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ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

Can you help me think up creative solutions for what may be the pickiest eaters ever to live?

Asked by ANef_is_Enuf (25184points) August 3rd, 2011

My stepkids are finicky eaters, they always have been. The problem is, like most picky kids, the stuff that they dislike is everything that is good for them. They live on junk.
My parents were always from the school of thought that you should put a plate in front of them of whatever you’re eating, and if they don’t eat it.. fine. Eventually they’ll get hungry enough that they’ll try anything. Well, that isn’t even an option. The last time my husband and I withheld junk food from them, we were accused of neglect in family court. The accusations didn’t hold, of course, but you can imagine that when I say we have to do this in baby-steps, I mean baby-steps.
I really have not ever met anyone more particular than these kids. Of course, they are independently picky, as well. One eats ketchup, one doesn’t. One eats hamburgers, one doesn’t. Etc etc. They don’t eat soup, beef, pork, and they are really particular about chicken. Neither of them eat any vegetables. One of them eats fruit, the other won’t touch it. They are only interested in heavily processed foods, and they will literally just refuse to eat anything if there is something on their plate that they don’t like.
They are overweight and they have to be nutritionally deficient, but I have no idea how to change that without fear that it will blow up in my face.

Are there any creative tricks for getting some nutritional foods into their diet, even if it is alongside the junk that they eat now? I find myself wracked with guilt over feeding them the stuff that they like, but I also feel like I’ve been backed into a corner. Help?

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28 Answers

bobbinhood's avatar

My sister purees vegetables and mixes them with other things so that her husband can’t tell he’s eating them. For instance, she will puree vegetables to mix into spaghetti sauce. If you are careful about which vegetables you mix with which dishes, and the kids don’t know you’re doing it, you should be able to get away with it. I would just start gradually so they don’t notice the changing flavor.

Sunny2's avatar

Wow. How old are these kids? My first thought is to get their father involved. As the step mother, you don’t want to get into a power struggle with them. He’s going to have to be the one to lay down the law. You didn’t create the problem and you aren’t going to be able to solve it alone. You’ll go nuts if you try.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

@Sunny2 he is involved. But I prepare the majority of our meals, and my husband is a terrible cook, so ultimately the recipes come down to me. I’ve also been in their lives since they were 4 years old, and they call me “mom,” so power struggles are not something new. That’s unavoidable at some point. We definitely approach parenting the kids as a team, though.

Cruiser's avatar

Don’t buy the junk…it’s that simple. Get baby carrots and other fresh veggies and ranch dressing for dipping, as well as grapes and other fruits and leave a bowl out on the counter all the time. Sliced apples and peanut butter are a hit in our family. Maybe some pretzels for salty crunchy snack time.

For meals you do have to compromise. I make healthy normal meals with one item or side I know they like and let them sort out what they want to eat. You can’t have expectations that kids will devour Parmesan encrusted Salmon.

Casseroles are a big hit with Mr. Picky in our house. Also…letting the kids help out on making the meals goes a long way to them actually eating the food they make especially when you tell them just how yummy their food is!

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

@Cruiser I agree, that’s my own personal method of choice. However, as I stated in my question.. the last time I just didn’t “buy the junk,” I was accused of child neglect.

I do like the idea of having easily accessible healthy snacks, though. It makes sense that they would be more likely to eat them if they don’t feel like they’re being forced. I was a picky kid, and whenever someone tried to talk me into eating something I didn’t like, that usually resulted in me wanting it even less.

SpatzieLover's avatar

House Rules. We had to implement a few due to our son.

Number one most important rule, Healthy Food First. A fruit or veg must be eaten prior to any meal or snack…Period!

This rule applies to everyone. One of the best “foods” we utilize for this is Green Juice. He gets the veg & fruits he needs.

Whenever I see a commercial saying “3 out of 4 Americans aren’t getting enough vegetables”...Or something like it…I know it’s not the truth for our home.

If you make it a house rule, then it doesn’t come down to you being a mean step-mom…it comes down to making healthy choices simpler for all.

You may want to read/glean the book Food Chaining. It has some easy ideas on how to implement healthy foods in simple ways and have kids not notice the changes.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

@SpatzieLover thank you, I love that idea! I did some serious work on my husband’s diet since we’ve been together, and I can’t put into words how much joy it brings me when he actually requests a salad before dinner. I love the idea of making it a rule for everyone.

bobbinhood's avatar

Here are a couple books that provide recipes for hiding vegetables in kid-friendly meals. And here is a well-written review that compares the two books.

