Meal Planning

April 2024

WIC Foods Perfect For Toddlers

2024-05-02T00:56:30+00:00April 29th, 2024|Categories: Meal Planning, Mom Health, Recipes, WIC Food, WIC Nutrition|Tags: , , , |

WIC foods are a great way to make sure your little ones are getting good nutrition. When WIC foods are part of a recipe, you know you are giving them healthy choices. Coming up with new ways to get your little ones to try new foods can be very challenging.

These easy recipes are perfect for toddlers, and they feature WIC-approved foods.

PEANUT BUTTER, BERRY OATMEAL

Oatmeal

Berries

Peanut butter

Cook oatmeal according to package directions.

Stir in a spoonful of peanut butter and mashed berries. Mix until well combined and serve warm.

Here is another recipe perfect for your little one, but tasty enough for the entire family to try.

VEGETABLE, LENTIL SOUP

1 cup dried lentils, rinsed and drained

4 cups vegetable broth

2 cups water

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, diced

2 carrots, diced

2 celery stalks, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon dried thyme

Salt and pepper to taste

2 cups diced tomatoes, fresh or canned

2 cups chopped spinach

Juice of 1 lemon

In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add diced vegetables. Cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add spices to the pot. Cook for another couple of minutes. Add dried lentils, broth, and water to the pot. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 25 minutes or until lentils are tender. Stir in diced tomatoes, spinach and cook another 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice. Add salt and pepper to taste.

TUNA, AVOCADO SANDWICH BITES

Canned tuna, drained

Avocado, mashed

Whole-wheat bread, toasted

Mash avocado and mix with canned tuna

Spread mixture on whole-grain bread and cut into triangles.

Pick up all your WIC foods at a Grocery Services North store near you!

March 2024

Easy Family Dinner Featuring WIC Foods

2024-03-24T23:34:38+00:00March 24th, 2024|Categories: Meal Planning, Recipes, WIC Food, WIC Grocery Shopping, WIC Nutrition|Tags: , , |

Red Beans & Rice

1 cup diced onion

2 tbsp minced garlic

1 tomato, diced

2 celery stalks, diced

1 jalapeno, diced

½ cup diced bell pepper of any color

1 ½ cups of rice

1 can kidney beans

3 tbsp+ hot sauce (Louisiana, Tabasco, or your favorite hot sauce)

2 tbsp Soy Sauce

Salt & Pepper, Paprika, Red Pepper Flakes, Garlic Powder

Cook the rice according to package instructions. Heat oil in a large skillet then add onions. Allow to cook for about 5 minutes then add in garlic, tomato, and celery then stir together and cook for a few minutes. Add in jalapeno and bell pepper then stir together. Cook until all vegetables are tender. Add in the cooked rice and kidney beans, stir and cook for about 5 minutes. Add in the seasonings and sauces, then cook for about 5 more minutes to allow the flavors to soak in. Serve and enjoy!

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day With Colcannon Mashed Potatoes

2024-03-08T13:29:53+00:00March 7th, 2024|Categories: Meal Planning, Recipes, WIC Food, WIC Grocery Shopping, WIC Nutrition|Tags: , , , , , |

Serve up a bowl of good luck with this Colcannon Mashed Potato recipe.  This St. Patrick’s Day favorite features WIC-approved vegetables like potatoes, cabbage and milk.  It’s sure to be a hit with your family this St. Patrick’s Day and all year long.

COLCANNON MASHED POTATOES

3 large russet potatoes, cut into chunks

7 tbsp butter

⅓ head of cabbage, shredded

2 tbsp garlic, minced

4 stalks of green onion, sliced

1 cup milk

Salt, pepper, garlic powder – to taste

Cut 3 large russet potatoes into chunks and add to a large pot of water with salt. Boil until fork tender then strain the potatoes in a colander. In the same large pot, add about 4 tbsp of butter and melt. Add in shredded cabbage, green onion, and garlic then stir. Cook until the cabbage is wilted, about 10 minutes. Add in the potato chunks, mash with a fork, and stir. Add in the milk ½ cup at a time, along with 2 more tbsp of butter, and stir thoroughly. Add in salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste. Top with a slice of butter and enjoy!

