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Grain and nut free mineral rich hummus makes the perfect snack or lunch box addition. This is will soon become a kid favorite for dipping veggies!

Grain and Nut Free Mineral Rich Hummus

Grain and nut free mineral rich hummus makes the perfect snack or lunch box addition. This is will soon become a kid favorite for dipping veggies!Grain and nut free mineral rich hummus makes the perfect snack or lunch box addition. This is will soon become a kid favorite for dipping veggies!

It’s time to get back to routines, back to school, back to nourishing lunches! If you haven’t set any goals, a good one is to make sure your kids are being nourished every single day at every meal.

It may sound daunting, but it’s not. Real food is actually quite simple. Want a snack? Have a pear. Have some pepper slices. Simple.

Want to know what else is simple?

My grain and nut free mineral rich hummus!

It’s so simple my kids can make it themselves. Just a few ingredients tossed in the blender. Done in less than five minutes.Grain and nut free mineral rich hummus makes the perfect snack or lunch box addition. This is will soon become a kid favorite for dipping veggies!

If you want to avoid using canned beans, the easiest way to cook chickpeas is in your Instant Pot!

But what makes it mineral rich?

In addition to the usual chickpeas and oil, I like to add pumpkin seeds. They are loaded with zinc, potassium, magnesium, iron, manganese, phosphorus and vitamin E!

The seeds are ground right into the hummus, so you’d never know they’re there. But they really boost the nutrition. You could also use sunflower seeds and/or hemp seeds to vary the minerals.Grain and nut free mineral rich hummus makes the perfect snack or lunch box addition. This is will soon become a kid favorite for dipping veggies!

Allergy Friendly Hummus

I like to keep my hummus very allergy friendly. No grains, nuts, dairy, eggs, soy or corn. Veggies with hummus is my go-to dish to bring to a family gathering. I have kids with allergies and a niece and nephew with allergies. So I try to make sure I bring something everyone can (and will!) eat.

My kids will eat hummus by the spoonful. I like to keep some on hand for easy snacks and lunch additions. If I have pepper and cucumber slices prepared, my three year old will grab a pile with the whole container of hummus and start dipping away.

This year make nourishing food a priority. But don’t stress yourself. Keep it simple with easy foods like fruits, veggies and my five minute grain and nut free mineral rich hummus. You never know, it might just be the trick to turn your kids into raw veggie lovers!

Are your kids adventurous eaters? They might like my pesto hummus!Grain and nut free mineral rich hummus makes the perfect snack or lunch box addition. This is will soon become a kid favorite for dipping veggies!

Grain and Nut Free Mineral Rich Hummus
Serves 10
A simple, mineral rich dip for veggies or crackers.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 cups chickpeas (cooked, boxed or canned), drained, liquid reserved
  2. 4 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil
  3. 6 Tbsp. bean liquid or water
  4. 2 Tbsp. pumpkin seeds (or sunflower or hemp)
  5. 1/4 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  6. 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  7. 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  8. 1/4 tsp. dillweed (optional)
  9. 1/4 tsp. desiccated liver (optional)
Instructions
  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a blender.
  2. Blend on high until smooth. Add extra liquid/water if needed.
  3. Adjust seasoning to taste.
  4. Serve immediately or refrigerate (up to one week) until ready to serve.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Protein-Rich Salted Chocolate Milk

Need a delicious drink that is also nourishing and loaded with extra protein? This protein-rich salted chocolate milk is perfect for kids and adults!Need a delicious drink that is also nourishing and loaded with extra protein? This protein-rich salted chocolate milk is perfect for kids and adults!

I am working with Vital Proteins on this post. I have been compensated for my time, but have not been paid to post positive comments. All opinions are my own.

When it comes to drinks in our house we basically have two options: milk or water.

It may seem boring. But really, we don’t need much else. Once in a while my kids get a little pure grape juice (if they are fighting a cold). And of course we do love our smoothies for added nourishment (check out my book full of recipes here!).

But if my kids are thirsty it’s generally water or milk.Need a delicious drink that is also nourishing and loaded with extra protein? This protein-rich salted chocolate milk is perfect for kids and adults!

A Little Extra

Then there are those days where we just want something a little extra. Or maybe my little one is in one of her “I don’t want to eat much” slumps. And I have to be sneaky.

That’s when I bust out the chocolate milk! Who doesn’t love chocolate milk? I know I sure do!

Protein-Rich Drink

My version is taken to a new level with extra protein from Vital Proteins collagen. It blends right in with no added taste. Plus it’s loaded with a whole array of essential amino acids.Need a delicious drink that is also nourishing and loaded with extra protein? This protein-rich salted chocolate milk is perfect for kids and adults!

The kids and I have been studying human anatomy and physiology for science this year. Our unit on nutrition introduced us to amino acids and how they are the building blocks of protein. And they are so important! So when I showed the collagen container to my oldest she was fascinated to look at the amino acid profile. Science lesson built in to making chocolate milk!

The good stuff doesn’t stop there. We are big fans of adding salt to chocolate. When I say salt I mean real, unrefined sea salt (like this). Not only does it contain a broad spectrum of minerals, it is also hydrating/good for balancing electrolytes and delicious! We even use it to make salted dark chocolate ice cream, healing hot cocoa and salted honey chocolates . Salt and chocolate go so well together.

