Our friends at Horizon Organics are encouraging Cooking with Kids and asked us to share some ideas for healthy, simple snacks and meals the kids can help prepare. I love cooking with my kids and it has become one of their favorite things to do too! If you ask both of my older children about their favorite things to do, they’ll answer cook and bake and the kitchen is their favorite room in the house.
For us, cooking with kids goes beyond just letting them help prepare their FAVORITE meals. We let the kids get involved in every part the meal making process. We let them look for recipe ideas, let them help create the weekly meal plans, encourage them to help with the grocery list & teach them about budgeting. Before any of this though, we remind them about choosing healthy options for our meals and encourage them to try new and different things. Getting kids involved in the planning and execution of meals can go a long way towards encouraging them to eat a variety of foods and making meal time a really enjoyable experience.
This week the kids came up with the idea of Pizza Kabobs. It’s summer and we make kabobs on the grill often so when they had the idea to combine two of our FAVORITE things, I was eager to give it a shot. I’m so glad we did! It ended up raining all afternoon so rather than grill the pizza kabobs, we baked them.
Ingredients & Supplies:
refrigerated pizza dough (the kind in the can like biscuits)
pepperoni sticks (for cutting into big chunks)
favorite pizza toppings – onions, peppers, tomatoes, pineapple, mushrooms and such
pizza sauce for dipping
Horizon Organics Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
Begin by tearing small pieces of pizza dough and rolling them into small balls. Place them 2″ apart on a baking sheet and bake according to package instructions.
While the dough is baking, prep your veggies and other toppings. Remember to cut the toppings large enough to not split when they are threaded onto the skewer sticks.
When the pizza dough is done baking and partially cooled, cut the balls in half and add to the other toppings.
We like to put the toppings in individual bowls and make a “pizza bar” where everyone can pick their own toppings for their skewers. Letting everyone be involved in making their own skewers means everyone will love what’s for dinner!
Once the toppings are threaded onto the skewer sticks, place them on a baking sheet and sprinkle with Horizon Organics Shredded Mozzarella Cheese.
Bake the kabobs in an oven heated to 400 degrees for 7-10 minutes or until cheese is melted and toppings are heated through.
Remove skewers from the oven and serve kabobs hot with pizza sauce for dipping! Your whole family is sure to love these!
With back to school time quickly approaching (and fall sports) we’re really focusing on healthy choices even more than normal. While we always try to keep FRESH fruits and veggies in the house, now we are really stocking the refrigerator and pantry with easy to prepare, ready to grab foods. To make healthy meals and snacks easier, here are a couple of our favorite tricks.
Clean & Cut Fresh Fruits and Veggies for the Week Ahead
We like to prepare large storage containers or bags full of fresh fruits and veggies. This makes choosing a healthy snack an EASY option. Our kids take cold lunch to school most days. To make packing lunch throughout the week an easier task, Sunday night we fill snack size storage bags with fruit and veggies. We fill enough for each child for each day they will take cold lunch. When it’s time to pack lunch, just grab a bag from the refrigerator and toss it in their lunch box. You can prep these bags for taking to sports practices or after school activities too.
Individually Packaged Snacks
There are so many healthy snack choices available whether you’re buying already made or preparing your own. It’s key to have individually packaged snacks ready for your family to grab. Items like granola bars, fruit snacks, and dried fruit can all be purchased in individually wrapped servings. If you’re making your own, portion these snacks and package them right way. The same is true for buying in bulk. If you are purchasing large bags of dried fruits or trail mixes, portion and package these items as soon as you purchase them. Another great option for individually packaged, healthy snacks are dairy products like cheese sticks and Tuberz (yogurt to go) from Horizon Organics.
Meal planning is SO important. Whether you work withing a grocery budget or not, meal planning is helpful in so many ways. Some people meal plan weeks or a month in advance. Simply putting together a meal plan for the week and making sure you have everything on hand for the meals you have planned will keep your splurge spending to a minimum, curb the temptation to grab unhealthy convenience foods or fast food, and will make it easier to turn to the pantry and refrigerator and grab the ingredients to create a healthy meal for your family.
You don’t have to just meal plan dinner. Sometimes lunch falls into the rut of eating the same things every day. Meal plan a variety of easy to prep lunch time meals too!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Horizon Organic. The opinions and text are all mine.