Roasted vegetable salad

Suitable from 8 months
Roasted vegetable salad


We love birthdays. We are always so busy all year, so birthdays are our excuse (like we needed one) to bring all our friends together over great food. Our children’s birthdays are no exception: I particularly love the challenge of coming up with healthy treats the kids will love as much as the adults. For Theo’s third birthday we had a bit of an animal theme going on: for the children we made a watermelon hedgehog, a chocolate hedgehog, a raw marzipan owl cake and an alligator salad. The ‘adult’ food included a couple of joints of roasted lamb and lots of different salads, including this roasted vegetable salad that one of the guests was so keen to try she swept it out of my hands before I could finish making it.
Simple, delicious and versatile, this salad tastes best chilled but can be served straight from the oven. It tastes especially delicious with crumbled, mature feta cheese and is a great accompaniment to meat or fish or our favourite way: as part of a platter loaded with lots of different salads.

Recipe tips
Several people asked me for this recipe after the party. They wanted to know if they could roast the vegetables together to save time and the answer is you can, but the tomatoes might make everything soggy so I wouldn’t recommend it. I always get the best results when I roast the tomatoes on a separate tray by themselves.

Roasted carrot & almond hummus

Suitable from 8 months
Roasted carrot & almond hummus


After several recent dinnertime meltdowns, I realized that the solution lies either in serving dinner earlier or in giving my kids a small appetizer to keep them going until dinner is ready. Since we don’t always get home in time to eat earlier than 6.30pm but I don’t want them to eat so much they skip dinner, I’ve been offering up vegetable sticks to crunch on together with a small dip whilst they are waiting. That way, if they eat less than usual I’m happy knowing they filled up on something healthy.
This dip is perfect to keep your kids happy while you make dinner, as a snack or a picnic filler at any time of day. Chick peas are high in fibre, molybendum, manganese, folate, tryptophan, iron and protein. The lemon juice in this recipe contains vitamin C which helps you absorb the non-heme iron. Carrots contain lots of beta-carotene, which is vital for a healthy immune system. Almond butter contains lots of good fats and adds a great crunchy taste.
This isn’t just a recipe for children. We serve this for our adult friends at parties and picnics as well.

Recipe tips
For adults and more adventurous children you can add the optional cumin.


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Avocado & banana whip

Suitable from 4 months
Avocado & banana whip


This is definitely one of those recipes that tastes much better than it sounds, especially with chicken, but it’s a great ‘quick fix’ baby dinner when you need to put something together in a hurry. Leave out the chicken and it also makes a great dessert for toddlers. The first time I made it, little sister had to fight big brother for her share of the pot.

Recipe tips
For a breakfast, snack, dessert or the vegetarian option, leave plain. As a dinner or for something more filling, add chicken. If you’re using chicken preferably use both the brown and the white meat or just the brown meat leftover from a roast, as the brown contains much more iron. Otherwise chicken breast will do just as well.


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Funky fruit skewers

Suitable from 10 months
Funky fruit skewers


If you ask my 3-year old, there’s something about lining up fruit on a stick that just makes fruit time even cooler. We often serve fruit skewers like these at kids parties or other occasions – they are quick to make, look pretty and are loved by kids and adults alike!

Recipe tips
Use any kind of fruit in season – cherries, kiwi and strawberries for example are available in late spring/early summer, while late summer/early fall brings us apples, different kind of berries, apricots and peaches. If you want to create something special for the eye, why not line up your fruit pieces in rainbow colors? For an adult version, melt a piece of dark chocolate in a pan over hot water and drizzle over your skewers.


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Mini apple pancakes

Suitable from 10 months
Mini apple pancakes


This is a recipe that has been a regular in my family ever since I can remember. My grandparents have a big apple tree in their garden and every fall there’s an abundance of ripe apples available, so we’re making loads of apple cake, apple sauce and also these small apple pancakes which everyone loves. Preparing and frying up enough pancakes for our extended family usually takes some time, but they’re worth waiting for!

Recipe tips
If using butter or another fat/oil with a low smoke point, make sure to fry on low heat to keep your pan from smoking. These pancakes are great on their own, but can also be dusted with a little bit of cinnamon (only for kids over the age of one, if no allergy is present) and served with homemade berry compote such as blueberries, raspberries and the like. If you want to avoid wheat, replace the flour with almond flour but use slightly less (about 2/3) in order to get a similar, pourable consistency. Substitute cows milk with other milks like oat milk, almond milk etc., if needed.


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Berry & chocolate chunk cookies

Suitable from 12 months
Berry & chocolate chunk cookies

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These are cookies I made for the snack buffet at my daughter’s first birthday party. I wanted something that’s easy to grab for little hands, soft enough for small peoples’ first teeth but at the same time chewy like regular oatmeal cookies, without being overly sweet. These turned out great – a perfect combination of berries and a hint of chocolate flavor, which was much appreciated by smaller and bigger guests alike.

