Food From Texas WIC: Little Hands, Little Bites

Starting The Baby Food Journey

Babies grow up fast. Each month they hit new milestones and make even more progress toward becoming little toddlers. Food from Texas WIC can help them grow healthy and strong. 

One of the biggest milestones is graduating from bottles to bites. After months of breastfeeding and bottles, your little one might be ready to transition to table food.

It may seem daunting, but this can be a really exciting time for parents and kids to start exploring the world of food. 

There are so many flavors, textures and food adventures around the corner. As stressful as it may seem, this stage can be a lot of fun. Don’t worry if it seems you have gotten into a food fight with your toddler. It’s all part of the learning process. Here are a few tips to help you navigate this next phase. 

READY, SET GO – FIRST BITES

Are you wondering if your baby is ready to try table food? Make sure to discuss any feeding transitions with your Texas WIC nutritionist or doctors before making this big change.

In general, Texas WIC experts set out these first year milestones to give you a general idea when babies are ready for milestones, but every baby is different. 

Once you get the OK from a professional, let the fun begin. Wondering where to start? Popular first food choices are baby cereal, apple sauce, mashed bananas or even avocados. Make sure the food is soft and has a “paste” like consistency. 

In the beginning it is best to stick to introducing only one new food at a time. This makes it easier to know which foods your baby may have had trouble tolerating. Whether you are starting with baby cereal or baby food, try introducing one flavor at a time. 

Remember, babies have tine appetites and only require a few teaspoons at a time, WIC experts recommend.

HITTING SPEED BUMPS 

If your baby doesn’t like a certain food at first, try, try, try again. It isn’t uncommon for a little one not to like a food when it is first introduced, but to come around to it later. 

Once you know your baby tolerates certain foods, different flavors can be mixed together to make bites a little more interesting. A few good combinations are sweet potatoes and peas, apples and bananas or scrambled eggs.

CAUTION AHEAD

Be on the lookout for food allergies, which can occur between two minutes to hours of feedings, according to Texas WIC. Some of the most common to cause reactions, but experts warn any foods can cause allergies: dairy, eggs, wheat, soy, nuts, fish and shellfish. 

Hives, red skin and face swelling are a few signs of reactions, but Texas WIC offers even more details about food allergies online.  If your baby is having several signs of reaction or is having trouble breathing, call 911, according to Texas WIC. 

Also, do not give babies foods that may cause them to choke like nuts or grapes.

FOOD FROM TEXAS WIC CAN HELP

Texas WIC has resources to make feeding your baby easier. Everything from counseling to online classes can help along the way. Be sure to reach out if you have questions. Be sure to talk to a professional about any concerns or questions about your specific situation and baby. 

Get all your WIC groceries in one easy stop at Grocery Services North in Dallas and Waco. Locations are near WIC offices. Find a location near you today. 

Get Your Peaches!

And Other WIC-Approved Foods At Grocery Services North

Justin Bieber should get his peaches at Grocery Services North. 

In his famous song, Peaches, he declares he gets his peaches from Georgia. He should try picking them up at Grocery Services North, where he can get them fresh, frozen and in fruit cups. 

Grocery Services North is a grocery store chain that caters to WIC clients by offering only WIC-approved items. The stores make it super easy to shop for WIC groceries. Customers can check their WIC balance before they shop, and bilingual clerks will walk them through the shopping experience to make sure they get all their WIC foods in one easy stop. 

Texas WIC now offers even more WIC-approved foods, and Grocery Services North is making sure we provide even more options to our customers. 

For example, Texas WIC is currently offering expanded fruit and vegetable benefits which gives families even more benefits to use at the store through September. You can learn more here about these extra benefits.  

Also, Texas WIC is allowing even more food options for these benefits. The benefits can be used on fresh, frozen, cans, glass jars and plastic containers, according to WIC.

So now at Grocery Services North stores you can pick up your peaches fresh, jarred, frozen or in individual serving cups perfect for little hands. 

These expanded WIC-approved food options are making the Texas WIC program an even better option for families that need a helping hand. The program is open to qualifying mothers who are expecting or for children up to age 5.  Learn more here about qualifications. You can apply for Texas WIC online if you aren’t already part of the program at texaswic.org/apply. 

