Dear Mumma! It’s the food format, not the food!

We understand that it’s not making Healthy food as big a challenge as feeding food to kids!

In a perfect scenario, a mother would want her child to pick up the veggies, fruits and nuts on a daily basis. But it seems like most mothers are far away from the ideal situation. Forget kids, even adults fuss over eating certain fruits and vegetables. Nevertheless, what we can’t forget is that every fruit and vegetable we avoid, we also risk the deficiency of its micro and macro-nutrients, which are extremely essential for active growth and life long functioning of the body.

Kids who don’t eat well in early years end up having problems with digestion, weaker bones, delayed growth, weak vision, dull skin and hair. In the long run, these early concerns mature and take the form of osteoporosis, diabetes, depression, grey hair, baldness, early aging, obesity etc. Hence it’s utmost important to teach kids to consume a variety of fruits, vegetables, nuts and other natural foods. The next big achievement of course will be when kids not only love to eat them but also demand them.

It is observed that it’s not the food that makes a child fussy but the food format. If a child is given food in his/her favourite format in their early years, then they learn to eventually pick up and enjoy those vegetables, fruits and nuts without much fuss.

Format 1- Fries: If a child loves fries, then baking sweet potato or carrot fries with favourite seasoning is a no brainer.

  • Recipe:
  • Scrub and wash the sweet potato or red skinned potato. Leave skin on (skin is loaded with antioxidants and fibre).
  • Cut sweet potato or red skinned potato in wedges form.
  • Rub and toss them in 1 tsp oil (or more)
  • Sprinkle some salt. Good to use Epsom salt (why?)
  • Spread them out on baking sheet on tray.
  • Place on middle rack.
  • Preheat oven for 5 min at 200 Celsius and Bake for 25-30 min.
  • Sprinkle any seasoning on top and serve.
  • KIDS LOVE IT! So make extra 🙂

Format 2- Wraps/Cheela: Another example would be a wrap made of ragi flour & chickpea flour mixed with spinach purée or beetroot purée. Replace tomato ketchup with nut spread or chutney (as ketchup sugar counters calcium absorption in the body). Stuff the wrap with cheese, tofu and sesame seeds and fold it in a convenient easy to hold format.

  • 1cup Ragi flour (optional)
  • 1 cup chickpea flour or mung bean paste (soak mung bean for 4 hours, blend with water to make thick batter)
  • 1 beetroot grated/ puréed (uncooked)
  • 200mg Tofu (mashed)
  • 3 tbsp Sesame Seeds or Iyurved’s 5 Ayurvedic herbs and 7 nuts savoury spread (order here).
  • Water (as required)
  • Salt (as per taste)
  • 2 tbsp grated ginger
  • 2 tsp Ajwain/ Carom seeds
  • Coriander leaves (chopped)
  • MIX ALL

Cook:

  • Spread 1 serving spoon batter on non-stick pan. Apply some oil.
  • Flip other side. Serve.

Kids happily enjoy the ‘hidden’ nutrition of nuts, herbs and veggies!

Format 3- Paratha/Flatbread: Sometimes kids don’t want to eat curry or sabzi with paratha.Stuffed parathas are an easy and healthy option to hide veggies & feed kids in such cases. 

  • Make Puree of cauliflower, sprouted mung bean/ moong dal
  • Add to wheat flour or sorghum/ jowar. Add salt and ajwain/ carom seeds.
  • Add nuts and seeds powder or Iyurved’s 5 Ayurvedic herbs and 7 nuts savoury spread (order here).
  • Serve it as a paratha roll.

Kids happily enjoy the ‘hidden’ nutrition of nuts, herbs and veggies!

Format 4- Cakes: Children love to eat cakes but parents are worried about feeding them nutritious food. Try to make this healthy no sugar, no egg, no white flour cake using nutritious & healthy dates, flaxseed powder & whole wheat.