Recipe tips
You can replace the almond flour with regular flour, but I do quite like the nutty flavor the almond flour gives you. If you want or need to avoid oats, you could replace them with Poha (rice flakes) or unsweetened coconut flakes. I haven’t tried either so if you do, drop us a comment and let us know how it went!


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Healthy nibble mix

Suitable from 12 months
Healthy nibble mix


When I was younger, I used to love sugary treats to nibble on while working or watching a movie. Now that we have kids I hardly buy sweets anymore as we’ve gotten used to eating healthier treats if we crave something sweet.
I love this mix as it’s the perfect combination of sweet and tart. I usually mix a bigger batch and store it in a glass jar in the pantry where it lasts a long time – well it would last if it wasn’t nibbled up so quickly! It’s nice to pack a little bag of it when we go out on adventures or on a longer trip, as an emergency booster when the kids’ or my own energy levels run low.

Recipe tips
Be creative and make your own favorite mix by adding coconut flakes, other dried fruit like cranberries, apples, mango etc, or whole/chopped nuts. We often have this mix for breakfast when we run out of granola, as a topping on yoghurt mixed with some fresh fruit.


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Baby omelette

Suitable from 6 months
Baby omelette


Eggs can be one of baby’s first foods, which nowadays means around 6 months of age unless like me you wean a little earlier because your baby is hyperventilating at the mere sight of your dinner. A 2008 study found no benefit to delaying egg introduction in babies who had no known risk of allergy, although some doctors still advise parents to try the yolk first. The egg-white protein causes most adverse reactions.

There are other good reasons to introduce the yolk first. Its nutritional value is higher, both in terms of fat and nutrients such as choline, and it contains less sodium. In fact, one of the most nutritious foods one can eat is a soft boiled organic egg yolk. Modern farming means that salmonella infections from reputable sources are very unlikely these days. However, because there is still a risk, albeit extremely low, the official advice is that it is still better to cook eggs fully for babies. This omelette is a good way of getting some vegetables in at the same time.

Recipe tips
We’ve included the vegetables we had available, but you can use any vegetable you can chop up small enough for your baby’s particular needs, or leave it plain. We have been asked if one could add cheese – yes you can, but we prefer to avoid milk from animals and cheese also contains a lot of sodium so we don’t recommend it.


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Mint choc chip smoothie

Suitable from 8 months
Mint choc chip smoothie


I have always been health-conscious, but when I was pregnant with our first baby I became even more so. When that little baby turned 5 months and started eating, my interest in healthy food continued and I became even more of a foodie on his behalf. I wanted to make sure that he got healthy food that tasted really great so that he would want to eat it. But I didn’t want a healthy diet to be a boring, tasteless diet and I didn’t want to ban sweet things from our lives, so creating delicious, healthy dishes and treats became a way of life for us.

When he was old enough to ask for pudding I started experimenting with raw chocolate and desserts made with cocoa and nuts. Almond flour, cocoa nibs, all kinds of coconut and other raw ingredients became staples in my pantry. Theo is three now and we love to create new dishes together and enjoy food together as a family. In the summer we eat our breakfast on the balcony and this recipe is our current favourite.

This is a delicious, refreshing smoothie with just the right combination of minty and sweet flavors. It is very nutritious, containing good fats as well as magnesium and calcium. We love it as a breakfast treat or mid-afternoon snack.

Recipe tips
We have made this with and without the spinach and avocado and it tastes great both ways. Avocado tends to dull the sweetness. We tend to have less of a sweet tooth, so add a bit more banana if you want to increase the sweetness.

Now that the sun is out we’ve also been making ice lollies with the same mixture. Just pour the smoothie into ice-lolly moulds, add the sticks and leave in the freezer for a couple of hours.


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Rainbow salad

Suitable from 8 months
Rainbow salad

This salad is a quick, easy, delicious addition to a meal or a meal in itself. It is popular with all the family and an ideal way to get vegetables and salad into small children.

My son piles this onto his plate until nothing else fits: a bowl we made to last two meals lasted less than half an hour.

Recipe tips
Anything that can be grated can be added or substituted. For the littlest foodies, chop the vegetables well after grating them to avoid them getting stuck in the throat. If I have it I often add some shredded kale, which I pulse briefly in the food processor before adding the same dressing by rubbing it into the leaves until they soften up, then tossing it with the rest of the salad.


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Party crocodile

Suitable from 12 months
Party crocodile


I’ve been wanting to make a cucumber crocodile for ages after having seen something similar in some magazine, so an invitation to an animal themed 3rd birthday party was the perfect opportunity to create this very cool looking yet totally healthy snack! This croc requires a little bit of patience when carving the teeth, but I promise the outcome will be worth it.

Recipe tips
Since this recipe uses a lot of toothpicks, adult supervision is required especially for smaller kids when devouring the crocodile.


