Tag Archives: toddler food

Baked Fish Sticks

My husband has never been much of a fish eater. This has always made me sad. While I had little room to complain being the non-chocolate eater that I am, I was thrilled when he decided to dub 2012 – “The Year of the Fish.” Eating fish is healthy (how are those New Years resolutions coming?), can be cost effective if you buy the right variety (again with the resolutions), and expands your horizons. I eased into this new year of the creatures of the sea with something light and simple, fish sticks. Not the nasty fish sticks dunked in tartar sauce that you get from the frozen food aisle, but homemade baked tilapia fish sticks.

I near ran around the room singing when my hubby went for seconds AND my finicky toddler piled these down in no time. This is a fast meal to prepare. The fish bake up really quickly, you just need to be willing to get your hands a little dirty in some dunking.

Baked Fish Sticks

3/4-1 lb fresh tilapia
1/4 C flour
2 egg whites
1 TBSP lemon juice
1 C crushed corn flakes
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with tin foil and spray with cooking spray.

In a shallow bowl, beat egg whites and lemon juice. Place flour in a shallow bowl. In another shallow bowl, add cornflakes and all spices. Mix together. Cut tilapia into 1 1/2 inch thick strips and about 4-6 inches in length.

On at a time, dredge tilapia pieces in flour. Dip in egg white mixture to coat and cover with cornflake mixture. Set on baking pan. Repeat until finished.

*Warning: toddlers and flour are a messy combination

Bake fish sticks at 425 for 10-12 minutes or until coating looks slightly crisp.

Serve with favorite dipping sauce.

These are delicious with a honey mustard dipping sauce. I’ve also eaten them with the Marzetti’s Otria Greek Yogurt Dips leftover from my December post. Equally delicious!

Cheers to 2012 – the Year of the Fish!



Filed under Cook, Healthy, Kid Friendly, Main Dish

The Art of Toddler Food: Snack Time

When Lincoln started on solid foods last year, I thought I had this whole food thing down pat. He ate every colorful vegetable I so lovingly pureed for him. Hooray! I do not have a finicky eater on my hands! Or so I thought…

Once Lincoln started to think a bit more independently (and by a bit, I mean VERY independent), meal and snack time began to change. My once blissful fresh produce state morphed into countless meals dropped on the floor and one frustrated mommy. I don’t necessarily believe it is the taste of the food Lincoln doesn’t like. He will eat peas one day and turn his nose the next. My little food critic decides what he will or will not eat before putting it into his mouth. So I have had to become crafty in making healthy and wholesome food for my pint sized Anthony Bourdain. If eating can be a fun experience, it is more likely the food will be consumed!

Enter: dip. The little man loves to dip his food in sauces. Most often he likes the sauce more than the dipping food. With the help of some healthy, creamy ingredients, I’ve started to create dips I feel better about than anything I can find in the store. (And they are great for moms too!)

Yogurt Veggie Dip

1 1/2 C plain Greek yogurt
1/3 C sour cream
1/2 large cucumber, finely diced
1/2 large carrot, finely grated
1 tsp dry dill
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp celery salt
1/2 tsp ground mustard
1/2 tsp table salt

Add yogurt and sour cream to a large bowl. Stir thoroughly. Add cucumber and carrots, mix well. Add dry spices, mix well. Make sure to taste before serving to make sure the spices are to you or your child’s palette.

Serve with cut up fresh vegetables, crackers, pretzel sticks, pita bread or veggie chips.

I like to spoon the dip into individual containers. Lincoln finds himself to be pretty awesome when he has his own bowl in which to dip. It is a great and easy snack to have on hand.

If you don’t have kids, make this for yourself! It is a perfect lunchbox companion for those afternoon office munchies.


Filed under Appetizers, Family, Healthy, Quick & Easy

The Art of Toddler Food: Breakfast Time

Baby food days are in the past. I now face a pint-sized man who creates a challenge much larger than himself. Meal time.

I’ve been working eagerly to develop meals and snacks our whole family can eat, while staying in the parameters of what Lincoln is able to chew with the few teeth he has. It can’t be too spicy, too crunchy, to hard, to messy or too bold.

For years, my go-to breakfast has been Quaker instant oatmeal. It was always easy to bring to work and eat at my desk. But as Lincoln started to transition from baby food to the real thing, he wanted to eat my oatmeal with me. I realized after days of hunger pangs by 9 a.m. that the half bowl of oatmeal I was eating would no longer cut it. I didn’t want to waste a whole packet on Lincoln, so I started making my own. And I tell you this: I will never go back!

After a few days of practice, I finally had my recipe for banana bread oatmeal. Making homemade oatmeal takes much less time than I previously thought. This recipe is quick, easy and healthy. We both gobble it up!

Banana Bread Oatmeal
makes 2 servings

1 1/4 C milk (whole, 2% or skim)
2 TBSP light brown sugar
1 whole banana, mashed
1 tsp vanilla
1 C old-fashioned oats
1/4 C chopped walnuts (adults only)

In a small sauce pan, mix together milk, brown sugar, vanilla and mashed bananas. Heat through to a low boil. Reduce to medium heat. Stir in oats, continuing until oats soften. If using regular old-fashioned oats, heat for approximately 3 minutes. If using quick oats, one minute will do. Remove from heat and serve. Top adult servings with chopped walnuts.

I’ve tried many variations on this recipe that are equally as tasty, depending on your mood:

Add one tablespoon peanut butter
Substitute vanilla with almond extract
Substitute one tablespoon of brown sugar with a drizzle of maple syrup
Substitute banana with 1/2 C natural applesauce

Whether this is for you, your toddler, or both, I think you’ll find it a nice way to start the day!

What do you feed your tiny tot for breakfast?


Filed under Breakfast, Cook, Healthy, Quick & Easy