Why is Breakfast so important?

We always hear “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day”, and here at Kids Eat Smart NL we see why every school day.  When students are fueled with a healthy breakfast we can see the impact first hand how it affects a child.  Breakfast at our Kids Eat Smart Clubs are so important for many reasons….. proper nutrition is a critical component to healthy development, breakfast helps to ensure kids are able to concentrate in class and our Clubs provide a safe and nurturing environment to allow kids to socialize with their friends and teachers before the school day begins.

For more information on healthy eating and general nutrition questions you can access the newly launched Dial-A-Dietitian service  available to all residents throughout the province, people can dial 811 for free, confidential, and easy access to the trusted advice of a registered dietitian. Dietitians are available to speak with callers from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday to Friday. Dietitians are also able to respond to email inquiries. Your questions can be sent directly to a dietitian using the Dial-A-Dietitian link on the www.yourhealthline.ca website.

To ensure you are serving a balanced breakfast at home and at your Kids Eat Smart Club include at least three of the four food groups from Canada’s Food Guide.

Here is a Breakfast menu we use at our KES Clubs.  Remember Good Eating = Good Thinking!

Kristin Hedges is a Registered Dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation NL.

Back To School Ready!

For most of us, back to school means back to a regular routine. When preparing book bags and closets for back to school don’t forget your child’s lunch box along with your fridges, freezers and kitchen cupboards. Here are a few tips to stock up and stay on budget with easy healthy items for breakfast, recess and lunch on those busy school mornings.

  • Prepare meals so that you have extra food on hand throughout the week. ie. make an extra batch of pancakes or French toast to freeze for breakfast, make large batches of soup or chili to freeze for lunches, and make large batches of pasta dishes with extra veggies to freeze for dinner.
  • Pick up bulk fruits and veggies: prep them when you return from the grocery store and put them in small baggies or containers so that they are ready to go for breakfast and snacks.
  • Purchase kid friendly (easy to open) containers for packing school lunches & recess.
  • When packing recess and lunch think – 2 food groups for recess and 4 food groups for lunch.
  • Ensure when packing lunches you keep cold foods cold and hot foods hot.

Try these few tips to be more prepared and organized for the school year to come.

Kristin Hedges is a Registered Dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation NL.

Loaded Cucumber Cups!

Including vegetables with each meal and snack is so important. Vegetables are sometimes not the favorite when it comes to kids.  Serving veggies in fun ways can get children excited about them.  This is a great snack for kids as it also includes egg so we can be sure they are getting enough protein throughout the day. Eggs are a great source of vitamins, minerals and protein.  Having boiled eggs on hand is a great way to make recipes like Loaded Cucumber Cups quick and easy. Try this recipe at home this week:

Loaded Cucumber Cups


  • 4 large – egg
  • 2 medium – cucumber
  • 1/4 cup – mayonnaise, light
  • 1 teaspoon – mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon – salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon – black pepper, ground
  • 1/8 teaspoon – paprika
  • 1 medium – carrot


1.Place eggs in a small pot and cover with water. Heat over high. Once boiling, turn off heat and allow eggs to sit for 10 minutes. Rinse in cold water, peel and place in a bowl to cool.

2.Meanwhile, cut cucumber into 1 1/2 inch thick pieces, removing the ends so that all pieces are able to sit on a flat surface. Using a melon baller or small spoon, scoop out the center of the cucumbers, enough to be filled.

3.Mash eggs with mayonnaise, mustard, salt, pepper and paprika. Fill cucumber cups with egg salad.

4.Peel and cut carrot into small sticks. Serve with cucumber cups.

Recipe & Image sourced from: https://www.superhealthykids.com/cucumber-cups-2/

Kristin Hedges is a Registered Dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation NL.

All Veggie Nachos!

