Sneaky food cookbooks have been around to assist us home cooks in the art of healthy family eating without your family knowing it. I have one of those families. But you don’t have to run out and purchase one of these bound how-to’s to kick up the health-o-meter in your cooking and baking, just have it on hand, mix it in, and don’t be afraid to try something new.
If you come to our house for chocolate muffins, there are flaxseeds inside. The pancakes have a ground mixture of oatmeal and walnuts in the batter. Don’t tell,, but there are kidney beans and zucchini in the tomato sauce.
Have it on hand. I have a go-to jar in the fridge and I encourage you to as well. Grind oatmeal, walnuts (omit if there are food allergies in your family) bran flakes, wheat germ, and flaxseeds. Stored in the fridge or freezer, this combo (with endless options) is an instant add in to any mix or meal and your recipe just went from “getting by” to meeting your daily nutrient intake!
Mix it in. We teach our kids how to match colors and put “sames” together. Now let’s put that into practice in the kitchen with some healthy foods. No one will notice the garbanzo beans pureed into macaroni and cheese. Mashed kidney beans and beets disappear into Bolognese sauce. Shredded carrots lay perfectly between the grilled cheese slices. White protein powder mixes into almost anything without notice. And don’t forget; use applesauce as a one-for-one substitute for vegetable oil in baking.
Try something new. For the advance section of this post I’ll say a note about quinoa, spirulina, and flaxseed. Quinoa is a whole grain that acts and tastes like the rice and pasta you are already use to in your menu but is a healthier unprocessed option. Spirulina comes in powder form rich in protein, fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals and added to something like a blueberry smoothie its dark color slips up the straw with no one the wiser. And flaxseed, wholesome in seed form it’s omega-3 fatty acids are decadent for your body. Home ground using your coffee grinder from whole form they are healthiest and cheapest. So travel down to our local town health food store like Wild Thyme in Ballston Spa and pick up one of these food diamonds in the rough.