1 Lunch + 2 Snacks #47
LUNCH – Beefy Tomato Macaroni Soup with Crusty Whole Grain Bread
I’ve been on a bit of a soup kick lately, understandably since it is winter, but I do find soup to be a bit tricky with a group of kids. Some like smooth creamy soups, some like chunky vegetable soups, some like broth bases, some tomato bases…Anyway, I thought this beefy tomato macaroni soup would be a good one to try because it is kind of like the homemade soup version of hamburger helper. The kids enjoyed it and the great part is I could add more or less broth to each child’s bowl depending on their age and how much of a soup lover they were. I also left out the sugar and used whole wheat macaroni pasta.
SNACK – Rice Pudding with Raisins and Strawberries & Pears
This is the same rice pudding recipe that I made here with the addition of some raisins, that I stirred in as soon as the rice was done cooking (but still hot), so they would plump up. After spooning the rice pudding into individual bowls, I topped it off with a sprinkling of cinnamon.
So, why did I serve it with strawberries and pears? There are a few things that I consider when deciding which fruits and/or vegetables I will serve at mealtimes. I hate to throw away food, so one of the big deciding factors is simply what is the the most ripe. Eat it before it gets too ripe.
Another deciding factor is what do we have on hand. We try to do one big grocery shopping on the weekend and yes, sometime we have to pick up a few things here and there throughout the week, but because I make a meal plan each week, there are usually no trips to the grocery store because of a what are we going to eat for dinner scenario. All that said, between meal planning and our one big grocery shopping, we tend to have a good selection of food on hand. The work has been done, so eat what you have.
And another deciding factor is that I like to serve a colourful variety of fruits and vegetables. It’s colourful, fun and healthy, but it also gives the kids more options and exposes them to new and/or less favorite foods alongside familiar and/or favorite foods.
SNACK – Polenta Chips with Veggie Boosted Tomato Sauce Dip
Yesterday I posted about the polenta with meatballs and tomato sauce we had for lunch (yum) and there was quite a bit of polenta left over. I’m always looking for ways to reinvent leftovers, it saves me time in the kitchen when I can use something that has already been cooked, but make it feel like a new meal, or in this case snack.
To make these polenta chips I used a 1 tbsp cookie scoop to scoop the cooked polenta onto an oiled baking sheet, leaving 2 inches between scoops (the polenta spreads as it cooks). Then I baked them in a 350°F oven for 20 minutes or until they started to brown. I let them cool completely on the baking sheet, but lifted them with a spatula after a few minutes, so they didn’t stick.
The veggie boosted tomato sauce dip was 2 cups of leftover tomato sauce from yesterdays lunch, plus 1/2 cup of diced cooked carrots and 1/2 cup of diced raw zucchini. The chips and the dip where a hit!
Supplies: flower baking cups
1 Lunch + 2 Snacks is where I share the healthy lunch and snacks that I serve Monday to Friday, along with a few tips & tricks thrown in here and there. For more posts in this series click here. If you would like to see my lunch and snack ideas in real time, you can follow me on Instagram where I post them as they happen:)