Melissa, October 21, 2013

We are SOO excited to have brought home our favourite products from last weeks ABC Kids Expo. Go social and ‘like’ everyone on facebook. We will be adding more details every day to the giveaway list. That is 5 days of awesome prizes totalling far beyond what our tired brains can add up after this busy trade show! a Rafflecopter giveaway GIVEAWAYS!                                                  

Black Bean Burgers

Melissa, October 16, 2013

I am always happy when I cook up something new and my little man loves it – it kinda makes my day! They are super easy to make, provide a lot of fibre, protein, minerals – manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper and iron, and vitamins – thiamine, folate, beta carotene, vitamin C and B6 and taste delicious. So here it is: Black Bean Burgers 2 cups black beans, cooked, or equivalent canned 1 small onion, chopped 1 to 2 cloves of garlic, chopped 1 tbsp coconut oil 1 sweet potato, chopped and steamed ¼ cup salsa 2 tbsp ground flax 2 tbsp tamari 1 tbsp miso 2 tsp mustard 1 tsp herb de Provence ¼ to ½ cup brown rice bread crumbs   Heat oil over medium heat, add onion and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes; add garlic and sauté another 2 to 3 minutes. Add remaining ingredients, except brown rice bread crumbs, mix well to combine and heat through. Add brown rice bread crumbs, mix well. Remove from heat and mash to desired consistency (we left ours pretty chunky).  Let mixture cool to touch. When cool, form into burgers (I have gotten 5 or 6 burgers depending on size) and place on baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes, turning half way through, until golden and crispy on the outside and soft and moist on the inside. Enjoy! What is your little food critic eating lately that is making you happy?

Mashed Potatoes and Peas

Melissa, October 10, 2013

A Few Words About Megan: My name is Megan and I am a Flight Attendant, married to a Pilot and mom to my adorable 6 month old son. I love to travel and document our life adventures over on my blog http://flythefriendlyskies.blogspot.com. We are excited to show our son all about the world we live in and he has already taken 8 flights and has a stamp in his passport. I am so very excited to join the LitterLESS Lunch team! Since becoming a mom, I’ve been a lot more aware of what we put into our bodies, where our foods come from and what we can do to minimize the waste. We’ve joined a CSA from local farmers, have been eating more organic and in season foods and using Wean Green cubes for my sons foods. I hope to teach my son about where our foods come from and what we can do to litter less as he grows!

Save Money By Going Green

Melissa, October 9, 2013

You may have heard that going green saves money. But wouldn’t it be nice to see some real numbers? The graphic below is from Grades of Green’s Trash Free Tuesdays activity. As you can see, using reusable containers and packing food from larger supplies rather than individually wrapped portions does save money! For more ideas on how you can do this, check out our Back 2 School Guide. Who wouldn’t want an extra $300 each year?

Detox Waters

Melissa, October 2, 2013

We all know it is very important to drink enough water daily to make sure we keep our bodies well hydrated, but still some people find it very difficult to get in their daily dose. Whether it is for yourself, your child or both, making home detox waters that are full of nutritious flavour can help to get that water down! You can make a batch of detox waters and store them in your Wean Green containers in the fridge to keep cool or bring them with you when on the go! This is a great drink to send off with children for the day at school, day camp, etc. – Try classic lemon water and add a dash of agave or coconut nectar to make your own lemonade! Added bonus: this drink will stimulate digestion – Try cucumber, lemon and ginger with fresh mint leaves to really detoxify and reduce inflammation – Try watermelon and lime water with fresh mint leaves for a great and refreshing summer detox drink Have fun with these! Add in whatever you’d like – strawberries, oranges, apples, herbal tea bags and a little sweetener to make iced teas, etc. These drinks will look pretty, taste delicious, and help you and/ or your children stay hydrated all summer long! For more summer recipes check out Marni’s Savour the Summer Cooking series here! Marni Wasserman is Culinary Nutritionist  & Health Strategist at Toronto’s First Plant Based Food Studio. www.marniwasserman.com