SpatzieLover's avatar

@ANef_is_Enuf You can tell them that my 6yr old who eats almost nothing willing drinks any juice I now make him prior to every meal. Green juice is now a fav of a few of his friends cuz the rule applies to them when they’re over, too ;)

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

@SpatzieLover I need to move closer to you and let my kids hang out at your house a few times. :)
My sister has a 3 y/o and a 4 y/o and they love their veggies. They will eat just about anything, except that the older of the two has an aversion to Mexican food. I am so envious sometimes when one of those munchkins sticks their fingers in my salad bowl or carefully counts out garbanzo beans so that we have equal amounts.

SpatzieLover's avatar

@ANef_is_Enuf Our nieces & nephews are like that. They fight over the berry bowl, or scarf down the veggie plates I bring over.

My son has oral sensitivities, so textures are a no go. No slippery foods, no sticky stuff…it leaves out “seeded” foods and soups…otherwise he gags or worse.

We’ve learned to buy the healthiest foods we can. We get the veg & fruits in before meals.

Another tip or two:

Bananas go down better with sprinkles ;) or if you allow with sundae toppings. Baby food can be your best friend, as frozen veg & fruits can be. I do puree veggies into foods. I also add frozen spinach into any dish I can.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

A little late for this year, but if you get them to help plant some stuff in the garden and work with them so they learn to eat what they grow. Peas right out of the pods or berries they can pick and eat are good ways.

gailcalled's avatar

Puree cauliflower and dilute with mashed potatoes;
Mice onion, zucchini,spinach red peppers, carrots etc and mix with hamburger meat.
If you stipulate, “healthy foods first,” you are sending the kids messages about healthy foods being equated with “yuck,” “nasty,” “punishment,” “mean” and “grim.’

Perhaps your husband can discuss this with the children’s mother if she is amenable.

Another thought is to have a family meeting and ask the kids what their solution is. Who took you to family court for not supplying junk food? That seems really odd.

I still remember, with horror, my mother insisting that my young brother eat one pea. He, at aged 7 or so, cut it into four pieces and doggedly ate each piece with a slice of white Wonder Bread. A very bad idea.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

@SpatzieLover without a doubt I am going to start doing the pureed veggies. They do eat spaghetti, so that will be the first way that I try it.

@gailcalled that is how my parents did it with me and my sisters. It wasn’t that we had to eat a bowl of brussel sprouts to get to our dinner, but my dad’s rule was always “try it.” You had to taste one bite of something new, and if you didn’t like it, you didn’t have to eat another bite. It worked, for us, anyhow. But I definitely see what you’re saying. I’ll PM the rest.

SpatzieLover's avatar

If you stipulate, “healthy foods first,” you are sending the kids messages about healthy foods being equated with “yuck,” “nasty,” “punishment,” “mean” and “grim.’

@gailcalled I equate it with necessity, health and optimum health. Our son understands this. How do I know? He tells all his friends, “You have to dink your green juice so you will get healthy like me.”

Children tend to think anything besides chocolate & potato chips are “yuck” and “grim” unless you set strong boundaries with expectations.

rebbel's avatar

First, I feel for you.
That must’ve been how my mother has felt during periods of my childhood.
I was a pickity eater as well, though no so extreme as your kids.
Junk food? Didn’t exist (almost).
But biscuits, cookies, chocolate bars, crisps, peanuts and nuts, ice creams, etc. were my favorite vegetables.
But I simply didn’t get any of that before I ate my Brussels Sprouts and potatoes.
I had to finish it, even if all had cooled down, sometimes I was close to puking of disgust.
But I had to eat it, if necessary mixed with my dessert (which I loved, but again, only after the veg and potato).
In the end, after months and months, I ‘learned’ that it would be best to start appreciating the veggies but also the energy that my mom (and dad) were willing to put in me.
What to do?
I think that some above me already nailed it and said to ditch the junk food, really get it out of the house.
Second, make them finish their meals, really finish their meals, before they can even think of leaving the dinner table.
In case they don’t finish it, there is no yummy stuff that day.
Next day, start over.
Good luck!

flutherother's avatar

You could try getting them hungry through a long walk, or cycle ride, or canoeing and then give them a good meal when they get back. If they don’t eat it then tough on them, but I feel it would be neglectful to let them continue in their unhealthy ways.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I was trying to think of physical stuff they could do, to get them hungry because you said they’re overweight, how about swimming?