To really boost nutrition we like to add probiotics and raw egg yolks (from our own free range chickens). So you are getting extra protein, essential minerals, probiotics and vitamins! All in a glass of chocolate milk. It’s a mom win!

If you like your chocolate milk a bit thicker, like a shake, you can add a little banana and/or avocado.Need a delicious drink that is also nourishing and loaded with extra protein? This protein-rich salted chocolate milk is perfect for kids and adults!

Kid Seal of Approval

When I gave this protein-rich salted chocolate milk to my daughter she had two comments:

  1. Does this have salt?! Yum! When can we make salted chocolate ice cream?
  2. You have to make this every single day!

Picky Eater Trick

My youngest can be really picky when it comes to meat. Veggies? She’ll out eat anyone. Meat? Turns up her nose. We have to bribe her to take bites of meat…then she can have thirds of veggies! For real. So I’m always glad when I can sneak in extra protein for her in something so delicious like chocolate milk. Vital Proteins collagen is a great way to do this. A couple big scoops gives her the protein boost her little body needs. Added to the raw milk and egg yolks it makes a complete protein.

Her ideal meal is a huge pile of vegetables with a glass of salted chocolate milk. And I love to give it to her.Need a delicious drink that is also nourishing and loaded with extra protein? This protein-rich salted chocolate milk is perfect for kids and adults!

Quick & Easy Nutrition

It only takes about three minutes to make salted chocolate milk (mostly just the time required to gather ingredients). Older kids can make it themselves. My six and nine-year olds know how to separate egg yolks thanks to the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse. My three year-old loves to help with the blender. It’s a family event! And we all enjoy the reward at the end.

The next time you’re in a beverage rut or your kids need a little protein boost, make a batch of salted chocolate milk. Use your favorite milk and some Vital Proteins collagen to blend a nourishing drink the whole family will love.Need a delicious drink that is also nourishing and loaded with extra protein? This protein-rich salted chocolate milk is perfect for kids and adults!

Protein-Rich Salted Chocolate Milk
Serves 2
A nourishing drink filled with extra protein and minerals.
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Ingredients
  1. 2 cups raw whole milk or full fat coconut milk
  2. 2 Tbsp. organic cocoa, carob or cacao powder
  3. 2 Tbsp. maple syrup or raw honey
  4. 1/4 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  5. 2 Tbsp. Vital Proteins collagen
  6. Optional: 1 capsule probiotics
  7. Optional: 1/2 banana and/or 1/4 avocado
  8. Optional: 1 - 3 egg yolks (from free-range chickens)
Instructions
  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a high powered blender.
  2. Blend on high until well combined.
  3. Serve immediately.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Gluten free sugar cookies are fun to cut and decorate any time of year. These hold up well and are so simple to make!

Simple Gluten Free Sugar Cookies

Gluten free sugar cookies are fun to cut and decorate any time of year. These hold up well and are so simple to make!Gluten free sugar cookies are fun to cut and decorate any time of year. These hold up well and are so simple to make!

I know what you’re thinking…it’s almost the New Year…time to get healthy. And here I am posting a recipe for cookies! Well, better late than never, right?

Crazy Christmas

That is the kind of Christmas we had. Everything was out of order. We had some celebrations early. We did our baking late. It was all mixed up. But it was still fun.

And boy did my kids have fun making these cookies! Even if Mom wanted to just forget the baking all together…Gluten free sugar cookies are fun to cut and decorate any time of year. These hold up well and are so simple to make!

Gluten Free Made Easy

Gluten free sugar cookies can be hard to make – crumbly, dry, rock hard, etc. But these are so simple and hold up so nicely. The dough is soft and easy to work with. And there are no strange ingredients like xanthan gum added!

I try to keep them not too sweet. Especially if you plan to add frosting or icing. I might even try cutting the sugar down more the next time I bake gluten free sugar cookies.Gluten free sugar cookies are fun to cut and decorate any time of year. These hold up well and are so simple to make!

One of my secrets to not having kids go crazy eating cookies all day? Make a small batch. They won’t feel deprived, but there won’t be cookies sitting around for weeks on end. You can also freeze extras to pull out for a special treat later.

This recipe makes about 25 cookies. You can easily double or triple it if you need a big batch for giving away or for a party.Gluten free sugar cookies are fun to cut and decorate any time of year. These hold up well and are so simple to make!

If you’re going to make sugar cookies, you have to decorate them! We used homemade frosting with natural dyes and chocolate chips. In typical fashion my toddler wouldn’t eat the cookies unless I scraped the frosting off. She is not a fan of sweets…and I hope to keep it that way.Gluten free sugar cookies are fun to cut and decorate any time of year. These hold up well and are so simple to make!

Healthy Year and Holiday

I hope you make this your healthiest year yet! But don’t forget that it can include a small treat here and there. These simple gluten free sugar cookies make the perfect little sweet treat or fun holiday baking project!Gluten free sugar cookies are fun to cut and decorate any time of year. These hold up well and are so simple to make!

