We are excited to bring you this month's post from Katie Blauser, the creator of Eat Pretty Darling. Each month on our blog we feature a "Color of the Week" that corresponds with Veggie Buds Club's veggie of the month. January's featured veggie is BROCCOLI so of course we're celebrating GREEN veggies!
Katie Blauser is the mama of two boys, wife of a picky eater, and food lover at Eat Pretty Darling. She believes in making food fun, healthy, & pretty! Katie’s not only outnumbered by boys in her little family, but also by picky eaters. She loves trying to find new ways to get both kids and adults to eat healthy while making food pretty yummy, pretty healthy, and pretty fun! Find Katie on Instagram (@eatprettydarling), where she shares colorful and cute food ideas for both picky and adventurous eaters.
Color of the Week - Green
This week is as easy one, GREEN! I think green is probably the easiest color to find in the produce section of your grocery store. But unfortunately, it can also be the hardest one to get your little ones to eat. You can find anything from fruit to vegetables, herbs to nuts. Green is such a fun color to take on for #eatprettycoloroftheweek and allows for so many options!
We picked out broccoli, spinach, avocado, and green onion and decided to make it into a savory pancake. Pancakes are always a favorite in our house so I thought it would be a great new way to introduce a food we’re still learning to like, broccoli. And what pairs better with broccoli than cheese?! These Broccoli & Cheese Pancakes are great served as pancakes for breakfast, dipped in ketchup as a side to any meal, or eaten just as they are!
There are more out there, but here’s a list to get started!
January's featured veggie is BROCCOLI at Veggie Buds Club! We hope you enjoy this delicious broccoli recipe from this month's Veggie Buds Club subscription box.
This recipe was developed by Heather Staller, a mom of two boys, ages 6 and 3, and cooking instructor specializing in bringing cooking into preschool classrooms. After college, Heather knew she wanted to be a teacher, but first followed her lifelong dream of going to culinary school. Teaching cooking combines both of her passions, and she truly enjoys introducing young children to the joys of cooking with fresh ingredients. Find Heather on Instagram (@heather.happykidskitchen), where she shares inventive kid-friendly recipes and ideas for cooking with kids at home.
Broccoli Cornbread Muffins
Have you ever made savory muffins? They are a fun and delicious way to get veggies into your day! Broccoli can be a little tricky for small hands to chop, so have your child help break apart the florets then practice sawing back and forth to trim the broccoli “leaves” off the “tree.” Chop the broccoli alongside your little chef and if he or she gets tired of cutting, your child can always help transfer the chopped broccoli to a measuring cup. Kids will also love to help by cracking the eggs, measuring the ingredients, and mixing everything all together. Enjoy!
We're starting the new year off with a delicious and sometimes a little suspicious (to kiddos, that is!) veggie- BROCCOLI. Veggie Buds Club members have received many exclusive hands-on broccoli activities in the mail (learn more here), and we are excited to share some additional kid-friendly recipes and hands-on activities here on the blog!
First of all, we like to start the month out with a list of recommended children's books featuring the veggie of the month so we hope you enjoy these great books featuring BROCCOLI! Reading about veggies is a great way to make veggies approachable, fun, and exciting for kids.
Our Veggie Buds Super Club members received the book, "Monsters Don't Eat Broccoli" by Barbara Jean Hicks this month:
In this rollicking picture book, monsters insist they don't like broccoli. They'd rather snack on tractors or a rocket ship of two, or tender trailer tidbits, or a wheely, steely stew. But boy do those trees they're munching on look an awful lot like broccoli. Maybe vegetables aren't so bad after all!
Children's Books Featuring Broccoli
"Benjamin Broccoli" by Sam Bourne
"Vegetables in Underwear" by Jared Chapman
"The Boy Who Loved Broccoli" by Sarah A. Creighton
"Monsters Don't Eat Broccoli" by Barbara Jean Hicks
"Where Does Broccoli Come From? A Book of Vegetables" by Arielle Dani Lebovitz
"There's Broccoli in My Ice Cream" by Emily MacKenzie
"Yummy, Yummy, Broccoli"
Each month, Ludavia Harvey, creator of The Preschool Workshop, develops a simple children's song for Veggie Buds Club that celebrates the veggie of the month. This is another way to make veggies fun for kids!
We're having fun featuring a new letter each week in our house, and since this is Veggie Buds Club plenty of our activities feature healthy veggies! Below find 9 activities that teach your preschool-aged kids about the letter "B" (and that veggies are fun and tasty!).
