Easy Mini Bird Nests

Just 15 minutes is all you need to make these super cute easy mini bird nests.  I came up with this recipe because my kids are a little bored of eggs. I always try to offer protein rich foods in the borning.  Since most breakfast choices have so much carbohydrates, I had to think outside of the box.  We all know most kids including my sons love toast and anything with bread. Who am I kidding, adults love bread too. This is perfect for the upcoming Easter holiday.

You can also just make these without the coconut and just add just fruit on top for an everyday meal or snack.

 

Easy Mini Bird Nests

Ingredients

  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tbs butter, melted
  • 1/2 c. milk
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 c. flour
  • 1/2 c. coconut, shredded
  • 10-15 drops green food coloring (optional for grass)
  • yogurt covered raisins
  • Coconut oil spray, or any other spray for greasing tin

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400F
  2. In a blender, add eggs, butter, milk, salt, and flour
  3. Blend
  4. Grease mini muffin tin with coconut oil spray
  5. Pour egg mixture into tin halfway full
  6. Bake for 10 minutes
  7. Remove, from tin and let cool, the nests will sink down
  8. In a bowl, add shredded coconut
  9. Add drops of food coloring into coconut until desired color is reached
  10. Assemble nests with grass, and yogurt covered raisins
  11. Enjoy!
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2017/04/easy-mini-easter-nests/

 

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Veggie Apple Chicken Meatballs

This is a complete meal in one bite! As many of you have noticed, I love meals that incorporate almost all the food groups. This has carbs, protein, fruit, and veggies too. Best of all, it’s moist and tastes great.

Give it a try. I’ve also included an optional sweet and sour sauce below.

Sweet and Sour Chicken Meatballs

The meatballs by itself is great to eat too. It also might be a great option for younger babies. Plus, it’s a great hide the veggies dish!


Chicken Meatballs

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground chicken
  • 1 grated sweet apple
  • 1/2 grated pear (optional)
  • 1 lightly beaten egg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1tsp dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup chopped spinach
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs / quinoa if you want to go #glutenfree
  • 1/3 cup chopped green onion (if you like less onion then reduce)

Instructions

  1. 1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl
  2. 2. Shape and mold. I use an ice cream scooper and placed it in a greased muffin tin for convinience
  3. 3. Bake at 350F until 165F, about 20-25 minutes, but it really depends on the oven so I use a leave-in thermometer.
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2017/04/veggie-apple-chicken-meatballs/

Sweet and Sour Sauce

  • 2 tbs water
  • 2 tbs ketchup
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tbs corn starch
  • 1/3 cup rice vinegar, add more if you like it more sour

Sweet and Sour Sauce Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients except for the corn starch and water into a pot, wait for a boil
  2. Mix water and cornstarch in a bowl
  3. Add into bowling mixture and whisk
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Overnight Chia Oatmeal

Waking up in the morning and thinking about what to fix for breakfast can often be difficult. Some nights I think ahead and make this. It’s nutritious, delicious and easy! You’ll need just a few ingredients and all you’ll have to do i s grab it from your fridge in the am and enjoy.

There are so many benefits of chia seeds. It’s definitely a super food.  It has fiber, protein, fat, calcium, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, Vitamin B3, potassium, Vitamin B1, and vitamin B2. I won’t get into why all those are good, but I’m sure you can do a google search if you’re interested!

We served it in our Num Num bowl and also spoon. It’s a great starter spoon because it’s flat and there’s really no way to use it. the open ridged hole makes it easier for food to stay on and promotes self feeding. Check out the video of my baby using it!

Overnight Chia Oatmeal

Ingredients

  • 1/4 c. rolled oats
  • 1/2 c. milk of choice
  • 1 tsp. agave or honey (more if you like it sweet)
  • 1 tbs. chia seed
  • Fruit (optional)

Instructions

  1. In a jar or bowl, add all ingredients together
  2. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight
  3. Enjoy!
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2017/03/overnight-chia-oatmeal/

*Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received the product for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.**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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Healthy Chocolate Ice Cream

I love chocolate. I’m not going to lie, to me it’s the best thing since sliced bread. While we do have the occasional real ice cream treat, it’s always nice to eat something guilt free. It’s also nice to be able to share something with both my kids without thinking about the sugar content and what’s in it. That said, I’m all about balance! So do what you do.

This has a lot of healthy fat including avocado and coconut oil. The hardest part about this recipe is remembering to put some ripe bananas in the freezer the night before. That’s it super easy and clean.

Healthy Chocolate Ice Cream

Ingredients

  • 3 frozen bananas (sliced)
  • 1 tbs. Cocoa powder (unsweetened)
  • 1 tbs. agave
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 tsp. coconut oil
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla

Instructions

  1. Slice bananas and freeze in a ziplock bag
  2. In a food processor combine all ingredients, and blend until desired consistency
  3. You can either freeze it for later or enjoy immediately
  4. If you freeze it for later, let it sit in room temperature for a a few minutes before serving for easy scooping, and a little bit creamier texture
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2017/03/healthy-chocolate-ice-cream/

Also, if you are ready for self feeding, or do Baby Led Weaning like us, you have to try out these Num Num spoons! There’s no wrong way to use because it’s flat. The innovative design requires no scooping or balancing.  My baby gets so excited to use it because it gives him independence. Better yet, you my friend, can eat YOUR food and not tend to your baby for at least 5 minutes. Now you know that’s priceless.  The non slip bowl is also top notch. The No-Slip,  No-Tip Design, facilitates learning to self=feed.

*Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received the product for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.**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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Lakeshore Learning Toys

If you’ve followed us for a while on Instagram stories, you know I do a lot of activities besides cooking. By popular demand, I’ll be posting more of our activities on my blog.

Finding toys that are both fun and educational are hard to find.I recently discovered the store Lakeshore Learning, and boy will you find great toys there! You all can thank me later. It’s seriously one of my favorite stores ever. Every toy I’ve seen sold there has a purpose and is really enjoyable for the kids as well.

I’m not homeschooling my son, but I do try to teach them the basics before he starts school in the fall. We recently started playing with the scented play dough pack.

It’s a great, fun, and creative type of play dough. Growing up I loved anything that smelled sweet like a treat. Do you remember scratch and sniff stickers? Those were totally my favorite. This play dough set brings me back to those days. I mean who doesn’t love the smell of blueberries? Or strawberries? We first played with the dough making fruit shapes and food.

Since I always try to incorporate some education into our play at least a few times a day, we continued on with phonics and letters.   I’ve found making our lessons fun and play based is much more effective.   We used these cards also from LakeShore Learning.

First I ask him what letter is on the card. I then asked him what sound the letter makes. Lastly, I pointed out the objects on the picture. Fore example, B is for balloon.

We do about 2-3 letters a day. He’s 3 years old and loves change. We bring out this activity a few times a week, eventually finishing the alphabet. You can also have him trace the letter with his fingers. Furthermore, for any of you who have kids with allergies, the non toxic dough does not contain corn, dairy/casein, egg, gelatin, latex or nuts.

Some of you ask what toys we use for my one year old. At this age, we do a lot of reading and sensory toys. These stars are great.  They are colorful and each one has a different texture. Babies love to learn and explore and this is a great safe way for them to do that. We also teach colors by pointing out each different hue of the rainbow. It also builds gross motor skills.

Yes, you guessed it. Lots of this happened.

But, not to worry, these are machine, or surface washable. I hope you enjoyed this post!

Here’s some fun clips of my kids playing with the toys!

*Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received the product for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.**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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French Toast Roll Ups

I’ve made something like these French toast roll ups in the past with other ingredients. This version this includes ones that are more ready available. You’ll probably find what you need in your refrigerator now. It’s a great way to make a meal more fun for the kids and packs in protein and fruit. The fillings are endless!

French Toast Roll Ups

Ingredients

  • Bread
  • Cream Cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbs. milk
  • Sliced fruit of choice (strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, kiwis, etc.)
  • Butter

Instructions

  1. Flatten bread with a rolling pin or glass
  2. Remove ends of bread (optional)
  3. Spread cream cheese on one end of bread
  4. Top with sliced fruit, roll tightly
  5. Tip: Do not overfill!
  6. In a bowl, combine one egg and milk
  7. Dip filled roll ups into egg mixture, removing excess
  8. In a pan, on medium heat, add butter and brown rollups on all sides until brown
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2017/03/french-toast-roll-ups/

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Dylan’s First Birthday

I absolutely love parties. A fun fact about me is I’ve always wanted to be an event planner since I was a teenager. I never pursued it, so when it’s time for my kid’s first birthdays I have a lot of fun. First birthdays are big in our family and I’m always excited to use my imagination and make it into reality.

My youngest son lights up when I sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. That’s one of the reasons I chose this theme. I added some golds and a hint of pink to create a softer look. I made almost everything myself, so if I can do it, you can too! It just takes a bit of time, but crafting is my favorite stress reliever. I hope my baby’s party (yes, he’s still my baby), gives you some inspiration!


Cake 
I love simple cakes. Not just because they create a cleaner look, but because its cheaper! I have yet to venture off into making cakes. Since I’m frugal especially when it comes parties,  I chose to buy a  buttercream cake instead of fondant. Maybe someday I’ll venture off into cake making, but not anytime soon! I made the cake topper with my silhouette and a good friend designed the fondant stars. Voila! This was a lot cheaper than the fondant cakes I was looking at. In my humble opinion, it’s just as pretty!

Centerpieces

I have to admit these flowers were time-consuming to make, but they were not difficult. I was able to find some ombre pink tissue paper, and ombre blue tissue paper to add some dimension to my flowers. I found the blue at my local craft store. If you can’t find ombre, you can definitely inter change lighter blues with darker blues. If I were you though, you may want to opt for the ready-made ombre color to save you time. After making your 20th rose, you maybe asking yourself why did I start this. But look.. it’s so worth it! It’s also so much cheaper than real flowers too! Just message me if you’d like for me to do a video on how to make it. But there are plenty on youtube.

I changed up some of the centerpieces to included painted mason jars and glittered painted jars. I added these twinkle lights to create the right ambiance. They’re perfect because its battery operated and turns on with a flick of a switch.