Simple Gluten Free Sugar Cookies
Yields 25
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Ingredients
  1. 6 Tbsp. butter, room temperature
  2. 1/3 cup organic cane sugar
  3. 1 egg
  4. 1/2 tsp. gelatin
  5. 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  6. 1 cup white rice flour
  7. 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  8. 1/2 tsp. unrefined sea salt
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 400*F.
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar.
  3. In a small bowl mix the egg, gelatin and vanilla. Add to the butter mixture and beat to combine.
  4. Stir in dry ingredients.
  5. Use your hands to combine the dough into a ball.
  6. Cover dough and chill for 30 - 60 minutes.
  7. Roll the dough on a floured surface. Cut shapes and place on a parchment paper or silpat lined baking sheet.
  8. Bake at 400*F for 10 - 12 minutes, until golden.
  9. Allow cookies to cool completely before decorating.
Notes
  1. The cookies can be frozen for up to a year.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

Candy Cane Mason Jar Fruit Salad

Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

I am working with Stonyfield Yogurt for this post. I have been compensated for my time commitment. All opinions expressed are my own. I have not been paid to post positive reviews.

When it comes to holiday entertaining (for a crowd or just for my own family) I have two requirements:

  1. Nutritious
  2. Simple

I’ve learned how to host a crowd without stress and still serve real food. The big stuff is easy – meat, potatoes, veggies, etc. But I tend to neglect the little things like breakfast, dessert and fruit sides.Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

Three-in-One Recipe

Today I’m sharing my solution for all three!

Candy cane mason jar fruit salads work for breakfast, dessert or a simple side dish.

Start with whole milk Stonyfield yogurt that you strain to make it really thick. We like to use the vanilla, but you could use plain to make it without any added sugar. The strained vanilla yogurt is a simple alternative to whipped cream that has probiotics! My kids could not get enough of it! And I always have quarts of Stonyfield yogurt on hand. Actually I usually have about four or five in my fridge because we eat it so often.

I add our own fruit, sweeteners and other add-ins (like kettle corn granola and chia seeds) to the plain, whole milk organic yogurt for an easy breakfasts a couple times a week. That way I know we’re eating good quality food! I love that Stonyfield is all organic and is committed to using quality ingredients.

And if you’re concerned about sugar content, Stonyfield has less sugar than other brands.Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

If you like your yogurt/cream really thick (like I do!) you can even use strained Greek yogurt for the fruit salads. But it would be a bit on the tart side. The strained yogurt works perfectly for these fruit salads so the fruit does not sink into the yogurt. You can really see those layers!Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

Fruit Stripes

Once strained, simply layer the yogurt with your favorite festive fruits. We use pomegranate seeds, kiwi, raspberries and grapes. Taylor it to your tastes and the look you like. Little kids might not be keen on pomegranate seeds. While adults might like a mix with everything. My toddler enjoyed a combination of raspberries and green grapes. But my big kids loved the pomegranate seeds and kiwi.Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

I make a variety and let everyone choose what they like. I keep some all green and some all red and some I mix. They look so festive! Like a candy cane in a jar.

How to Save Time

Best of all? You can make them ahead of time for a super easy breakfast or dessert. Don’t want to interrupt opening Christmas presents to make breakfast? Make these fruit salads the night before and munch while you unwrap. Or prep them before your guests arrive for a super easy dessert.Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

If you’re really busy you can skip the last step and simply turn breakfast into a candy cane parfait buffet. Set out all the ingredients and let everyone assemble their own! Add granola, chia seeds and nuts for a complete meal. This works very well for a big crowd.

Kids Can Cook Too!

I really love that my kids can actually make these on their own. They’ve been learning to cook for two years now through the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse. So they are proficient with knives and many other kitchen tools. I could give them all the supplies and let them prepare the fruit salads as a fun project. Then I’m free to work on the main meals.

Interested in teaching your kids how to cook? Check out the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse HERE!

Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

Coffee with Dessert?

Whether serving mason jar fruit salads for breakfast or dessert, a cup of coffee is an excellent accompaniment for the adults. If you like coffee that is. Me? I’ve never been a coffee drinker. But my husband and in-laws are! Whenever my in-laws come visit I have no drink to offer them with dessert. My brother and sister-in-law actually bring their own! They know I never serve any.Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

Thanks to Krups I now have a great coffee maker! And I can finally learn how to make some decent coffee. No more embarrassed hostess here.Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

Cutest Candy Canes

Now let’s be honest, the real reason we all want to make these mason jar fruit salads is simply because they are so stinkin’ cute! Seriously. Who wouldn’t want one? My kids were sad I hadn’t made two for each of them. I guess next time I know to make a huge batch. They could be easy grab ‘n’ go snacks or great additions to school lunches. Use seasonal fruit to change it up throughout the year.

Festive and nutritious holiday dishes don’t have to be complicated. Keep it simple and fun with these fresh, fruity candy cane mason jar fruit salads. They are sure to be a family favorite.Looking for that perfect Christmas breakfast or dessert? This adorable and easy candy cane mason jar fruit salad is great for both kids and adults!

