Cook with Kids: Rainbow Meatball Kabobs

Cooking with your kids is an excellent way to help them build healthy eating habits.

This recipe is a Mom Made favorite. It's easy, healthy and fun to make! Get creative with the assortment of fruits, vegetables and cheeses then stand back to let the kids add whatever they wish to their kabobs. Challenge them to make it a RAINBOW kabob by adding many colors.

5 Reasons Mom Made Foods Is Found in the Freezer Aisle

Happy #NationalFrozenFoodDay! Did you know there was such a thing? Here at Mom Made, we think the process of freezing is pretty cool. No pun intended. Freezing is our preservative.

Here are the top 5 reasons why Mom Made is frozen:

1. Frozen food is convenient, fast and still provides nutritious value.

2.  Occasionally leftovers just end up in the trash. Frozen food eliminates food waste. Did you know that 2/3 of the population ditch up to 20 items a month?

3.  Compared to home freezing, manufacturers, like Mom Made Foods, freeze food within minutes to keep the nutritional value, as well as locking in texture and taste. 

4.  Freezing food is a natural process and the use of any preservatives is NOT required. Instead, it seals in freshness, locks the vitamins and minerals.

5. Thanks to freezing, Mom Made Foods is available year around, allowing busy families the option to help their home freezers stocked with easy, healthy meal options for those really busy days. 

Find a store near you.

Asian Meatball Appetizer

Craving something a little sophisticated? 

Five ingredients, a few toothpicks, and 1 dish later, you've served up an instant favorite.

asian meatball appetizer

Prep Time: 10 Minutes

Ingredients:

1 Box of your favorite Mom Made Meatballs

1 cup Teriyaki Sauce

1/2 cup Green Onions, chopped

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

Sesame Seeds

Instructions:

Chop green onions. 10 minutes before you are ready to serve, heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil in saucepan over medium heat. Add meatballs to olive oil and heat for two minutes while turning meatballs until lightly brown. Add 1 C of water and continue heating over medium heat for 5 minutes or until hot. With a slotted spoon, remove meatballs from pan and place on a plate with teriyaki sauce. Roll meatballs in teriyaki sauce. Place meatballs on serving plate. Sprinkle green onion and sesame seeds atop meatballs - serve with toothpicks. Or for dinner, serve with sides of rice and salad. 

Find Mom Made in a freezer aisle near you!

simple SLIDERS

Tiny & Tasty- our simple sliders are easy and delicious!

Everyone loves sliders - and everyone loves Mom Made.  Now you can enjoy both with this super simple slider recipe.  Great for home, parties, meals, and snacks!  

Total Time: 20 Mins

Yields: 4 Servings

Ingredients:

8 Mini Buns

1 Box Mom Made Meatballs

1-2 cups Marinara Sauce

Mozzarella Cheese, shredded or fresh

Basil (as desired)

Instructions:

Place Mom Made Turkey Meatballs on a small bun and top with marinara sauce. Sprinkle mozzarella on the meatball. Place in over or toaster oven for 5 minutes, or until cheese us melted. Dress them up by adding a sprig of fresh basil.

Enjoy!

Looking for Mom Made in a freezer aisle near you?  We've got you covered.

Meatball and Orzo Soup

From The Six O'Clock Scramble: "This is a really fun recipe from subscriber (and my college friend) Jill Rabach. It’s also great for a busy night because it’s a one-pot meal to cook and a one-bowl meal to eat, so clean up is a breeze. Serve it with whole wheat or white dinner rolls."

Prep Time : Prep + Cook = 30 minutes
Yield : 6 servings, about 1 1/2 cups each

1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, finely diced (about 1 cup)
2 carrots,finely diced (about 2 cups)
1 1/2 tsp.minced garlic (3 cloves)
32 oz. reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1 cup water
15 oz. no-salt added petite-diced tomatoes, with their liquid
2 boxes of Mom Made Turkey Meatball Bites (or 1 lb. other pre-made Meatball or Meatless Substitute.)
1/2 cup orzo
3 cups fresh spinach, coarsely chopped

In a large stockpot, heat the oil over medium heat. When it is hot add the onions, carrots and garlic, and sauté them until they onions and carrots are tender, about 5 minutes.

