Thursday, September 12, 2013

Simple School Lunches with Home-Made "Hot Cocoa" Fage Greek Yogurt

I got some coupons for free FAGE Greek Yogurt in the larger tubs, and my grocery store only had the plain flavor. (Don't even get me started on how they messed up my coupon and I had to wait in line at customer service for an extra 20-minutes, then they tried to redeem the second coupon I had brought out to show them, even though the original cashier still had my first one for the one tub I'd bought... Grrr!) I chose the 2% because I heard that the fats are good for them at this age, plus we're trying to get E to actually gain some weight here! She's below 5th percentile - she's 21-months old and still wearing 9-month clothes!

I like getting plain yogurt because it gives me the flexibility to use it as-is in recipes, and also to flavor it myself! I had originally wanted to add some chocolate syrup, but I couldn't find my Ah!laska organic chocolate syrup Yes, my fridge is that crammed and disorganized. (I love this brand - organic, dairy free, and no fake vanillin flavoring!)

In desperation, I decided to try my Ah!laska Organic Cocoa mix instead. I was really hoping that it would dissolve some, and blend to look like chocolate yogurt, but this way it looks like ground up chocolate chips - almost like a cookies and cream or chocolate chip ice cream.

[I am a BzzAgent and received the coupons as part of a campaign with FAGE Greek Yogurt]
You can, of course, use any plain Greek or regular yogurt that you like, but I prefer Greek yogurt for the nice wallop of protein versus regular yogurt (plus it tends to be less runny and dribbly and drippy!) And FAGE has a smoother, less bitter taste than most of the other plain versions I've tried.

"Hot Cocoa" Greek Yogurt
2 Tbsp sweetened hot cocoa mix
1 cup plain Fage Greek Yogurt

Combine cocoa mix and yogurt. Mix well.

So simple, and it was such a big hit!

[This post contains affiliate links.]

For My Big Girl
"Hot Cocoa" Greek yogurt and PB&Co's Dark Chocolate Dream-berries!
Van's GF "Say Cheese" crackers, Hot Cocoa FAGE Greek yogurt, organic carrots,
organic strawberries with  Peanut Butter and Company's Dark Chocolate Dreams
I packed the yogurt for both girls in our Mini Dippers; both to make a smaller serving size, and to keep them leak-proof (although Greek yogurt tends to be thick enough you don't need to worry about leaks in the EasyLunchboxes, unless a certain little someone forgets to put the lid back on before dumping the lunchbox sideways into her bag!)

The previous day, I had accidentally grabbed the wrong lunch cooler when dropping Z off for Kindy at lunch time. By the time I'd coaxed Baby back to the car, realized my mistake, and rushed back in to trade back, Z had already started eating the strawberries and small square of chocolate I had packed. There were no berries or chocolate in Z's lunch. Doh!
She had loved breaking off a bit of chocolate to eat with each berry, and told me so, with much enthusiasm. So I thought I'd make a nice surprise in her lunch for the next day - chocolate PB strawberries! It was super simple, thanks to my Dark Chocolate Dreams peanut butter (sent to me for free - thanks guys!) I just sliced the berries in half (you can go lengthwise or across the width) and spread a blob of the chocolate peanut butter on one half and sandwiched them up! I left the greens at the top to give her something to hold on to, and hey, if she accidentally ate some, the greens are the healthiest part! (Normally I save the tops to toss into smoothies!)
*if you're in a nut-free class, try making your own chocolate sunflower seed butter from MOMables!

I made a goal this school year to try and include a heart in every one of Z's school lunches, as a way to show her that I'm sending my love with her every day. So far so good! Here there are 3ish: the heart muffin cup, the baby carrot cut diagonally and arranged into a heart shape, and the heart/leaf pick to secure it

It's Not Easy Being Green (for the Toddler)
Crunchmaster GF cracker "sandwiches" with Sabra Hummus,
Hot Cocoa FAGE Greek yogurt, organic grapes and leftover corn
E had some hummus left over from the previous day's lunch, so I decided to try her on some cracker sandwiches. With regular ones, she just licks off the spreads, so I figured worst-case scenario, she'd eat her hummus! The corn was cut off of rounds of corn on the cob I had sent in both girls' lunches the day before, that neither of them really ate. Which was from one lone leftover corn cob from dinner the night before.

The grape sliced to look like a heart (just like Big Sister's carrot heart!) was secured with a heart pick, and was actually salvaged uneaten from Z's lunch the day before too. I don't throw out rejected lunch leftovers unless I have to!
*FYI to the "choking patrol": I sliced the rest of the grapes too. And hoped fervently that the thin sharp breakable pick wouldn't be in her mouth or near her eyes if I had to slam the brakes for some reason. Which I didn't. It's not a very hazardous drive from our house to Z's AM school, then back near home to her PM school.

Tools of the Trade

Food for Thought

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