Monday, April 22, 2013

Wholesome, Kid-Friendly Breakfast Foods!

I have seen many posts recently about breakfast cereal.  Bottom line is, it just isn't good for our kids, no matter how we slice or dice it.  I will be the first to admit that I allow some organic, gluten free rice krispies and Enjoy Life chia flax cereal into our home for quick breakfasts here and there (no artificial colors or sweeteners and very low sugar - always sprinkled on top of coconut yogurt) but these are still very processed and do not hold my three year old over for very long... he is hungry again well before snack time!

For many of us, especially those of us who are working moms, we need breakfast to be quick and easy.  So, how do we accomplish this in a way that is healthy, wholesome and nourishing for our kids?  First off, we need to be planful.  The three recipes below will need to be prepared ahead of time.  But make a double or triple batch of any of these recipes, stick them in the freezer and defrost as needed and you are good to go for a great breakfast that your kiddos will love.

1.  "Chia Crunch Bars"

I have been working to find more easy, allergy free, grain free snack and breakfast options lately.  This is a new favorite in our house.  I keep these in the freezer at all times now!  You can eat them directly from the freezer - chewy and sweet.  They do not require any baking - they are raw and grain free!  My three year old loves them.  On mornings when we need to be out the door at 7:30, I make him a green smoothie and give him one of these to nibble on and he leaves the house for school ready to take on his busy morning at school!  This is also a great post workout snack or on the go breakfast for you busy moms and dads out there!

I double this recipe and press it into an 8x8 baking pan.  Stick it in the freezer for 20 minutes, pull it out and cut into squares.  Put the squares in a container or Ziploc bag in the freezer (they will not stick together as long as you keep them frozen). 

I add 1/2 cup of shredded coconut and about 1/8 cup (give or take) Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips to this recipe.

Click here for the recipe!

2.  I am blessed to live down the street from a very like-minded mama who is also always coming up with wonderful new breakfast and snack ideas while living with dietary restrictions similar to ours.  It is so nice to be able to exchange food and recipes.  Thanks to her, I have come to love this new breakfast/snack recipe.  They taste like oatmeal cookies but are totally guilt free.  You can easily play with this recipe and add your favorite dried or fresh fruit or seeds to this recipe.

Use an ice cream scoop to make pack a tight, round scoop of the mixture

Oatmeal Bakes
1/3 cup coconut oil
3 mashed bananas
1 cup dried cranberries
Oatmeal Bakes
1 tsp vanilla
1 tablespoon honey
2 cups rolled oats

Mash bananas in bowl. Then add all other ingredients. Mix and let sit for about 15 minutes. Place onto cookie sheet (greased or use silpat or parchment paper) and bake 20-24 minutes or so, until golden brown. Let cool. Makes about 25.

Optional add ins:
Chocolate chips
Diced apples
Sunflower seeds
Pumpkin seeds

If I add an optional add in I take out some of the cranberries.

3.  Quinoa Banana Muffins

I just discovered this recipe (omit nuts if nut free).  It is one of the best allergy free muffin recipes that I have made thus far.  You can do add ins with this one too - raisins, dried cranberries, mini chocolate chips, etc.  Makes 15 muffins.  These are great served with a ham or turkey lunch meat roll-up and a little fresh fruit.  I sometimes add a little sunflower seed butter to the top for an extra filling breakfast!

Quinoa Banana Muffins