MIX/ BLEND

  • 2 tbsp heap-full wheat flour
  • 2 tbsp heap-full cocoa (dark)
  • ⅓ tsp baking soda
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil/ ghee/ any oil
  • 4 dates (paste)
  • ½ tsp vanilla essence
  • 2 tbsp flaxseed powder (take flaxseed and powder it) mixed with 6 tbsp water
  • Iyurved’s 5 Ayurvedic herbs and 7 nuts choco spread (order here).
  • Jaggery/honey/coconut sugar (to your taste)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup milk (try any milk/ nut milk)

Preheat the oven for 5 min at 200C and bake for 30 minutes in the middle rack.

Kids happily enjoy the ‘hidden’ nutrition of nuts and herbs!

Format 5- Cupcakes: Cupcakes are another popular food commonly loved by children. Chia Berry cupcakes are a healthier alternative for regular white flour cupcakes and allows mothers to feed their kids berries & chia seeds which kids would not eat otherwise.

  • 1cup Whole wheat flour
  • 2 tbsp chia powder mixed with 6 tbsp water (wait 5 min to become a lump and then add)
  • 3 tbsp yogurt
  • 3 tbsp almond butter or Iyurved’s 5 Herbs & 7 Nuts savoury spread (order here)
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries (use milk to purée this in granular form)
  • Honey (as per sweetness required)
  • Drops of Vanilla essence
  • ¾ tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup Milk (or as much as to make a thick batter)

Preheat the oven at 200 Celsius for 5 minutes. Mix all ingredients together with your hand or mixer and transfer to an oiled baking pan. Bake for 25 min in a lower/middle rack.

Top it up with melted dark chocolate or Iyurved’s 5 Herbs & 7 Nuts choco spread (order here)

Kids happily enjoy the ‘hidden’ nutrition of nuts and herbs!

Format 6- Pizza: Pizza is probably every child’s favourite food. Hiding nutrition in their pizza in the form of veggies, nuts, seeds & herbs can be a win-win situation for both children & parents.

  • Both handful of cauliflower, pureed with little water
  • 2 cups Wholewheat flour or half mixed with Rye flour
  • Salt and Oregano seasoning
  • Add any nut spread or Iyurved’s 5 herbs and 7 nuts savoury spread (order here)
  • 1 tsp yeast
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 1 tbsp psyllium husk (optional)
  • 1 tbsp honey (optional)

Mix all together into a sticky soft dough. Leave covered with cotton cloth and dry lid in a dark space for 2-3 hours. Once done, take a small ball of dough and roll it into the pizza base. Top this with sauce, veggies, greens, cheese, tomato as per your wish. Preheat for 5 minutes and Bake for 12-15 minutes at 250 celsius. Serve!

Kids happily enjoy the ‘hidden’ nutrition of nuts, herbs and veggies!

Format 7- Pasta Sauce: Pasta is also every child’s favourite food. Hiding nutrition in their pasta sauce in the form of veggies, nuts, seeds & herbs can be a win-win situation for both children & parents.

  • 1 Red capsicum (roast and peel charred/black skin)and Puree
  • 2 garlic cloves chopped
  • Ghee or Oil for preparation
  • 3 tomatoes, pureed
  • Few basil leaves
  • 2 tbsp Seed powder (sunflower and pumpkin) or Iyurved’s 5 herbs and 7 nuts savoury spread (order here)
  • 1 tbsp Nutritional yeast (optional)
  • Oregano, salt, pepper, turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp jaggery/ sugar
  • Red chilli sauce/ powder (optional)

Heat oil and add garlic. Add tomato puree. After 5 min, add seeds powder or Iyurved’s herbs and nut spread and nutritional yeast, seasonings and let it cook for 5 minutes. Add red capsicum puree. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Add 1 tsp jaggery/ sugar. Switch off gas. Add basil leaves. Ready to serve!

Kids happily enjoy the ‘hidden’ nutrition of nuts, herbs and veggies!

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