Healthy Eating: Week 4, Spinach (#52NewFoods) January 29 2012, 3 Comments

Planted firmly toe to toe, it was a piercing stare down contest of epic proportions. Two unrelenting, iron wills: Spinach vs. my picky eater. What’s a mom to do?

healthy eating spinachDark, leafy and overflowing with wholesome healthiness, spinach has long been the holy grail of healthy eating. Popeye cried, “I'm strong to the finich, ‘cause I eats me spinach!” to coax children into eating spinach to channel superhero strength. But not my picky eater! First, the polite pass, “No thank you, not today.” Second, the more direct, “My taste buds and spinach aren’t friends.” Culminating in the uniquely Seussian, “Not in a car, not in a tree, not on a train, Mom, let me be!”  

To succeed, I needed a game changer: a crafty, colorful creation my picky eater could have fun cooking. There’s one person I know who could pull that off: Catherine McCord of Weelicious.

Feature Recipe: Spinach Cake Muffins

weelicious spinach cake muffinsWeelicious is a gold mine of tasty, easy, healthy recipes you and your kids can cook. Catherine has done the heavy lifting for us busy moms and figured out how to make healthy eating easy and fun. She’s woven beets into pancakes, gone wild for wheat berry, and in this case, spun spinach into healthy muffins. In my house, no one is going to turn down a piping hot muffin and with fewer than 10 ingredients and ready to bake in less than 10 minutes I decided I'd take Spinach Cake Muffins for a spin.


Crunch a Color Kids Vote: 2 Thumbs Up! It’s my turn with the food processor!

spinach cake muffins cuisinartWhat we liked: Any recipe that involves a Cuisinart is sure to be a winner with kids. What’s more fun than loading a bushel full of ingredients into a big bowl and flipping the switch to blend it into a blur? Instant entertainment. We also had a blast guessing the “magic” ingredient. We baked up a batch, shared it with friends, and challenged, “Guess the magic ingredient!” Green tea, melon, peas, mint chip ice cream and avocado were some of the speculations. With each bite, a new guess. So much fun! These mighty muffins are tasty, healthy and easy: the trifecta of healthy eating. A great lunchbox snack or power breakfast partner, Spinach Cake Muffins will be a regular in our kitchen this year.

Watch Catherine and her helper Chloe whip up these tasty treats in this adorable Weelicious video:

Do your kids like spinach? What are some of your favorite folate-fortified recipes? Share your comments!

Next up: Sunbutter

no bake sunbutter bitesWhen our school went nut-free, I sighed a long, tired sigh. What would I do without those cute, crustless PB&J sandwiches? Sunbutter, a peanut butter alternative made from sunflower seeds, was recommended. But on a sandwich it made my kids simply long for the real McCoy. Thanks to the amazing Aviva Goldfarb at The Scramble, I may have found the solution. Next up: No Bake Sunbutter Bites.

Craving more new recipes to try? Catch up on last week’s recipe: Avocado and Orange Salad.

About the author: Jennifer Tyler Lee is a mom of two children and the creator of Crunch a Color™ -- the award-winning game that makes healthy eating fun. Like most parents, she struggled to get her kids to eat balanced meals, so she decided to make it into a healthy eating game and she’s giving back to support Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, FoodCorps, and Alice Water’s Edible Schoolyard. Watch her picky eaters tell the story of how they turned into healthy eaters playing the game. Follow @crunchacolor and #52NewFoods to tune into Crunch a Color's healthy eating adventure and Jennifer’s tips and kid-friendly, easy recipes.