Tag Archives: easy recipes

We Can Cook

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know that I occasionally write about childhood nutrition issues: childhood obesity, children’s menus, cooking with kids, etc. One thing I am very passionate about is feeding children real food. What I mean by this, is that it is best to introduce children to the same foods you and other adults eat.

Kid favorites like mac ‘n’ cheese and chicken fingers are pretty much always available to kids at restaurants, but no child needs to eat those calorie-laden meals every time he eats out (or even when eating at home). If you knew me as a child you’d be saying “Who are you to talk?!” because I was what many parents would call a picky eater. Staples of my diet were chicken nuggets, pizza bagels, and mac ‘n’ cheese, and the only vegetables I liked were peas and carrots (especially carrots). Looking back at my diet, it’s a good question how I became a dietitian (and I didn’t even tell you about all the desserts I used to eat)! Lucky for me I didn’t have a weight issue, which may be why no one thought twice about what I ate. But from a nutrition standpoint, I would not want my children eating the same way.

My interest in childhood nutrition and making sure children learn about all varieties of foods is what excited me to write my first kid’s cookbook, We Can Cook: Introduce Your Child to the Joy of Cooking with 75 Simple Recipes and Activities

recipes
The book is full of recipes that I developed using a variety of foods including ones that children may not be familiar with. Every recipe is designed to have children help in the preparation, this way they get to know the foods they are going to be eating and they will learn how to cook at the same time. While the book is geared to children ages three to six, children of all ages can take part in making these recipes — the older the child, the more he or she can do in the kitchen! There are also a handful of food-related activities written by Maja Pitamic.

You can read a review of the book at MomTrends.com and taste a sample of the recipes in this post by my friend and fellow dietitian Elisa Zied.

And don’t fret — there are recipes for Mac ‘n’ Cheese and Chicken Fingers included!

Coleslaw Lightened Up

Labor Day weekend is right around the corner and that unfortunately means it’s the official end of summer. Hopefully the weather will be nice and you can enjoy a few more BBQs and delicious summer fruits and vegetables. One side dish that I made a few times this summer is coleslaw. When I was younger (before I was a dietitian), I would eat mayo-drenched coleslaw all the time. While I occasionally indulge in it now, my preference is a lighter version of coleslaw, which I can make myself — as can you!

healthy coleslaw recipe

Mahi Mahi Burger with Coleslaw and Grilled Summer Squash

nutritioulicious™ Coleslaw

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 head green cabbage, thinly sliced and shredded
  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into thin strips
  • 1 red onion, sliced into thin half moons
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. Combine cabbage, carrots, and onion in a large bowl.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the rice wine vinegar, olive oil, sugar, salt, and pepper. Drizzle over the slaw, making sure to coat all the slaw completely.
  3. Refrigerate for at least 20 minutes to allow flavors to marinate before serving.

If you don’t have time to prep the coleslaw from scratch, you can buy a bag of packaged coleslaw and just add the dressing yourself. It’s a simple and healthy version of a classic summertime favorite.

Nutrition Tidbit: Cabbage is a cruciferous vegetable in the same family as kale, brussels sprouts, and broccoli. It is an excellent source of vitamins K and C, and darker varieties are also a good source of antioxidants beta-carotene and quercetin. Cabbage is also low in calories, with only 17 calories per cup.