September 19, 2013 by Shannon
Over the last month, help my husband and I have been adjusting to the new changes in our house. We remodeled the kitchen, doctor put in new carpets, nurse bought new furniture… Oh, yeah, we also became foster parents to the most adorable 11 year old girl ever.
We quickly learned that our diet of sprouted, raw and spicy foods isn’t quite what falls into a tweens idea of tasty. I swear, this child has super human senses. There is no sneaking anything past her! Not only were our food choices “weird”, they were vegan which was something she wasn’t used to. After failing miserably with my fancy recipes, I decided to go old school and try to re-create some of the classic kid foods I grew up with. Surprisingly enough, she liked them!
Top 10 Soy-Free Vegan Foods Kids Will Love
1. Mac n’ Cheese. Earth Balance makes a boxed version of mac n’ cheese similar to the Kraft version I grew up with. I prefer to make my own mac n’ cheese from scratch but the boxed stuff works in a pinch! Add some veggies or cut up some Field Roast frankfurters!
2. Hamburger-less Helper. How on EARTH do you make soy-free, vegan, meat-filled pasta you say?! Peep THIS! Delicious. You can omit the cheese if you like.
3. Enchiladas. This recipe adds a fun twist using mashed potato flakes. Use whatever veggies they like and swap out the butter, milk and cheese for vegan versions like soy-free Earth Balance, almond milk and Daiya.
4. Pizza. I’m sure there are people that exist that don’t like pizza. I, personally, have yet to meet them. EVERYONE likes pizza. If you’re in a hurry, Daiya has a decent frozen selection. Stores like Whole Foods have pre-made dough as well. Just add some sauce, veggies, Daiya and bake away!
5. Pigs-less in a Blanket. The ultimate kid food. Immaculate Baking Company makes fluffy, light, melt-in-your-mouth crescent rolls like a boss. Wrap it around a slice of Daiya cheese and part of a Field Roast sausage and you’re good to go!
6. Lasagna. You can even make this recipe gluten-free if you swap out wheat noodles for gluten-free noodles. BOOM!
7. Sloppy Joes. I bet you didn’t know the sauce was vegan, did you?! Most grocery stores carry Manwich, the sloppy joe sauce. All you need to do to complete this quick and easy week night meal is chop up a loaf of Field Roast Celebration Roast, throw it in a food processor until it becomes crumbly and resembles ground beef, add the “meat” to a pan and mix it with a can of Manwich and heat. Serve it on a vegan burger bun and… viola!
8. Veggie Rice Bowls. As simple as it gets. Buy some awesome rice. Follow the directions on the bag and set aside. Stir-fry your favorite veggies in a pan over medium-high heat with a little vegetable oil or water and add a bit of salt, pepper and Coconut Aminos to taste. This is probably your healthiest bet.
9. Tacos or Taco Salad. Again, Field Roast to the rescue! Throw a Celebration Roast in the food processor until it resembles ground beef, season and heat the “meat” in a pan with a dash of cumin or taco seasoning (some taco seasoning packets contain milk, make sure you read the labels!) Build your tacos however you like, Daiya shreds, lettuce, tomato, avocado, beans, go nuts!
Now, I know what you’re thinking. These foods aren’t very healthy, right? While they may not be packed with all the vitamins and nutrients we’d like them to have, they are a great way to transition kids who are used to eating meat into a vegan diet. It also provides a great opportunity to talk to your child about why vegan choices are important and how they not only affect their health, but how their food choices affect the animals and the planet.
Wish us luck on this new adventure!