Grocery Services North has locations throughout Dallas and in Waco. Find a Grocery Services North location near at a WIC clinic near you at groceryservicesnorth.com/locations.

Primarily WIC Stores Coming To East Texas

Grocery Services North Opening Tyler, Longview Locations

WIC grocery shopping is about to get easier for East Texans. Primarily WIC stores will soon open in Tyler and Longview.

Grocery Services North will soon open its 10th and 11th Primarily WIC stores in East Texas.  The Tyler location will open at 225 East Amherst #700 and the Longview location is opening at 2430 South High Street, #C4.Both are conveniently located next door to WIC clinics. 

The stores will feature the latest shopping technology in English and Spanish.

“WIC clients can update their WIC benefits, and get all their WIC groceries in one easy stop,” said Cristina Torres, Grocery Services North manager. “Plus, customers can check their WIC balance before shopping and see exactly what WIC benefits are remaining.”

Grocery Services North is a primarily WIC grocery store chain with locations in Dallas and Waco, TX and now East Texas. The stores offer an easy WIC shopping format that takes the hassle out of WIC shopping. 

PRIMARILY WIC STORES COMING SOON EAST TEXAS

The Primarily WIC store in Tyler and Longview will only be stocked with WIC-approved groceries – including everything from baby formula, specialty baby formula, milk, eggs, cheese, beans, tuna, peanut butter to fresh fruits and vegetables. Grocery Services North makes it super easy to get all your WIC groceries in one easy stop.

WIC clients can visit a store, insert their WIC EBT card at the counter to see all of their redeemable WIC benefits before they shop. Bilingual clerks help assist WIC customers get all their desired WIC groceries for checkout. WIC clients then approve each item for redemption while a clerk sacks all their groceries.

 “Customers don’t have to wonder if their groceries are WIC approved or search aisles looking for groceries,” Ms. Torres said.

WIC Approved Fruits and Vegetables

Expanded WIC Approved Fruits and Vegetables Benefit Extended Thru September

Texas WIC has extended it’s expanded fruit and vegetable benefits thru the end of September. Now clients can get even more WIC approved fruits and vegetables.

According to WIC, the new WIC approved fruits and vegetables benefit is currently:

  • Children get $24 each month 
  • Pregnant, postpartum and some breastfeeding clients get $43 each month 
  • Fully and partially breastfeeding clients get $47 each month.

For example, if you are pregnant and have two children (ages 1-5) receiving WIC, you will get $91 ($43 mom + $24 child + $24 child = $91) each month in April, May and June to buy fruit and vegetables, according to WIC.

WIC clients should contact a local WIC office if they have questions about these benefits. 

The expanded WIC fruit and vegetable benefits are expected to return to $11 for pregnant, breastfeeding and postpartum women and $9 for children Oct. 1.

WIC clients can get all their WIC groceries in one easy stop at any Grocery Services North location in Dallas and Waco. Grocery Services North caters to WIC clients and locations are located conveniently to WIC offices to help customers get WIC in one trip. 

Vegetables Are WIC Foods

Summer Salads You Will Want To Eat!

Salads don’t have to be boring. In fact, they can be so refreshing and tasty that your toddler might even be asking for more.  

Sometimes salads get a bad reputation. After all, they are made mostly with vegetables. If you aren’t a salad lover, we have a few ideas that might change your mind. If you already love a nice crisp salad a few tips to change things up might be just what you need.  They are also a healthy side or quick meal and are a great way to eat healthy WIC foods.

Here are a few tips that will make your salad a little extra special.

ADD FRESH FRUIT

Adding sliced fresh apples or mandarins, really add something unexpected to a lettuce and tomato salad. Mangos, fresh berries, and watermelon can also be a wonderful addition. Add some of your favorites for extra color and taste.

ADD CHEESE

Grated or crumbled cheese of your choice is a great salad topper. Try anything from shredded cheddar to cubed mozzarella. It also adds great nutrition to your meal in a bowl. 

ADD HOMEMADE SALAD DRESSING

The healthiest, and the most cost-effective salad dressings are the ones you make yourself. Plus, they are super simple and fast and taste a lot more delicious. 

