Healthy Banana Muffins

I woke up with a leg cramp when I decided to make this.  I’m not a doctor, but I remember my physician telling me to eat bananas when I get a leg cramp because the potassium in the yellow fruit helps. On top of that my son won’t stop talking about banana bread lately. My food inspiration comes from weird places doesn’t it?

The bananas sitting on my counter were super ripe, so naturally I decided to make banana muffins.  Since I’ve been eating a lot of what I make for my son lately, I made healthy banana muffins!

If you’re wondering what’s healthier about this recipe, it only has 1 tbs of butter and uses coconut sugar. No oil!  According to the Huffington Post, coconut sugar has a lower glycemic index than white sugar. That means it doesn’t raise your blood sugar as quickly as white sugar.

Healthy Banana Muffins

Ingredients

  • 3 ripe bananas
  • 1 tbs butter, softened or slightly melted
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 c. flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 c. crushed walnuts

Instructions

  1. Cream together butter and sugar
  2. In another bowl, lightly beat eggs, add crushed bananas, and vanilla and combine
  3. In another bowl, mix flour, soda, and salt. Add to the creamed mixture. Add applesauce and combine well, but do not overmix. Add crushed walnuts if desired
  4. Grease muffin tin by lightly spraying with cooking spray or use silicone cupcake liners
  5. Bake at 350F for 20-30 minutes (depends on size of muffin tin used, so use a toothpick to check if it comes out clean) Check frequently!
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2016/08/healthy-banana-muffins/

Healthy Banana Muffins 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I bought the silicone cupcake liners here —>  Star shape and Heart Shape and Round I can’t live without these because it’s so easy to clean! No scrubbing metal muffin tins 😉

I’m so excited to share this recipe. Can you believe there’s no oil in this recipe? But.. still so moist! Don’t believe me? Take a look below. Healthy Banana Muffins

 

BIG TIP: Cook time will vary depending on what kind of pan you use. My mini muffins took about 10-12 minutes and mini loaf pans about 15. PLEASE check it often and poke with a toothpick until it comes out clean.

*If you decide to make a purchase through the  affiliate link, Amazon will pay me a very small commission for it. This does not cost you anything additional. These commissions help to keep the rest of my content free. Thank you!

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Delicious One Pan Apple Chicken

My oldest son’s two favorite foods are chicken and apples. So I thought to myself, why not cook them together?! I was pleasantly surprised with this delicious one pan apple chicken recipe and this is now in our weekly rotation.

The apples add a light sweetness to the dish and it this takes less than half an hour to make. This time I didn’t use any butter like I normally would to cut back on fat for my husband and I. It still tasted great!

Note: You’ll see that I wrote “to taste” on the herbs. My husband and I like a lighter flavor, but if you prefer you can always add a little more! Remember, if you use fresh herbs its a lot less potent than dried.

Delicious Apple Chicken

Delicious Apple Chicken

Ingredients

  • 2 tbs. olive oil, divided
  • 1 lb. chicken thighs, skinless, boneless
  • 3/4 tsp. salt, divided
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper, divided
  • 1/2 tsp. oregano dried, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. rosemary dried, to taste
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 2 apples, sliced thinly
  • 1 small red onion , sliced thinly (optional)
  • 1/2 c. chicken broth

Instructions

  1. Heat a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add 1 tbs. olive oil
  2. Sprinkle some salt and pepper on the chicken
  3. Add chicken to skillet and brown, about 5 minutes each side or until brown
  4. Set aside
  5. In a bowl, whisk broth and mustard
  6. Add remaining oil to pan and all ingredients (broth and mustard mixture, remaining salt, pepper, rosemary, oregano, apple, and onion)
  7. Cook for another 4 minutes or until cooked
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2016/08/one-pan-apple-chicken/

 

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Asian Beef

My husband recently bought me an Instapot and I I’m a huge fan! First off, let me just say that this is not a sponsored post.  I just wanted to share how awesome it is, because it truly cuts my cooking time dramatically.  As a mother of two kids under two, I need every shortcut I can get. Instant Pot is a seven-in-one multi-cooker that works as an electric pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, yogurt maker, steamer, warmer, and sauté pan all in one. I’ve made several stews and meals in it, but this Asian Beef recipe is my first official instapot post. You can definitely use a dutch oven or a regular deep pot to make this, maybe even a slow cooker, but I’ve never tried.

I was hesitant to use it let alone buy it. It sat in my Amazon cart for weeks before my husband bought it. Frankly, he probably bought it on accident ha-ha. When it first arrived, it sat in my kitchen for several weeks unopened, because I was anxious and scared to use a pressure cooker. I remember my dad using the old-fashioned one and that steam release scared me! But I’m so glad I finally gave it a try.

I basically used my regular on-the-stove Asian Beef recipe in the Instapot and bam! It only took 30 minutes from start to finish. It would normally take a longer time to simmer the beef to achieve tender meat. If you use another type of meat like rib eye or sirloin or maybe even flank, it will take probably only take 12-15 minutes!

Asian Beef 2 (3)

Asian Beef

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs flank steak, rib eye, or chuck (takes longer), slice into small strips
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbs. vegetable oil
  • 1 c. honey
  • 1/2 c. soy sauce
  • 1 c. water
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tbs. sesame oil
  • 2 tbs. cornstarch
  • 3 tbs. water
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Instapot Version (scroll down for over the stove version)
  2. Lightly salt and pepper beef
  3. Select the sautee button on the Instapot
  4. Add 2 tbs of vegetable oil and add minced garlic
  5. Brown beef in batches, set aside
  6. In a small bowl, mix cornstarch and 3 tbs of water, set aside
  7. In the pot, add soy sauce, honey, ginger, onion powder, sesame oil
  8. Return beef in the instapot with the sauce mixture
  9. Add cornstarch mixture and mix
  10. On manual, cook for 20-25 minutes (note: this will vary with type of beef cut)
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2016/08/asian-beef/

Stove Top Version
Lightly salt and pepper beef
In a dutch oven or deep cooking pan, add oil and garlic
Brown beef slices and set aside
In a bowl, mix soy sauce, honey, ginger, onion powder, sesame oil, until well combined
In another bowl, mix cornstarch and water
Add beef, sauce mixture and cornstarch in the dutch oven and simmer on medium low until desired beef tenderness is achieved.

*If you decide to make a purchase through the  affiliate link, Amazon will pay me a very small commission for it. This does not cost you anything additional. These commissions help to keep the rest of my content free. Thank you!

 

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Flu Fighter Jellies

Some of you have toddlers starting preschool soon. Or you might have older kids going back to school. Unfortunately, the start of school season marks the start of flu season. It’s never fun to see our kids sick. I’m a firm believer of using nature’s nutritious foods to stay healthy. Why not arm your kid’s bodies against the cold and flu with these flu fighter jellies?

Kiwi Bears 3

Studies show that loading up on vitamin c may help shorten the length of time you’re sick and reduce the severity symptoms. And while the first fruit that comes to mind when I think of vitamin c is an orange, there are many more common fruits and veggies filled with more vitamin c.  Kiwis pack the ultimate vitamin C punch. It has 137 mg of vitamin C and also rich in potassium and copper. Oranges only have 51 mg. That’s more than double!

Flu Fighter Fruit Jellies

Ingredients

  • 1/2 c. pureed kiwi
  • 3 tbs. gelatin powder
  • 2-3 tbs. honey or to taste

Instructions

  1. Cut kiwi for easy blending
  2. Puree kiwi and add gelatin powder
  3. Microwave for 60-90 seconds
  4. Whisk in honey
  5. Using a dropper fill gummy bear mold
  6. Refrigerate uncovered for at least 24 hours (the longer it sits the firmer it becomes)
  7. You can also use fruit juice, see below.
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2016/08/flu-fighter-jellies/

P.S. you can also add 1/2 c. fruit juice to create a mixed flavor. Sprinkle gelatin into fruit juice and microwave for 60-90 seconds then whisk in kiwi and honey. Every 1/2 c. of juice or kiwi I would use about 3 tbs. of gelatin powder.

TIP:

  • Eat immediately, or store in the fridge, it doesn’t do too well packed
  • Don’t over blend the kiwi, the seeds will turn bitter!
  • Use sweet fruit! If it’s sour to begin with, the jellies will end up sour.
  • This is more of a jelly consistency. For a harder texture use other fruit like pureed strawberries, grape juice or apple juice

Thanks Zespri Kiwifruit for sponsoring this post! It’s our new go-to kiwi fruit. The sun gold variety is hairless and has a delectable tropical sweet taste. We can’t get enough of it! Did you also know that kiwi is a natural tenderizer? Check out this recipe here: Summer Skewers

*If you decide to make a purchase through the  affiliate link, Amazon will pay me a very small commission for it. This does not cost you anything additional. These commissions help to keep the rest of my content free. Thank you!

