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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

"Tweaking" Dinners for Everyone in the Family

I get the question often about how to "tweak" dinners for pickier eaters in your family while still eating heatlhy and not having to cook 2 completely different meals. It's definitely not something I've perfected but something I've been attempting for almost 10 years with my husband and more than 5 with kids in my house. While I think it's important to introduce new foods I also know there are certain foods I will eat that my family simply won't. So, here's an example of a meal we had last night and how I used the basic ingredients but changed the meal for everyone's liking while keeping it healthy.

Chicken fajitas:
I started with baked chicken breasts cut into strips, red and green peppers cut into very small pieces and my favorite salsa from Hy-Vee, Organic Pineapple Salsa.

Whole grain hard shells and soft tortillas, La Tortilla High Fiber Tortillas, another favorite from Hy-Vee.

For the girls: soft tortilla filled with chicken and peppers (finely chopped they hardly even notice). The salsa isn't spicy but it's sweet which makes it ideal for the girls. I threw in a little shredded 2% cheese (shredded myself), folded the tortilla in half and microwaved it for 30 seconds then cut it into 4 triangles. 2 per girl. They love quesadillas and they are less messy than a taco. Plus...they don't really look inside the quesadilla like you do a taco. Less questioning of the contents and more eating :)

For Scott: hard shelled tacos filled with mostly chicken and some peppers, topped with shreded 2% cheese and more salsa on top

For me: shredded lettuce with the fajita mixture on top, threw on extra peppers and salsa, no cheese

I threw a bowl of washed fresh fruit on the table and everyone was happy and full! I should add that Payton had dance from 5-6 pm last night so I baked the chicken, shredded the cheese and cut of the lettuce ahead of time so we could quickly assemble dinner and eat before 7pm. Easy, fast and healthy! Yay!

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