Picky eaters

 

One of the biggest challenges that I have faced as a mom isn’t dirty diapers or sick kids. I have a natural maternal instinct so the sick kids I can handle. The dirty diapers comes with being a parent. What my challenge is….. Picky Eaters!

My oldest didn’t use to be a picky eater when she first started eating solid food. She was actually a vegetarian for 6 months. Wouldn’t touch anything meat related. So that made me a vegetarian for 6 months because there was no point in fixing two meals and financially it wasn’t worth two separate meals.

But then something changed when she was 2. She would only eat chicken nuggets, pizza, eggs, and pizza rolls. it was a battle to get her to eat anything else. Sometimes she would eat spaghetti but not the meat. She would pick that out. When I was working all the time, it was just easier to cave and give in to her pickiness than to actually fight to get her to eat something else. I was exhausted.

But when I became a home mom, I had more time to try to work things in. But if she could see it, you would forget about it. So there was half the battle. I know that you can shred cooked broccoli and hide it in mac n cheese but if she saw a speck of green she wouldn’t eat. That is where shakes came into. I could make a banana smoothie with spinach, put it in a cup that you couldn’t see thru with a straw and she loved it.

But I couldn’t hide everything and it got really hard. She loved carrots. But only the sweet kind you get from a Japanese restaurant. So I could use those and slowly decrease the sweetness and she didn’t know.

But as she got a little older and we were preparing for her to start her first year of school, we knew that if she wanted to eat school lunch she would have to expand her taste buds. And to do so, whenever I cooked food, she would have to eat a small bowl of what I cooked and if she didn’t like it she could find something else for dinner which usually consisted of pizza rolls, grilled cheese or chicken nuggets. However, to her surprise, she sometimes liked what I had cooked and asked for a second bowl. There are sometimes, I know she won’t eat what I cooked but per our agreement, she has to try it. I never give her too much because if she doesn’t like it then it is wasting food.

It probably isn’t the best way to fight the picky eater syndrome. But it is a start. She is seeing that there are other foods that she really likes, like chicken pie and lasagna soup. I even let her help meal plan. Where in the 60 meals I choose she gets to pick 10 of her all time favorites that are not grilled cheese, breakfast, chicken nuggets or pizza. Then of course we do have pizza nights all the time. Maybe twice a month. But we don’t order out pizza. That is for special occasions.

Nope. We sit together at the kitchen table and make our own pizza. And we make it stuffed crust. Even the two year old loves to help put cheese and pepperoni on the pizza.

The picky-ness hasn’t ended yet. But we are working on it. One meal at a time.

Mexican Pie

Now I’m not sure why it is called Mexican pie. It is more like a taco pie. This is something that my mom made for us all the time growing up. It was amazing. Now that I’m married and have kids of my own, I still enjoy my moms recipe. My mother enjoys that I cook it too because that means that we don’t have to do it.

What we need:

2 lbs of ground beef (I used 2 pounds because I cook for a lot of people and 2 pounds makes 4 pies)

4 Pillsbury frozen pie crust (Comes in a pack of 2 so just 2 packs)

2 cups of cheeses (I use the Fiesta style blend)

Re-fried beans. (The big can)

Taco seasoning

Salsa

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

First you need to cook the hamburger. Completely.  I cannot stress the importance of cooking ground beef completely. Once it has finished cooking, you need to drain the meat. Then you will need to put the meat back into the pan with the packet of taco seasoning. Add water according to the packet.  Let this sit for a few minutes. Then add the Salsa. I let this cook for a few minutes.

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While the meat mixture is cooking, open the big can of re-fried beans, put them into a bowl and heat it up. I found that warm beans are easier to spread.  Once the beans are warm spread the beans in the pies and up the sides. According to my mothers recipe, add cheese on top of the beans.

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This one had too much cheese, I removed some

After spreading the beans and cheese, you will need to add the taco meat mixture on top and add more cheese.

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The you just put it in the oven until the cheese is nice and bubbly. I added sour cream to my bowl and it was delicious.  My picky eater actually ate two bowls. Enjoy!

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