Kids and the Kitchen

The new Canada’s Food Guide was released this year. Unlike the previous food guide, the new food guide highlights the importance of how we think about food because “healthy eating is more than the food you eat”.  Healthy eating is also about why we eat and how we eat.  And the best way to enjoy what we eat is by surrounding ourselves with friends and family.

With the Christmas holidays just around the corner there will be many feasts with friends and family. Kitchens every where will be busy preparing special meals and baked goods.  And whether it is our home kitchen or our Kids Eat Smart kitchen that is buzzing with excitement, there is sure to be little chefs eager to help. So, roll up their sleeves, wash their hands, and let them dive in because there is no better way to teach children about healthy eating than to have them help in the kitchen.  It will also help them build their self-confidence, learn about cultural and family traditions, and explore new foods and flavours.

Here is a kid-created oatmeal cookie recipe that is a healthier alternative to many of the traditional oatmeal or chocolate chip cookie recipes that are out there.  It also has hints of Christmas spice; a taste of things to come.

Soft Oatmeal Raisin Delights

Ingredients

1 cup unbleached all purpose flour

1 ½ tsp baking powder

1 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp baking soda

½ tsp nutmeg

¼ tsp ground cloves

½ cup softened butter

⅓ cup packed light brown sugar

1 Large egg

2 tbsp fancy molasses

1 ⅓ cup unsweetened applesauce

1 ¾ quick cooking oats

1 cup raisins

¾ cup toasted sliced almonds (optional)

1 ½ tsp vanilla

Directions

  1. In bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, nutmeg and cloves; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until fluffy.
  3. Beat in egg and molasses until combined.
  4. Alternate adding the flour mixture and applesauce into the butter mixture (add 3 parts flour and then 2 parts applesauce).
  5. Stir in oats, raisins, almonds, if using and vanilla.
  6. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Drop batter by tablespoonfuls (15 mL) onto baking sheet.
  7. Bake in 375°F (190°C) oven for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown and firm to the touch.

This recipe has been used with permission from Dietitians of Canada.  Get easy to understand information on food, healthy eating and disease prevention along with award-winning recipes at www.unlockfood.ca.

The new Canada’s Food Guide can be found at https://food-guide.canada.ca/en/.

Hello Sunshine!

Sometimes all we need is a fun summer shape to get kids excited about eating a healthy snack.  If we have lots of fresh fruits and vegetables on hand the possibilities are endless.  You can make whatever comes to mind and even get the kids creative minds to help make them.  The more colorful the plate the better.  When we ensure our kids are getting a variety of fruits and veggies each day we are providing them with so many essential vitamins and minerals that they need to grow.  Try a fun plate like this one today:

Hello Sunshine Snack

Ingredients:

  • Yellow pepper
  • Red pepper
  • Celery
  • Carrot
  • Kiwi
  • Pineapple
  • Orange

Directions:

  1. Cut peppers, celery and carrots in slivers to allow for letter shapes
  2. Slice kiwi for the letter O
  3. Cut pineapple in slivers for the rays of sun
  4. Slice orange for sun
  5. Place together as picture below and serve!

Image sourced from:  https://canadianfamily.ca/food/cute-snack-idea-hello-sunshine/

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