Chicken Noodle Turmeric Soup

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When using whole food ingredients, it doesn’t get more basic or wholesome than chicken noodle soup.  Everybody knows it, almost everybody loves it.  It’s THE quintessential comfort food.  I slow-cooked a whole chicken the other day (my favorite way to do that is The Natural Nurturer’s recipe for Slow Cooker Lemon Thyme Chicken – it’s so simple and delicious). I had the shredded chicken and the bone broth I made from it afterward hanging out in the fridge.  I knew when I woke up this morning and there was a chill in the air that they were destined to become soup.

Traditional chicken noodle soup has celery.  I didn’t have any, but I did have some zucchini.  I thought that would make a fun change.  That got me to thinking what other changes I could make … turmeric.  Yes!  I love incorporating turmeric into the foods we eat because it is such a superfood spice.  Its list of benefits is extensive; in short, turmeric is an awesome anti-inflammatory, an anti-oxidant, and it’s considered a “brain booster”.  As I always say though, do your own research! While I am passionate about healthy cooking and eating, I am not a dietitian or a doctor.  The final change I knew I had to make was a no-brainer – I HAD to add some greens.  Always greens.

This soup comes together quickly if you already have cooked chicken on hand, making it the perfect weeknight meal.  Serve with a salad or with some crusty buttered toast.  Mm mmm.  Toddler approved, parent approved.  Healthy.  Flavorful.  What’s more – with a couple yummy and simple substitutions, it can be made vegan.  Sub chickpeas for chicken and switch out vegetable broth for the bone broth.

Chicken Noodle Turmeric Soup

  • Servings: 6
  • Time: 30mins
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Chicken noodle soup with some fun & flavorful twists – zucchini, turmeric, and greens!.

Ingredients


– 1 tbs. olive oil
– 1 onion, finely chopped
– 2 carrots, diced
– pinch sea salt
– 5 cloves garlic, minced
– 1 medium zucchini, chopped
– 1 tsp. turmeric
– 1 tsp. poultry seasoning
– 6-8 c. bone broth (vegetable broth for vegan option)
– 3 c. cooked shredded chicken (sub chickpeas for vegan option)
– 1 c. uncooked elbow pasta
– 2 large handfuls baby spinach

Directions


1. In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, carrot, and a pinch of sea salt. Stir occasionally and cook for 5-7 minutes, or until onion is translucent and the carrot is softened.
2. Add garlic, zucchini, turmeric, and poultry seasoning and stir to combine again. Let spices toast for a minute.
3. Pour in just a splash of the bone broth to deglaze the pan; scrap all the yummy bits from the botton of the pan to reincorporate. Add remaining broth and shredded chicken.
4. Increase heat to medium high to bring to a boil. Once boiling, add pasta and cook until pasta is tender (read package instructions – it will likely be 6-8 minutes, depending on what type of pasta you’re using).
5. Once the noodles are tender, turn off the heat and add spinach. Stir to combine until spinach is wilted.

Happy Food Making, Mamas! ❤


Cacao-licious Hemp Shake

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Cacao powder is amazing stuff.  It looks and tastes pretty much just like cocoa powder, but it’s better.  WAY better. Cacao is actually cold-pressed unroasted cacao beans (straight from the tree!) and its nutritional properties are still intact because it hasn’t been roasted at high temps like cocoa powder.

Cacao is loaded with antioxidants and nutrients like calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium, and zinc. There are other cool health benefits to choosing cacao over cocoa too, but as always, I encourage you to do your own research.

Smoothies are such an awesome way to pack a ton of nutritional punch into a tiny toddler approved package.  What’s even more fun is when a smoothie is so thick and creamy and decadent that you can call it a shake, but it also happens to be extremely healthy.  This Cacao-licious Hemp Shake does that.  What else does it do? It satisfies even the most intense ice cream craving from an always hungry, breastfeeding mama (that’s saying something, am I right?!).  I won’t lie – I have been known to take my blender into the laundry room after toddler bedtime so that I can whip this up without the fear of waking a little human.

When your next chocolate craving strikes or you just want to offer your kiddos a guilt-free, no refined sugar chocolatey treat, I hope you’ll try this shake – and if you do – tag me on Instagram so I can see (@ mamamakesfood and #mamamakesfood).

In the recipe below, I’ve provided Amazon links to products that I use in my kitchen on an almost daily basis.  If you should purchase something by using the link(s) below, it won’t cost you anything extra, BUT it does give the mama behind Mama Makes Food a tiny commission (which might help justify staying up way past my bedtime to share recipes 😉 ).