January 2024

Black Bean Brownies

2024-01-10T01:55:08+00:00January 9th, 2024|Categories: Meal Planning, Recipes, WIC Food, WIC Grocery Shopping, WIC Nutrition|Tags: , , , |

Craving something sweet? Whip up a batch of tasty black bean brownies using WIC-approved ingredients like black beans and peanut butter! Trust us, you won’t even notice the difference!

BLACK BEAN BROWNIES
3 eggs
3 tbsp oil (vegetable, olive, or avocado)
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ cup peanut butter
½ cup packed brown sugar
⅓ cup cocoa powder
1 can of black beans (15oz)
Optional:
½ cup chocolate chips for topping
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Coat a 9×9 inch baking pan with oil or non-stick cooking spray. Drain and rinse the black beans. Add all ingredients aside from toppings into a blender and blend until the ingredients look well mixed. Pour into the greased baking pan and cook for 25-30 minutes. Allow the brownies to cool before cutting into pieces and serving. Enjoy!

December 2023

Breakfast Casserole Featuring WIC Foods Is Perfect For Christmas Brunch

2023-12-12T02:15:52+00:00December 11th, 2023|Categories: Meal Planning, Recipes, WIC Food, WIC Grocery Shopping|Tags: , , , , , , |

You’re in for a treat with this easy and delicious breakfast casserole using WIC approved foods like eggs, milk, and potatoes!

BREAKFAST CASSEROLE

20 oz shredded hash browns, thawed (or you can shred fresh potatoes)

1 lb breakfast sausage, cooked and drained

1 ¼ cup diced mix of onions and bell peppers

2 ½ cups shredded cheese

8 eggs

1 ⅓ cup milk

Salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika to taste

Heat a large skillet over medium high heat and brown the sausage, breaking it up into small pieces, until no pink remains. Drain excess fat in a strainer.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9×13 inch pan with oil or butter.

Add the hashbrowns, cooked sausage, diced onion and bell pepper mix, and 2 cups of cheese. Mix the ingredients together and spread them out evenly.

Crack the eggs into a large bowl, then add the milk and seasonings. Mix until well blended. 

Pour the egg mixture over the ingredients in the pan and sprinkle the remaining ½ cup of cheese on top. Bake uncovered for 1 hour.

November 2023

Thanksgiving Stuffing

2023-12-12T02:18:37+00:00November 21st, 2023|Categories: Meal Planning, Recipes, WIC Food, WIC Grocery Shopping|Tags: , , , , |

Impress your Thanksgiving guests with this delicious stuffing recipe, where every bite is a grateful celebration of savory goodness.

STUFFING

1 loaf of bread*, cut into ½ inch cubes  

½ onion, diced (about 1 cup)

3-4 stalks celery, finely diced (about 1 ½ cups)

1 medium carrot, grated

½ lb ground sausage (I use Turkey sausage)

¾ cup unsalted butter

⅓ cup fresh parsley, finely minced

3 tsp fresh sage, finely minced

2 cups chicken broth*

Salt, Pepper, and Garlic Powder, to taste

NOTES: 

Bread: For best results, use a heavier bread like wheat bread, cornbread or sourdough, not a light and airy sandwich bread like Wonderbread.

Make ahead instructions: Prepare the stuffing 1 day in advance to give the flavors time to soak in. To make ahead of time, prepare as directed but don’t bake it. Store in a covered casserole dish in the fridge. Before your Thanksgiving meal, remove the stuffing from the fridge and allow it to sit on the counter for 30 minutes to bring to room temperature, then follow the baking instructions. 