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

Activity really isn’t an issue. They play outside all day, run around in the house making me nuts, and in this weather we have been swimming for hours on a daily basis. They also play sports in school.
It’s really just the diet.

Kardamom's avatar

I know exactly what you are going through, only with me, it’s my elderly father who thinks everything is yucky.

I was extremely picky when I was a little kid, but I grew up to be a vegetarian that eats just about everything (that vegetarians eat, obviously I don’t eat meat LOL) but I do eat Brussels sprouts, mushrooms, tomatoes and onions, things that picky eaters usually hate.

My parents never forced me or my brother to eat any particular foods, but we were encouraged to give things a taste (just a little taste) and sometimes after tasting something multiple times, we became a fan of those items.

I can’t even imagine how it played out in court that you were in trouble for not allowing junk food in your home. I literally can’t see how you could ever be in trouble for that, so you should put that thought out of your head now, even if the bio mom is trying to cause trouble for you. That charge won’t ever hold water. If you’ve got food in the house, even if your kids don’t like it (at least right now they don’t) then you can’t be accused of starving them or neglecting them.

Ok, this ain’t gonna be easy, but you and your husband are going to have to have a private conversation first. You and he are going to have to be in 100% agreement on how things are going to change and how things are going to be or else this isn’t going to work. There is no need to punish your kids for not liking certain foods, or for not even trying them, but you and your hubby are going to have to make a pact and say, “No more junk food in this house!” It would be best if you cleared out all of the junk, without the tykes knowing what is happening. Just get rid of it all and that means everything that is highly processed from crackers, to chips, to candy, to packaged baked goods, to regular ice cream, to most frozen meals, to any kinds of breads that are not made with 100% whole grain as the first item on the ingredients list, to most canned soups, and boxed convenience noodle dishes like Top Ramen and Hamburger Helper and even Kraft Macaroni and Cheese. Don’t ever allow your kids to drink soda in your home or to order in in a restaurant. Cut out any fruit juices that aren’t 100% juice. Etc. There’s tons of other stuff too, but I can’t even think of them all right now (which is totally unlike me).

Anyhow, the next step, if you can manage this, is to find a class (hopefully a free one) though the school system or through your health insurance (Kaiser has free nutrition classes, for instance) or sometimes if you look in the “things to do” section of your newspaper, or free entertainment paper, there will be classes or lectures or seminars that focus on nutrition for healthy families. If you can find something like this, you all need to go togegther and then talk about how you are going to make some changes.

Once the junk is cleared out of the house, sit down with the kids (who will probably complain and cry and scream) and let them know that everybody including Mom and Dad and the kids are no longer going to be eating, or cooking with junk foods in this house. Let them know that this isn’t happening as a punishement, but as a means to ensure the health of the whole family. Let them know that up until now, you have been very lax and you didn’t really understand the implications of how changing your diet (and your lifestyle) can help to ward off all kinds of conditions that might effect them later on down the line (and some that might give them problems right now, such as diabetes) like heart disease and cancer. Let them know that everybody in your household is going to have to make some changes and that you all want the transition to be fun and go smoothly and that everyone is going to be involved in making the changes. From learning about nutrition, to learning to cook, to learning about where food comes from, and learning how to grow food in your own garden.

So one of the first things that you can do as a group, before you even hit the supermarket, is to sit down as a family and give everyone a big sheet of paper and a pencil and make a good list on one side and a bad list on the other side and then on another piece of paper, everybody gets to make a list of 10 new things (good, healthy things) that they would like to try. You and their Dad are going to have to be the ones that explain to the kids why such and such a food is not good. You and Dad should also read up, before this list making thing even happens, to figure out how you can eat a certain item (such as chicken) in a way that is healthy as opposed to an un-healthy way. Such as McDonald’s chicken nuggets = bad. On the other hand these Crispy Baked Chicken Tenders =better!