Candy Cane Mason Jar Fruit Salad
Yields 6
A simple, holiday fruit salad that works for breakfast, dessert or a side dish.
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Ingredients
  1. 4 cups Stonyfield whole milk vanilla yogurt (or plain or Greek)
  2. Seeds of 1 pomegranate
  3. 2 kiwis
  4. Medium bunch of red and/or green grapes
  5. 2 cups raspberries or strawberries
  6. (Optional) 2 Tbsp. chia seeds
Instructions
  1. Strain the yogurt in cheesecloth for one hour. Hang it over a bowl to get as much whey out as you can.
  2. While the yogurt is straining chop/seed the fruit into bite-size pieces.
  3. Layer the fruit and yogurt in 1/2-pint mason jars, small glass bowls or festive dishes.
  4. Top with chia seeds or more fruit.
Notes
  1. The fruit salads can be made with all red fruit, all green fruit or a combination.
  2. Older kids can help prepare the fruit and layer the salads.
  3. This makes 6 - 8 1/2-pint mason jars, depending on the ratio of fruit to yogurt you like.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Give your little cowboy a power-packed treat with these fun, gluten free cowboy cookies. They are loaded with real, nourishing food.

Abram’s Cowboy Cookies {gluten free, nut free, dairy free option}

Give your little cowboy a power-packed treat with these fun, gluten free cowboy cookies. They are loaded with real, nourishing food.

Give your little cowboy a power-packed treat with these fun, gluten free cowboy cookies. They are loaded with real, nourishing food.

Last year my daughter got her own cookbook for Christmas. Of course she immediately wanted to try some recipes. We found a few good ones that the whole family enjoyed. Her favorite was the molasses cookie.

Naturally if big sister gets to choose some recipes little brother wants to as well. My son saw a recipe for cowboy cookies. But when we went to make them, we realized they were loaded with things he is allergic to like wheat, nuts and oats. He was quite disappointed.

Time to Recipe Create

No worries. Allergy-friendly mom to the rescue!

We came up with our own cowboy cookie recipe that does not contain gluten, nuts or oats. They can also be made dairy free.

My son and I had a blast making these together (he is quite skilled in the kitchen thanks to the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse!). And he loved being able to share them at a family gathering. Everybody else loved them too!Give your little cowboy a power-packed treat with these fun, gluten free cowboy cookies. They are loaded with real, nourishing food.

A Colorful Cookie

We use sunbutter in this recipe to help bind and add fat. You must note that when you use sunbutter and baking soda together it can turn green! So if the inside of your cookie starts to look green there is no need to throw them out. And no, you didn’t do anything wrong. My kids now think it’s a fun surprise to have a green cookie when you take a bite.

Save Some for Later

This recipe makes a big batch (about 30 cookies). They freeze really well. So you can enjoy some now and save some for later. Or if you need them for a party or event you can make them well in advance. They thaw very quickly (10 – 20 minutes). Though my kids love to eat them frozen!

Cookies with a Punch

My little cowboy (and cowgirls!) is very active. He loves to spend all day outside on the farm taking care of animals and helping with any jobs he can. He really works up an appetite (and is by far my fastest, biggest eater). These cowboy cookies are great as part of a snack or the perfect ending to a hearty meal.

Loaded with protein, vitamins and minerals from eggs, sunbutter, pumpkin seeds and raisins, Abram’s cowboy cookies are nourishing and sweet. As you can see my little one sure loves them!

Give your little cowboy a power-packed treat with these fun, gluten free cowboy cookies. They are loaded with real, nourishing food.

Get your little cowboy or cowgirl into the kitchen to whip up a batch of cowboy cookies. You’ll all enjoy the time together and delicious treat you make.

Looking for more fun cookie recipes? Try these!

Grain Free Pumpkin Spice Breakfast Cookies

Everything Free Chocolate Cranberry Cookies

Gluten Free Peppermint Twist Cookies

Einkorn Chocolate Chip Cookies

Gluten Free Squash Cookies

Give your little cowboy a power-packed treat with these fun, gluten free cowboy cookies. They are loaded with real, nourishing food.

Abram's Cowboy Cookies {gluten free, nut free, dairy free option}
Yields 30
A hearty and allergy friendly cookie.
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Ingredients
  1. 1/2 cup softened butter, palm shortening, lard or tallow
  2. 1 cup organic cane sugar or coconut sugar
  3. 2 eggs
  4. 1 tsp. organic vanilla
  5. 1/4 cup sunbutter
  6. 2 cups white rice flour or brown rice flour
  7. 1/2 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  8. 1 tsp. baking soda
  9. 1/2 cup chocolate chunks (we use Enjoy Life)
  10. 1/4 cup raisins and/or dried cranberries
  11. 2 Tbsp. pumpkin seeds
Instructions
  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy.
  3. Add the sunbutter, egg and vanilla. Beat until well mixed.
  4. Add the flour, salt and soda. Mix well.
  5. Stir in the chocolate, dried fruit and seeds.
  6. Scoop large mounds (2 - 3 Tbsp.) about 2 inches apart on a parchment or silpat lined baking sheet.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes, until golden brown.
  8. Allow to cool for 5 minutes and transfer to a cooling rack.
Notes
  1. The cookies freeze well. Allow 10 - 20 minutes for them to thaw.
  2. The cookies may turn green inside due to the sunbutter reacting with the baking soda. It is not harmful.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Real foodies love cookbooks and kitchen gadgets. But don't forget about the little ones. Here are my top picks for little foodie gifts.

