ONE YEAR OLDS AND VEGETABLES!
If you are like me, it is important to you to make sure your little one is getting a healthy balanced diet on a daily basis. Thankfully, my one year old is a great eater and loves veggies and really loves fruits! Here are a few ways I try to make sure my little guy gets the nutrients he needs, even when we are busy and on the go and I don’t have the time to prepare them for each meal.
Try these simple tricks to always have veggies on hand for your little one.
Baby carrots are a great source of nutrients! I like to purchase a bag or two and steam them in my double boiler until very tender. I’ve gotten them for as low as .49 a bag! Once they are tender, I let them cool, throw them in a freezer bag, and put them in the freezer. When meal time comes, I simply get out as many as my son will eat (which is usually about 8!), place them in a bowl and microwave them for about 30 seconds. Then I chop them into bite size pieces, stir them to make sure the heat is evenly distributed and they are ready to give to my one year old!
The 30 minute cooking time is taken care of on one day and then I have several days worth of carrots that take 30 seconds to prepare. Perfect!
Pureed Spinach and Green Beans
This little idea is especially helpful if you have a child that doesn’t like a lot of veggies. It’s a good way to get a good serving in them without them even realizing it! My little guy loves spaghetti and mac and cheese and just about any type of pasta dish, and these pureed veggies are the perfect addition to his pasta meals. I freeze them in an ice tray and end up with a freezer bag full of veggie ice cubes. They take about 40 seconds or so to thaw and warm in the microwave , then I can stir them right into the pasta dishes.
I start with a bag of frozen green beans and a bag of frozen spinach.
I steam them together for about 20-25 minutes or until the green beans are very tender. I reserve some of the liquid from cooking to blend in when I am pureeing. My stick mixer makes this part so so fast! I just stick it in the veggies with the added liquid and blend until smooth. (If you are making this puree for a younger baby, it’s a good idea to strain it through a mesh strainer after pureeing.) A small container of stage one baby food is equal to 2 ice cubes from the ice cube trays I use. Knowing this, I can figure the cost of my veggies compared to the cost of store bought containers! It is usually about $2 for close to $10 of store bought baby food! Big savings!
I fill my ice cube trays with the veggies and once frozen solid, pop them out and store them in a freezer bag. Like I mentioned earlier in the post, it takes less than a minute to thaw and warm a couple cubes in the microwave and mix in with his pasta. He gobbles it up!!! Very convenient and so healthy.
Canned Green Beans
While this one may not be quite as healthy, it’s certainly a better option than snack foods. I open a can of green beans at the beginning of the week and store them in a container in the fridge. At meal time, my son will gobble down a large portion of cold green beans straight from the fridge while I am preparing the rest of his meal. The can will last him several days. I am not a fan of canned vegetables, but know that one yr olds need pretty soft vegetables to be able to eat them. These canned green beans provide a very easy to eat vegetable option. If you want to make it healthier, you could buy the cans of low sodium green beans.
WHAT ARE SOME WAYS YOU GET YOUR ONE YEAR OLD TO EAT HIS VEGETABLES?
I’d love for you to leave a comment and let us know!