You should also go to the bookstore (if they still have any real book stores by the time you read this) and check out the cookbood section, especially the healthy diet books and the vegetarian books and the heart healthy books and the many ways to fix vegetables books and the low fat, or high fiber books. It’s much more enjoyable to pick out a cookbook when you can see the pictures. But going online is also good, make a folder on your computer under Favorites, for where you will save any recipes that you want to try.

Then start shopping. You don’t want to get too many new things at once, except for staples like multigrain dried pasta, lower salt marinara sauce, olive oil, vinegars of all kinds, whole grain breads, tortillas, English muffins and waffles (which can be kept in the freezer) and jars of pureed prunes (to replace some of the fat in home made baked goods) and other jarred pureed baby veggies to put in your spaghetti sauce, and cans of beans (for which chili and dips will be made) and peanut butter (regular Jif or others is fine) and lower sugar versions of jams and jellies, and all kinds of no-salt nuts (which can be stored in the freezer) and maybe some boxed jello and low fat fruit yogurt as well as plain non-fat yogurt (which can be used in place of sour cream on baked potatoes, or made into all sorts of flavorful dips for veggies).

After you’ve got your staples, then take an item or 2 off of everyone’s list and pick out some new fruits and veggies that you’d like to try. Then have a little tasting party. You can try some of the stuff raw, or baked or roasted or grilled or whatever or however you can prep the new items in a healthy manner. Try to get each person to take at least one bite and then write down (or just say it out loud) what you liked about it and didn’t like about it. This is going to be hard and unpleasant at first, because the kids are so used to complaining that everything is yucky. But just let them know that this is an ongoing family project and you won’t be going back to the old way. And make sure you and your husband are 100% comitted to going on this journey and not going back to the old ways, or else you will be wasting your time and money. You can’t make bio mom feed them well, or if they go to a friend’s home you have little control (although you can talk to the parents of your kid’s friends ahead of time and get them on board with you goals) but in your own home, and when you take your kids out to a restaurant, you have to be in control, but not be a punisher or else all of this will backfire and your kids will eat nothing but McDonald’s once they turn 18. This has to be a family project too, because if your kids see you and Dad eating junk food and not paying attention to your health, then the kids will think you are hypocrites. If you start out will this happy goal in mind, and try not to punish anyone or get upset at anyone who’s having a hard time adjusting, then eventually things will change for the good and this situation will get better. But let everyone know ahead of time, that the junk food is gone from your house and won’t be coming back, but let everyone know that you want to work together to find things that everyone will like, that will still be good for them and allow them to lead healthy and productive lives.

It might be a good idea if you can manage to get a tour of a real farm (not a factory farm, but a local organic farm) so that your kids can see where food actually comes from. Talk to the farmers about their techniques and why certain foods are super healthy and others are not.

If you can manage to find a series of family oriented “healthy cooking” classes, that would be ideal. Sometimes it’s the way that food is prepared that makes it healthy of unhealthy. Plus when you learn how to cook, you become much more attuned to how things taste, why they are the way they are and you get inspired to learn more.

Take a trip the the local farmer’s market and go down the aisles and try to find the prettiest, yummiest most interesting looking fruit and vegetables and give them a try. Good luck with all of this. Sorry this is so long, but this is a huge problem with a lot of variables. I have to go out of the house right now, but I’m going to check back and list some websites that might be useful and some recipes that hopefully everybody will like.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

@Kardamom awesome post, thank you so much!

YARNLADY's avatar

Veggie Burgers look and taste just like real ones, so maybe that would work.

If you don’t have full time custody of them, there’s not much you can do. The more you get them involved in the food purchases and preparation, the better. They need to fix their own food to their own taste.

creative1's avatar

My neice and nephew had the same problem and I always had one rule when visiting Auntie, you don’t have to eat it but you have to try it. I never made different meals for them in replace so if they were hungry enough they would eat. The other thing I did to make vegetables always taste good I made sure always to carmelize them to bring out their natural sugars and it makes them always taste sweet, infact I still cook that way. My neice asked me just a few weeks ago and she is now 16, How do you always make vegetables taste so good Auntie, so I showed her how to cook them in order to make them the way she likes them.

Food doesn’t have to be a battle if you make it taste yummy and just have them try it but not make them eat it. One thing you never want to do is give in and make them something different to eat. Once you do it will be expected all the time.