Vegetarian/Vegan: To make this vegetarian, leave out the sausage. To make this recipe vegan, use oil instead of butter and use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth. 

Cut the bread into cubes using a sharp serrated knife. Try not to smash the bread too much as you’re cutting. Spread the bread cubes out onto a baking sheet to dry out for at least 24 hours, OR set your oven to 200 degrees F and cook for 2 hours to dry, tossing them occasionally.

Finely dice the onion and celery, grate the carrot, and mince the parsley and sage.

Brown the sausage and break it into small pieces as it cooks. Drain the sausage well and use a paper towel to soak up excess grease. 

Melt the butter in a pan on medium heat and add the onions and celery. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in the carrots and cook for 3 more minutes. Add in the sage and gently stir in, cook until the sage is starting to wilt and release its flavors. 

Add the dried bread cubes into a mixing bowl, sprinkle in the parsley, add the cooked sausage, and gently mix together. Pour the veggies with butter over the dried bread cubes and sausage and gently mix again to combine. 

Slowly add in the chicken broth. Start with 1 cup and slowly pour small amounts of broth as you stir gently. It is important not to pour all of the broth in at once, as it will make soggy spots in the bread. You want to make sure the bread is slightly moist, but not overly wet. Add in your seasonings at this time as you’re stirring.

Pour the stuffing into a greased casserole dish and cover with tin foil.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes, then uncover and bake an additional 15 minutes. Enjoy your Thanksgiving stuffing!

Broccoli and Cheese Is A Great Thanksgiving Side

2023-11-22T01:09:27+00:00November 21st, 2023|Categories: Meal Planning, Recipes, WIC Food|Tags: , , , , , |

This is a Thanksgiving side dish your family will love, and it’s made with WIC-approved foods. This super nutritious vegetable topped with cheese will be loved by everyone gathered around your table. You will want to keep serving it up this winter because it’s a cozy dish for winter weather.

Cheese Sauce For Broccoli

Cooked broccoli, fresh or frozen

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons flour

1 cup of milk

1 ½ cups of shredded cheddar cheese

Salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter in a pan over medium heat. Add flour and keep whisking until you form a paste. Add milk and keep whisking for about 5 minutes or until it is thick. Add cheese and combine until melted. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add cooked broccoli to the mixture or use topping to spread on top of your broccoli, using just as much as desired. * You can also add cooked rice to the broccoli and cheese.

Note: Cheese sauce can also be used for topping for potatoes or other types of vegetables. Enjoy!

Potato Sides Perfect For Thanksgiving, Fall

2023-11-14T14:13:45+00:00November 13th, 2023|Categories: Meal Planning, Recipes, WIC Food|Tags: , , , , |

Using WIC-Approved Foods For Your Family Dinner

Fall is the perfect time to dish out comfort food, and Thanksgiving is the perfect place for these foods. Many may argue that the perfect side dish is the potato. It’s also a perfect side for Thanksgiving.

As you prepare for Thanksgiving you might already be thinking about your menu. To help make preparing for the day easier, you might need a few ideas of sides your family will love. Here are a few recipes – featuring WIC-approved foods – we think you will like.

What’s better than hot, comforting cheesy potatoes? This dish is so good it can be a dinner on its own.

SCALLOPED POTATOES

4 cups of thinly sliced russet potatoes (about 4-5 medium-sized potatoes)

2 cups of grated cheddar cheese (or your favorite cheese)

3 cups of whole milk

1/4 cup of unsalted butter

1/4 cup of all-purpose flour

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 teaspoon of salt (adjust to taste)

1/2 teaspoon of black pepper

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and cook for about 1-2 minutes. Stir in the flour to create a roux. Cook, stirring constantly, for 1-2 minutes until the roux is light golden brown. Whisk in the milk to the roux, ensuring there are no lumps. Continue to cook and whisk until the mixture thickens, which should take about 5-7 minutes. Season the sauce with salt, black pepper. Layer half of the sliced potatoes in a greased 9×13-inch baking dish. Pour half of the cheese sauce evenly over the first layer of potatoes. Repeat with another layer. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes. After 45 minutes, remove the foil and bake until the top is golden brown, and the potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork.

