I love any excuse to have fun in the kitchen and so, although I am not Irish, St. Patrick’s Day is a favourite of mine. I always believe that you can celebrate any holiday regardless of your heritage. It allows the children to learn and appreciate other cultures and have fun all at the same time. Not to mention, this mommy loves being creative and holidays like this are just as fun if not more fun for me. Whether you just want to do a themed dessert or you choose to go all out and make a day full of green and rainbow goodies, the options are endless. Below is a list of my all-time favourite foods and treats to make this holiday exciting for all!
Just as simple as it sounds. Whip up a batch of your go-to pancakes and add in some green food colouring to embrace the theme. You can even take it one step further and add in marshmallows like the clouds at the end of a rainbow. If you do so, you are obviously making the pancakes less healthy but hey, we can all have a little fun once in a while!
Green egg cups
Egg cups are a popular breakfast option in my house. the kids love being able to select their ingredients and they even have a blast helping me make them. I love them because they are simple, versatile and can be made in advance which makes for easy mornings. I take my regular recipe and will simply add in green food colouring to make them a little bit more festive for St-Patrick’s day. If you don’t have food colouring or if you would like to add in an extra vegetable, I like to take my eggs and mix them in a bullet or blender with some spinach. By doing so, they will turn green and the kids will never know you hid spinach in them. Once blended, I will pour the egg mixture back into a bowl and add in my additional ingredients (ham and cheese) and then prepare as directed.
- 6 eggs blended with a few handfuls of fresh spinach
- ½ cup of milk
- ¼ cup of grated cheese
- ¼ cup of diced ham
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350F
- Spray your muffin tin with cooking spray, these will stick
- Mix all your ingredients well in a bowl
- Divide mixture evenly between the 12 muffin cups
- Bake for 15-20 minutes until set
Festive main meal ideas
This is another favourite, especially with my son. He is the pickiest of my children and with this recipe, I know he will have at least two bowls full and still ask for more. I love it because I am able to sneak healthy ingredients into the sauce without him knowing. Another great thing about this meal is that it fits perfectly with the St-Patrick’s day theme. I am not sure where I originally found this recipe, but I have made it my own over the years.
- 1 pound of pasta
- 1 cup of peas
- 2 cups of broccoli
- -For the sauce
- 3 tbsps. butter
- 3 tbsps.flour
- 3 c. milk
- 4 c. of cheese (I use whichever grated cheese I have on hand)
- 1 c. of spinach
- ½ avocado (optional)
- ¼ c. water
- Melt butter in a saucepan and then slowly incorporate your flour to make a roux
- Add in your milk and whisk until smooth, slowly add in your cheese. Once smooth, add in more until you have added in all the cheese
- For the green part of the sauce, in your blender or bullet, add in your spinach, avocado, and water. Blend until smooth and then whisk into your cheese sauce.
- At the same time, boil your pasta. When it is almost done, throw your veggies in with the pasta.
- Once the veggies are tender and the pasta is cooked, drain. Return pasta and veggies to the pot to
- Mix your sauce into the pot with veggies and pasta
- Once the pasta and sauce have been combined, you can serve it or you can put it in a baking dish to cook later on. If you choose to cook it later, you can top it with bread crumbs and additional cheese to get a nice crispy topping.
You are probably thinking that this sounds easy enough and it really is. At your local grocery store, you can find spinach tortillas. They look like regular tortillas except that they are green. Perfect for the occasion. I’m a big wrap lover because of how easy they are and that you can literally have for breakfast, lunch or dinner. My personal favourite is a good breakfast wrap filled with BBQ sauce, egg, ham, cheese, and avocado.
Pesto Mashed Potatoes
It’s not always easy to find meals that consist entirely of green food. You can also choose to have fun with your sides. You can simply make any green veggie or you can try these pesto mashed potatoes. There are a few ways in which you can make these. You can simply make your potatoes and add in ready-made pesto, you can make your own traditional pesto using basil or you can try my favourite: a pesto made from spinach. Again, you get the added benefits of using spinach and an extra veggie hidden inside yummy goodness that the kids are sure to eat. I found the recipe for the spinach pesto on the foodnetwork.com and tweaked it a little to make it my own.
- 2 c. of baby spinach
- ¼ c. pine nuts (I chose not to add)
- 2 tbsps. of lemon juice
- 1 tsp. of grated lemon zest
- ⅓ c. of olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- ⅓ c. grated parmesan cheese
- Add in all of your ingredients except for the oil and pulse. Slowly add in the oil until it is smooth
- mix the desired amount of pesto into your mashed potatoes.
- With the remainder, I like to freeze in ice cube trays for future use.
I rarely make milkshakes for my kids so a holiday is a perfect excuse. Also, I am sure there is a multitude of ways to make them a little healthier, but if you really want to indulge, give these a try.
- 2 cups of vanilla ice cream
- 1 cup of milk
- 5 drops of mint extract
- Green food colouring
- Toppings: marshmallows, whipped cream, crumbled Oreos
Simply add your ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Top however you fancy. I prefer to use a minimal amount of ice cream but enough to get a thicker texture then if I used only milk.
If my kids could have popcorn every day, I think they would. So, I like to have fun with it whenever possible. On the plus side, this recipe is so easy. All you need is a bag of popcorn unless you like to pop your own. If your family likes added butter then add a little green food colouring to your melted butter before drizzling it on top. Also, you can add in any type of green candy or chocolates. If you are going to use chocolate, be sure to let the popcorn cool slightly of you will have a melted mess on your hands and potentially your furniture as well.
There is no right or wrong way to embrace St. Patrick’s Day. If you are like me, have fun and play around in the kitchen. The kids will love it and you are sure to make lasting memories. Like I always say, don’t be shy to bring them in the kitchen as well. There are so many easy to follow recipes that they will love to help with and the food tastes that much better when they make it themselves.
*Opinions expressed are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Parent Life Network or their partners.