Kid-Friendly Breakfast Options

I feel the most important meal for kids is breakfast. They get rushed off in the morning and are expected to have energy and patience all day while they learn. That certainly can’t be done with a big bowl of sugary cereal or a cinnamon bun in the morning. Way back before I had kids, I was a teacher. I saw the difference between the kids that had a nutritious breakfast and the kids that did not. I taught kindergarten for a year and I used to get in trouble because I let them rest their heads on their desks in the afternoon. Most of them fell asleep. Poor babies needed a nap. Guess that’s why I’m not a teacher anymore. Lol.

But there are so many options for breakfast. It just might take a little time to make ahead each week.

I made a list of some of my favorite kid friendly breakfast items that will give your kids the energy they need to keep their brains on point all day. Most of these can be used for  lunch or snack as well!

  1. Eggs: When I eat an egg or two I am full for hours. It gives me energy and prevents me from snacking like I usually do.
    • Hard Boiled Eggs: I usually hard boil 6 at a time. These can be eaten with just salt and pepper. I love them dipped in mustard as well. That’s usually my mid morning snack while I’m rushing around. My son loves deviled eggs. Take the yolk out and mix with a little mayo, salt and pepper. Put the mixture back in the middle of the egg and sprinkle with paprika! Hard boiled eggs can also be used in salads or to make a quick and simple egg salad. I also love chopped egg and avocado. Chop one of each and stir together. Sprinkle with Trader Joe’s everything but the bagel seasoning and that is it!
    • Egg Muffins: My son Dominick has two for breakfast and sometimes two before bed. He’s growing and always hungry!
  2. Muffins: The muffins we buy at the store have some scary ingredients.
    • Whole Wheat Banana Muffins: These are filled with great ingredients and taste delicious! I have to hide them from my husband because he will eat the whole batch! My son Matthew has one as a snack in school and two for dessert.
    • Pumpkin Muffins: It does not have to be Halloween to enjoy pumpkin muffins! If bananas aren’t your thing, all you need is a can or two of pumpkin…
  3. Bring on the smoothies! I am a big fan of smoothies. I love that you can customize them with what you like. They can also be prepared in freezer bags and placed in the freezer. All you have to do is dump it in the blender and add your choice of water, milk or juice!
    • Triple Berry Smoothie: This is my go to smoothie that everyone in my family enjoys. I love that there is a big bunch of spinach in it!
    • I also make a very simple kid friendly smoothie some mornings that both of my boys love. No spinach, but a great big serving of fruit!
      • 1 cup of frozen strawberries
      • 1 frozen banana
      • 1 cup of watermelon
      • 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup of orange juice
    • Smoothie Bowl: If sometimes your kids need a little bit more crunch to their breakfast, you can make a smoothie bowl. We enjoy it with peanut butter and granola with some sliced bananas on top. Simple and delicious.
    • Strawberries and Cream: The perfect deconstructed smoothie for your picky eater.

 


  • Ok, so this one simple tool will assist you with all these healthy foods.  Egg Slicer 
  • And if you are in the market for a muffin pan, this would be perfect!
  • This Ninja Blender will make your life a lot easier when you start on your smoothie adventure!

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Fill em Up!

Believe it or not, when I make salmon everyone eats it! I never have any left over. It seems like when I make it, nobody gets filled. So I usually make this orzo side dish along with it to fill them up and it is amazing! I love pasta and I love vegetables, so for me this is perfect. I eat it leftover for lunch and it could be cold right out of the container…

You can use any vegetables you have in the house, not just the ones I used! 

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Orzo Side Dish

Ingredients

  • 1 box of orzo pasta
  • EVOO
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 1/2 of an onion chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 package of mushrooms chopped
  • A bunch of tomatoes chopped
  • handful of Italian parsley
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. In a medium sauce pan, boil salted water and cook the orzo per directions on the package.  Drain and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, add olive oil to a pan over low to medium heat.
  3. Add onion.  After a couple of minutes add the garlic.
  4. Toss in the bell pepper and mushrooms and saute until they are tender.
  5. Add the tomatoes and cook for a few more minutes.  Take off the heat.  Toss in the parsley and salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Put the drained orzo in the pan with all the veggies and mix together.  Top with a little grated cheese and a drizzle of olive oil.

Enjoy!

See below for other similar dishes…

Simple Side

Italian Pasta Salad

Simple Egg Salad

With Easter around the corner most of us will have a lot of hard boiled eggs hanging around. In my house we actually love hard boiled eggs with a little salt and pepper, so we have them around all the time. As easy as egg salad is, for some reason I don’t make it a lot. I always loved egg salad as a kid and still do. My son Dominick loves it also! So we shared some for lunch and it was filling and delicious.