My Top Picks for Little Foodie Gifts

Real foodies love cookbooks and kitchen gadgets. But don’t forget about the little ones. Here are my top picks for little foodie gifts.

Real foodies love cookbooks and kitchen gadgets. But don't forget about the little ones. Here are my top picks for little foodie gifts.

If you want your kids to grow up knowing about real food, you have to teach them. What better way than with some Christmas gifts that promote real food and natural health?!

My kids love all things related to food – cooking food, eating food, learning about food and nutrition. So it’s no surprise that my gift list for little foodies isn’t that different than my list for adults. Just a little more age appropriate.

My kids have or want everything on this list. So it really is little foodie approved!

Desiccaated Liver

Now you might think I’ve really lost it. I put liver at the top of my gift list and now on my kids’ gift list! I really truly believe it is that important. Although my kids would not want a jar wrapped up under the tree, they do understand how nutritious it is and request to add it all sorts of foods.

Soon I’ll be sharing my son’s secret taco seasoning recipe – which includes lots of desiccated liver. My youngest likes to put liver on her salads.

While this may not be a stocking stuffer, using liver in your cooking will give your kids the gift of good health. And it doesn’t get much better than that.

You can always get an extra 10% off using my code TAKE10. I already stocked up for the year. Merry Christmas to all my kiddos! Grab yours HERE.

Kids Cook Real Food eCourse

Making nutritious food for your kids is a wonderful gift. The next best thing…teaching them to cook good food! It’s the gift that won’t take up space and will benefit them for a lifetime.

My six year old loves to cook dinner with me. By the time he is college age he’ll practically be a chef. I keep saying he is going to make an amazing husband someday.

My girls beg to help in the kitchen too. That’s why we’ve been doing the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse for two years now! Even as early as age two kids can learn to use knives, proper measuring skills and how to follow a recipe.

This really is a gift for you too. Wouldn’t you love for your kids to be able to get up in the morning and make breakfast? With the KCRF eCourse they will!

Grab a spot today in the Kids Cook Real Food course! This is a great gift for Grandpa and Grandma to get the kids.

Kitchen Tools

If you teach your kids to cook…they’re going to want some kitchen tools. Trust me on this one. My kids LOVE having their own set of measuring spoons and cups, knives and other little gadgets like crinkle cutters.

This can be a great way to encourage a child that is hesitant to help in the kitchen. It also teaches your child responsibility by needing to take care of their own equipment.

Last year my oldest got a set of knives for Christmas. Now every time she helps with chopping she HAS to use her knives. Maybe this year I’ll get a set for my son. Yes, a six-year old can safely use sharp knives! They learn how in the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse.

Chef Coat/Hat/Apron

Of course when your kids start working in the kitchen with their new skills and new tools they will have to look the part. Last winter my oldest and I made super cute aprons for each child. They grab them whenever they help me cook. Or even just to set the table. My son likes to fill the pockets with silverware and pretend he works at a restaurant.

This year I think we might go a step up and get the older kids chef coats (like these)! My daughter wants to be a baker some day. And my son really loves to cook. They will be thrilled to look like a real baker and chef with the proper attire.

Again, it’s one more way to encourage kids to learn about food, nutrition and how to cook. It’s a win for everyone.

Cookbooks

My oldest is an avid reader. She has been since she was a few months old. I could read book after book to her when she was literally three months old. It was crazy.

Now at age nine she still devours books. One of her favorite things to read is a cookbook! It’s actually a great way to teach younger kids to read too. Get one with lots of pictures to help those younger readers (and for those that just love to see good food). Then you can look through it together or they can read on their own.

Choose some recipes to make together. Or for older kids challenge them to try a new recipe on their own for dinner some time!

Here are a few good ones:

Nourishing Meals

The Nourishing Traditions Cookbook For Children

The Nourishing Homestead

Real foodies love cookbooks and kitchen gadgets. But don't forget about the little ones. Here are my top picks for little foodie gifts.

Nutrition Books

I may be getting a bit nerdy here. But this is how important nutrition is to me. I really want my kids to understand why we eat the way we do. I want them to understand how to care for animals, how to grow our own food and how it helps our bodies. Not to mention how we eat is important for taking care of God’s holy temple.

This year for science we chose to study human anatomy and physiology. My kids LOVE it! They beg to do science every day. We just finished learning about the digestive system and are now learning about nutrition. Perfect! This is the curriculum we are using.

I know not everyone homeschools. But that doesn’t mean you can’t study nutrition! Find age appropriate books (or even “study” some cookbooks) and make time to read them often.

We love these books about eating the rainbow that are simple yet show what each color of the rainbow does for our bodies.

We live in a world where food comes in boxes and bags. Which leads to the question...how much do your kids know about their food?

Play Kitchen

Hands down the toy all of my kids play with the most is our play kitchen and food/dishes. We started with just a small bucket of play food when my oldest was about two. It has evolved now into a full bin of dishes and food. They make elaborate feasts and love to play restaurant.

