Posted by: mmstanger | May 24, 2010

Menu Monday: Sneaking the Produce In

  • Happily downing bite after bite of homemade and organic baby food fruits and vegetables.
  • Nibbling on fingerful after fingerful of sliced bananas, raisins and other produce.
  • Revolting against almost every piece of produce presented to them
  • Sucking down hidden fruit-and-veggie smoothies with a smile.
  • Realizing what’s in the smoothies and refusing them
  • Picking a favorite fruit or veggie and ONLY accepting that ONE – a sliced apple, apple sauce, broccoli trees, boiled carrots (but only circle slices), etc. at different periods and, then, switching what preferences are with no prior notice to Mom and Dad.

Luke and Nina have been through, perhaps, as many produce-eating-and-refusing stages as they are years old.  Always changing, always challenging, always different than each other, but never completely stymieing Mom and Dad.  So far, we have managed to get a least a small dose of fruit-and-vegie vitamins into them a day…

Lately, this involves our favorite meal: Breakfast!  And, here’s how we do it:

We offer the kids fruits and vegetables that we think they may like throughout any given day – butternut squash, apples, pineapples, bananas, carrots, zucchini.  Then, if they don’t go for them, the next day the 1-2 cups of leftovers—surreptitiously, for now —go in the food processor with a cup or so of milk, homemade yogurt, rice milk or soy milk.  We give this a quick whir and, then, either in the food processor, or transferred to a bowl, invite the kids to add all the remaining ingredients of our tweaked pancake and waffle recipes (or, occasionally, muffin or cookie ones.)

The kids are excited to help us make breakfast as they are to eat it – albeit often doused with a good squirt of flavored agave or a large swirl of maple syrup.  And, Mom and Dad are thrilled to know they will leave our “Breakfast 2” table happy and fortified, satisfied that we all got a bit more produce “healthy stuff” (even if cooked and processed) to keep our bodies going strong for the day.

What are your strategies for getting “5 a day” into your family’s diet one way or another?

And, what’s on your menu this week?

menu planOurs is:

Breakfast 1 Daily Choices:  apple slices, squeezed oranges, pineapple chunks, defrosted berries, etc.

Breakfast 2 Choices: produce-fortified waffles, produce-fortified pancakes, French toast with fruit and syrup, overnight oatmeal, grain porridge and whole grain toast with spreads

Easy Lunch Choices:  bread, chips, crackers and wraps with spreads and dips:  bean spread, but butter, cream cheese, egg salad, chicken salad, cheese sliced fruit and vegetables, etc. and finger foods, such as garbanzo beans, kidney beans, sliced fruit, etc.

Dinner Choices (Going for the ultra quick and easy this week as we have lots of work and appointments to attend to and several Daddy-the-Quick Chef Nights while Mommy is out):

  • Build-a-Tortilla Bite Night (chips, beans, sauce, diced veggies, cheese, etc.)
  • Toasted Pizza Breads Night with fruit and veggie sides
  • Scrambled Eggs and Steamed Veggies
  • Build-a-Sandwich or Wrap Night (beans, cheese, sauces, chix slices and dice, sliced and stocked vegetables, spreads, etc.)
  • Pasta Night (pasta, olive oil, zucchini-garlic-onion sauté, etc.)
  • Scrambled Turkey Night and Sides Night (scrambled turkey, pasta leftovers, vegetables, sauce or gravy, etc.)
  • Fridge-and-Freezer Forage Inspiration

Snack and Treat Choices: fresh fruit, canned fruit, organic fish crackers, whole grain crackers, homemade muffins or cookies, homemade yogurt, ice cream, nuts, etc.

To get more ideas for your menu plans, please visit the links at I’m and Organizing Junkie.  Also, please don’t forget to post a comment if you have a great fruit and vegie tip.  We’ve got our breakfast 1 and Breakfast 2 fruit and vegie strategies in place for the moment, but we can always use some of snacks, lunch and dinner, as well as for when the kids go willy nilly on us again, deciding they don’t want pancakes and waffles for Breakfast 2 afterall.

As always, please remember that the links at the bottom of this post may not take you to related posts in Wonder and Will.  For those, click on the links in the Categories column to the right.


  1. Dip! My kids love dip. Slowly as they are getting older, they use it less and less, but in the beginning that was the only way they would eat vegetables.

  2. […] Zucchini, Pineapple, Apple or Banana Waffles and Toppings (to Sneak the Produce In) […]

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