Sunny2's avatar

I think what @Kardamom had to say about you and your husband setting some new rules, so he will back you up, is on the right track. Yes, you do the cooking, but you and your husband set the rules of the house, which includes eating: at least what and how. Have a family meeting with your husband running the meeting. Make an agenda and follow it. Make a list of foods the kids may eat as much of as they want, like fruit and specific vegetables. Talk about the problems of trying to cook for each individual versus making a family meal. It really isn’t fair to ask you to produce more than one meal. I think there’s a special place in Heaven (if there is a Heaven) for stepmoms and dads.

Kardamom's avatar

Hello I’m back, but only for a few minutes. Today is my Uncle’s 90th birthday and we’re taking him out to lunch. I’m going to list a few recipes and products and then come back later. Note that when trying to change your dietary habits, sometimes it will take from 2 to 12 times of trying a new food before one acquires a taste for it. You might also have to try preparing any particular new food in several different ways before you find something that everyone likes. Anyway, here goes.

Baked Sweet Potato Fries

Shredded Chicken Chili with 3 Beans and Cornbread Muffins (Note: any chili can be made less spicy, simply by using less of the hot stuff)

Ground Turkey Sloppy Joe’s (Note: make sure to get ground breast of turkey, rather than the kind that has both light and dark meat, otherwise it has the same amount of fat as regular old ground beef. You can also use Morningstar Farms Meal Starters Burger Crumbles for a vegetarian version. I use this stuff all the time in chili and tacos and burritos!

Chicken Soft Tacos

Vegetarian Baked Beans (Note: you can also mix in some vegetarian hotdogs like Yves Veggie Dogs or Smart Dogs. I like them both and you can also slice them on top of home made macaroni and cheese, or just put them on a bun with ketchup or mustard, or add some veggie chili. Yum!

Homemade Cheese Pizza (Note: you can make your own dough in a bread machine, directions are on this website if you scroll down. You can also add your own toppings once the kids get used to finding fresh vegetables that they like. In the meantime you might like Yves Meatless Pepperoni I love that!)

Chicken Salad With Cashews and Apples (Note: you can always omit anything that anybody doesn’t like)

Here is a website page put out by WebMD that has a bunch of listings for Vegetarian Alternatives to Meat Products. I looked at most of them, and they’re pretty accurate the way the tastes are being described. I used quite a few of these products.

Here is some info about how to make your homemade chicken noodle soup in a much healthier manner. And here is an easy, quick Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe

The following are some products that you might like to try, to substitute for other less healthy products that you currently use. I’m only listing products that I’ve actually tried and like the taste of.

Smart Balance Buttery Spread

Ronzoni Smart Taste Pastas (These cook and taste just like regular pasta, but they have added fiber and protein)

For snacks you guys might enjoy Amy’s Pocket Sandwiches that can be popped into the microwave. I especially like the Vegetable Pie and the Cheese Pizza Pocket

McDougal’s Baked (not fried) Ramen Noodles

I’ll be back later Chow!

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

@Kardamom wow, these recipes all look amazing. Thank you so much!

Kardamom's avatar

Sorry I keep popping in and out. We have company this weekend.

I thought you might like a recipe for Turkey Meatballs which you can serve atop the Ronzoni Smart Taste Pasta, listed in my previous post ^^. Or you can make meatball sandwiches, with some cut open French Rolls (regular or whole wheat) with a few big spoonfulls of a low sodium marinara sauce (home made or jarred) with a sprinkling of mozzarella cheese. Or if you really want to get crazy, you can tryTrader Joe’s Meatless Meatballs I love them. They’re also good if you slice them and put them on top of pizza.

Baked potatoes are a good option too. They’re loaded with vitamin C. But instead of putting globs of butter and/or sour cream on them, consider topping them with the Smart Balance Buttery Spread from above ^^ or non-fat plain yogurt and some chopped chives, or the yogurt with some type of salsa.

Here’s a list of tasty salsa’s that are good with the potatoes, or any kind of taco or burrito that you might make.

Salsa Roja

Tomatillo Salsa

Salsa Fresca

Fresh Pineapple Salsa

Fresh Cranberry Salsa (These last 2 fruity salsas are especially good on baked sweet potatoes with the non-fat plain yogurt).

Most kids seem to like tomato soup, but this recipe is much tastier and has none of the disgusting additives that most canned soups contain.

Once you guys start going to Farmer’s Markets and the kids start developing an interest in cooking and trying new foods, soups will become your best go-to meals (healthy, easy, convenient to freeze for later). Here’s a list of some great soups.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup (Note: I would omit the half and half from this recipe and just use low fat milk, or not even add the cream at all. I make my own recipe, and it has no dairy at all)

Hot and Sour Soup (Note: you don’t have to use dried mushrooms if you don’t want to. You can pretty much use any kind of schrooms that you want. Mushrooms are one of the healthiest super-foods you can eat, so if you can convince people to learn to like them, sometimes after many times of trying different ones, you will have a winner with schrooms) I put schrooms in everything from sloppy joe’s to omelets to stir fry, to lasagna and even my low-fat mac and cheese.

Two Ways with Carrot Ginger Soup

Minestrone Soup

And here is one of my own recipes:

My Dad recently had heart surgery so I wanted to try to make some recipes for him that would be heart healthy as well as good tasting. This recipe is chock full of veggies, uses whole grain corn tortillas and substitutes low fat cottage cheese for full fat jack or cheddar cheese. I thought a green sauce would be best for this dish, but most of the store bought sauces are full of nasty, un-natural things and are especially high in sodium content (The Frontera sauce had 35 mg of sodium compared to 200 mg and up in the canned green enchilada sauces). Generally I would make my own sauce, but this week I was in a hurry. I found a jarred green tomatillo sauce made by Frontera (who incidentally makes a line of excellent salsas) that is made for livening up guacamole. But for my purposes, I used it as my enchilada sauce. Perfect. I even surprised myself at how good these enchiladas tasted. For this go round I used kale, orange colored cauliflower (which has more beta-carotene than white, and looks really terrific) and fresh mushrooms. You can substitute just about any kind of veggies you like. Next time I’m going to try artichoke hearts, carrots and asparagus.

1 package Trader Joe’s brand Corn Tortillas
1— 8 oz. jar Frontera All Natural Guacamole Mix
1— 16 oz. container low fat Cottage Cheese
2 tbls Olive Oil, divided use
1 and ½ cup chopped fresh Kale
1 and ½ cup sliced fresh White Mushrooms
1 cup diced Yellow Onion
1— 4.5 oz. can chopped Green Chilies, rinsed
1 and ½ Cups chopped fresh orange colored Cauliflower


Start by spooning the cottage cheese into a fine wire mesh strainer over a bowl, to allow some of the liquid drain off; ten or fifteen minutes ought to do the trick. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. In a medium sized skillet, sauté the diced yellow onions in 1 tablespoon of olive oil until just soft, add the mushrooms and stir until they just start to brown, then add the rinsed green chilies (they’re rinsed to remove most of the added sodium) until heated through. Empty the mushroom/ green chilies mixture into a bowl and set aside. In the same skillet, sauté the orange colored cauliflower in 1 tablespoon of olive oil until it just starts to brown, then set the cauliflower aside. Meanwhile, spread about 4 tablespoons of the Frontera All Natural Guacamole Mix into the bottom of a glass 11 inch by 7 inch glass baking dish. Take 2 of the corn tortillas out of the package and cut them in half (because of the round shape of the tortillas and the rectangular shape of the baking dish, you will need four half sections of tortilla to fill in the middle spaces in your dish). Place two whole tortillas and one of the halved tortillas into the bottom of the dish to cover the bottom. Spread a thin layer of the cottage cheese over the tortillas, and then spread the mushroom/green chilies mixture over the bottom layer. Put down another layer of tortillas, spread another thin layer of cottage cheese over the tortillas, and then spread the chopped kale over this layer. Drizzle about 6 tablespoons of the Frontera sauce over the kale. Add another layer of tortillas and cottage cheese, and then spread the chopped orange colored cauliflower over this layer. Add one more layer of tortillas and cottage cheese for the top layer and pour the remaining Frontera sauce over the top layer and down into any crevices. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes, or until bubbling and hot. This may sound like a lot of steps, but the prep time took me only about 20 minutes. I chopped and sautéed the vegetables while the cottage cheese was draining.

Hope you like. I’ll be back!

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