Trashy Trivia Time

Melissa, September 25, 2013

Did you know that Los Angeles County throws away enough trash to fill Dodger Stadium each week? Or that a single aluminum can takes between 80 and 100 years to decompose? Some of the statistics regarding our country’s current wastefulness are staggering. One way to encourage waste reduction is to educate youth on these statistics and the ways in which they can make a positive difference. The two statistics above are from Grades of Green’s “Trashy Trivia” cards. The trivia cards ask questions about what happens to our waste and also bring up suggestions for positive change like using reusable lunch containers and making sure recyclables end up in the recycle bin. To learn more interesting facts (or print a set of Trashy Trivia cards for yourself), check out all of Grades of Green’s downloads as part of its Trash Free Tuesdays activity:http://www.gradesofgreen.org/initiatives/trash-redux/trash-free-Tuesdays

LitterLESS Lunch Tips

Melissa, September 23, 2013

We are almost a month in! Congrats to those that are making the efforts!! Here are some of the tips that I am finding as I go along-if you have some please share! 1. Copy the Stores-look to see what is on store shelves and copy them in a healthy homemade option! Examples: fruit cups, sauces, meats, crackers, sweet treats, etc. 2. Get Organized-on Sunday nights I have been busy in the kitchen slicing, dicing and cooking for the upcoming week. Have everything ready and in containers in the fridge so the kids can grab what they need and fill their lunch bag in the morning. I try to do the main dish in the morning so that it is hot and fresh. Here is my break down for 2 kids: 10 Snack Cubes of ‘fruit bowls’ (whatever is in season or readily available). Mix the up so they don’t have the same every day. 10 Wean Tubs of veggie slices (cut to the length of the container to take full advantage). Again, mix it all up so they don’t get bored. 10 Snack Cubes of homemade crackers. Here are some of my fave recipes: Whole Wheat Cheddar Crackers, Toddler Crackers, Apple Cinnamon Crackers). 10 Snack Cubes of healthy treats like homemade muffins, homemade pudding or sometimes even a cookie or two:) 10 Wean Bowls to cover the dairy food group. This is sometimes a nice plain yogurt with a Wean Cube of granola to dump in or cut up cheese to go with their crackers. 3. Keep it COLD. I throw a bunch of containers in the freezer the night before school and then pack the cold items in the frozen containers. It keeps the food nice and cold until lunch time. 4. Keep the kids involved! Let them help slice, dice and cook. Ask them to make a meal plan for the week and bring them grocery shopping to pick up all the ingredients. Even just letting them choose from your prepared options will make them more likely to finish all the food up:) 5. Create a Recipe Box. Mine is digital so I don’t have to print. I have a folder on my computer that has all the recipes that I try. If the kids don’t like it I save the file as ‘don’t make-crappy crackers’. Find your favourite websites. Here are some to get you started: http://weelicious.com/ http://www.marthastewart.com/ http://ohsheglows.com/ http://www.annaliisasorganickitchen.blogspot.ca/ http://thepioneerwoman.com/ http://www.parents.com/recipes/familyrecipes/lunch/super-food-lunch-ideas/ Happy Lunch Making;) ~Melissa

Steamed Vegetables with Garlic Butter Sauce

Melissa, September 19, 2013

Ingredients – 1 1/2 cups cauliflower, cut into bite-size florets – 1 1/2 cups broccoli, cut into bite-size florets – 1 cup carrots, sliced into pieces of 1/4″ thickness – 1 cup mushrooms or celery (or both!), cut into slices – 1/2 cup butter – 1 bulb garlic, peeled and crushed (or less to taste) – several pinches of fresh rosemary, basil, or dried oregano – 1 tsp salt (or more to taste) – 1/4 tsp ground black pepper Directions Take all of your cut up veggies and steam them in a pot (easiest way is with cauliflower and broccoli on the bottom and everything else on top) for about 10 minutes on high heat. Test with a fork to make sure they are ready. They should be firm (so they won’t fall apart), but you should be able to poke the fork through to the center. Put vegetables into a colander and run under cold water, which will prevent the vegetables from continuing to cook and becoming too soft. Set aside. Now prepare the sauce. Over low heat, melt the butter. Now add the crushed garlic and the herb of your choice, and let simmer for several minutes, until the sauce becomes very fragrant. Remove from heat and let the flavors continue to marinate for a few minutes. Put the sauce into a large bowl, and mix in the salt and pepper. Add the mixed vegetables, and toss to coat. Serve, and enjoy!   A Word From Lalia: Lalia Frolick began the Found Frolicking blog in order to write about life as a “crunchy” mama. Her blog is a little bit of everything: she shares her reflections and experiences of motherhood along with recipes, DIY projects, reviews, promoting giveaways, and more! She grew up in San Francisco, California, and was raised to have a global appreciation of diversity and cuisines from India, Greece, Thai, Italy, and more. Although Lalia has been living in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada (as if you didn’t know where that is!) for over 4 years, she hopes to return to California soon to be closer to her extended family. She currently lives with her husband, 1-year-old son, and two furry rascals: a chocolate lab and a manx cross (that’s supposedly supposed to be a cat, but he acts more like a small dog).  