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4 Ingredient Mini Chicken Pot Pies

“A toddler friendly twist to a hometown classic recipe”

Chicken pot pie is a comfort meal that almost everyone loves. Since I haven’t ventured into cooking homemade pies, I created this easier and faster recipe for busy parents. This pie is a slight variation to one of my most popular recipes, Mini Turkey Pot Pies. Frankly, why wait until Thanksgiving to have this yummy meal?

Chicken Pot Pie

All you need is 30 minutes, four ingredients, and some self control. That’s because you’ll want to eat more than one. A plus side, there’s lots of veggies in it.

Chicken Pot PIe Hand

P.S. This recipe is highly recommended by my toddler. See food review below in the video 😉

4 Ingredient Mini Chicken Pot Pies

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Serving Size: 6 mini pies

Ingredients

  • Ingredients:
  • Crescent dough – Store bought
  • 1 c. cooked chopped cooked chicken
  • 3/4 c. canned cream of chicken
  • thawed garden vegetables
  • chicken seasoning or salt and pepper (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400f
  2. In a bowl, mix chicken, cream of chicken and sprinkle a little chicken seasoning or salt and pepper. Set aside
  3. Using a glass or cookie cutter, carve out circles of crescent dough
  4. Grease a muffin tin with cooking spray and carefully place dough in each circle
  5. Add chicken mixture into each circle
  6. Using the leftover dough, cut strips and place it on top as shown in video
  7. Bake for about 20 minutes, check at 15 minutes for desired browness
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2016/07/4-ingredient-mini-chicken-pot-pies/

P.S. That’s a dry erase marker I used on our oogaa baby bowls!

Music credit: www.bradbyrdofficial.com

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Broccoli Cheddar Muffins

Have you ever had a savory muffin? While I do love sweet muffin varieties,  sometimes a little change is a good thing. Plus, when it comes to breakfast, I’d prefer savory. I’m always trying to create fast on the go meals that include as many of the food groups as possible. This broccoli cheddar muffins recipe is tasty and packed with all kinds of goodness!

Broccoli Cheddar Muffins 1 (2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In case I haven’t persuaded you to go make this yet.. check out what it looks like on the inside!

Broccoli Cheddar Muffins Closeup

Without further due.. here’s the recipe (actually, my second son who used to sleep 12 hours is going through a sleep regression, and well, I can’t keep writing, because he just woke up!)

Okay, I digress, here it is!

P.S. this is SUPER toddler approved by my almost “threenager”

Broccoli Cheddar Muffins

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: About 24 Muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 C. flour
  • 1tbs. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tbs. sugar
  • 1/2 c. grated or blended broccoli florets, raw
  • 3 c. grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 c. milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 stick of melted unsalted butter

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375F
  2. In a bowl, mix first 6 incredients until well combined (flour, baking powder, sugar, broccoli, and cheese)
  3. In another bowl mix milk, egg, and melted butter
  4. Mix flour mixture and milk mixture until well combined (don't overmix!)
  5. Grease muffin tin or use these for easy cleaning silicone liners
  6. Fill tin or liners 3/4 of the way (enough to leave for rising)
  7. Bake at 375F for 20-25 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2016/07/broccoli-cheddar-muffins/

If you decide to make a purchase through the  affiliate link, Amazon will pay me a very small commission for it. This does not cost you anything additional. These commissions help to keep the rest of my content free. Thank you!

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Summer Chicken Skewers

Every time I go to the grocery store, I get tempted to buy chicken breast. But then I think about the many times I’ve cooked it unsuccessfully. Unless stewed, the healthy white meat is so dry. I’ve recently found a fix! In just 10 to 15 minutes your meat of choice will be incredibly juicy or tender. These summer chicken skewers are healthy and delicious!

All thanks to Zespri Kiwifruit.! That’s right.. FRUIT. No chemicals additives or weird powders to add to your meat.  I’ve recently had the opportunity to work with Zespri Kiwifruit and found out it has some incredible uses.

Kiwi Kabob Vertical

There is an enzyme called actinidin found in green kiwifruit which makes for a wonderful natural meat tenderizer. Simply peel and mash or blend a kiwi, and spread the pulp on a tough cut of meat. Let stand for 10 to 15 minutes and lightly scrape off the kiwi.

Kiwi Kabob

This is a simple kabob recipe I came up with. You can also use kiwi for any foods that you wish to fry. It’s simply a great tenderizer.

