You guys seem to love these recipe round-ups and I love putting them together for you! I mean, let’s be real: we’ve all been putting in some solid kitchen time these days, so inspiration on what to cook and keep it fun becomes even MORE important than ever.
Whatever makes mealtimes easier, more efficient, more fun, healthy and delicious? Count me in, sister.
Enter— this little list of 3 vibrant, nutrient-rich meals that everyone in your fam can enjoy. (Mmhmmm, little ones, too!)
One of the most fun parts about Noah’s age (pause… he’s about to turn two soon. WHAT?) is that he’s been so much more active with me in the kitchen (and our tiny garden). Last week I recently rooted up all our summer produce and planted all the fall, hearty root veggies that we go through so quickly this time of year: leafy greens, kale, and all the herbs .And if you follow along on IG, you know he’s also been stirring up goodies with me in the kitchen. Wooden spoon in hand, enormous smile on face.
I just ordered a kitchen learning tower because my chair is getting a little bit dirty with all his help, and I know he’s going to love it. Me too, actually. I got this one for those that have been asking which one I picked after debating it for weeks. I wanted something that wasn’t a total eye-sore, but also relatively small in our already small space. This one was a runner up because of it’s smaller footprint too.
(That is, unless he’s trying to snack on something with raw eggs in it and the spoon gets taken away. He’s not a fan of THAT part.)
Anyway, it’s been a great reminder and encouragement to me that he sees what we do. He notices, mimics, watches and copies our habits and routines, small and large.
That he is learning to appreciate real food because that’s what we make around here as our norm. And he gets to participate in it…. in the growing, in the making, in the waiting and producing of it.
I know he might not *always* want to be my kitchen helper, but for now, it brings me so much peace to have these quiet afternoon moments together. Mixing and giggling, waiting for our GF sourdough to come out of the oven, while he flicks the oven light on and off a million times and squats down so far to peer inside.
If you have littles, invite them into the kitchen with you. Give them small jobs. Relax a little on the control or “doing it right”.
It might be messier. It might be slower. But it will get them invested in the process of creating something to nourish your whole family’s bodies (and minds & souls).
Maybe even ask them to help with one of these 3 recipes, below. They’re good ones any time of year, but I love them especially in these cozier, quieter days of fall.
3 Meals Your Whole Family Will Love
01. The Morning Warming Smoothie (from the Simply Real Eating cookbook!)
Makes 1 serving
Notes: This is such a great way to use some leftovers from the night before and turn it into breakfast. I love making this when we’ve had sweet potato, broccoli and zucchini the night before (or use whatever veggies you have– cauliflower and roasted carrots would work great here too).
1 sweet potato, roasted
½ zucchini, roasted or steamed with the skins peeled off
½ cup spinach
1 cup broccoli stems, roasted or steamed
½ cup milk of your choice (I use coconut milk from the can or our homemade almond milk)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ cup ice (optional)
Add all ingredients except ice, to a blender and puree until smooth. If using ice and having it cold, add next and blend again until smooth. If serving room temperature, leave the ice out. I know I’m strange but I also like this one warmed up soup style 🙂
02. Overnight Oats
Makes 1 serving
Notes: Another great one to make the night before. Feel free to add in whatever else you love in your oats: pureed pumpkin & pumpkin spice, blueberries, bananas, strawberries, nut butters, chia seeds, flax seeds, spirulina, a dash of maple syrup or honey, etc)
1/2 cup gluten free oats
1/2 cup almond or coconut milk (or water)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Dried fruit (currants, raisins, coconut flakes, etc)
Combine all ingredients in a small glass jar and shake well. Place in the fridge for at least 4 hours, or overnight. Serve warm (my pref) or at room temperature if you’re on the go), with toppings of your choice.
03. Sweet Potato Chili
Makes 4 -6 servings
This soup is so great for a slow cooker—just brown the onions and meat before adding the other ingredients and cooking on high for 4 hours or low for 6 hours. Or if making traditionally, follow the instructions below. Great additions to the soup include cooked quinoa, avocado, whole milk sour cream, cheese, lime wedges, green onions or organic corn chips. To make this as a vegetarian dish, just leave out the meat. This is also great one for a crowd, served with a toppings bar.
½ lb organic ground turkey, chicken or beef, optional
3 carrots, chopped
1 small yams or sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
5-6 stalks celery, chopped
½ yellow onion, chopped
1 can baked beans, with liquid rinsed and drained (look for baked beans without corn syrup)
1 red pepper, chopped
1 28oz can whole peeled tomatoes
2 cups organic chicken stock
½ teaspoon each of cumin, chili powder and oregano
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon pepper
Heat a large soup pot over medium heat with a dollop of olive oil. Add the onions and sauté until translucent, stirring as you go. When done, remove from the pan, turn up the heat to medium-high, and brown the turkey. When done, add all other ingredients to the pot (except broth) and let cook together for 5-7 minutes. Add broth and bring to a boil, then reduce down to simmer and let cook for another 5-7 minutes until warm. When ready to serve, scoop into bowls and add any extra toppings you’d like.
Have you tried The Baby Food Files yet?! It’s all you’ll ever need to cook real-food for your babies (& toddlers)!
It’s a month-by-month guide for how to start feeding your baby REAL food— safely, easily, and without the stress. (Also the perfect holiday gift for new mamas!)
Love the idea of your sweet potato chili. Going to try this week. Can’t wait to see how it turns out