This is the kitchen my youngest just got for her birthday. It is the perfect size for little hands. And all of this pretend play helps develop a love for working with food.

The sets that allow kids to practice cutting are great leads into real kitchen skills!

Mini Trampoline

Little foodies need to focus on health in addition to real food. A mini trampoline (like this one) is a great way to get out energy. But more than that it is wonderful for the lymphatic system. Every bounce or tap helps drain the lymph nodes.

When I did Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis for my girls one of the action items on their plan was to rebound for ten minutes every day! Kids think it’s fun. But it’s more than that. It is so good for them!

Crunchy Balm

Last on my list is another repeat from my real foodie gift list. Crunchy Balm. My son uses it daily when his legs get itchy. I love the quality ingredients (tallow and essential oils) and how well it works.

This year I think I’m getting my oldest some of the Crunchy Organics lip balm. She’s at the age where she is interested in “beauty products.” But there are very few products that I will let her use because I am picky about ingredients. I totally trust this lip balm. It’s on my list too! I ran out of my last one. It’s the only thing that keeps my lips from cracking in the winter.

And for the older crowd Crunchy Organics has deodorant too! Another product that requires careful consideration due to potential harmful ingredients. There are a few different scents so it works well for boys or girls! I think this will be another stocking stuffer for my oldest.

Time to Shop!

It’s so fun to shop for little foodies! I love encouraging my kids to understand where their food comes from and why it’s important. Let’s raise a new generation of good stewards, taking care of God’s creation. Start small with some fun Christmas gifts!

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Creamy Spinach Pesto Salad Dressing

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

I don’t know about about you but when June rolls around I am so ready to get my salad on! I actually love eating salads year round. But something about the warm, summer weather makes me crave salad.

And when it comes to dressing I am not a traditional girl. Ranch? No thanks. Italian? Blech. I used to always eat honey mustard (I even have over four versions of it on the blog!!), but when I had to give up mustard for two years I lost that taste too.

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

My New Favorite

These days my salad dressing usually contains desiccated liver, fermented kale or aquatic greens…or all three if I’m really feeling the need to boost nutrients.

But there is one thing I always love on my salads – pesto! I usually make a really mild and simple version of pesto with peas (super kid friendly!!!).

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Recently I had the opportunity to try some Taylor Farms organic salad mixes. I went right for the baby spinach and popped it in the blender with olive oil, Stonyfield whole milk yogurt and seasoning. Amazing!

I served it with dinner on a bed of Taylor Farms mixed spring greens. The family loved it! My six-year old still isn’t a fan of lettuce salads. So he had cucumber, avocado and parmesan cheese topped with the creamy spinach pesto.  He sure was happy with his salad – and even asked for it again the next day!

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Kid-Friendly Greens

Creamy spinach pesto is a great way to get your kids to eat their greens. It does not taste like eating spinach (my son will vouch for that!). Plus it is combined with healthy fats like whole milk yogurt and extra virgin olive oil to help utilize the vitamins and minerals in the spinach.

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Even if your kids aren’t big salad eaters yet this creamy spinach pesto works well for dipping veggies or even chicken nuggets. We also like to eat it on noodles (pesto pasta!).

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Sometimes I’m sneaky and add a little desiccated liver. My kids don’t mind the taste since I add it to everything. It really boosts the Vitamin A content!

If you’re like me and craving a good summer salad this dressing is for you! Grab a big bowl, some Taylor Farms organic salad mix, your favorite salad toppers and a big helping of creamy spinach pesto! Summer has officially begun.

What is your favorite salad dressing? Do you make your own dressing creations?

Ready to dress up your summer salad? In less than five minutes this creamy spinach pesto salad dressing goes from the blender to your bowl!

Creamy Spinach Pesto Salad Dressing
Serves 6
A creamy green dressing the whole family will love!
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Ingredients
  1. 2 cups tightly packed spinach
  2. 1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
  3. 2 Tbsp. plain, whole milk yogurt
  4. 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  5. 1/4 - 1/2 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  6. 1/8 tsp. garlic powder
  7. 1/8 tsp. onion powder
  8. optional: 1/8 tsp. desiccated liver, 1/8 tsp. fermented kale powder, 1 Tbsp. pumpkin seeds, 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Instructions
  1. Run warm water over the peas to thaw or let sit on the counter to thaw.
  2. In a blender combine the spinach, peas, yogurt, oil, salt, garlic, onion and optional ingredients if desired.
  3. Blend on high until smooth, scraping sides as necessary.
  4. Adjust seasoning to taste.
  5. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator up to one week.
Notes
  1. This dressing works well on salads, as a veggie dip, on pasta or for chicken nuggets.
  2. This recipe makes one cup of dressing and is easily doubled or tripled to serve at a picnic.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/
I am working with Stonyfield Yogurt and Taylor Farms for this post. I have been compensated for my time but all opinions expressed are my own.

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Missing your beloved granola bars because you can't have oats? Problem solved! These oat and nut free chewy granola bars have the taste and texture of oats. You'll never miss them!!

