mighty morning muffins

mighty morning muffinsmighty morning muffins

We’re heading away for the weekend to one of our favourite island destinations in the whole wide world to watch my beautiful baby sister marry the man of her dreams.

We are all so excited but very busy.  There is so much to organise when travelling with little ones and no matter how planned and thought out I think I am there always seems to be bits and pieces I miss and last minute dashes to the store are inevitable.  Today’s mad rush involved hunting down a pair of stockings for Miss G.

Packing food for the kids is always a challenge too.  So at the beginning of the week we got busy in the kitchen and baked a whole heap of goodies to freeze and take with us.   In our lunch box we have coconut banana pancakes, delicious oat choc chip cookies, pea and mint fritters and a batch of these gorgeous golden mighty morning muffins.

These muffins really are mighty and so jam packed with nutritional goodness.  The combination of oats, sultanas, carrot and banana make them a hearty baby led weaning breakfast and will keep the little ones going well and truly until lunch time.

These muffins couldn’t be simpler to prepare simply whisk together the wet ingredients along with the banana and carrot, fold through the dry ingredients, pop into a muffin tin and bake.  This particular recipe makes approximately 15 muffins and freezes beautifully. Simply allow the muffins to cool completely, wrap individual portions, pop into a freezer safe container and stash in the deep freeze for up to three months.

To create your own batch of mighty morning muffins simply…

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raspberry oat bars

raspberry oat barsraspberry oat bars

I did the unthinkable yesterday and ventured solo to Ikea with my two lovely little cherubs.

By some miracle they both behaved (very uncharacteristically) like angels.

So I took advantage of their great moods and shopped, shopped and shopped whilst Harry giggled at Grace as she pushed him in the trolley through the maze of furniture and homewares.

We did stop halfway though for a lovely snack and my little shoppers were so happy to munch on these raspberry oat bars I’d packed into our lunch box.

These bars are delicious and couldn’t be simpler to prepare.  Just pop the ingredients into a food processor and blitz.  Once the batter is nestled in the tin gently press a few raspberries into the bars and bake for 20-25 minutes or until gorgeously golden.

This recipe makes 16 bars that will vanish all too quickly.  They really are delicious.  And did I mention this recipe contains no eggs and no sugar!  These bars are instead sweetened by a couple of ripe bananas and a handful of mejool dates.  The vanilla extract and ground cinnamon also provide the bars with a good hit of gorgeous flavour.

The texture of these bars is soft and squishy yet firm which makes them wonderful for baby led weaning beginners as they will withstand their tight grip.

My little ones also enjoy these bars for breakfast.  I serve them alongside a little fresh fruit and they are gobbled up in no time.

To create your own batch of raspberry oat bars simply…

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apricot coconut squares

apricot coconut squaresapricot coconut squares

Miss G. and I did a little messing about in the kitchen yesterday afternoon and came up with these gorgeous apricot coconut squares.

The flavours were definitely inspired by last weeks apricot coconut breakfast cookies.  Grace enjoyed the breakfast cookies so much I just had to find another recipe to weave apricot and coconut into and these bars were just the place.

These little darlings are chock full of natural goodness and are a simple mix of bananas, oats, dates, natural peanut butter, maple syrup, vanilla bean paste and of course apricot and coconut.  Pictured below are flaked almonds, however I decided to leave them out of the batter and replace instead with extra shredded coconut.  Doing so created a much more friendly baby led weaning texture and these squares are suitable for bubs approximately 8 months and older.  Younger bubs may find the dried apricot a little too challenging.

Thanks to the food processor the apricot and coconut studded batter comes together in just moments and can be baking away to golden perfection in less than 10 minutes.  Grace really enjoyed making these bars and made sure she was in charge of measuring the ingredients, popping them into the processor and of course turning the processor on (her favourite thing to do in the kitchen).  She also managed to flatten the dough into our prepared baking tin thanks to her pint sized rubber spatula.

Once the squares had baked to golden perfection and cooled we stirred together a little melted white chocolate with greek yoghurt and vanilla bean paste to create a luscious drizzle to adorn the cooled squares with.

Along with a few fresh strawberries these apricot coconut squares make the perfect baby led weaning morning or afternoon tea snack.

To make your own batch of apricot coconut squares simply…

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apricot coconut breakfast cookies

apricot coconut breakfast cookiesapricot coconut breakfast cookies

Miss G. and I did a little baking yesterday and came up with these gorgeously golden darlings and I am so excited to share the recipe.

Not only are these babies chock full of apricot, coconut and oats but are sugar free and can be whipped up and nestled in the oven baking to golden perfection in less than 10 minutes.  And the flavour of these cookies is amazing, the vanilla bean paste and maple syrup work so beautifully with the oats to create the most incredible baby led weaning breakfast.

