I can’t believe it’s taken me almost 12 years of being a mom to discover this method for making pancakes!
You can make a week’s worth of pancakes in 15 minutes!
First, make your pancake base. I made Paleo Sweet Potato Banana Pancakes… but you could totally use a mix like Kodiak Cakes or even Bisquick if that’s what you have on hand.
For my pancake base, I mixed 3 browned bananas, one medium baked sweet potato, 2 eggs, 2 tablespoons of cashew butter and 2 teaspoons of cinnamon until well blended. If batter seems too thick, pour in a slash of almond milk or water.
Next, prepare your sheet pan by covering with parchment paper. I sprayed my pan with cooking spray then put parchment paper down to help it stay in place.
Pour batter on the parchment lined sheet pan and spread evenly. Add toppings as desired. I created sections with different toppings to keep everyone in my family happy. For this batch, I used blueberries, strawberries, chocolate chips and left one section plain. The possibilities are endless for toppings! Next time, I’m planning on banana slices and walnuts.
Place in a 350 degree preheated oven for 15 minutes or until pancake is cooked through.
Remove and slice into squares. Serve immediately or allow to cool and store in the fridge to reheat for quick weekday breakfasts!
I’m often asked if our boys eat like we do. Short answer: yes and no. When we are home, we eat the same meals with small modifications, but it hasn’t always been this way.
Rewind to 2012, I was pregnant with our youngest son Jett, and Rush, our oldest, was in Kindergarten. What seemed like out of nowhere, Rush started constantly itching all over. He couldn’t run down the soccer field without stopping to scratch his arms and legs and his teacher reached out to let me know the itching was impacting him in school.
I took him to our pediatrician after trying everything I could think of – including changing laundry detergents and bath soaps – and her recommendation was to put him on steroids.
In my gut, I knew putting my 35 pound, 5 year old son on steroids was not the right call.
Mike and I had completed our first Whole 30 about a year before and decided we should try one with Rush. Let me tell you, this was no walk in the park. Five-year-old Rush was a mac and cheese – pizza – hot dog – eating kind of kid who wouldn’t dare come near a vegetable, so a nutritional reset rocked his little world!
We eased into it and once we got half way into the reset, the itching had not only lessened, it was completely gone. We knew something he was eating had caused the skin irritation.
During reintroduction we were able to pinpoint certain gluten-containing grains as the culprit. Had we followed the doctor’s recommendation to put him on steroids to mask the symptoms, and not addressed the root cause, he would still be struggling! Now, thanks to this nutritional reset, Rush clearly understands how the foods he eats impact how he feels.
Fast-forward to today: Do my kids eat the way we eat? Yes and no. They eat what I make with small modifications. For example, neither have a dairy intolerance, so they both drink grass-fed whole milk and eat cheese. (See the bottom of this post for sample meals.)
I’m not a food Nazi kind of parent, but my kids both know that the foods they eat will either make them more healthy or less healthy. Rush can read labels to determine added sugar content and knows the foods that will make him stronger, healthier and faster and the ones that will not. (Jett is still learning to read but knows the difference between healthy foods vs. unhealthy foods.) They eat what I make at home and (for the most part) are able to make good choices about food when they are out. Now, they are typical kids – so when offered a choice, they will absolutely go for the ice cream over an apple 😉
Rush knows if he goes to a birthday party and chooses to eat a commercially prepared cupcake, his skin will likely be impacted and he will deal with the consequences later. He is able to decide for himself when foods are worth it and when they aren’t. The fact that he is 11 years old and armed with that knowledge is powerful!
My best advice, when addressing your children’s nutrition, is to make changes, one at a time. A complete overhaul will likely end in a struggle of wills and potentially create an unhealthy relationship with food.
I highly recommend that as a parent, you model good nutrition for your children starting with breakfast. If you are having a cup of coffee and skipping food altogether in the mornings, I can promise they notice.
Protein and healthy fats for breakfast will set you and your child up for a successful day. Most mornings, my boys eat chicken nuggets, apples and a spoonful of peanut butter. Thinking out of the box and not limiting yourself or your kids to typical breakfast foods is a great place to start!
I have many friends who tell me they regularly prepare two different meals for dinner – one for their kids and one for themselves. Now, I know there are special situations with some children, however I encourage you to cook one meal for your family with small modifications. This not only saves time and money, but also teaches children to eat a variety of foods.
Here are a few dinners that are in my regular rotation with examples of how I slightly modify for my boys:
1. Roasted Salmon (The best recipe from the Pioneer Woman!) with Cauliflower Rice (Jasmine or white rice for the boys) + Roasted Broccoli topped with Tessemae’s Creamy Ranch.
My boys will be 11 and 5 this Christmas, and every year I revel in watching their awe and wonder at the holiday season. I know these “magical” years are numbered, so I’m trying my best to slow down and take it all in. I’m excited to share a new Christmas tradition with you that I think will do just that: A Book-a-Day Advent Calendar.
I can’t take credit for this amazing idea – I remember seeing it on Pinterest when Rush, my oldest son, was a baby and then was reminded of it’s brilliance again when my friend, Melissa, did it with her children last year.
The idea is to open one wrapped book every night from December 1st through Christmas Eve and read it together in front of the tree as a meaningful way to count down the days until Christmas.
Twenty-four Christmas books seemed like a lot, but I searched my house for every Christmas/Holiday/Winter-y book I could find; and it turns out, we already had a fairly good collection! I think I ended up buying about seven new ones. My youngest son is learning to read right now so I chose a few that he will be able to read to us.
I wrapped each book individually and then gave it a number to represent the day it will be opened. On December 1st all of the books will appear under our tree so the magic can begin. I’ll let the boys take turns opening the book each night. We’ll start with The Christmas Wish and end with The Night Before Christmas.
To make your own book-a-day advent calendar, you’ll need 24 Christmas, holiday, or winter-y books. If you are building your book collection you could even start by doing the 12 days leading up to Christmas. There is no need to buy all new books. You can find great books at thrift stores or borrow them from your local library. Once you have collected your books, you will need to wrap them up and number them 1-24.
Here are the books included in our Book-a-Day Advent Calendar: