Cauliflower Rice for Kids
I had one of those weeks this week.
I had my large family over for lunch on our public holiday Monday which meant I did not get a chance to get organised for the week. As a working mum, I like to plan our menu for the week and make sure our shopping is done over the weekend. This helps us to make sure we all eating healthy meals, that I can prepare quickly.
When I have a week when things are crazy, I like to pull out my cauliflower rice recipe. It is really quick to make, my kids love it and its a great way to make sure my boys are getting a veggie packed meal.
Step 1: Making the Cauliflower Rice
If you have not used cauliflower rice before, I say give it a go. I love using it as a base for meals instead of rice or combined with rice. It is such a great way to up our veggie intake. I tend to make it in a food processor as it is nice and quick (despite having to clean the machine!). For those with a Thermomix, the chopping is the easy part for you! You can also just use a cheese grater to do this step, it will just take a little longer.
As you can see, I process it until it is the size of rice. This only takes about 1 minute to do. I make about 1-2 cups for the recipe which is about a quarter of a cauliflower.
Step 2. Cut up the Vegetables
The next step is to chop up your veggies. It really doesn't matter what you use. I tend to just look in the fridge and use whatever we have. We are part of a veggie coop so always have vegetables in the fridge that need using. I tend to use about 2 cups of vegetables for this recipe. If you are really stuck on time there is no reason why you couldn't use frozen vegetables or the vegetables that are pre-cut in the supermarket.
Here I have used broccoli, green beans, capsicum, carrot and baby spinach leaves for the rice. I have also used sweet potato, zucchini, corn and peas! Although I am not a fan of "hiding vegetables", this is one of the only ways my zucchini hating son will eat zucchini!
Step 3: Cutting up the Protein
For this recipe I used about a half a chicken breast, which I cut up finely. You could really use any type of protein that you had in the fridge or freezer. For those who are vegetarian then an omelette would work well. You can also add more chicken to this recipe. I only had a half a chicken breast so that is what I used. The protein part of the meal really helps to fill up your kids tummies so feel free to use more.
As the cooking process is fast, I also tend to measure all the sauces I use into a bowl first. Makes life much easier later. This is about a tablespoon and a half of salt-reduced soy sauce (you could also use Tamari) and about a quarter of a teaspoon of sesame oil.
Step 4: Cook the Chicken
I always cook the chicken first and then add it back later to the rice. Heat some oil in the pan and cook the chicken for about 2-3 minutes, until lightly browned. I use a wok on a very high heat so this doesn't take very long. Once cooked remove from pan and set aside for later.
Step 5: Cook the Vegetables and Rice
I next add all of the vegetables and then the rice. I cook the veggies for about a minute and then add the raw cauliflower rice straight in. I don't worry about steaming the cauliflower first, it cooks well this way.
The whole process takes about 3- 4 minutes. I like my vegetables to have a slight crunch to them and they retain a lot of their nutrients this way.
Step 6: Add the chicken back in and the sauce
Once the vegetables and cauliflower are cooked, add the chicken back in as well as the soy and sesame oil mixture. I mix this around and then taste. You might find you need to add a little more soy sauce. Of course you don't have to just use soy sauce, other Asian sauces would work well. You could also add some garlic and ginger for more flavour.
Step 7: The Finished Product
Once the sauce is added cook for another minute and then dinner is finished! Quick, easy, healthy and tasty!
A Hint for the Fussy Eaters!
I know not all kids will take to the Cauliflower Rice straight away! What you can do is mix normal cooked rice in with the Cauliflower Rice. Check out the picture below, it looks like a normal fried rice but so much better!!!
Was this helpful? I hope so. Please leave your comments below.
Dr Jennifer Cohen
"Providing Bite-Sized Pieces of Nutrition Information to Busy Families"
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