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As the AM Colorado nutrition challenge with the University of Colorado Health-Northern Colorado comes to a close I have realized a couple of things about my food choices; the challenge was given to us to see who could make healthy and colorful meals.  I liked the challenge of trying to use new foods but was frustrated that my kiddos were not always open to colors beyond green, yellow and brown.  I also realized we eat very little red meat, other than hamburgers, because we simply are not a red meat family and prefer chicken, fish and pasta dishes.

The biggest thing I learned is that I am a good cook but to give a meal 100% every night actually requires more time than I have.  My time in the spring and fall revolves around getting my kids from school and to and from all their after school activities.  By the time my chauffeur duties are finished everyone is starving and I’m too tired to care about making or eating dinner.

Though not all the side dishes were a hit with my kids they did seem to like the new variety of dinners this month and they thought the process of watching me plate my dinner so I could get a good photo was hilarious (just like dinner and a movie entertainment).    I know that I will continue to try new foods, especially after recently joining a food co-op, and hopefully will teach my kids that foods are worth trying and you might actually like a wide variety of vegetables.  The food co-op does not give me a choice of what fruits and veggies I receive but it has helped our budget a little bit, made me look up new recipes for preparing foods I would not normally buy and has provided us with great tasting fresh foods. 

Here are some of my dishes to add to the nutrition challenge:

chicken sweet potato winefishsteaksalad2

  1. Chicken marinated in chocolate fig balsamic dressing, roasted sweet potatoes with thyme & rosemary, edamame, corn & wine
  2. Grilled white fish, marinated cucumbers, steamed carrots, bruschetta with sun dried tomato spread
  3. Grilled steak, red & white carrots and mango-habanero spread (this was perfect on the steak!)
  4. Mixed green salad with salmon, apples, mandarin oranges, dried cranberries, feta cheese, walnuts & raspberry vinaigrette dressing