Five High Fiber/Plastic-Free Breakfast Ideas for Toddlers
May 21, 2020
by drplasticpicker (with daughter Plastic Picker’s help)
Parents are cooking more meals for their children during COVID-19 quarantine. We have continued to do well child visits for kids that require vaccines, and several parents in my practice asked me for breakfast ideas. I think the combination of more inactivity due to quarantine and more screen time, has worsened the pediatric constipation crisis and widenened the pediatric fiber deficit. In addition, when we are scared to browse through the grocery store – I think parents are falling back on more processed foods and that as you know leads to Taste-Bud Dysfunction https://drplasticpicker.com/taste-bud-dysfunction-lets-dial-down-the-salt-and-sugar-in-snacks/.
It always surprises me when patients ask me for meal ideas. I have learned how to cook late in life. But I have learned from the amazing home-cooks in my life including my own mother and amazing younger sister. I think my cooking advice is good now because if I can do it, anyone can do it. I also concentrate on fiber rich foods and put nutrition at the forefront, and if it’s climate friendly also – that’s an added benefit that Dr. Plastic Picker loves.
I enjoy playing around with recipes and discovering new skills! We all need to cook to nourish our children’s brains, and Dr. Plastic Picker is all about nourishing intellectual development. So these are my Five High Fiber/Plastic-Free Breakfast Ideas. I have actually done these, and if I can do it – anyone can do it! I am writing this blog just to give you ideas about what kinds of easy things you can do to broaden your breakfast offerings without falling into the prepackaged breakfast trap. Please google some real chefs and cooks for good instructions as well.
- Instapot Oatmeal: Oh my gosh. This is so easy and so delicious. I don’t know what I have been doing the last decade. The possibilities are endless. But the basics is 1 cup of any oatmeal, 1 cup of non dairy milk, 1 cup of water. A little bit of salt. Throw in a bit of cinnamon (either stick or powder). Mix. Press the porridge function of the Instapot and it goes for 3 minutes. Allow it is vent for usually 20 minutes, but I’ve done 10-15 and it’s been fine. I am sometimes impatient. This oatmeal is phenomenol and will keep in the fridge well to be reheated later. I recommend cutting fruit (especially half a banana) as well, and sprinkle with brown sugar or a little bit of honey (if you are not vegan). You can stir in vanilla 1/2 teaspoon if you like into the entire pot for the fragrance. I now keep 2 containers of chia seeds and flaxseeds so that my children can sprinkle in a teaspoon in over any Instapot oatmeal to give it some added fiber. Cut a bananas or whatever left-over fruit you have, and sprinkle some brown sugar or a bit of maple syrup and you have a fantastic breakfast. So much more cost efficient and a lot less packaging than buying those oatmeal packages. Take your power back! Begin making your own oatmeal in the Instapot! If you buy your rolled oats at the bulk bin, you’ll even feel more powerful as an ECO-WARRIOR! You get the satisfaction of feeding your family and cooking for them, but its so quick and easy.
- Instapot Rice Porridge (Cháo or Congee) : Again, I have no idea what I’ve been doing for the last decade. I love rice porridge and it is the breakfast of my childhood, but I had never made it before this year. Just start with the basic. 1 cup of jasmine rice with 5-7 cups of water in the instapot. Use the porridge function and press 20 minutes in the porridge function. Allow to naturally vent. That is it. Then you can use it as a base, and pair it with any left over savory things from the night before or half of a hard boiled egg. After you learn the basics, you can start incorporating other savory flavors.
- Vegan Breakfast Cookies: So much of ensuring climate health is in changing what we eat. I am still going through my environmental journey, and picking up plastic has made me realize that we cannot depend on processed food and also we all can eat more sustainable. Why not venture into some vegan and vegetarian cooking? This is an amazing resource for high-fiber easy to make Vegan Breakfast Cookies. It has flaxseed, oats, dried cranberries and wonderful nuts! Pair it with some vegan milk, and you have given your toddler a healthy, cruelty-free and planet healthy diet. The website below is highly rated by my vegan environmental friends! https://itdoesnttastelikechicken.com/healthy-vegan-breakfast-cookies/
- Oatmeal/Pumpkin Puree Breakfast Cookies: There is a huge trend on banana puree and oatmeal breakfast cookies. You can also do the same with pumpkin puree. I altered this fun recipe I found online. Please click here for the actual recipe which is 3 ingredients and easy. https://runningonrealfood.com/healthy-pumpkin-oat-cookies/ I am definitely at the stage that I feel comfortable experimenting. I am trying to cook by feel and instinct. I used pumpkin puree, added in rolled oats, cocconut flakes I had left over, flaxseed, and almond flour. It probably goes well with whatever yummy chopped nuts you may have around, or chocollate chips. I shaped the cookies and put in the oven at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes (depending on how big you shape your cookies). Again this recipe is great because it incorporates pumpkin and all that fiber and beta-carotene goodness and oats.
- Savory Beans, Avocado and Toasted Carb: Sometimes the kids want a savory breakfast. Why does it have to be always eggs and sausage? There is no fiber in either and the carbon footprint of sausage is huge. Remember swine-flu originated from factory pig farms. Savory beans provide fiber, and also pairs well with everything? Everyone needs to eat more beans. If your toddler is constipated, than your toddler needs to eat more beans. We have begun cooking a pot of beans once a week and having some for dinner, and then I am storing small tupperwares of well cooked red beans or pinto beans in the fridge. My daughter and I are toasting whatever carb it is we have at home (pita bread, corn torillas, even bread), and repurposing the beans as our protein and eating it with a side of avocado. So delicious and healthy, and fiber filled. This keeps me full so that I’m not rushing to find that 10am snack.
- Chia Seed/Overnights Oat Breakfast Pudding: (from Daughter Plastic Picker). This turned out fantastic and it is a very versatile recipe. You can sub in any nondairy milk, and add whatever berries and sweetener you would like. My sister had mentioned this before and now our family knows why it’s all the rage! Provides tons of fiber to combat the pediatric constipation crisis and pediatric fiber deficit. https://wellnessmama.com/59344/chia-seed-pudding/
Okay. I figured I gave you five ideas of things you can do for breakfast, and the other days go back to your standard breakfasts. I like the above recipes because they are high fiber, use a lot of left over ingredients, and will reduce the packaged breakfast items parents feel rushed to buy. Remember mini-pancakes work well, simple yogurt with fruit and some chia seeds. I am going to store my pumpkin/oatmeal cookies in the fridge so the kids can have for breakfast 1-2x this week. Our son was eating white toaste with cream cheese, which is very refined and NO FIBER! I will offer this as an alternative.
Here are other Dr. Plastic Picker approved websites for High-Fiber Breakfast Ideas for your Toddler. I highly recommend these websites. They have very similar breakfast ideas.
21 Healthy Toddler Recipe Ideas by Amy Palanjian at YummlyToddlerFood https://www.yummytoddlerfood.com/recipes/breakfast/10-healthy-toddler-breakfasts/
23 Healthy And East Breakfasts Your Kids Will Love by Deen Shanker at BuzzFeed https://www.buzzfeed.com/deenashanker/healthy-easy-breakfasts-your-kids-will-love
Mr. Plastic Picker just came down and tried my pumpkin puree/oatmeal cookies. He loved it! My husband never ate my cooking before. He is really loving this vegan and fiber filled goodness! If I can do it, anyone can do it.