If you need to know how to get perfect hard boiled eggs, follow the link below. Good ole Martha:

https://www.marthastewart.com/354061/perfect-hard-boiled-eggs

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Simple Egg Salad

Ingredients

  • 8 hard boiled eggs
  • About 2 tablespoons of mayo(start with less and add more as needed)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 stalk of celery, diced small
  • Small of amount of onion, about 2 tablespoons, diced small(I used red onion this day, but you can use whatever type of onion you have)

Directions

  1. Peel the eggs and put in a medium bowl.
  2. Cut into chunks with fork and knife.
  3. Add mayo and mix by smashing with a fork so it is all combined. (You don’t want to drench it in mayo. It just needs a little bit to coat it.)  My mom doesn’t add anything else at this point and it is still delicious!!
  4. Add the celery, onion salt and pepper and mix until combined.

Serve on toasted buns, with crackers or just like that!!

Enjoy!

If you like this recipe, you will also like…

Uncle Joe’s Simple Salad

Italian Salad(Pasta or no Pasta)

Kid-Friendly Breakfast Options

 

Uncle Joe’s Simple Salad

I love going to Long Island to visit family in the summer. And the food. I love the food. My sister Ali and brother-in-law Joe really embrace Long Island summers. Their house is in walking distance to the bay. They always have fresh fruit and vegetables growing in their garden and somehow there is always someone dropping off fresh fish and clams caught that day! Dinner usually includes fresh fish fillets and a simple salad.

Joe prepared this the other day with my nephew Joseph and this is a perfect example of my summers in Long Island. Uncle Joe’s Simple Salad takes a few minutes to prepare and will get you dreaming about simple summers…

BTW, Joe makes the best fresh cocktails. So stay tuned for drinks that will make the sun shine…

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Uncle Joe's Simple Salad

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 2 grape vine tomatoes, diced
  • 2 green bell peppers, diced
  • 2 cucumbers, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 of an onion diced
  • handful of Italian parsley, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • fresh lemon juice, squeezed from 1 lemon
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Place the tomatoes, peppers cucumbers, and onions in a medium bowl and toss gently.
  2. Add the parsley.
  3. Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Toss gently one more time.

Enjoy!

If you like this recipe you will love…

Salsa Salsa

Shoepeg Corn Salad

Summer Salad

 

Italian Salad(Pasta or no Pasta)

Let’s face it, I love all pasta.  I love it hot, cold and leftover!

When I think of pasta salad I think of summer. But this Italian Pasta Salad can be served all year long hot as a main dish, cold as a side dish, and packed in the lunchbox the next day for a yummy lunch your kids will love!

pasta salad

Don’t want the pasta? Put it over Romaine lettuce instead! I love making an Italian Salad for a crowd because sometimes I don’t want to make an antipasto and a salad. So, I combine them and there you have it! Like everything else this recipe can be adjusted depending on what you have in the house.

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Italian Salad

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

With Pasta:

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound of small elbow pasta(or any type you prefer)
  • 1 packet of Good Seasons Italian Dressing
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 of a red onion, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup of black olives, halved
  • 1/2 cup of Giardeniera Italian mix, drained
  • 7-10 oz pack of mozzarella balls(the little pearl ones)
  • 1/4 cup of pepperoni or salami, chopped into small pieces
  • big bunch of parsley, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Boil a pot of salted water.
  2. Cook pasta per directions on box.
  3. Drain and set aside.
  4. Prepare the dressing per directions on box.
  5. Put the pasta in a large bowl.
  6. Add all the ingredients except for the dressing.
  7. Toss together. Make sure you added enough salt and pepper. It needs a good amount.
  8. Drizzle with a little bit of dressing and mix again.
  9. Add enough dressing so that everything is coated and tasty.
  10. Before serving you may need to add more dressing to moisten the pasta.

Without Pasta:

Ingredients:

  • 2 heads of romaine lettuce, rinsed, drained and chopped
  • 1 packet of Good Seasons Italian Dressing
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 of a red onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup of black olives, halved
  • 7-10 oz pack of mozzarella balls(the little pearl ones) or shredded mozzarella
  • 1 can of hearts of palm
  • 1 can of marinated mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup of pepperoni or salami, chopped into small pieces
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Prepare the dressing per directions on box.
  2. Lay your lettuce on a platter.
  3. Top the lettuce with all the toppings except for the dressing.
  4. Season with salt and pepper salt and pepper.
  5. Drizzle with a little bit of dressing.

Enjoy!

Listed below are some of my other favorite salads…

No Romaine, No Problem

Shoepeg Corn Salad

 

 

Rockin’ Ramen

So, my boys recently said the words I thought I’d never hear. “Mom, everyone else at school eats Ramen Noodles. Why can’t we have it?”

