My dear son, Khaled, for the past two months, hasn’t been eating meat, chicken, or fish. While he loved fruits, vegetables, grains and dairy, he was missing on a whole food group. Meats (by meat I mean chicken and fish too) are an excellent source of protein, iron, and vitamin B12 (and omega-3’s from fish). Plus, I want my child to enjoy as many various food experiences as possible.
Iron is the most common nutrient to be deficient in toddlers. They are old enough to not eat or drink fortified formulas anymore, but still won’t eat a broad range of foods like older kids and adults. Read this question I answered on Little Stomaks about Getting Enough Iron on a Vegetarian Diet. Khaled’s hemoglobin a few months ago was fine and he doesn’t look tired or lacks energy, and that was assuring.
Since I don’t believe in no forcing or bribing, I figured some creativity may not be a bad idea.
Mini-frittatas, with ground meat, veggies, and eggs. I didn’t add milk or cheese–he really eats and drinks enough dairy. If you want, you can add few tablespoons of milk, which will make the frittatas fluffy.
Here’s the recipe. Half the meat and vegetable mix can be frozen to use later. Hurray for pre-prepared meals in the freezer! I hope you and your child will like them.
- Canola oil for sauteing vegetables, about 1-2 tbsp
- 2 small white potatoes, peeled and chopped into small pieces
- 1/2 lb lean ground meat (I use 5% fat)
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped into small pieces
- 1 green zucchini, chopped into small pieces
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 tsp all spice
- 4 eggs
Heat the oil in a saute pan. Stir in the potatoes and saute. Don’t add too much oil, this is not deep fat frying. Just a little to soften the potatoes and get their cooking started. Add the meat and cook until no pink is left.
Add the bell pepper, zucchini, and spices. Add a tablespoon of water if the vegetables are dry. Stir frequently so they won’t burn. Continue to cook until soft.
When soft, divide the meat and vegetables in half. Store one half in the freezer for later use. Place the other half in a medium size bowl, add the four eggs and stir until well mixed.
Pour the egg mixture in a pre-greased small muffin baking sheet (makes 12).
Bake at 350 until a toothpick comes out clean, about 15-20 minutes. Serve hot, warm, cold–any way you or your child likes!