Oat and Nut Free Chewy Granola Bars

Missing your beloved granola bars because you can’t have oats? Problem solved! These oat and nut free chewy granola bars have the taste and texture of oats. You’ll never miss them!!

Missing your beloved granola bars because you can't have oats? Problem solved! These oat and nut free chewy granola bars have the taste and texture of oats. You'll never miss them!!

My son can’t eat oats.

We’ve been working through a myriad of food allergies with him for the last four years. And amazingly he has been able to get rid of almost all of them.

Except a few oddballs. Like oats.

We have added back dairy, corn, rice, seeds, bananas, apples, avocado – a whole assortment of foods – too many to list! But the oats are still a big no-go.

So every time I make a batch of granola bars he feels a bit left out. I’ve made rice bars before. Which are delicious! But they are more like a cookie than a granola bar.

Missing your beloved granola bars because you can't have oats? Problem solved! These oat and nut free chewy granola bars have the taste and texture of oats. You'll never miss them!!

Oat Free Bars!

We put our heads together and my son and I came up with a new version of oat and nut free chewy granola bars. They have some texture and lots of flavor. Plus they hold together well. Which is always a trick with homemade granola bars.

The secret ingredient is brown rice puffs. Cereal is a rare treat in our house. If we do have cereal, it’s often plain rice puffs. We eat them with milk or add them to yogurt for a little crunch. They work perfectly in this granola bar recipe to add texture.

Missing your beloved granola bars because you can't have oats? Problem solved! These oat and nut free chewy granola bars have the taste and texture of oats. You'll never miss them!!

Make it Double

I like to make a big batch (or two!), wrap them individually and stick them in the freezer. Then I’ve got an easy snack or breakfast component ready to go at any time. These chewy granola bars are ready to eat right from the freezer.

One batch makes about fourteen bars. But if you’ve got toddlers and preschoolers you can cut them even smaller to make a batch of twenty to twenty eight.

Probably the best part of these oat and nut free chewy granola bars is how easy they are to make. I can get a batch in the oven in less than ten minutes.

So what are you waiting for? Got ten minutes? Get into the kitchen and whip up a delicious snack that has no corn syrup, glycerin, thickeners or binders.

Don’t need to avoid oats? Both my chewy and crunchy granola bar recipes are great!!

Missing your beloved granola bars because you can't have oats? Problem solved! These oat and nut free chewy granola bars have the taste and texture of oats. You'll never miss them!!

Gluten, Oat and Nut Free Chewy Granola Bars
Yields 14
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Ingredients
  1. 3 cups rice puffs, roughly chopped in a blender
  2. 1 1/4 cups white or brown rice flour
  3. 2 Tbsp. chia seeds
  4. 1 tsp. cinnamon
  5. 1/2 cup honey
  6. 1 Tbsp. organic cane sugar
  7. 1/4 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  8. 1/2 cup butter
  9. 2 eggs
  10. 1/4 cup unsweetened sunbutter
  11. 1/2 cup add-ins (raisins, chocolate chips, pumpkin seeds, cranberries, etc.)
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 350F.
  2. Melt the butter, sunbutter and honey in s a small saucepan. Set aside.
  3. Combine rice puffs, flour, chia seeds, cinnamon, salt and sugar in a large bowl.
  4. Add the butter mixture and mix well.
  5. Add the eggs and mix well.
  6. Stir in opt-ins.
  7. Spread the batter in a greased or parchment lined 9x13 baking pan.
  8. Bake for 25 min.
  9. Let cool 15 minutes. Cut into bars (but do not remove from pan).
  10. Let cool 1 hour. Remove bars from pan.
  11. Wrap individually or store in a large container in the refrigerator or freezer.
Notes
  1. Bars are ready to eat straight from the freezer.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

We live in a world where food comes in boxes and bags. Which leads to the question...how much do your kids know about their food?

How Much Do Your Kids Know About Their Food?

We live in a world where food comes in boxes and bags. Which leads to the question…how much do your kids know about their food?We live in a world where food comes in boxes and bags. Which leads to the question...how much do your kids know about their food?

We have a little joke in our house about corn.

Whenever I serve corn with a meal my husband asks, “Why did you make two vegetables?” – referring to the corn and whatever vegetable I’m serving. To which the kids quickly reply, “Corn is NOT a vegetable, Daddy! It’s a grain!”

The sad thing is that far too many people don’t actually know that. My husband and I both grew up thinking that corn was a vegetable (now he says it just to tease the kids). It may be laughable at our table, but the reality is so many kids are so disconnected from where their food comes from that they don’t even know that corn is a grain. Or that an egg is not dairy (it comes from a chicken, not a cow!).

Kids today see food that comes in boxes and bags without any idea of its origin.We live in a world where food comes in boxes and bags. Which leads to the question...how much do your kids know about their food?

How Will They Learn?

We are blessed to live in the country, raise our own animals and grow our own produce. Every day is a lesson in agriculture for my kids! (Though I am curious if some of the neighbors that have large corn fields know they are growing grains??)

But not everyone has that opportunity. That is why I am thankful for resources like the book Where Does a Rainbow Grow? by Kathryn Kemp Guylay. In it she uses bright colors and easy-to-read text to explain to kids where their food comes from and what to eat to stay healthy.