My response of course was, “It’s gross and has way too much sodium.”

But of course my next trip to the supermarket I left with some Ramen noodles. I figured they would hate it. Well, guess what? They liked it. And they wanted it every day after school.

That is what led me to making my own homemade version. It was good, but simple. There was something missing though. Then it came to me… MITA! Of course my friend Mita will have a recipe she can share. I texted her asking if she has a homemade Ramen noodle recipe. Five minutes later she had a picture and recipe for me.

I’ve mentioned my friend Mita in several other blogs. We met when our kids attended pre-school together. I joke that I stalked her, but it’s the truth. She was so sweet and I wanted to be her friend. Lol. Then she baked me peanut butter blossom cookies and we were friends from that point on. I grew up in an Italian Catholic household in the suburbs of Long Island. Mita grew up in an Indian Hindu household in the city of San Francisco. But we raise our boys very similar and have the same values. I’ve learned a lot of different things from Mita. She taught me about different spices and how to use them while cooking. She also taught me how to eat slow, especially when we are out to eat. I am still working on that one! Mita also taught me how to listen. She’s so patient when other people talk. Another thing I am still working on…

BTW, she moved to Texas and I am not happy! 

So, I followed her recipe and it is amazing! It takes a half hour and is a big bowl of comfort.

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Your Ramen Soup essentials:

Reusable Chopsticks

Soup Spoons

Soup Bowls

Rockin' Ramen with Optional Chili Bomb

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp. of sesame oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 Tsp. of grated ginger
  • 1 carrot, peeled and shredded
  • 1 package of shiitake mushrooms (sliced thin)
  • 2 Tbsp. of low sodium soy sauce
  • 64 oz. of beef or chicken broth (Mita prefers beef, I love either)
  • 1 Tsp. of rice vinegar
  • 1 Tsp. of chili sauce or sriracha
  • 2 cups of bean sprouts
  • 3 chopped green onions
  • 8 oz. package of Chinese noodles (I use KAME)

Optional: Chili Bomb (goes in the center of the bowl on top of everything else for an extra explosion of flavor)

  • Chili Sauce
  • Garlic, sliced
  • Scallions, chopped
  • dash of soy sauce

Directions

  1. In a large pot, heat the sesame oil.
  2. Saute garlic and ginger for about 1 minute. (Do not brown)
  3. Add carrots and soy sauce. Stir.
  4. Add broth, vinegar, and mushrooms.
  5. Bring to a slight boil. Simmer for 5 minutes.
  6. Add chili sauce or sriracha. Stir.
  7. Taste and add more soy sauce or chili sauce if needed.
  8. Add noodles to the pot, and cook per directions on the package.
  9. Serve in individual bowls. Top each bowl with a bunch of bean sprouts. Submerge them into the broth.
  10. Top with green onions and the optional Chili Bomb if you like it spicy!

Enjoy!

If you like this, you will also enjoy:

Salsa Salsa

Mita’s Slow Cooker Chicken

Holy Guacamole

Soup Season

 

 

 

Egg Muffins

I really love to start my day healthy. It may not always end up that way, but if I could give us all a head start, that works for me. I like to prepare quick, healthy breakfasts ahead of time so I don’t have to do much cooking in the morning. I enjoy taking it easy and drinking my coffee while I plan for all the other big meals. I have been making these egg muffins for a while now. They are filled with veggies and protein and are delicious. They go quick because everyone grabs them throughout the day, so double the recipe if you want to have enough on hand. They can easily be stored in the fridge or freezer. I take a few out of the freezer each day and put them in the fridge. It takes about 20-40 seconds to heat it in the microwave. We like to add a dab of Sriracha on top for a little spice!

***Keep in mind that any of these veggies and cheese can be replaced with what you have in the house or what you prefer!***

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All you will need to get started is a muffin pan!

Egg Muffins

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 8 eggs
  • 1/2 of a small onion, diced small
  • 1 container of baby bella mushrooms, rinsed and chopped small
  • 1-2 handfuls of baby spinach, chopped
  • 1 piece of Swiss cheese, broken up into small pieces
  • 3 or 4 pieces of bacon broken up into little pieces(I use this if I already have some leftover in the fridge, otherwise I’ll leave it out)
  • 2 tablespoons of milk or 1/2 and 1/2
  • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Spray muffin pan with non stick cooking spray.
  3. In a large bowl mix together the eggs, veggies, cheese, bacon and milk. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Mix until it is all combined.
  5. Evenly distribute the egg mixture into the muffin pan.
  6. Bake for about 15 minutes or until fully cooked.

Enjoy!

If you enjoyed this recipe you will also like:

Simple Egg Salad

Pumpkin Muffins

Whole Wheat Banana Muffins

Homemade Bagels