Add the broth, water, and tomatoes, cover it and bring it to a boil. Add the meatballs and orzo, and stir frequently for a minute or two so the noodles don’t stick to the bottom of the pot. Simmer the soup for 15 minutes, partially covered, stirring occasionally. (Meanwhile, warm the dinner rolls, if you are serving them.) Stir in the spinach and let it wilt for one minute. Season the soup with salt and pepper to taste, and serve it immediately.

Do Ahead or Delegate: Dice the onion and the carrots, peel the garlic, chop the spinach.

Scramble Flavor Booster: Use fire-roasted diced tomatoes rather than plain, and/or add a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes to the soup along with the orzo.

Tip: Keeping all cooked foods and liquids covered while in your refrigerator not only prevents spills and odors, but also helps to prevent the build-up of humidity.

Side Dish suggestion: Serve it with whole wheat or white dinner rolls, warmed in a 300 degree oven for 5 - 10 minutes.

Happy New Year! Would you like a tomato?

 Photo on  Foter.com

Photo on Foter.com

When I was five, my dad tried to get me to eat a tomato by forcing it into my mouth.  What I now refer to as “the incident” has made me refuse to eat tomatoes ever since.  This year I’m trying to get over my fear/aversion/disgust of tomatoes by incorporating them (very slowly) into my diet.  Looking back, I was probably being a bratty and uncooperative kid, but “the incident” still had a profound effect on the way I looked—and continue to look—at food (or at least tomatoes). 

Do you have any horror stories about eating as a kid?  Think about the environment around your dinner table and what can improve or be changed to drive positive changes in your family.  Consider whether new rules or boundaries need to be reset. Consider new healthy recipes or food goals. Are your kids excited to adventure with new foods? If not, why not? Little changes in the way your family interacts around food can make BIG differences—such as your child not being afraid of tomatoes.

New Years is such an exciting time for us here at Mom Made because it gives us the extra motivation to make small changes that have huge positive impacts on our lives with our families.  Now is the perfect time to consider what parts of your family mealtimes can be improved upon and get your crew on board. With that being said, throughout the month we’ll be posting healthy tips, recipes, and articles to give you inspiration.

What New Year’s resolutions have you made?  This year, instead of resolving to lose 50 pounds in a week, give yourself a break and be realistic and inspired.  If you haven’t made any New Year’s resolutions, start small—but start now!  What better time is there?  Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to tell us what your New Years resolutions are!

Happy New Years!

Your friends at Mom Made

How to Make Homemade Marshmallows

A Holiday Treat

We eat nearly all organic foods in our house but somehow marshmallows find their way into our house regularly. My kids LOVE marshmallows. LOVE.

This year I decided to try something different for our holiday cooking fest.  Thanks to an idea that inspired me on Pinterest from Martha Stewart, we made vanilla and candycane marshmallows in the shapes of snowflakes.

Thanks to our awesome neighbors, we borrowed a candy thermometer and snowflake cookie cutters. It's not often (if at all!) that you find me cooking with corn syrup, but we went for it, heating it and sugar (yes, so healthy!) to 238 degrees then adding it slowly to gelatin and whipping it for 12 minutes. It was pretty simple but the key was to put vegetable oil on the spatula before pressing it into the greased pan.

This was a first for us in making marshmallows and we all agreed, they taste so much better than the store bought marshmallows.

Such a treat!

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Do you have a recipe that you made with your kids for the holidays?  Please share!  Happy holidays from our family to yours!

The Easiest Holiday Breakfast

Leave it to Mom Made so that you can put the "Merry" before "Christmas" the morning of 12/25. 

Christmas morning, the kids are engulfed in present mania but need something nutritious in their bellies to counteract the candy canes. This dish, Mom Made Chicken Apple Meatballs served with maple syrup for dipping, is the perfect protein you can prepare in a couple minutes and they can eat while unwrapping.

Prep Time – 3 min

Cook Time – 2 min…no kidding!

You will need:

  • Mom Made’s frozen, antibiotic-free Chicken & Apple Meatballs (8oz)
  • 1/4 Cup water
  • Organic maple syrup
  • Skewers or toothpicks (for serving)

Instructions:

  • Heat the meatballs on stovetop according to directions on the box.
  • Place on a plate and add some maple syrup for dipping!