To make your own, here are a few ingredients you will want to have on hand. Of course, they won’t all go into the same recipe, but they are fun to mix and match to find the perfect combination. Some great dressing ingredients include: lemon juice, lime juice, apple cider vinegar, oil such as olive oil, honey mustard, and seasonings (such as garlic powder, black pepper, and Italian seasonings.)

ADD PROTEIN

Drained canned beans, boiled eggs, and canned tuna are great protein toppers for summer salads. They aren’t heavy but provide a healthy protein punch to your meal. 

ADD EXTRA CRUNCH

Depending on the flavor of your salad, it’s fun to add a little extra crunch like baked tortilla strips made homemade with tortillas. Simply take a corn tortilla and brush it with the oil of your choice. Slice it up and bake for about 15 minutes at 350 degrees (turning halfway) until they are nice and crispy. 

VEGETABLES ARE WIC FOODS – TRY THIS SALAD RECIPE

SUMMER APPLE SALAD

1 bag of fresh salad mix

2 apples, chopped

Tomatoes, chopped

Mozzarella cheese, shredded

¼ onion, chopped

Chopped carrots

Homemade Apple Vinaigrette (recipe below)

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix together. 

APPLE CIDAR VINAIGRETTE

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon honey

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon salt

Ground black pepper

¼ cup olive oil

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk or add all ingredients to a mason jar, close the lid, and shake. Pour as much as you would like over your salad.

PICK UP YOUR VEGETABLES & OTHER WIC FOODS AT GROCERY SERVICES NORTH

Get all your summer salad ingredients at Grocery Services North. All 9 locations in Dallas and Waco are conveniently located near WIC clinics for easy WIC grocery shopping. Everything in the store is WIC approved. Find a location near you today.

Vegetables are WIC foods. Plus, WIC is also currently offering expanded fruit and vegetable benefits. Learn more here.

 

Enjoy Summer WIC Foods This July 4!

Summer is in full swing. Que the fireworks because this July 4th is going to be HOT! We have summer WIC foods and fun activities your plans this holiday weekend.

If you are ready to kick off July 4th with a big bang, we have some great tips to help you cool down and chill and celebrate with your family this holiday weekend – all spotlighting foods WIC foods you can redeem with your EBT card.

The fun doesn’t stop there. We also rounded up some family-friendly activities for the entire family. 

SUMMER WIC FOODS: PICNIC PERFECT (SPOTLIGHTING WIC INGREDIENTS)

Many people will fire up the grill this holiday weekend. We have the perfect grill addition and a few sides that go perfect with your family picnic.

 

SUMMER WIC FOODS: GRILLED POTATOES

Wrap your russet potatoes up in foil and throw them on the grill. Before closing the foil, feel free to add your favorite seasoning blend and a little olive oil for some extra flavor. Place them on the grill rack and let them cook. You know they are done when a knife slides easily into the center of the potato. Remove from grill and let cool. Remove foil and get ready for the fluffiest, smokiest tasting “baked”  potato you can imagine. Add toppings (cheese, plain yogurt, salt, and pepper to taste) of your choice. 

SUMMER WIC FOODS: SALSA MADE WITH GRILLED PEACHES 

While your grill is out, slice open peaches ( a great summer WIC food) in half and throw them cut side down on the grill for this amazing recipe you will want to keep eating ALL SUMMER LONG.

4 ripe peaches pitted and sliced in half

1 red onion diced

2 ripe tomato diced

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro (optional)

1 lime juiced

Salt & pepper to taste

Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Brush the peaches with olive oil and place them cut-side down onto the grill. Grill for about 5 minutes until the peaches are soft but not mushy. In a bowl combine the remaining ingredients. Remove hot peaches from the grill. Let them cool before dicing them. Add to bowl and mix with remaining ingredients. Serve.

INDEPENDENCE DAY FAMILY FUN 

Spending time with loved ones is the best medicine. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to put a smile on a kid’s face and enjoy quality family time. In fact, sometimes the simpler things are the best.  Here are a few ideas we loved for spending extra quality time with the family this holiday weekend. 

DON’T WASTE TIME, GET YOUR SUMMER WIC FOODS TODAY!

With so much family fun planned, stop by any 9 Grocery Services North locations to pick up all your WIC groceries in one easy stop. Don’t search aisles for WIC-approved foods. Grocery Services North caters to WIC clients, and everything in the store is WIC approved. You will be in and out with your groceries for your family picnic. Find a location near a WIC clinic near you on our website.

 

 

Ways To Save Money This Summer

Everything seems to cost more these days: gas, groceries, and almost everything else. Here are a few tips to help parents save money this summer on everything from groceries to gas. HINT: Maximizing Texas WIC can help!

MAKE FEWER TRIPS

One way to save gas money is to try to fit in as many errands into the same trip. Fewer trips to an area help reduce the number of miles you are driving to get there and back.  Mapping out your errands this way also helps you save time. 

For example, if you are driving to a WIC clinic to renew your benefits then pick up your WIC groceries at a nearby PWIC store that caters to WIC clients. Stores like Grocery Services North locations are usually really really close to WIC clinics. Sometimes they are even next door. Find a PWIC store near you at GroceryServicesNorth.com/locations.

SAVE MONEY WITH WIC: USE EBT

Another way to save money is to make sure you redeem all your EBT benefits. Remember, if you don’t use your WIC benefits by the end of the month they expire. SNAP benefits never expire so redeem your WIC benefits first. Bonus, Grocery Services North locations accept WIC and SNAP EBT. 

Using programs like WIC for food benefits will help you save money on food. Plus, PWIC stores like Grocery Services North caters to WIC clients. That means we have all your WIC items in one place, and the bilingual staff is familiar with the program if you need help. 

PLAN YOUR MENU AHEAD, SAVE MONEY WITH WIC FOODS

Another way to save money is to plan your menu for the week or even the month ahead. It also helps create less waste. For example, if you roast veggies you can use them for two meals in one week by using them in a stir-fry one night, as a side, or even in a salad or a grilled sandwich. It also helps you save time because you can cook multiple meals at one time. If you are looking for tips on meal planning check out this article. 

Plus, check out our blog for more recipe ideas using WIC foods. 

It’s also a great activity for kids. When you get them involved, you can have age-appropriate conversations about healthy foods, meal planning, and not wasting food.

WIC Kids: Fun Summertime Activity

Check Off  Mealtime, Playtime At Same Time! 

Who said you couldn’t play with your food? Getting kids into the kitchen is a great activity to get their creative juices flowing. It’s also a great way to keep them interested in eating healthy, WIC foods. 

Healthy WIC foods don’t have to be boring. In fact, you and the kids can turn their little plates into works of art all with some of your favorite WIC ingredients. Gather up some of your favorite WIC foods (oatmeal, fruits, vegetables and tuna fish) for these fun ideas that will get your kiddos excited to help out in the kitchen.

WIC FOR KIDS: OATMEAL

Oatmeal is a super healthy WIC food. It’s also a super healthy snack. For the first snack of the day. Let your kids help “decorate” a bowl of oatmeal like their pets or animals. These fruits make great faces: sliced bananas, berries of all kinds, apple pieces cut into fun shapes and maybe even a little peanut butter to hold pieces together.  What little one wouldn’t love eating this yummy, healthy creation once they are done. 

Oatmeal is a great WIC food because it’s full of fiber, iron and other vitamins and minerals like zinc.

WIC FOR KIDS: FRUIT CRITTERS

Getting your kids to eat more fruit is easy when you make fruit critters. Slice up some of your favorite fruits and let your toddlers “color” their plate by turning the fruit into fun animals. You can get them started by making a few of your own. It’s also fun to cut fruit into fun shapes using kid-friendly cookie cutters.  

WIC FOR KIDS: VEGGIE PALS

Having a hard time getting enough vegetables into your tot’s stomach? Serve them a plate of green peas that look like a friendly frog.  

WIC FOR KIDS: TUNA FISHY

First, make a bowl of tuna fish, using this great Texas WIC recipe. Then let the little ones help by spreading it on a piece of toasted whole wheat bread. Place another piece of whole wheat bread on top. Let the kids decorate the sandwich into fruit to make it look like a fish. See photo above. Orange quarters, banana slices and berries can all be used to make fun fish faces and fins. Looking for a little more creative inspiration? Check out this recipe idea from Texas WIC.

