Cinnamon Roasted Veggies

As I mentioned in my last post I have really been trying to stock up my freezer with nutritious homemade foods that I can grab and thaw quickly for my one year old.  These roasted veggies keep dwindling in my freezer and I find myself making them over and over again.  Fortunately my little one plows through these and just loves them.  If your baby isn’t so much of a veggie fan, the cinnamon in these may just do the trick.  So simple, but so rewarding for baby and stress-free for Mama because they are ready to go straight from the freezer!

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Ingredients:

Sweet Potatoe

Turnip

Carrot

Butternut Squash

Olive or Grapeseed Oil

Cinnamon

I’m not going to put amounts for this recipe because it really just depends on how much you want to make.  I just use equal amounts of each vegetable  cut into cubes roughly the same size.  Put your veggies in a casserole dish, drizzle with oil just to coat them, sprinkle with cinnamon, cover with a lid and bake at 350 degrees.  Gently stir veggies periodically  throughout cooking time.  Remove veggies from oven when tender (poke with a fork to test).  If you’re going to be freezing them you want them to hold up in the freezer and not end up like mashed potatoes so don’t let them get too soft.  Although I’m sure your baby would still eat them!

Once removed from oven, remove the lid and allow to cool.  Spoon into small ziploc bags or freezer safe containers, each 1 serving size and store in the freezer.

When you’re ready to use them, you can either take the veggies out of the bag and defrost in the microwave in a bowl or if you have more time you can sit the ziploc bag with veggies in it in cold water in the sink to defrost, then heat them up.

I like to serve these with some cut up whole grain pita, and maybe some cubed cheese.

Here’s to spending a little time to save time in the long run!

May you enjoy your coffee today while it’s still hot   😉

 

Roasted Red Pepper & Goat Cheese Puree

I don’t know about you, but lately when it comes to my almost one year old I am often finding myself staring blankly into the fridge wondering what to feed him.  He’s in that awkward stage where he still prefers some food pureed but will also try some of the food that we make for ourselves.  So I’ve found lately that he seems to be getting odds and ends and I don’t really feel like he’s getting enough variety in his diet.  I often fall back on the things I know he likes just because I know he will eat them.  But that means he’s missing out on other foods (and nutrients).

So I decided that for the next couple of days I will be in full on cooking mode!  I am loading up the freezer with healthy purees, stews and cooked veggies to have on hand for him.  It makes life so much easier…..it’s just finding the time to do it.  It’s worth it.  Take one or two days to get it all done and be stress-free about meals (most of them anyway) for the next little while.

This roasted red pepper and goat cheese puree is the first one I whipped up.  It can be used as a pasta sauce, dip or spread.  High in Vitamin A and C with some Folic Acid, Potassium and Niacin the peppers are a great nutrient boost combined with protein rich goat cheese.

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Ingredients: (This makes about 1 cup you can store in the fridge for a few days.  However if you’re stocking up your freezer you will want to multiply the ingredients according to how much you want)  I used 8 peppers!

1 Large Red Pepper

2 Tbsp. Goat Cheese

Lay your Pepper (s) on a foil lined baking sheet and broil for about 15 minutes, rotating them every few minutes to make sure all sides get roasted.  You want your peppers to become black and charred on the outside, so don’t worry about burning them.  This makes the skin come off very easy.  Once done, set your pepper(s) in a bowl and cover for a few minutes to allow the steam to also help remove the skin easier.  Once they are cool enough to handle peel of the skin (you can use a knife to get it started), pull out the stem (it should come off very easily), slice the pepper down the middle, flatten it out and scrape out the seeds.

Roughly chop into pieces your food processor can handle.  Add the pepper(s) to your food processor along with goat cheese and process until smooth.

Store in a container in the fridge for up to a few days or freeze in baby-friendly containers in the freezer.

Roasted Sweet Potatoe with Dill

A great finger food for your baby….as easy as it gets!   Roasted sweet potatoe with dill.

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Chop up 1 peeled sweet potatoe in similar sized small cubes that your baby can handle.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with dill (fresh or dried)

Roast in the oven at 350 degrees on a parchment paper lined baking sheet for about 20-25 minutes until soft when poked with a fork.

Store leftovers in the fridge and eat within a few days.

Apple Apricot Puree

I LOVE this simple puree because it works for the entire family.  You can use it for baby mixed with oatmeal in the morning or mixed with other purees throughout the day.  But why I love it so much is because it is so versatile and works for my toddler and myself as well!

This puree can be added to oatmeal, spread on toast, muffins, pancakes, waffles and more.  We especially love it on french toast with a drizzle of real maple syrup!

Make up a batch and store in the fridge in a glass jar, or freeze to use later.

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Ingredients:

-4 Large apples (I use organic Gala)

-20 dried apricots

To make:

Peel apples and chop into pieces of the same size.  Add water to a pot with a steamer tray and steam the apples until soft but not mushy.

In another pot add your apricots with just enough water to cover them.  Bring to a boil and then simmer until soft.

Add the softened apples and apricots to your blender, reserving the cooking liquid.   Add roughly 3/4 cup (total) of the cooking water from either the apples or apricots or a mixture of both.  Blend until you get a nice consistency.  (You may have to stop the blender and move the fruit around and start again until it all gets blended).  You can also add more liquid if needed.

Put your puree in a glass jar and store in the fridge or you can freeze in individual containers for your baby for later.

Yum yum.

Baby Cereal

I found that when my little one started eating solids, cereals were a big part of that journey.  If you have a baby bullet or similar blender with a milling blade included you can absolutely make your own rice cereal, oatmeal, barley and more for your baby.

I like to whip up oatmeal and brown rice cereal and store them in separate mason jars for easy access in the morning and throughout the day (they are great additions to other veggie, fruit and meat purees).

To make:

Blend in a blender with a milling blade in small batches until a powder forms.  I use a funnel to put the cereal into the mason jars, pop on a tight lid and store in a cool dry place.

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Some other nutritious grains to try include:

Barley – High in fibre and protein

Kamut – High energy grain, good for those who have allergies or are sensitive to regular wheat.

Quinoa – Gluten Free. High in fibre and a complete protein

To cook:

In a saucepan bring 1 cup of water to a simmer over medium heat, add 1/4 cup of grain of your choice and whisk constantly to avoid lumps.  Stir until water is just absorbed.

I like to add some fruit puree and yogurt and mashed avocado to these for my little man.

A bit of prep. time making up these jars goes a long way!  Hope your babes enjoy them!