Table Setting

For the table setting, I found some square plates  online. I also added a rustic touch to the table by using wooden utensils instead of plastic.  I couldn’t find the exact plates, but the ones I listed above are the same or similar.

Chocolate Star Favors

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen me make these. It’s so super easy! All you need is a mold, some lollipop sticks, and some chocolate. You can also use candy melts if you can’t find the merkens. The candy melts or chocolate melt great in the microwave. I then used a spoon to pour the chocolate into the mold. Freeze for 15-20 minutes and you’re all done!

#1 Sign

This #1 is made out of card board box. I made a number one shape and then glued and taped it three dimensionally. I then added weight to the bottom of the number one by using rice in ziplock bags. After sealing it, I then wrapped the shape in tulle. To tie it in to the theme, I wrapped the number one with the star lights!

Food 

We did cater from an outside restaurant, but I wanted to make sure everyone had something to choose from including picky toddlers! I made these super easy star and cloud shaped peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

All I did was use these cookie cutters. Star and Cloud. The best part about it you can always reuse them to make lunches for your kids!

 

In case you are wondering the wonderful photography is from my friend Dawnley.

**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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Hidden Veggie Egg Salad

Veggies. These fiber rich foods are oh so good for you, but oh so hard to get your kids to eat it. At least that’s what I gather from the dozens of messages I get from all of you. If you’ve followed my blog or social media you’ll see I try to offer my kids veggies at every meal.  I came up with this hidden veggie egg salad recipe while trying to fulfill this goal. It was one of those days where I knew we would be home late for lunch and I had to prepare something quickly. I boiled some eggs in the morning with the plan of making egg salad. Then, as expected when I got home, had not much time before nap time. I looked in the refrigerator, combined a few things and voilà, almost all the food groups in one bite.

Tip: You can also just steam some cauliflower and smash it, or cook some rice cauliflower with a little olive oil.

Hidden Veggie Egg Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 egg, boiled
  • 1 tbs. mayonnaise
  • 1 tbs. avocado
  • 1-2 tsp. riced cauliflower, steamed
  • Paprika to taste
  • Bread
  • .

Instructions

  1. In a bowl, mash the boiled egg
  2. Add mayo, avocado, cauliflower and mix
  3. Sprinkle paprika and combine
  4. Top on bread and serve with chips and fruit
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2017/02/hidden-veggie-egg-salad/

P.S. If you have a super picky toddler with texture issues, you can cut the cauliflower amount to 1/2 tsp., but honestly you can’t hardly taste it! You can also just use avocado only, that in itself has much more nutrients than just mayonnaise.

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Asian Glazed Salmon

Frozen to the dinner table in less than 30 minutes! That’s my kind of dinner. This Asian glazed salmon is perfect for busy days and last minute meals. Pair it with some steamed veggies and brown rice and it’s a perfect meal. The slightly sweet and salty flavor makes it also appealing for kids. If your family likes the teriyaki,  you must give this dish a try. Put it this way, if you can mix a cup of coffee, you can definitely mix this easy marinade!

P.S. For the perfect salmon, I would highly suggest buying a meat thermometer. The recipe says 15-20 minutes, but the best gauge is its internal temperature, since ovens vary.

Asian Glazed Salmon

Ingredients

  • 2 tbs. soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 2 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 1/2 c. maple syrup
  • 2 tbs. butter, melted
  • 4 frozen salmon filets, wildcaught

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven 400F
  2. In a bowl, mix soy sauce, salt, pepper, garlic, maple syrup, and butter
  3. Line a baking sheet with foil and place frozen salmon filets
  4. Brush each filet with olive oil on both sides, place back skin side down on prepared sheet
  5. Pour soy sauce mixture over salmon
  6. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until internal temperature is 145F
  7. Pair with steamed vegetables and brown rice for a perfect meal
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2017/02/asian-glazed-salmon/

 

**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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Buttered Bananas

Every now and then memories come up from my childhood. I often think about what foods I ate growing up, especially when I’m trying to figure out what to fix for my kids.  I grew up eating pan fried butter bananas.  Whether it was for breakfast or a snack, it was such a treat! It tastes incredible, but the one I remember is packed with sugar. I made our traditional family recipe healthier and baby friendly. It has no refined sugar, but is still tasty. Plus, all you need is 3 ingredients!

 

Buttered Bananas

Ingredients

  • 1 banana (ripe, but not overripe)
  • 2 tbs. butter (melted)
  • Dash of cinnamon
  • Dash of nutmeg (optional)
  • 1/8 tsp. peanut butter

Instructions

  1. Cut bananas, or split in half
  2. In a bowl, mix melted butter, cinammon,and nutmeg.
  3. Combine bananas with butter mixture
  4. In a nonstick pan, cook bananas under low-medium heat until brown
  5. Brown on both sides
  6. Serve plain, on yogurt, or on waffles or pancakes
http://easytoddlermeals.com/2017/02/buttered-bananas/

P.S. I added peanut butter for added protein, but you’re more than welcome to omit. You can also use maple syrup instead of honey (for the waffles) if your child is under one

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