Giving picky eaters exposure to new foods

via Daily Prompt: Exposure

We all have our food quirks. We all went through that phase where our parents thought we were going to starve ourselves. If you have kids, you know the struggle. I know my parents struggled with me to eat peas.. my aunt told me my hair would turn purple and now I LOVE peas. I would never dream of eating Spinach or asparagus until in my 20s when my mother in law made me try them and now I love them.

If my bonus child had her way, we would only eat Biscuits and gravy, Mac N cheese, pizza, chips, candy, cereal, Grilled cheese, bacon, and Turkey sandwiches. This child has the strangest food choices mainly because everyone lets her get away with it. This child drives me nuts when it comes to food. She “hated” taco doritos… it’s all we had and she now begs for them. She loves fresh bell peppers but put them in food and they make the food too spicy. She refuses to eat anything with onions in it but will sit and eat White Castle sliders like she hasn’t been fed in days. She hates ketchup but loves plain tomato soup. She hates tomatoes but will eat cherry tomatoes like candy. She prefers nasty canned spag O’s over spaghetti.. will not touch goulash.

I hate explained to her it’s all in her head. We have tricked her into eating things and will get a “this is yummy” but when we explain she may or may not eat it again just on principle. My husband is passive about it because he too is picky, not as picky but still annoying to someone that likes variety. He hates cooked veggies. He hates beans. He isn’t a fan of casseroles. Unless it’s chili or potato soup, soups are off the table. His reasonings I can deal with.. he has tried them and dislikes them.

I made it clear when I moved in, things are changing in this house. She actually hasn’t been horrible. There’s been resistance, there’s been stubburness, but there have been plenty of aha moments for her also.

My kids are not picky. My twenty month old will eat anything. Daddy puts tabasco on his food she still eats it. Jalapenos… she will take a bite or two. Her dietary concerns are on the other end, she will eat as long as she has food to eat.

Through the week, I surrender for the most part to their “food” because I’m tired, I don’t want to cook and I don’t want to do a million dishes. I usually always try at least a new dish in the crockpot on the weekend, even if its a twist on something they already like. On a great weekend, I try two new dishes. It’s a rule that the kids must try what is cooked.

This summer it is my goal to get most of the junk out of this house. We tried planting tomatoes and peppers last summer. This year I vow to either have a raised garden or pot veggies. I’m going to dehydrate, freeze, and force veggie snacks. I’m sick of arguing over chips vs veggies..I want the processed crap gone.

I am a firm believer that if kids are introduced to new foods they will find new likes. Most of the time they do not like foods because someone else does not.

Child hates BBQ – so we are going to try this Honey and soy chicken

Child hates tacos but loves pizza – Mexican pizza

Child LOVES mac n cheese but it needs a twist – Mac n cheese with a twist

Child loves pizza but hates goulosh – Pizza bake

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Dinner when you are overworked

via Daily Prompt: Overworked

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I love food! I love Pinterest! I love my crockpot! I have begun a routine of at least one meal a week is in my crockpot. Why? By the end of the week, the last thing I want to do is slave over dinner. There is nothing better feeling than loading the crockpot after I make the kids lunch and having free time for the rest of the day. Todays post is a few of our family favorites.

I did not write out the actual recipes as they are not mine, I found them on Pinterest and do not deserve any credit for them. I did provide the links to where I found them and the ingredients you will need. I hope you enjoy.

Beer can chicken – Yummy and moist! My husband didn’t understand the foil balls and the beer not actually touching the chicken but when he tasted it… he stopped questioning me. What you need – 

Meat

  • 1 (6 1/2 to 7 pound) whole chicken, whole

Produce

  • 1 tsp Garlic powder
  • 2 tsp Oregano, dried leaves
  • 2 tsp Thyme, dried leaves

Baking & Spices

  • 1 tsp Cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp Paprika, smoked
  • 2 tsp Pepper, coarse
  • 2 tsp Salt

Beer, Wine & Liquor

  • 1 can Beer

Other

  • 4 (6-inch) strips Aluminium foil, each bunched into a ball

Slow cooker lasagna – My bonus child hates lasagna, not sure why she loves spaghetti. To satisfy her enough to try and because my hubby hates ricotta and cottage cheese I omitted these. They loved it and couldn’t get enough. My husband actually said the sauce was the best he ever had.

You will need – 

Meat

  • 1/2 lb Ground beef
  • 1/2 lb Italian sausage

Produce

  • 2 tsp Garlic powder
  • 1 Onion, large
  • 2 tbsp Parsley

Canned Goods

  • 1 (6oz) can Tomato paste

Condiments

  • 1 (29 oz) can Tomato sauce
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

Pasta & Grains

  • 1 (8 oz) package Lasagna noodles, regular

Baking & Spices

  • 2 tbsp Granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp Pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp Salt

Dairy

  • 1 1/2 cups Cottage cheese
  • 4 cups Mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

Liquids

  • 1 1/4 cups Water

Potato soup – I think the chicken stock was a little much. I think I would sub at least a cup of it with milk.

You will need – 

  • 6 slices cooked bacon*, diced
  • 3-4 cups good-quality chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes**, peeled (if desired) and diced
  • 1 medium white or yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 4 tablespoons bacon grease* (or butter)
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 (12-ounce) can 2% evaporated milk
  • 1 cup shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt or low-fat sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt, or more to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
  • optional toppings: thinly-sliced green onions or chives, extra shredded cheese, extra bacon, sour cream

Honey Lemon chicken – I would honestly omit the lemon being cooked inside the chicken. To us, it was a little overwhelming. Next time we will just squeeze a lemon over the chicken after cooking. Other than that it was great!

What you need –

Meat

  • 1 Chicken, whole roast

Produce

  • 1 Lemon, whole

Condiments

  • 1/2 cup Honey
  • 2 tbsp Lemon juice

Baking & Spices

  • 1 tsp Lemon pepper
  • 1 Salt

Oils & Vinegars

  • 2 tbsp Olive oil

Drinks

  • 1/2 cup Orange juice, lite

Dairy

  • 4 tbsp Butter

Crustless pizza – This is the house favorite to date! My bonus child has never ate dinner and said “Can we have this every week?” My husband was skeptical about the fact that it was crustless.

I served the pizza over buttered toast that was sprinkled with garlic powder. Instead of using hamburger.. we used breakfast sausage. Instead of using jarred pizza sauce I used a recipe that I also found on pinterest, it will be included also.

What you will need

  • 2 lbs Ground beef

Condiments

  • 1 14 oz jar Pizza sauce

Baking & Spices

  • 1 Garlic salt
  • 1 Your favorite pizza toppings

Dairy

  • 2 cup Mozzarella cheese
  • 2 cup Pizza blend cheese

Homemade pizza sauce – Instead of using the basil, thyme, and oregano..I just used Italian seasoning. I also omitted the bay leaf.

You will need

Produce

  • 1/4 tsp Basil, dried
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1/4 tsp Garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp Oregano, dried
  • 1/4 tsp Thyme, dried

Condiments

  • 1/2 tsp Lemon juice
  • 15 oz Tomato sauce

Baking & Spices

  • 1/8 tsp Black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Sugar

Liquids

  • 1/4 cup Water