Summer snacks are always a big one for kids – from When is snack time? to What are we having for snack? It’s important to ensure kids are well nourished with all the fun summertime activities keeping them busy each day. Including fruits and veggies with snacks is key as it allows kids to get more servings of fruits and veggies in throughout the day.  A balanced snack includes 2 of the 4 food groups.  As kids are growing, snacks are that much more important.  This is a great snack to amp up your veggie intake this week:

All Veggie Nachos


  • 3 bell peppers (a combination of yellow, red and orange), seeded and cut into triangles
  • ¼ Cup light sour cream
  • 1 Teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 Persian cucumber, diced
  • ½ Cup quartered cherry tomatoes
  • ½ avocado, diced
  • 3 Tablespoons grated Mexican blended cheese


  1. Place the bell pepper “chips” on a plate.
  2. Whisk the sour cream and lime juice in a small bowl.
  3. Drizzle the bell pepper “chips” with the sour cream sauce and the cucumbers, tomatoes, avocadoes, and cheese to form veggie nachos.

Crunch and enjoy!

Recipe & Images sourced from: https://www.thedailymeal.com/recipes/all-veggie-nachos-recipe

Kristin Hedges is a Registered Dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation NL.


Egg Salad Pinwheel Wraps

Sometimes parents struggle with what to give kids for lunch at summer camp that’s quick, easy and healthy!  Eggs are sometimes forgotten about when it comes to a great source of protein.  From Canada’s Food Guide, eggs are a source of Meat & Alternatives and provide an excellent source of protein as well as many essential vitamins and minerals.  Boil eggs in advance and have them ready to pack in camp lunches in the morning.  Pinwheel wraps are always a great hit with kids as they are fun and easy to pack and prepare.  When your child gets to camp in the morning ask the councillor to refrigerate your child’s lunch.

Try this recipe this week for camp this week:

Egg Salad Pinwheel Wraps

  • 6 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) light mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) sweet relish
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) yellow mustard
  • 1/4 tsp (1.25 mL) each salt and pepper
  • 4 lettuce leaves
  • 4 small flour tortillas


  1. Gently stir eggs with mayonnaise, relish, mustard, salt and pepper. Store, tightly covered in the refrigerator, for up to 3 days.
  2. Line each tortilla with lettuce leaf and spread egg salad over top. Tightly roll into a log, similar to a jellyroll. Cut each tortilla into 6 pinwheels. Package snugly, in an airtight container, so the pinwheels hold their shape.

Recipe and image sourced from: https://www.eggs.ca/recipes/egg-salad-pinwheel-wraps

Kristin Hedges is a Registered Dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation NL.


Healthy Homemade Lemonade!

A simple glass of lemonade turned a child into a hero, a community into a giant and a province into a land where good prevails.   We think about the Denine family today and we think about Nevaeh’s friends at Goulds Elementary and send you our sincere and deepest condolences.   Today we honour one special little girl who has inspired the good in all of us by sharing this recipe for a healthy homemade lemonade.

Healthy Homemade Lemonade


  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 cups white grape juice
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest


  1. Blend or shake or stir all the ingredients to combine.
  2. Enjoy! Keep in the refrigerator.

Recipe sourced from: https://www.feastingonfruit.com/fruit-sweetened-lemonade/

Kristin Hedges is a Registered Dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation NL.

Fresh Summer Salsa!

With kids busy playing in the hot summer sun it’s so important to keep them hydrated and energized with cool summer treats.  Ensuring our kids are hydrated and are taking breaks from the hot summer heat is so important.  Having fun, fresh, easy snacks on hand is key! Prepare this Fresh Summer Salsa ahead of time to have on hand when the kids are looking for snacks. Serve straight from the fridge so it’s a nice cool treat.

Fresh Summer Salsa

  • 3 tablespoons chopped onion (finely chopped)
  • 2 small cloves garlic (minced)
  • 3 large ripe tomatoes (peeled, seeds removed, and chopped
  • 2 chile peppers (hot or mild, chopped)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 cup corn
  • 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)


  1. Put chopped onion and garlic in a strainer; pour 2 cups boiling water over them then let drain thoroughly. Discard the water. All the chopped onion and garlic to fully cool.
  2. Combine onions and garlic with chopped tomatoes, peppers, corn, cilantro, and lime juice. Add salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
  3. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours to blend the flavors.
  4. Serve as a dip or a condiment with Mexican style dishes. It can be refrigerated for up to 5 to 7 days.

Recipe adapted from: https://www.thespruceeats.com/classic-fresh-salsa-3060434

Kirstin Hedges is a Registered Dietitian with Kids Eat Smart Foundation NL.