Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Vegetables For Breakfast

You probably know all about the value of feeding many servings of vegetables to children every day. Vegetables are so full of good nutrients, and populations of people who have a diet high in vegetables tend to be healthier. As a child care provider, you have a chance to help children get some of the vegetables that they need in their diet every day. Maybe you can even help them discover a vegetable that they never even knew they liked!

If you are a provider on the Child and Adult Care Food Program you are feeding the children in your care vegetables for lunch and supper at the very least. But what about those kids who just get to eat one of those meals at your child care home? Are they getting enough? Probably not, since most kiddos do not get enough servings of fruits and vegetables at home. You might want to try serving vegetables at breakfast on occasion to help children get what they need, and also because it can be a delicious change of pace!

I found a recipe for mini egg frittatas that I have adapted a bit. It is a very versatile because you can use any diced veggies that you have around (even leftovers)! The last time I made these I used onions, red bell pepper, zucchini and green chilies which gave them a really pretty mix of colors.

I have served these to my family for both breakfast and dinner and there are never any leftovers!

Mini Egg Frittatas
(makes 12 frittatas)

You will need:
1/2 Tablespoon olive oil
3 cups of diced veggies (for example: red bell pepper, yellow bell pepper, green bell pepper, zucchini, onion, green chilies, etc.)
1 cup low-fat grated cheddar cheese (or your favorite cheese)
10 eggs, beaten together (I usually substitute 1 cup of egg substitute- such as Egg Beaters- for 4 of the eggs just to cut down on the saturated fat and cholesterol)
2 Tablespoons chives, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large 10-inch skillet heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Saute the diced veggies for about 5 minutes or until they are slightly soft. Season with salt and pepper. Coat a muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray. Divide the veggies up among the muffin cups.

In medium-sized bowl, whisk the eggs and add the chopped chives. Fill the remaining area in the muffin molds with the egg (about 1/4 cup per muffin cup). Sprinkle the top with cheese. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until the eggs are completely set. Serve warm or cold.

Crediting information:
Makes 12 servings. Each serving is creditable for 1/4 cup of the vegetable requirement at breakfast, or 1 meat/meat alternate and 1/4 cup of the vegetable requirement at lunch or supper for 3-5 year old children.

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