Today's recipe for DIY Pesto Quinoa Bowls is my sort of dinner: Easy to customize for each family member, simple to make, and filled with wholesome but yummy ingredients. This is part of my ongoing attempt to get my little one to start eating grains again..
Yup, that's right: I currently have a daughter who won't eat grains. (Okay, she still happily downs oatmeal!). But for dinner, she's recently stopped wanting to eat rice, quinoa, or other grains. Which is frustrating on many levels, but one is that we eat grains a lot! Whole grains are a great source of fiber, B vitamins, and complex carbohydrates, and quinoa even has a nice dose of protein. She used to devour all of these foods so I'm trying, ever so slowly and ever so deliberately, to get her back on board.
I've shared some of how we approach food in our house but when something like this crops up, the biggest thing that I do is not forcing it. If she doesn't want to eat her rice, so be it. But I do make sure that there is enough other food in the meal to fill her tummy and I do my best to promote good table manners. (That should be a separate post...) And if she starts playing with the food she doesn't want to eat, I either take it away or end the meal.
These DIY Pesto Quinoa Bowls are an example of a successful meal even if your child won't eat everything in their bowl. Heck, you can even let them pick out their toppings all on their own and then you can ask them to take a taste of something they didn't choose so you can see if they like it. (They may or may not!) The eggs on top add protein, the roasted veggies add, well, vegetables, and the pesto adds nice flavor to the quinoa. I cannot say that L ate her full share of quinoa, but she loved the meal regardless because there was plenty else for her to eat.
My point? Sometimes we cook meals for our families that are successful in less traditional ways. Did she eat everything? No. Did she eat enough that she was full and well-nourished? Yes! And at the end of the day, that is my real goal. (And plus, I like quinoa a lot, so there was more for me!)
I also bet that she'll come back around to grains, just like she's starting to do with beets. Or, a mom can hope anyway.
Find the full recipe for Pesto Quinoa Bowls on recipe.com.