Kiwi Kabob

Summer Chicken Kabobs

Ingredients

  • 2 bpneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1 inch size pieces
  • 2 kiwis (green)
  • Bell peppers
  • Zucchini
  • 1 tbs. balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbs. dijon mustard
  • 2 tbs. olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. thyme, or 1 tsp if desired
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Skewers, metal preferred

Instructions

  1. Mash or blend kiwi (note: stop blending before the seeds get crushed, or it will turn bitter)
  2. In a small bowl, mix blended kiwi marinade and all ingredients
  3. Cut up chicken into 1 inch size pieces
  4. In another bowl, pour marinade onto chicken breast
  5. Place in refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes
  6. Add chicken onto metal skewers, alternating between chicken and vegetables
  7. Bbq until internal temp is 165F
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2016/07/summer-chicken-skewers/

Some tips for cooking with Kiwi

Source: Zespri Kiwifruit

  • Some important things to keep in mind while creating your own delicious meals and recipes.
  • The skin is edible on both varieties. The SunGold Kiwi has no hair which makes it easier to bite into like an apple. Be sure to rinse your kiwi first.
  • If you insist on peeling, a serrated peeler works best.
  • The actinidin in Green also prevents gelatin from setting and breaks down proteins in dairy products which can cause curdling. If serving Green Kiwifruit with ice cream, yogurt or otherdairy products, serve immediately after you add to your dish. SunGold kiwis do not have this enzyme.
  • When puréeing be sure to stop processing before the seeds are crushed. Crushed seeds may lend a slightly bitter flavor to your dish. Seeds can be removed by passing the pulp through a strainer.
  • When using kiwifruit in hot dishes, add it at the very last minute so that it will retain its bright color. Kiwi flesh is soft so it is recommended that you add later when cooking certain dishes like a stir-fry.

Thanks Zespri Kiwifruit for sponsoring this post! It’s our new go-to kiwi fruit. The sun gold variety is hairless and has a delectable tropical sweet taste. We can’t get enough of it!

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Festive Fruit Flag

Hope everyone is having a great Fourth of July weekend!

Here’s a simple festive fruit flag to do with or for the kids.  Fruit FlagAll you need is fruit and some measuring spoons.

Picky Food Eater Tip: Try out these affordable picks for fussy eaters. Makes eating fun and every kid I know loves to poke there food because it makes them feel like they’re doing it themselves.

Festive Fruit Flag

Ingredients

  • Watermelon
  • Pears or Bananas
  • Blueberries

Instructions

  1. Using a measuring spoon, make balls from watermelon and pears
  2. Form a flag (see video)
  3. Enjoy!
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2016/07/festive-fruit-flag/

**I received this product to try. If you decide to make a purchase through the  affiliate link, Amazon will pay me a very small commission for it. This does not cost you anything additional. These commissions help to keep the rest of my content free. Thank you!

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How to Pit a Cherry

I pass by bags of cherries at the grocery store every time I go. I never buy them because frankly I don’t have time to  pit them for my toddler. This past week however, I wanted cherries for myself. I mean how could i resist, its cherry season after all. Here’s what I came up with!

My little man helped me too in with it and he had fun! He then helped me cut it with his knife. It’s sharp enough to cut fruit and some veggies but won’t cut skin.

$8.95 for THREE on Amazon –> Kids Knives

**If you decide to make a purchase through the  affiliate link, Amazon will pay me a very small commission for it. This does not cost you anything additional. These commissions help to keep the rest of my content free and pay for my coffee to keep me awake so I can write these posts 😉 Thank you!

 

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Turkey Swiss Rolls

“A super easy recipe, that’s so delicious”

Turkey Swiss Roll Ups 3 (2)

I always have store-bought dough of some sort in my refrigerator. For fast meals I often use crescent rolls. These rolls are so incredibly tasty, I couldn’t stop eating it. For the sake of my waistline I won’t make these turkey Swiss rolls again for a few months. It’s THAT good.  I did however, sneak in some spinach in it so the meal included more food groups.

TIp: I used crescent rolls, but a sheet of dough will work better like crescent dough sheet or pizza crust.

Turkey Swiss Rolls

Ingredients

  • 1 tube crescent dough sheet
  • 8-10 turkey deli slices
  • 6 swiss cheese squares
  • 1/2 c. buttter, melted
  • 1 tbs. yellow mustard
  • 1/2 c. spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbs. brown sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. In a bowl, mix melted butter, worcestershire sauce, mustard and sugar, set aside
  3. Roll out crescent dough and top with turkey and cheese
  4. Sprinkle chopped spinach
  5. Roll the dough starting on the long side into a tube
  6. Cut into pieces
  7. Place rollups into a baking dish
  8. Add sauce mixture on top of each rollup
  9. Bake, uncovered, for 25 mintues until lightly browned
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2016/06/turkey-swiss-rolls/

Recipe adapted from Kevin and Amanda

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