  • Grilled cheese with meat, tomato, spinach
  • Breakfast casserole:  bread, eggs, cheese, turkey sausage, spinach topped with avocado or tomato.
  • Breakfast muffins
  • Chicken fajitas with zucchini and quinoa
  • Hatch chili
  • Squash fritters
  • Cuban style black beans with peppers and onions
  • Boiled veggies like carrots, green beans, etc in chicken or veggie broth
  • Stone fruits like peaches/nectarines
  • Acorn squash prosciutto penne pasta:  wash, slice into wedges, toss in olive oil, salt, pepper, bake 30 minutes and peal.
  • Baked sweet potato cubes tossed in olive oil with cinnamon, salt, pepper and brown sugar.
  • Falafel (genius!)
  • Shepherd's pie with ground turkey, mashed potatoes, peas, corn, carrots, etc.  
  • Ice cube tray filled with little things like blueberries, peas, etc.
  • Chicken cubes with black beans and rice
  • Chick peas
  • Quesadilla with broccoli or zucchini puree
  • Cereal mixed with yogurt
  • Mixed beans
  • Pumpkin chips
  • Mini quiches cooked in tiny muffin tins
  • Ham and pineapple
  • Tuna pasta bake
  • Omelet cooked around bread:  cut hole in bread and cook omelet in center.
  • Bonognese
  • Chicken fettucine
  • Mini pies:  egg & bacon, chicken & tomato, spinach & feta
  • Progresso soups (big noodles easy to pick up)
  • Quinoa mac & cheese - cooked quinoa with butter, broccoli/squash, garlic and peas.
  • Quinoa waffle
  • Almond/egg pancakes
  • Pickles
  • Black bean patty
  • Vegan cashew cream sauce on pasta
  • Turkey fried rice
  • Chickpeas and spinach braised in coconut milk (this looks AMAZING)
  • Muffins in a coffee mug in the microwave with fruit as the filling - flax meal, almond meal, egg, baking powder, cinnamon, honey
  • Chicken/egg sandwiches
  • Tuna salad sandwiches
  • Avocado or plain greek yogurt instead of mayo on sandwiches
  • Soft tacos/burritos
  • Crustless chicken pot pie - chicken, rice, veggies and a binder (sauce) and a layer of mashed potatoes or cauliflower mash as the crust
  • Meatloaf with veggies as filler
  • Yogurt covered raisins
  • String cheese dipped in guacamole
  • Homemade chicken tenders or fish sticks rolled in egg and a mix of almond flour, parmesan cheese and other seasoning (baked or fried in coconut oil).  Can fry a mix of veggies the same way too.
  • Gf pasta cooked in a veggie broth with zucchini, spinach and tomato and use tomato sauce or butter and a little fresh parmesan cheese and garlic.  Can put in reusable squeeze pouches and freeze for on the go.
  • Little Grazers
  • Quinoa mixed with yogurt and diced strawberries
  • Quinoa with olive oil, garlic and diced roasted veggies
  • Avocado mashed with banana (two of Lemon's favorites)
  • Pureed veggies with mac & cheese or spaghetti
  • Sauteed green peppers and onions with mashed potatoes
  • Crackers with peanut butter
  • The Wholesome Baby Food Guide
  • And Julie, from The Girl in the Red Shoes, did a post about toddler food too and I didn't even know it! 
  • Shawna also has some recipes on her blog as well.
Phew, that was tough but I typed them all!  If you have recipes for any of the above, ladies, please share in the comments below.  Hope this helps, can't wait to try some of these!!!  Thanks again for sharing!!!

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  1. The cookbook Weelicious or the website has amazing toddler recipes for all meals/snacks! I am by no means a cook but these are all fairly easy recipes that have all been a success with my kiddies! :)

  2. You just helped me out.HUGE with that list.

  3. Great ideas. I used to make big batches of turkey meatballs and mini meatloafs in cupcake pans to freeze so we always had a toddler friendly protein on hand.

  4. From Melanie (on IG):
    Scrambled eggs with veggies/cheese
    Fried rice with ham/turkey in small pieces and peas, onions, spaghetti squash or brussel sprouts
    Roasted asparagus or brussel sprouts
    Zucchini with tex mex cheese melted on top
    Sushi (sushi?!)

  5. From Bethany G (on IG):
    Soups/stews and freeze them: Veggie base with potatoes, carrots, celery, peas, thyme, garlic in crock pot.

  6. Great post! My little guy is 8 months and I'm constantly trying to think of what I can give him besides purees !