 Texas WIC is an advocate of getting kids in the kitchen to help in “age-appropriate ways,” and these recipes are a great way to get them involved. For more tips from including kids in the kitchen, check out these tips online.

RENEW YOUR WIC BENEFITS AND REDEEM THEM IN THE SAME TRIP

Next time you visit a WIC clinic to renew your WIC benefits, visit a nearby Grocery Services North store to get all your WIC foods in one easy stop. Grocery Services North locations are located near WIC offices to make it super convenient for clients to get everything they need. 

There are 9 locations throughout Dallas and Waco. Visit online to find a store near you.

Visit our blog for more recipes using WIC foods. 

Family Meal Ideas

Add Some Sparkle To Your Memorial Day Table Using WIC Foods

Looking to add a little something festive to your Memorial Day Weekend menu? Here are a few family meal ideas using WIC foods that will add a little something extra to your holiday.

Temperatures are also beginning to heat up so these recipes are easy, refreshing no-fuss bites. They are the perfect way for you to keep everyone satisfied without having to spend too much time in the kitchen. Plus, little helpers can also get involved for the perfect quality family time.

IDEAS FOR FAMILY MEALS USING WIC FOODS

FRUIT SPARKLER DRINK

Break out your red and blue fruits and add them to your ice water or juice for a cool, refreshing treat. A few fun fruits to try are watermelon, strawberries, and blueberries. Don’t forget to let the kiddos help.  This is a perfect way to celebrate while spending time outside this Memorial Day weekend. 

PATRIOTIC CHEESE TRAY

Cheese platters have never been more popular! Cut up some of your favorite fruits and cheeses and arrange in fun patriotic ways. Make a red, white and blue design, like the one in the photo, using blueberries, white cheese cubes and cubed watermelon. You could also use strawberries. The design possibilities are endless and the kids will love getting involved! 

VEGGIE ROLL-UPS

Roll-ups make a simple, healthy snack or lunch the kids will love. Place a whole wheat tortilla on a plate, add your favorite salsa, dressing, vegetables, and cheese, and roll! Cut the rolled tortilla into bite-size pieces and enjoy! A few filling ideas include and combination of the following WIC-approved foods:  lettuce, tomato, cheese, apple, avocado, guacamole, cucumbers, raw or cooked mushrooms, and beans!

Once made and sliced, arrange on a platter for a quick family-style meal for everyone.

DON’T FORGET THE WATERMELON

No matter how you cut it, watermelon is a summertime staple. It’s perfect for hot days because it even can help you stay hydrated. There are so many fun ways to eat this fruit. Cut it into cubes and place it on skewers for a fun kebob. The kiddos can help by cutting watermelon slices with cookie cutters and creating fun shapes (Oh my Stars for Memorial Day!) You can even quarter watermelon and dig in with a spoon!  

GROCERY SERVICES NORTH CATERS TO WIC CLIENTS

Get all your WIC foods in one easy stop at any Grocery Services North location, including our newest store in Plano, TX. To find a location near you visit us here.

Select Grocery Services North Stores Open Memorial Day

Grocery Services North will open select locations on Memorial Day to help WIC clients needing to access their benefits at the end of the month.

The following stores will open 10 AM to 4 PM Monday, May 30: 

  • Grocery Services North at 1050 N. Westmoreland Rd. Ste. 312, Dallas, TX 75211
  • Grocery Services North at 6921 Lake June Road, Dallas, TX 75217 
  • Grocery Services North at 310 N. Barnes Rd. Ste. A, Garland, TX 75042 
  • Grocery Services North at 8202 Spring Valley Rd., Ste. 300, Dallas, TX 75240 

Everyone at Grocery Services North wishes you and your family a happy and safe Memorial Day weekend. 

Looking for recipes using WIC foods for a perfect Memorial Day weekend celebration? Check out these recipes from our blog using WIC foods. 

 

2022-05-18T18:28:28+00:00May 18th, 2022|Categories: Dallas, Grocery Services North, Texas WIC|Tags: , |0 Comments