New Ways To Use Your Wean Greens

Melissa, September 18, 2013

Wean Green comes in a wide variety of sizes and shapes making them practical containers for all kinds of things! Here are 4 ways to use your Wean Greens you may not have thought of yet: – Soaking: Soak your nuts and seeds to boost their nutritional value and make them more easily digested by your body through reducing physic acid and neutralizing enzyme inhibitors. Some great nuts and seeds for soaking are cashews, almonds, pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds. Simply take your nuts and seeds, put them in separate Wean Green containers, cover them with reverse osmosis or purified water, let sit overnight, drain and rinse and then use as desired! Learn all about soaking (and sprouting) here. – Growing Herbs: Use your Wean Green containers for growing your own detox herbs! You can grow herbs such as basil, thyme, peppermint, lavender and lemongrass. Start with a high quality, organic, light potting soil to plant your seedlings. Once planted, you will need to ensure your seedlings get frequent exposure to sunlight, enough water and organic fertilizer. Once grown you can use as desired! Snip off some fresh herbs to add delicious flavour to your cooking or dry your herbs and make your own home herbal detox teas! Check out the benefits of growing your own herbs and veggies here. – Storing Homemade Flavours: Get busy in the kitchen by creating your own spice mixes, sauces, salad dressings, spreads, etc. This will be a fun new way for you and your family to explore new tastes and flavours! Try adding some great detox flavours to your creations such as cayenne pepper, ginger and cinnamon. Wean Greens wide variety in sizes makes them perfect for holding all of these homemade mixtures so that you always have quick and easy access to your favourite flavours to add to meals! – Make Single Serving Raw Avocado Chocolate Pudding: If your child has a sweet tooth they will enjoy this one! Make a simple and delicious raw chocolate mousse with avocados, raw cacao powder, unsweetened almond milk, raw almond butter, agave and soaked dates for a nourishing snack or dessert to enjoy together at home or on the go. You can add in additional flavours and raw food toppings raw cacao nibs, goji berries, coconut, etc. Use Wean Greens snack cubes or tubes to have the perfect single serving size of this pudding! Marni Wasserman is Culinary Nutritionist  & Health Strategist at Toronto’s First Plant Based Food Studio. www.marniwasserman.com  

Last Night’s Dinner is Tomorrow’s Litterless Lunch

Melissa, September 12, 2013

One of our weekly dinners involves some kind of chicken, veggies, and grains.  This particular dinner was chicken breast marinated in Maui Maid Natural marinade and baked, steamed peas and carrots, and jasmine rice.  This is a quick and easy meal to make for dinner and leftovers pack easily for lunch the next day. A Few Words From Rosella: I live in San Francisco.  I’m married and mother to a beautiful 2 year old boy.  I have a wonderful job working full-time for a software company.  I am passionate about photography, food, and travel.  I love to cook when I can and I enjoy trying new recipes.  My current obsession is dark chocolate, sea salt chocolate chip cookies. I am thrilled to be a part of the LitterLESS Lunch Team because I like knowing what ingredients make up the food that my family eats.  I’m fortunate to live in an area that has an abundance of organic foods readily available but sometimes it’s still difficult to find healthy options when we go out, so packing along a lunch saves money and provides my family with a healthier meal or snack when we go out.  Wean Green glass containers come in so many different sizes, it’s easy to pack something simple as crackers for the little one, to full meals for the adults.

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