Real Colors!

As a family we made a decision over five years ago to cut out food dyes 100%.

No exceptions. It has made a world of difference in the neurological health of our children. So when I opened this book and the first page talks about avoiding fake colors I was hooked.

My kids love to look at the pages with brightly colored produce. They also like to answer the questions and try to name every fruit and vegetable.We live in a world where food comes in boxes and bags. Which leads to the question...how much do your kids know about their food?

Ever since reading Guylay’s first book Give it a Go, Eat a Rainbow my kids and I have enjoyed pointing out how many colors we eat each day. Just the other day when I put some spinach on my son’s plate he asked, “What is green good for?” It makes me so happy to know at six years old he is already learning how his food impacts his health. Green is great for bones and teeth!

Try Something New

Seeing all of the pictures has reminded me that, although we eat a wide variety of and a large quantity of produce, we still have plenty of foods we haven’t tried. Maybe we’ll grab a few new items the next time we go to the store and experiment with them.

Where Does a Rainbow Grow? would make a great addition to a home school curriculum. Or it would be a wonderful gift to share with your child’s classroom.

I firmly believe that the more knowledge we have about our food, the better choices we make and the healthier we become.

Let’s raise a generation of kids that understand where their food comes from and how they can use food to feel good. Reading Where Does a Rainbow Grow? Is a great place to start!We live in a world where food comes in boxes and bags. Which leads to the question...how much do your kids know about their food?

If you want to get your kids more involved with their food and learn how to cook check out the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse.

I was compensated for my time to review this book; however I was not paid to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.

Ready to think summer? This no mixer required bananas foster ice cream is sure to help! So easy to make and free of grains, eggs and nuts.

No Mixer Required Bananas Foster Ice Cream (gluten free, grain free, egg free, nut free)

Ready to think summer? This no mixer required bananas foster ice cream is sure to help! So easy to make and free of grains, eggs and nuts.

Ready to think summer? This no mixer required bananas foster ice cream is sure to help! So easy to make and free of grains, eggs and nuts.

Summer is just around the corner. I keep telling myself that so when it’s forty degrees in May I don’t get too discouraged. A couple days of eighty degrees before the forty sure helped too.

One great way to start thinking summer is with ice cream! If you’ve followed me very long you know ice cream is my absolute favorite food. At least these days I don’t eat nearly as much as I used to and most of the ice cream I do eat is homemade. It’s all about the baby steps!

Ready to think summer? This no mixer required bananas foster ice cream is sure to help! So easy to make and free of grains, eggs and nuts.

Make it Real

I recently bought some ice cream for my husband – a limited edition flavor – bananas foster. I tasted it. Wow, was it sweet!! Good, but sweet. It reminded me of egg nog.

My kids (and I) were a bit jealous, so I made our own version. This homemade bananas foster ice cream is loaded with banana flavor – because it is mostly pureed bananas! Then I swirled in some homemade caramel sauce for the “foster” taste. You could really bump up nutrition and save time by using this metabolism boosting caramel with liver!

Ready to think summer? This no mixer required bananas foster ice cream is sure to help! So easy to make and free of grains, eggs and nuts.

You can add homemade vanilla wafers for great texture. I didn’t have any on hand…but I can’t wait to try it some time!

A little pinch of nutmeg really makes this bananas foster ice cream stand out.

Feel free to make your version with as much or as little sweetener as you like. The bananas add plenty of sweetness on their own as long as they are really ripe. But a tablespoon or two of maple syrup added to them is just right for us.Ready to think summer? This no mixer required bananas foster ice cream is sure to help! So easy to make and free of grains, eggs and nuts.

Quick and Easy

One of the best parts of this ice cream is that there is no ice cream mixer required. You do have to make the caramel and freeze the bananas in advance. But once you’re ready the ice cream comes together in minutes and is ready to eat.

Are you thinking summer already? Give this bananas foster ice cream a try. What’s your favorite flavor?

Ready to think summer? This no mixer required bananas foster ice cream is sure to help! So easy to make and free of grains, eggs and nuts.

No Mixer Required Bananas Foster Ice Cream
Serves 6
A creamy banana ice cream with swirls of caramel.
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Ingredients
  1. 6 very ripe bananas
  2. 2 - 4 Tbsp. maple syrup or honey (optional)
  3. 1/4 - 1/2 tsp. unrefined sea salt
  4. 3 - 4 Tbsp. caramel sauce
  5. 1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg (optional)
  6. 1/4 cup vanilla wafers, crumbled (optional)
Instructions
  1. Prepare the caramel. Refrigerate.
  2. Slice the bananas and freeze on a parchment lined baking sheet in a single layer.
  3. Combine the frozen bananas, maple syrup, salt and nutmeg in a food processor. Blend until smooth (this will take a few minutes and you may have to scrape down the sides multiple times).
  4. Transfer the ice cream to a freezer safe container.
  5. Gently mix in the caramel and vanilla wafers.
  6. Serve or freeze.
Just Take A Bite http://justtakeabite.com/

In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. It will not change the cost of any products or services for you.