This next recipe is classic, and many like to serve for Thanksgiving. It’s also perfect for fall. 

MASHED POTATOES

4 large russet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter

1/2 cup milk 

Salt and pepper to taste

Peel the potatoes and cut them into evenly-sized pieces. Place the potato chunks in a large pot and cover them with cold water. Add a pinch of salt to the water. Bring the water to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and let the potatoes simmer for about 15-20 minutes or until they are fork-tender. You should be able to easily pierce the potatoes with a fork without them falling apart. Drain the cooked potatoes in a colander. Return the drained potatoes to the pot and place it back on the stove over low heat. Add the butter and milk to the potatoes. Start by adding half of the milk and butter and then adjust to your desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Mash the potatoes using a potato masher or a hand mixer. Mash until the potatoes are smooth and creamy. Be careful not to overmix.

THE PERFECT OVEN FRIED POTATOES 

4-5 medium-sized russet potatoes, scrubbed and cut into wedges

2-3 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

1/2 teaspoon black pepper, or to taste

1/2 teaspoon paprika (optional)

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, toss the potato with olive oil, salt, pepper, and any optional seasonings like paprika and garlic powder. Ensure the potatoes are evenly coated. Spread the seasoned potato pieces in a single layer on the hot baking sheet. Make sure they are not overcrowded to allow them to crisp up. Roast the potatoes in the preheated oven for about 30-35 minutes, flipping them once or twice during cooking, until they are golden brown and crispy on the outside, and tender on the inside.

Grocery Services North Announces Thanksgiving Holiday Hours

2023-11-13T14:21:35+00:00November 10th, 2023|Categories: Dallas, East Texas, Grocery Services North, Holiday hours, Meal Planning|Tags: , , , |

Grocery Services North will be closed Thanksgiving Day.

The following two stores will be open from 9 am – 3 pm the day after Thanksgiving:

Lake June – located at 6921 Lake June Rd., Dallas, TX 75217

Spring Valley – located at 8202 Spring Valley Rd. Ste. 300, Dallas, TX 75240

Stores will resume regular hours on Saturday, Nov. 25th.  All Grocery Services North stores will also be open the day before Thanksgiving. Stop by a store to pick up popular WIC-approved foods that can help you make some of your favorite holiday favorites. Looking for Thanksgiving recipes, check these out and this fun appetizer.

Veggie Platter For Thanksgiving

2023-11-07T21:26:24+00:00November 7th, 2023|Categories: Meal Planning, Recipes|Tags: , , , , , , |

Turn Your Vegetables Into A Festive Snack Board

Looking for something the entire family will love to make and eat this Thanksgiving? Try making a turkey veggie platter. 

This festive snack is healthy and full of personality. It’s also a great way to get the whole family involved in the kitchen. 

The great thing about this recipe is that you can make it with whatever you have on hand or love snacking on.

The fresh vegetables are arranged as the turkey’s feathers. The turkey’s face is made with the cut end of a bell pepper. Make his face with pieces of carrots and you can make eyes out of anything from olive pieces of tomato, capers or pickle pieces. The dip inside the bowl can be anything you love from homemade hummus to ranch or veggie dip. 

Arrange your cut vegetables on the top half of the bell pepper. Make it as small or large as you wish. This is the perfect activity for the kiddos.

Here is a recipe for homemade yogurt dip you can fill your bell pepper with: 

Ranch Yogurt Dip

1 cup of yogurt

3 tablespoons of mayonnaise

3 teaspoons of ranch seasoning mix

Mix everything into a bowl and combine. Refrigerate overnight. 

If hummus is more what you had in mind, check out our recipe here.