grilling tip + gratitude

Posted by on Jun 17, 2013 in cooking with kids, families, healthy food, local food, lunch time, Recipes | 2 comments

5062066751_bbfb3a8ce4Calling all grilling enthusiasts!

Leave a lasting mark on your summer grilling ingredients by using the “cross hatch” method.

Not only does the cross hatch make your food look pretty, it allows it to cook more evenly ensuring that your ingredients both look and taste delicious.

Check out our last table top of the school year that our students get to read during lunch. Hopefully this cooking method will inspire our students during their fun summer cook outs!

Happy end (or almost end) of the school year for all! It’s been an amazing year filled with lots of healthy food, nutrition education, cooking classes and happy and healthy children.

Thanks to everyone that has been apart of making our program a success, and to all of our students, parents and faculty for being so supportive, informative and enthusiastic.

Looking forward to another spectacular school year ahead, and a rich, fun and eye opening summer camp program to come!

With gratitude,

The Butter Beans Team

Photo courtesy of Dinner Series

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family dinner guide – week 3

Posted by on Jun 14, 2013 in cooking with kids, families, healthy food, healthy lifestyle, raising children, Recipes | 0 comments

Screen Shot 2013-05-24 at 10.03.06 AMBelinda is back with week 3 of her family dinner guide.  

Are you ready for another week of home cooked delicious family meals?

“What’s for dinner” – Week 3

It is 7:00 am, Friday morning. In order to plan out the week’s meals in a thoughtful, orderly way, my method is to take a few hours on Friday morning and knock it out. Today, however, life is interfering and I don’t have a few hours to spare. Since I know that this happens to everyone, not just me, you will appreciate the scramble of figuring it out anyway, just in a lot less time. This is when the real gratitude comes in for what we have prepared for previous weeks that we have in the freezer.

You will notice from this week’s menu, we are keeping the prep light to help us make it through the week with less time to plan, and we are throwing in a pizza night at the local pizzeria. After all, we have managed to make homemade, healthy meals on the table every night for three whole weeks, which is an accomplishment for any working set of parents with young children!

Enjoy dinner, and let us know if you want me to include any specific recipes that you like to prepare for your family in the comments below, or on facebook!

This week, our menu is:

4519568860_08a48e4898Monday: Fish tacos with guacamole and slaw

Tuesday – Kids’ Choice Night:  Mac n cheese, broccoli, chicken cutlets

Wednesday: Rice pasta with sautéed shallots, garlic, veggies and bacon (optional)

Thursday:  Panini night – your choice of ingredients and side salad

Friday: Let’s go out for yummy pizza!

This week’s grocery list for a family of four is right here. Plan to have these items in the house by Saturday evening and you are ready to go. Planning – check. Groceries – check. What’s for dinner? – check.

Here is your personal Sunday prep for the week as well as your nightly prep guide that will take the guess work out of every night.

Have fun.

Good luck.

And enjoy homemade meals every night of the week!

Photo courtesy of Stacy Spensley

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10 father’s day breakfast ideas

Posted by on Jun 14, 2013 in cooking with kids, families, healthy food, healthy lifestyle, Recipes | 7 comments

4723553277_9684516e90This Sunday is Father’s Day!

What better way to say thank you than to cook him up a delicious and hearty breakfast!

To get you thinking, here are some fun ideas for breakfast:

  • Poached eggs with spinach and smoked salmon over crusty bread
  • Baked polenta with corn and chorizo topped with poached eggs
  • Whole grain blueberry pancakes with maple syrup or strawberry sauce
  • Oatmeal bar with fun toppings that he gets to pick
  • Tofu scramble with sweet potato hash
  • Almond butter filled fresh croissants with jam on the side
  • Oven baked frittata with fresh summer veggies topped with cheese and hot sauce
  • French toast with lemon and orange zest topped with sliced bananas and coconut shreds
  • Huevos rancheros with black beans, avocado, cilantro, sour cream, corn tortillas
  • Tortilla española with chorizo and peppers

Along with his favorite morning beverage, some great company, and a fun plan for the day, your celebration is bound for success!

Happy Father’s Day!

Photo courtesy of edenpictures

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sweet potatoes to the rescue

Posted by on Jun 10, 2013 in healthy food, healthy lifestyle, lunch time, nutrition, Recipes | 6 comments

7601424828_52726f8f04Wondering how to get in super nutrition in almost no time?

Hello sweet potatoes!

Incorporate these vitamin and mineral jewels into your lunch, dinner or breakfast repertoire and your skin just may glow, your immune system might get stronger, and your cravings for sweets may slowly diminish.

Use your time in the kitchen wisely, and when you’re making dinner the night before pop a few in the oven on 400F and let roast for 1 hour (this method will increase the sugar content), or cut them up into pieces and steam them until soft (this method will lessen the sugar content).

A great way to increase the beta carotene benefits of sweet potatoes is to eat them together with some healthy fats like olive oil or nuts.

To increase the fiber benefits make sure to also eat the peel!

Steamed sweet potatoes:

Rinse, then chop up sweet potato into 1 inch slices, then in half. Add water into your pot, along with a steamer basket. Once water reaches a boil, add sweet potatoes, cover and let cook for 7-10 minutes, until soft.

photo-47Recipe ideas:

Breakfast: Blend your steamed sweet potatoes then add a touch of maple syrup and top with cinnamon and walnuts (or seeds) or oats/granola/muesli.

Lunch: Add the steamed pieces to brown rice or quinoa with a lemon dijon vinaigrette (olive oil, lemon juice, dijon mustard, garlic, sea salt, black pepper).

Dinner: Mash with some olive oil, salt, pepper as a healthy side, add steamed pieces to a stir fry, or blend into a soup with some ginger.

You can’t go wrong with these stellar spuds!

Photo courtesy of You As A Machine

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Minty carrots

Posted by on Jun 7, 2013 in healthy food, healthy lifestyle, local food, nutrition, Recipes | 0 comments


Transform your ordinary carrots into this unordinary salad.

It’s more delicious than you could ever imagine!

Recipe adapted from George Mateljan

Serves 3-4 Prep time: 3 minutes Total time: 15 minutes


  • 6 medium-sized carrots, cut into thick pieces
  • 1/2 tbsp parsley or cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tbsp mint, chopped
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds or sesame seeds
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • olive oil to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Bring water to a boil in steamer with a tight fitting lid.
  2. Steam carrots in basket until al denté.
  3. Chop rest of ingredients and toss with carrots, enjoy!!
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