I know what you're thinking.
Just feed them what you're eating. What's so hard about that?
Here's the thing. I don't always eat dinner. Sometimes I'm running around trying to get ready for the next day, or packing diaper bags, or playing, or I get home late from work. And I'm never home for lunch. Even if I were, would Weight Watchers zero-point soup and pretzels be a very good meal for the iToddler?
So I have to think ahead and make big meals that I can portion out and have ready to go with just a few seconds in the microwave.
Note: when the munchkin first started eating more mature non-baby food, we were crazy busy and I was buying Graduates meals. First, have you ever tasted those things? She ate them, but YUCK! And second...the price on those things is outrageous! If you're a mama buying those things, read on...you're gonna LOVE this!
Anyway, over the past few weeks, I've found a few really great little meals that have been huge hits with the tiniest member of the family. Some of the recipes seem a little long in the ingredients list and time-consuming, but I do think it has been totally worth it. Meals are pennies on the dollar now, and I'm slowly building a freezer stash to sustain us though those weeks when I just don't have the time or energy to make a casserole a week. What I've found so far is that each of these recipes make between 20-28 meals a piece. Since my little one only eats lunch like this (breakfast is usually an egg and a banana with some Activia), one casserole can last up to a month. Make one each week for a month and you have some variety to keep you for several weeks.
That's what I call ROI.
Here are the iToddler-tested and approved dishes I've made so far:
- Butternut Squash & Spinach casserole
- Venison pasta bake :: Add cooked pasta, pasta sauce, a couple handfuls of cheese and browned ground venison to a sprayed 9x13 baking dish and cooked till heated through
- Chicken, Broccoli & Rice casserole (dude, do not judge me for using Velveeta)
- Baked Spinach & Potato
Tonight I also whipped up a yummy little recipe from Weight Watchers' new book, Eat! Move! Play! My kiddo scarfed it up and begged for more.