1. Read Books!
Enjoy our recommended "B" books featuring veggies and fruit (and honey!):
2. Paint with Broccoli
Simply dip broccoli florets in washable paint and use them as "paintbrushes" and/or slice broccoli florets in half to make "tree stamps". So simple and so fun!
3. Letter "B" Tracing
Download this FREE letter "B" tracing sheet from Veggie Buds Club.
4. Bake Some Beet Brownies!
5. Letter "B" Coloring Pages
Download these FREE letter "B" coloring pages from Veggie Buds Club.
6. Bake Some Broccoli Nuggets
Enjoy this delicious kid-approved recipe that was included in Veggie Buds Club's "Kids Love Broccoli" box! You can find the recipe on on our blog here.
7. Make Beet Watercolor
8. Broccoli Activity Sheets
Have fun with these Broccoli activity sheets! Create the letter "B" by using dot stickers or dot paint with Activity Sheet #1. Fill in the letter "B" with broccoli florets with Activity Sheet #2 (bonus if you have a laminator!).
9. Play Bean Tic Tac Toe
Make a Tic Tac Toe board out of green beans and use two different types of dry beans as the X's and O's! You can also go a step further and create the letter "B" with dry beans and greens beans. Be sure to eat some green beans as a snack while you play!
Enjoy this delicious recipe that was included in Veggie Buds Club's "Kids Love Broccoli" box this month! Here are some great photos from our members that have been shared with us, keep to Broccoli Nugget love comin'!
Heather is a mom of two boys, ages 4 and 2, and cooking instructor specializing in bringing cooking into preschool classrooms. After college, Heather knew she wanted to be a teacher, but first followed her lifelong dream of going to culinary school. Teaching cooking combines both of her passions, and she truly enjoys introducing young children to the joys of cooking with fresh ingredients. Find Heather on Instagram (@heather_kidskitchen), where she shares inventive kid-friendly recipes and ideas for cooking with kids at home.
-4 cups small broccoli florets (about 1 medium head of broccoli)
-1 cup cooked quinoa or 1 1/4 cups cooked brown or white rice, cooled
-1 large egg
-1/4 cup finely shredded cheddar or mozzarella cheese
-1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Brush a 24-cup mini muffin tin with oil or spray with non-stick spray. Using a silicone muffin tin is recommended, but if you don’t have one, make sure to grease your metal pan very well to avoid sticking.
2. Place broccoli florets in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped, stopping a few times to scrape down the bowl and pulse again.
3. Add quinoa (or rice), egg, cheese, garlic powder, and salt. Continue to pulse until all of the ingredients are combined and uniform in size (this will only take a few pulses if you are using quinoa but will take 8 to 10 pulses if you are using rice).
4. Scoop about a tablespoon of the broccoli mixture into each muffin cup then push down the top with the back of the spoon to pack the mixture down. Sprinkle the tops of each ‘nugget’ with a little extra cheese, if desired.
5. Bake until lightly brown around the edges, about 10 to 12 minutes.
6. Allow nuggets to cool completely. If using a metal pan, you may need to loosen the edges of the nuggets with a butter knife to help remove them from the pan. Enjoy with your favorite dipping sauce.
We created this fun FREE printable for you to do at home with your kids! Memory is a classic game that's appropriate for a wide-range of ages. Use fewer matching cards for younger kids and increase the amount of matching cards for your older children. Why not make veggies the star by playing a "Veggie Memory Game"?!
Make this activity more robust by first reading a book featuring veggies, here are some of our suggestions:
"Eating the Alphabet" by Lois Ehlert
"Growing Vegetable Soup" by Lois Ehlert
"We're Going to the Farmers' Market" by Stefan Page
Veggie Memory Game Printable
Simply print both sheets out at home, cut out the cards (bonus if you can laminate them), and play!
The other day I did a fridge forage for dinner, and this one happened to be delicious (i.e. both kids devoured it- 4 year old asked for seconds- and it included quinoa, broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts so I WILL be making this again!). I posted some pics on Instagram and received enough inquiries about the recipe that I have decided to make a blog post about it, recipe included.
Like any good fridge forage, first I checked out what we had on hand in our fridge and pantry and gathered supplies. I knew I wanted to make a vegetarian meal for #meatlessmonday and it was a chilly fall day so some type of casserole seemed like it would hit the spot. I had a partially used bag of pre-cut broccoli and cauliflower florets so I also wanted to use these up before they went bad. So without further ado, here's a satisfying vegetarian Quinoa and Roasted Veggie Casserole that works great as a side-dish but also as a main-dish if you eat enough of it;)
Quinoa and Roasted Veggie Casserole