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Pancake snails

Suitable from 8 months
Pancake snails


I’m not sure if many people actually use a recipe to make pancakes, as the simplest version really only contain three ingredients (four if you add salt). Still I think it is fun to post some inspiration to how to give very basic food a twist and make it into a fun snack. We’ve included a sweet and a savory filling but the possibilities are endless, see more ideas in the recipe tips!
This is a great recipe to make with toddlers or smaller kids, as they like spreading the filling on the pancake and rolling up the strips into snails. I had the feeling that my son was slightly intrigued when I told him that we were making snails, i.e. something that usually doesn’t at all belong in the kitchen. Let your kids help decorate and make their very personal pancake snail and I’m sure they’ll have a blast!

Recipe tips
Other tasty pancake toppings – though maybe less suited for rolling up – include sliced bananas, mixed berries, lime juice, shredded pineapple, chopped nuts, coconut flakes, thinly sliced cheese, strips of thinly sliced salami or shaved turkey, minced meat with herbs, soft-steamed strips of mixed vegetables, or thin slices of salmon.
You can use any kind of milk for this recipe – cow’s milk, almond milk, soy milk etc. – though the taste will vary slightly. If you go traditional and fry your pancakes in butter, keep in mind that butter has a very low smoke point (the temperature where an oil or fat starts breaking down into different components and producing a blue-ish smoke, also marking the beginning of both flavor and nutritional degradation), so make sure to fry on low to medium temperature. If using oil, you could for example use refined coconut oil which has a higher smoke point and an adequate taste for frying pancakes.


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Carrot cake train

Suitable from 12 months
Carrot cake train


A few days before my son’s 3rd birthday party, I asked him what kind of cake he wanted. “A car! …No, an elephant!” Then, after some thinking: “A train!!!” So a train it was. I looked for train-shaped cake tins but couldn’t find any in the local stores, and found the ones online simply too expensive for one-time use.
I decided to skip the carriages and only do a train engine. I used a 10 x 24 cm (4 x 9.5 in) loaf-shaped cake tin for the base, plus made a 10 x 10 cm (4 x 4 in) square tin from cardboard covered with aluminum foil – this cake cube was later set on top of the base to make the engineer’s cabin.

I knew I wouldn’t be having much time on the day of the party as I had a bunch of other food to prepare, so I chose to keep the decoration simple and frosted the entire cake with a no-sugar frosting, added round biscuits as wheels and piped some simple decorations on the cake. It is by no means perfect but I think considering that I was juggling a slightly squirmy baby at the same time, it turned out ok! The birthday boy loved his cake, which was the main thing. 🙂

Recipe tips
You can of course also make this as a regular shaped round or rectangular/square cake. You might need to adjust the baking time according to the size of your cake tin(s). Check the color of the cake in the oven (it should be golden brown) and do the toothpick test – a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake should come out slightly crumbly or clean.


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Egg chicks

Suitable from 6 months
Egg chicks


We made these cute egg chicks the other day and my son was so excited, so I had to share. This is not a real recipe as such but inspiration for a snack that I’m sure your kids will love as well! How will you be serving your eggs this Easter? 🙂
Note: Eggs are the second most common food allergy in kids. Medical experts used to advise that babies under 12 months should not be given egg whites, as they are more likely to trigger an allergic reaction than the yolk. More recent studies have shown though that there is no benefit in delaying the introduction of egg whites to your baby’s diet. The current recommendation is that babies can be given whole eggs – yolks and whites – from 6 month of age, as long as they are no known food allergies in the family. Be sure to consult your pediatrician if in doubt!

Recipe tips
For babies, toddlers and pregnant women (or anyone with a compromised immune system) the current recommendation is that eggs should be completely cooked to avoid the risk of salmonella. Use organic eggs if you can. If you prefer the carrot beaks to be cooked, throw them in the water with the eggs for around 3-4 minutes.


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Tomato soup with mascarpone

Suitable from 8 months
Tomato soup with mascarpone


It always surprises me how simple it is to make a good soup, and tomato soup is no exception. We had this for dinner the other night and it made me so happy that the whole family could eat the same food without any extra preparations – even my 8-month old couldn’t get enough of it.
Tomatoes are excellent sources of antioxidants (found to protect us from different cancers as well as promoting healthy skin and bones), dietary fiber, minerals and vitamins (especially vitamins A and C). Did you know that a tomato is technically a fruit? A fruit is generally defined as the edible part of a plant containing the seeds, while a vegetable is the edible stems, leaves, or plant roots. Who would’ve known!
Some babies are extra sensitive to acidy food like tomato and citrus fruit, usually showing mild symptoms like redness or swelling around the mouth. Stronger reactions are very unusual. If your baby seems sensitive to tomatoes it’s best to wait a few months and then try again.

Recipe tips
Fresh basil gives this soup a real taste kick – if you don’t have any fresh one on hand though you can replace it with 1 tsp of dried, or even a click of green pesto. If you prefer your soup chunky rather than smooth, simply skip the hand blender in the end!


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