Thursday, May 23, 2013

Crunch A Color Healthy Lunch Challenge : Monster Muffins & Nutty Greek Yogurt Dip

When I offer a new food to my preschooler, I find that when I "hide" it among familiar foods she's less likely to flat out refuse it, so I try to make the new food just one of many small portions. Muffin tin meals are perfect for that!

Monster Muffin Tin Meal by BentOnBetterLunches
Believe it or not,  Birdie's never eaten a pear! I don't like pears, so they're not a fruit I buy unless a recipe calls for it (I do like how they taste, just not their texture) and I recently realized I've never offered them to my 4 year old. Perfect - I wanted a new food to score bonus points in my Crunch A Color Healthy Lunch Challenge meal - pears it is :)

I decided to offer the pears with similar fruits I know she likes, apples, and something yummy to dip them in.  The Crunch a Color formula for a healthy lunch is 3 colors + a protein + a healthy grain. No processed foods. Birdie's not much of a meat eater so a greek yogurt & nut butter dip was just the thing for her protein. Celery sticks would go well with that too.

Nut Butter Greek Yogurt Dip
  • 1 cup greek yogurt 
  • 1 cup nut butter (I used almond butter) 
  • 1 Tbsp honey 
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
Stir all ingredients together & serve with fruit, veggies, graham crackers... whatever sounds good to you!

Birdie loves muffins so for her healthy grain portion I baked a batch of carrot bran ones and gave some of them monster faces :) I haven't made monster muffins in ages! I featured some in one of my first blog posts! That batch had cheese teeth & craisin eyes. Today I made the teeth with almond slivers and the eyes with cheese & candy coated sunflower seeds.

Monster Muffins by BentOnBetterLunches

The monster muffins inspired a monster theme for the muffin tin meal!  I put a funny creature cupcake topper ring on a celery stick, and some octopi bento picks in the almond butter dip became baby monsters taking a mud bath :)

Monster Muffin Tin Meal by BentOnBetterLunches
So how did Birdie's muffin tin meal score? Using the cards from our Crunch A Color Healthy Eating Game, I calculated the points:

Red - apples - 5 points
Liquid - water (not shown) - 5 points
Green - apples - 5 points
Yellow/Orangepears - 5 points
Try a New Foodpears - 5 points x 2 = 10 points
Healthy Grains - carrot bran muffin - 5 points
Yellow/Orange - if carrots in the muffins count - 10 points
Green - celery - 10 points
Proteinalmond butter & yogurt- 10 points
Bonus - calcium rich protein - yogurt in dip - 1 point

Monster Muffin Tin Meal by BentOnBetterLunches
66 points, not too shabby for a simple lunch! It could have scored more points with a little more colour... but there's always dinner  :) 

Most importantly, lunch was a winner with my little sproutlet :

Monster Muffin Tin Meal by BentOnBetterLunches
Are you wondering if she liked the pears? No, she didn't - but she tried them!

Thanks Crunch a Color for including me in this Challenge!

6 comments:

  1. So cute! I love that she showed it off to the neighbors :)

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  2. I just love the muffins

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  3. Absolutely precious!!

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  4. What a great lunch! The delighted look on Birdie's face is priceless!

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  5. Love the pictures, they turned out great!

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  6. LOVE the monster muffin! And so cute that she took it to show off :D

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