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Cacao-licious Hemp Shake

  • Servings: 2-3
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A creamy, decadent chocolatey treat that packs a nutritional and protein punch.


Credit: Mama Makes Food

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 c. unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or use plain + 1 tsp. vanilla extract)
  • 2 frozen bananas, cut into chunks
  • 1 tbs. chia seeds
  • 3 tbs. cacao powder (cocoa or carob will work in a pinch)
  • 3 tbs. hemp seeds
  • 2 tbs. sunflower seed butter (or preferred nut butter)
  • 1-2 tbs. pure maple syrup, to taste
  • small handful of spinach
  • small handful of ice cubes

Directions

  1. Put all ingredients in the order listed into a high speed blender and blitz until smooth and creamy.
  2. Note: a regular blender may also be used, but it might not pulverize the hemp seeds entirely smooth like a high speed model will.

Happy Food Making, Mamas! ❤


Grain Free Chocolate Pancakes

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Say “I love you” to your littlest Valentine with these Grain Free Chocolate Pancakes! These are a yummy, not-too-sweet chocolate treat perfect for piling high with toppings like sliced banana, fresh or freeze-dried berries, coconut cream, hemp seeds, a drizzle of maple syrup … the options are endless!

Decadent enough for dessert yet wholesome enough for breakfast, these Grain Free Chocolate Pancakes are delicious anytime of day. Leftovers store well in the fridge for about 5 days and these babies are easily reheated in the toaster.

Grain Free Chocolate Pancakes

  • Servings: 4 to 6
  • Time: 20 min
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Say “I love you” to your littlest Valentine with these chocolately, wholesome pancakes!.

Credit: Mama Makes Food

Ingredients

– 4 eggs
– 1 14oz. can lite coconut milk
– 2 tsp. vanilla
– 2 tbs. pure maple syrup
– 1/2 c. coconut flour
– 1/4 c. cocoa or cacao powder
– 1 tsp. baking soda
– 1/2 tsp. sea salt
– 2 tbs. chia seeds
– coconut oil, butter or ghee, for frying

Directions

1. Preheat large skillet or griddle over medium low.
2. Combine eggs, coconut milk, vanilla, maple syrup, coconut flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, sea salt, and chia seeds in a blender and blitz until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides as necessary.
3. Grease skillet or griddle with a thin layer of coconut oil (or butter or ghee) and spoon 1/8 cup sized portions of batter about an inch apart, spreading out to about 1/2″ thickness.
4. Cook until the bottoms are firm and the tops are puffy – about 5 minutes. Carefully flip and flatten slightly with the back of a spatula. Cook remaining side until firm and slightly browned, about 3-4 minutes more.
5. Remove cooked pancakes to a cooling rack (this helps keep the undersides from getting sweaty and soft).
6. Continue to cook remaining pancakes in batches, adding a new layer of coconut oil each time.

If using 1/8 cup sized portions of batter, this recipe will yield approximately 30 2-3″ pancakes.

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Happy Food Making, Mamas!


Chickpea Wild Rice Soup

 

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Our family loves soup any time of year, but of course it’s absolutely crave-worthy in the winter.  I wanted something that would warm us from the inside out, especially after coming into the house from doing our farm chores on a cold, blustery winter’s evening.  Enter this creamy, hearty, and veggie packed soup.  The wild rice adds a chewiness to the texture of this soup that we love, but brown rice will work nicely too.  The trio of onion, carrot, and celery – in addition to the poultry seasoning – make this reminiscent of Chicken Noodle Soup (only without the chicken OR the noodles 😉 ).

Surprisingly, my toddler (23 months old) fished out all of the whole chickpeas and gobbled them up.  In the past, he wasn’t so sure about them.  Another testament that we must keep offering foods over and over again, even if they’re regularly rejected.  Mister happily scooped spoonfuls up and eagerly ate, so this was all in all a super successful meal (notice I didn’t say it wasn’t messy – let’s be real here, mamas).

We’re a family of three and this made enough for us to all have for dinner one night and then lunch the next day.  Win win!

Chickpea Wild Rice Soup

  • Servings: 5-6
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A creamy, hearty, veggie-filled soup that is full of goodness and toddler approved.