We ate these for breakfast this morning, along with a little fresh fig but these breakfast cookies would make the perfect addition to any lunch box and make the perfect on-the-go snack.  There not too messy either which is great for when you’re out and about.

Although I haven’t tried to freeze these cookies (they disappear way too quickly) I do think they would freeze beautifully.  Simply wrap individual portions, pop into a freezer container and stash in the deep freeze for up to 3 months.

If your little one is just beginning their baby led weaning adventure these cookies may be a little ambitious and the slightly crumbly texture may be a little too challenging.  However from approximately 8 months onwards your little one should be fine with these cookies.

To create these easy peasy apricot coconut breakfast cookies simply…

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strawberry & apple oat crisp bars

strawberry & apple oat crisp barsstrawberry & apple oat crisp bars

Oh it feels so wonderful to be back in the kitchen and baking once again.

We’ve just experienced one of the most unbelievably crazy months.

Between teething molars, tummy bugs, trips to emergency (both Grace and I), the flu, spring cleaning, redecorating the house and a family beach vacay we have been completely out of our usual routine.

The good news is we made it through and today we’re back with these totally gorgeous strawberry and apple oat crisp bars.

These bars are amazing and come from one of my all-time favourite food blogs, Smitten Kitchen.  The moment these gorgeously golden fruit layered oat bars hit my inbox I knew Grace and I had to bake them.  They’re everything we look for in a morning tea snack; they’re chock full of oats and fruit, taste incredible and are the perfect portable snack.  We made a few adjustments to the original recipe (mostly in the method so that Grace could get involved in the baking) and we also swapped the rhubarb for apple.

These bars really are a breeze to prepare, Grace and I managed to get them into the oven in less than 10 minutes and only used one mixing bowl, which is great when you’re trying to clean with an eager 18 month old chasing you around the kitchen.

Once baked, I popped a couple of the crispy golden strawberry and apple strewn bars into the lunch box and Grace devoured them alongside a little fruit for her snack at the park this morning.

To create these gorgeous strawberry & apple oat crisp bars simply…

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cranberry pecan oat bars

cranberry pecan oat barscranberry pecan oat bars

With a busier than usual weekend coming up, this morning we decided to get a little uncharacteristically organised and prepare a few lovely little snacks for the lunch box to keep us satisfied whilst on the road.

Along with an easy peasy batch of blueberry muffins and sweet corn fritters, Grace and I stirred together this gorgeously simple batch of cranberry pecan oat bars.

I love these cranberry pecan oat bars.  Not only are they sugar free and chock full of amazingly nutritious bananas, dates, oats, cranberries, coconut and pecans but they couldn’t be simpler to prepare thanks to the muscle of a food processor.  Miss G. and I were easily able to whip these bars up and have them baking away in the oven in less than 10 minutes.

And these gorgeously golden bars make the perfect baby led weaning snack.  They are firm enough to withstand tight little grips whilst soft enough for little mouths to nibble on with ease.  Grace had no trouble demolishing the chopped pecans strewn throughout the bars, however if you think your little one isn’t yet up to the task simply leave them out.

To create these gorgeous cranberry pecan oat bars simply…

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oat choc chip cookies

oat chocolate chip cookies

oat chocolate chip cookies

How do you know your baby is finished eating?

This can be one of the trickiest parts of baby led weaning and a question I get asked a lot.

Each baby has their own unique way of letting mummy and daddy know she’s done but I thought I’d share the cues Miss G. gives me in the hope they’ll help you better understand your little ones signals.

Usually I know Miss G. is finished eating when she:

  • begins to look bored
  • stops ferrying food to mouth and instead plays with her food
  • starts to squish food and mash it into her high chair tray
  • looks me directly in the eye, throws food & then giggles (my personal favourite)
  • places food into her nappy
  • generally pushes food away from her
  • uses her arms to sweep food across her high chair tray
  • attempts to climb out of her high chair
  • interested in absolutely everything other than what’s on her high chair tray
  • and when offered a little more food simply shakes her head

Learning your little ones cues can be difficult but over time it does get easier.  If you’re still unsure as to whether your little one is finished I’ve found the best thing to do is offer a little more food, usually a new flavour and see how they respond.

Now onto today’s cookies.

Still obsessed with last weeks easy peasy banana oat cookies today I decided to whip up a batch of oat chocolate chip cookies.

These little beauties are chock full of oats, coconut, dark chocolate chips and are flavoured with a little maple syrup and vanilla.

And this cookie dough couldn’t be simpler to prepare, just pop all of the ingredients into a bowl and mix with your hands, squishing and squeezing to create a soft sticky texture.  Once the dough has rested for 5 minutes or so (just until the oats a lovely and soft), add the dark chocolate chips, shape into rounds and pop into the oven to bake until golden and delicious.

To  create your own batch of oat chocolate chip cookies simply…

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