Avocado Snacktime!

 I have been serving avocados for snack time for a long time now for myself and for my daughter Mattelyn. When she was a baby, a smashed avocado and banana were her favorite food. I am sharing this quick snack with you because it’s super buttery deliciousness and it’s so good for the body! It helps you feel full quickly and it’s easy to make. Getting Mattelyn, (who is just two years old), to eat avocado now is trickier than when she was a baby. She loves guacamole but the avocado by itself is still something she isn’t flipped out about.

 I think it’s a texture thing for her. One, however, she always gets over eventually! Does that sound mean? My belief with a baby’s eating or a toddler’s eating – continue giving foods to them (if it’s good for them) even when they initially turn their noses up. Everything is new and different in their little worlds. And a salty hot dog or a sweet cookie is always appetizing because it’s easy and it’s not complex. A baby has millions of taste buds compared to ours. Things have much more flavor to them and we may confuse their looks of “Wow, this is new and different,” with, “Ewwww, this is disgusting!” They take SO MUCH from us. If we (or someone around them) are always turning up our noses or saying ewwww or making faces when they are trying things or eating along with us, we are hindering their natural curiosity with food and in the long run, may even be altering how they feel about food. I think of them as little adults that I am raising and I want them to have all experiences without as much bias as possible. THAT SAID, they are still TWO! I give Mattelyn everything over and over again, and almost always, she ends up loving it. Fish sticks, edamame, guacamole, baked tilapia and cod, chicken enchiladas, spaghetti and meatballs, broccoli, peas, corn on the cob, salad, red, yellow and green peppers – yep, she will eat them all. But it wasn’t at first. Or even the second or third time trying them. But my goal is always the same – I want them to eat what we’re eating. That is part of why it’s not as important to me that there is a kid’s menu when we go out to eat – Mattelyn eats what we eat so we typically share a meal. She doesn’t always have to have a hot dog or chicken nuggets (although there is NOTHING wrong with that and she most often does indulge in one of those during lunch!) Ahhhh, I always get carried away – but I wanted to share how I am trying to raise my daughter in case it might work for you too! I want to eliminate the picky eater early on if I can. I think it’s hard to do though and takes persistence and believing in them and the process. It takes planning and caring and is HARD. But it’s so worth it!!!

“A serving of avocado (also) contains 81 micrograms of the carotenoid lutein and 19 micrograms of beta-carotene. Per serving, avocados have 3.5 grams of unsaturated fats, which are known to be important for normal growth and development of the central nervous system and brain.” From Avocados and Babies.

Also beneficial for breast feeding and pregnant mamas! “Avocados are listed under fruit items that the USDA recommends as one of the best sources for some of the nutrients needed when pregnant or breastfeeding. A 1-oz. serving of avocados contains 4% of the daily values for Vitamin E and potassium, and 2% of the daily value for iron.” From Avocado Central.

1. Choose a good, ripe avocado. It is barely soft at the touch of the skin. Read here all about the health benefits (so many!) of an avocado and how to pick a ripe one.

2. Slice in half.

3. Remove the nut or the seed.

4. Slice crossways with a knife, creating small squares or bite-sized Yummies.

5. Scoop out with a spoon into a bowl or plate.

6. Drizzle with a tiny amount of Extra Virgin Olive Oil and using a fork, drain the juice of a 1/4 or 1/2 of a lime. Sprinkle with fresh ground pepper or a smidge of sea salt.

There it is. Such a delicious yummy snack!

Enjoy! I also include avocado in my pineapple salsa recipe for grilled chicken – super delicious!!! You can also read about how I incorporate avocado into baby food (another adventure I am about to embark on yet again with my 6 month old twin sons!!)

Happy healthy snacking!

XO ~ Stephanie

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