Credit: Mama Makes Food

Ingredients


– 1-2 tbs. + 3 1/2-4 c. water, divided
– 1 1/2 c. chopped onion
– 1 c. chopped carrot
– 1 c. chopped celery
– 1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
– 1 1/2 tsp. poultry seasoning
– 1 tsp. ground mustard
– 1/4-1/2 tsp. ground turmeric, to taste
– 1/2 tsp. sea salt
– 1/2 c. uncooked wild rice (*can sub brown rice, see note at bottom)
– 2 cloves garlic, minced
– 2 cans (15 oz) chickpeas, rinsed & drained, divided
– 3 tbs. nutritional yeast
– 1/2-1 tbs. white miso, to taste
– 2 bay leaves
– 2 c. vegetable stock
– 1-2 c. chopped kale

Directions


1. Preheat large soup pot over medium heat. Add 1 tbs. water, onion, carrot, celery, oregano, poultry seasoning, ground mustard, turmeric, and sea salt. Stir to combine, cover, and let cook for 4-5 minutes. Add another tablespoon of water if it starts to stick.
2. Stir again, then add rice and garlic. Cook for another minute or two.
3. Set 1 c. of chickpeas aside. Add remaining chickpeas to the soup pot along with the nutritional yeast, miso, bay leaves, 3 1/2 c. of water, and vegetable stock. Increase heat to bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 45-50 minutes, until rice is completely cooked.
4. Remove bay leaves. With an immersion blender, slightly blend soup to add some thickness, but not enough to totally puree. A chunky texture is desired. Stir in the 1 c. of reserved chickpeas and kale, cover, and cook for 5-10 minutes more. Add a little more water to thin, if necessary. Season with salt and pepper, if desired.

*Note: Brown rice can be substituted for the wild rice. Cook time will be reduced to 30-35 minutes.

This soup is inspired by the Chickpea ‘N Rice Soup in Dreena Burton’s cookbook “Plant Powered Families”.

Happy Food Making, Mamas!


Deluxe Pumpkin Oatmeal

Thanksgiving was a couple of days ago, but I’m not quite ready to let go of pumpkin season.  Heck, I might just keep indulging my pumpkin-lovin’ heart all winter long.  Especially when it’s something that the toddler will pretty reliably gobble up, why would I stop? 🙂

We love this oatmeal – it’s a favorite.  I made it for the umpteenth time this morning and Mister 21 Month Old happily ate his entire serving and started to eye mine.  I gave him a little more and he polished that off too.

In case you need more enticing, this oatmeal is:

hearty
creamy
pumpkin-y
warming
full of delicious toppings
fast
easy

Need I say more?

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Deluxe Pumpkin Oatmeal

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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A hearty, pumpkin-y oatmeal to enjoy all fall and winter long - the perfect filling, warming breakfast on a chilly morn.


Credit: Mama Makes Food

Ingredients


For the oatmeal:
– 1 15oz. can lite coconut milk
– 1 c. pumpkin puree
– 1 heaping tsp. pumpkin pie spice (or cinnamon)
– 1 c. oats
– 2 tbs. chia seeds
– 2 tbs. pure maple syrup
– 1 tsp. vanilla extract
For the topping:
– pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
– pecans
– hemp seeds
– raisins
– flax meal
– banana chunks
– maple syrup

Directions


1. Preheat small saucepan over medium heat. Add coconut milk and pumpkin and whisk until smooth. Add pumpkin pie spice and whisk again.
2. Add oats and chia seeds and stir to combine. Cook oat mixture for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until hot and creamy.
3. Stir in maple syrup. Turn off the heat and stir in vanilla.
4. Portion oatmeal into bowls and pile on the toppings. Drizzle a little more maple syrup over top if desired (highly recommend).

Happy Food Making, Mamas!


Pumpkin Pie Green Smoothie

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In the fall, there’s rarely a time when there isn’t an open can of pumpkin puree hanging out in our fridge.  I figure during September, October, and November anything and everything pumpkin is fair game – and let’s face it – we all kind of love it.

Last week I shared our current favorite pancake recipe for Banana Pumpkin Oat Pancakes that you can find here.  And as far as I’m concerned, there are still a solid 5 weeks of pumpkin season, so I may not be done yet!

So, this recipe – Pumpkin Pie Green Smoothie – it seriously tastes like liquid pumpkin pie!  The taste of the kale is undetectable, although if green smoothies are new for your little one(s) and family, spinach is more mild and might be a better place to start.  If you follow me on Instagram, you know I put chia and hemp seeds on and in almost everything.  Naturally, this smoothie is no exception!  If these superfoods are also new to you, putting them into smoothies is a great jumping off point as their texture is completely unnoticeable.

