Saturday, March 30, 2013

Breakfast Trouble Update

Thank you to everyone who helped out and sent in recipes for our breakfast troubles. In some ways breakfast has gone so much easier this week, and in another way, it's been harder (aka we've found an underlying problem). 

But overall, we've found many benefits to eating a healthier breakfast:
- We've had more energy
- We've felt fuller longer
- We've started adding healthier options to the rest day's snacks and meals

I've been very busy in the kitchen all week. Here are the recipes we've tried:

Giant Oatmeal Raisin Breakfast cookies from tonetiki

Image via tonetiki

Initial thoughts: Oooh, who wouldn't like cookies for breakfast? But after thinking about it some more, I remember back in September we had tried a breakfast cookie. It was a disaster. The cookie was so dense it was hard to eat, and the only thing you could taste was the banana in it. This new recipe had no banana in it, so I decided to give it a try for a mid-morning snack when I had five babysitting kids here; three are very picky, one is sometimes picky, and the other one is too young to be trying them :)

Reviews: Everyone loved them for morning snack! I think the pickiest child had three of them. I had Paige and Nate try them later; Paige liked the cookie but not the raisins, and Nate loved them. They're now his favorite cookie!

Changes made to the recipe: The only thing I changed was I made smaller cookies using my medium cookie scoop; the batch made 2 dozen cookies.

Will I make these again?: Definitely! I made them twice in a week's time.

Breakfast Bars via Noel's Kitchen Tips

Image via Noel's Kitchen Tips

Initial thoughts: They looked really good! Very healthy, but still looked soft and chewy. We already have an oatmeal bar recipe we love, but it's not as healthy as this. The only concern with trying this recipe was the molasses; the kids haven't really had that flavor before, and I didn't know what to expect.

Reviews: Again, Nate loved these! He had a huge one for breakfast for four days in a row this week. Ryan loved them as well; he threw a fit they were all gone on Wednesday, so we made the breakfast cookies again. Paige was iffy on these; she didn't like the dried fruit in them, but said if I did fresh blueberries maybe they'd be okay. Pete, who only eats toast or bagels on school mornings, actually took these to work while they lasted and really enjoyed them! They were dense, but in a satisfying way. The molasses wasn't overpowering at all, and it was just a really good breakfast option.

Changes made to the recipe: Nothing really; I used cranberries only, and no walnuts.

Will I make these again?: Definitely.

Baby Breakfast Quiches from Sara

Image and recipe can be found here

Initial thoughts: Paige LOVES quiche! For the monthly women's prayer breakfasts, Pete's mom always has a breakfast quiche, and Paige just eats it right up.

Reviews: They were a hit on the first day! She ate two of them right up and was very happy with them. I also tried one, and it was pretty good.

Changes made to the recipe: I wasn't sure how much milk to put in, so didn't put too much in. I didn't have any meat for them, so just omitted it. I defrosted some California mix veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots) to use (what we usually have in our quiches), and it worked out really well.

Will I make these again? Yes. I'll add some meat (we just stocked up on sausage!), and probably some more milk. When we reheated them, the were a little dry, so we're hoping more milk will help that.

Walnut-Yogurt Parfaits via whole living

Image via whole living

Initial thoughts: The kids all love fruit and yogurt parfaits, but they eat so much of them and are still so hungry afterwards. I wasn't sure about the Greek yogurt; I'd been hearing a lot about it lately but didn't know much about it. I was concerned about too much sugar (between the fruit and the yogurt), especially first thing in the morning. After doing some research (this article was very helpful), I decided to give the recipe a try!

Reviews: Ryan tried it first; he hated the walnuts. He was expecting peanuts, so wasn't to thrilled about the change. He ate everything else, though, and was satisfied until morning snack time. I gave it a try, and loved it. I've been having a bowl of this every day, either as breakfast, snack, or most of my lunch. The yogurt (we just got the plain Greek yogurt) is much more filling, so we're using less (which is awesome cause it's more expensive). Paige loves this, too, and asks for a double helping of walnuts.

Changes made to the recipe: What I've done this week is peel and separate a mandarin orange into the slices, add a handful of grapes, a sprinkle of chopped walnuts, and a large spoonful of the yogurt to that and mix it up. It's not as pretty as the picture above, but it works! We didn't see the need for the honey on top; even though it's plain yogurt, the sweetness from the fruit balanced it out really nicely. Once our cantaloupe and pineapple are ripe, we'll be eating that in the parfaits as well :)

Would I make this again?: Um, yes. Over and over again.

Butternut Squash Muffins by Jamie Oliver for Parenting magazine (can see picture on link)

Initial thoughts: This might be a great way to use up the butternut squash that's been sitting on my counter all winter long. We like sweet potato and pumpkin in our muffins, why not butternut squash?

Reviews: Very mixed. Nate said they were okay, but ate three of them in one sitting. Later he said they were good, just not as good as the cookies or bars I had made. Ryan liked them, and ate them a couple times this week. Paige picks at them; she also wasn't feeling very well the day I made them, but hasn't wanted them again. One of my babysitting kids, E, loved them and ate five of them (apparently she was really hungry?). I thought they were okay; they'd be better with some butter or cream cheese on them.

Changes made to the recipe: I didn't add the raisins on the top; I had to give them a chance with Paige!

Will I make them again?: Probably, but it won't be my first option. I do have some squash in the freezer to make another double batch of these, and some muffins that are in the freezer on standby for rushed mornings.

We have a bunch of other recipes that we'll be trying this week. I'll let you know how that goes, as well! Feel free to check out my breakfast recipes board on Pinterest for some other ideas!

Have you tried any new recipes lately?

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