A couple of notes about this smoothie recipe:  it tastes best with chilled pumpkin puree, so if you know you are going to make this, put a can in the fridge for a few hours beforehand (nobody likes a warmish smoothie!)  Also, the sweetness of this smoothie will depend a lot on how ripe your frozen bananas are.  I found that one tablespoon of maple syrup made our smoothie slightly sweet, which is what I prefer.  Mr. Mama Makes Food (Daddy Makes Food?! 😉 ) would have liked his to be a little sweeter, so be sure to taste your smoothie after adding one tablespoon of syrup and adjust to your liking.

If you have leftovers, they keep in the fridge for a few hours, although the banana will shorten the “shelf life”.  If I make a smoothie for breakfast and have extra, I try to use it up for our afternoon snack.  You can also freeze the leftovers into a freezer pop mold (we use this one – the pops are tiny, which makes them perfect for toddlers).

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Pumpkin Pie Green Smoothie

  • Servings: Family Size - 5 cups
  • Difficulty: Easy
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All the classic pumpkin pie flavor in green smoothie form, with undetectable super food boosts from chia & hemp seeds!



Credit: Mama Makes Food

Ingredients


– 1 1/2 c. milk of choice (we used almond)
– 1 1/2 frozen bananas
– 6 to 8 ice cubes (a big handful)
– 1 c. pumpkin puree, chilled (see note above)
– 1 tbs. pure maple syrup (or to taste)
– 1 tsp. vanila
– 1/2 c. pecans
– 1 tbs. chia seeds
– 1 tbs. hemp seeds
– 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon
– pinch sea salt
– 1 packed cup of greens (we used kale, but spinach or chard would work too)

Directions


1. Add all ingredients to a high speed or sturdy blender (a Vitamix, Blendtec or similar type of blender works best to get the hemp seeds and kale super smooth).
2. Blend from low to high speed until smooth and creamy.

Happy Food Making, Mamas!

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Banana Pumpkin Oat Pancakes

img_2448It’s October and that means we can put pumpkin into everything and eat it with reckless abandon, right?!  I think so.  There’s no doubt it’s delicious, but the kicker is that it’s super healthy too! Pumpkin packs a trove of nutritional benefits, such as high levels of vitamins A & C, a hefty dose of fiber and potassium, as well as antioxidants like beta carotene.  Want to know more about the benefits of eating pumpkin? I encourage you to do your own search and read all about it.

We’ve been enjoying these Banana Oat Pumpkin Pancakes pretty often the last couple of weeks as I’ve been tweaking the recipe to get it just right.  They’re naturally sweetened only with ripe banana and pumpkin puree.  They can easily be made gluten free by using gluten free oats and oat flour.

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I’ve found that this recipe will yield between 12 to 16 three inch pancakes (I use a 1/8 cup measuring spoon to pour the batter). You may want to double the recipe, especially if you have a larger family.  Plus, these pancakes freeze well and can also be stored for a few days in the fridge.  I pop them into the toaster and they thaw beautifully.  As an added bonus, toasting them makes the edges a little crispy! We eat them for breakfast and as easy, on-the-go snacks.

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Banana Pumpkin Oat Pancakes

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Naturally sweetened pancakes with all the fall flavors your heart desires! Easily made gluten free by using gluten free oats. Great for breakfast & snacks.


Credit: Mama Makes Food

Ingredients


– 1 ripe, spotty banana
– 2/3 c. pumpkin puree
– 2 eggs
– 3/4 c. oat flour
– 1/4 c. rolled oats
– 1/4 tsp. salt
– 1 tsp. baking powder
– 1/2 tsp. cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
– butter, ghee, or coconut oil – for frying
Toppings Suggestions:
plain yogurt or coconut whipped cream, pepitas, hemp seeds, raisins, ground flax, maple syrup

Directions


1. Mash banana in a medium bowl.  Add pumpkin and eggs and stir to combine.
2. Add oat flour, oats, salt, baking powder, and cinnamon and stir again until just combined. Let batter rest while pan is preheating.
3. Preheat large skillet or griddle over medium low (I find that halfway between medium low and medium worked perfectly on my stovetop).
4. Once pan is hot, add butter (or fat of choice) and coat the bottom.
5. Drop batter by the heaping 1/8 cupfuls (2 tablespoons) into hot skillet and fry until golden, 3-5 minutes.
6. Once golden, flip each pancake and flatten slightly with the back of the spatula and fry until golden, another 3-4 minutes.
7. Set finished pancakes on a cooling rack and repeat with remaining batter, adding more butter between batches.
8. Load up with toppings and enjoy!

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Happy Food Making, Mamas!