Can't wait to hear what you think. Happy (peace-filled) holidays from the Mom Made family to yours!

easy MEATBALL LASAGNA

Try a "bumpy" Mom Made spin on homemade lasagna! 

This delicious, saucy lasagna is packed with tasty Mom Made Meatball Bites and can be made ahead of time! 

Prep Time: 20 minutes   

Cook Time: 1 hour  

Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes 

Yields: 8 servings

Ingredients:

1 (8 oz.) box Mom Made Beef & Cheese Meatball Bites, frozen, cut in half

1 jar (26 oz.) Tomato pasta sauce (any variety)

1 container (15 oz.) Ricotta cheese

1 Egg, beaten

2 Tbsp Fresh basil leaves, chopped (may use dried basil as well)

8 Uncooked lasagna noodles 

3 C Mozzarella cheese (12 oz.), shredded

¼ C Parmesan cheese (1 oz.), shredded

Instructions:

Spray 13x9” (3-quart) baking dish with cooking spray or olive oil. 

In medium bowl, mix ricotta cheese, egg & basil. 

Spoon ½ cup tomato sauce over bottom of baking dish and top with 4 noodles. Top with about half of the ricotta mixture, half of the meatballs, 1 C of tomato sauce and 1 C of the mozzarella cheese. Layer with remaining 4 noodles, remaining ricotta mixture, 1 C of tomato sauce, 1 C mozzarella cheese & remaining meatballs. Sprinkle with remaining 1 C mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese.

Spray sheet of foil with cooking spray; cover baking dish with foil.

Heat oven to 350°F and bake covered lasagna 45 minutes. Uncover; bake 10 to 20 minutes longer until bubbly, edges are golden brown and cheese is melted. 

Garnish with fresh chopped basil. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting. Freezes well. 

Do Ahead or Delegate:  Cut the meatballs in half. Make ricotta mixture.
Flavor Booster: Add chopped garlic and/or chopped onion to the tomato mix.

Side Dish Suggestion: Serve with a green salad.

dipping meatball APPETIZER

Meatballs, dipping sauces & some toothpicks ... what could be simpler?

Whether you're fixing a feast for youngsters or grandparents, this delicious dish is sure to delight!

Total Time: 5-8 Minutes

This one's super simple!  Just cook your favorite Mom Made Meatballs as directed on the box, pour some sauces in dipping bowls, set out some toothpicks, and you're good to go! This also works well for the kids who don't care for the Thanksgiving turkey as a no fuss protein. What sauce, you ask? We recommend cranberry, barbecue, and/or apple sauce to dip.

Enjoy!

Find Mom Made Meatballs here.

4 Ways to Involve Kids with Thanksgiving Preparation

Preparing for Thanksgiving is a great opportunity to get the kids involved with sharing some of the responsibilities in the kitchen. There are plenty of tasks your children can help with no matter what age.

  • Let each family member select one dish they’d like on the menu. Discuss what new foods they would be willing to try. Use this time to explain the importance of having a balanced meal that includes protein, vegetables and a variety of other dishes.
  • Let children help with table decorations. Ask them to craft some simple table decorations like placing colorful fall leaves in a bottle and create name cards for all your guests.
  • For kids who want to be more hands on with the prep work, give them a specific job in the meal preparation, i.e. mashing potatoes, chopping vegetables or stirring the gravy. (Of course, make sure they are being supervised when they are using sharp knives.)
  • On Thanksgiving, ask your kiddos to help set the dinner table. They can help fold napkins, set out the plates, put ice in the water glasses. Depending on the age, they can also carry plated dishes to the serving area.

Your kids will become more invested in the celebration and come to the table with pride in their contribution. Happy Thanksgiving from the Mom Made family to yours!

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Sous Chef Junior

If you love quality food as much as we do here at Mom Made, it only makes sense to get the kiddos involved in the kitchen! We believe in starting kids while they're young. It's genuine quality time while being productive in the kitchen. 

We encourage you to challenge your children to help with more than dessert. The more involved they are from a young age, the more they will learn to appreciate the joy of cooking and the link to healthy eating. 

Keep in mind - you know your kids way better than we do! Feel free to follow these age guidelines as you feel necessary. 

3-4 Years Old

  • Use cookie cutters
  • Rinse produce
  • Juice citrus fruit
  • Tear lettuce
  • Chop herbs (with much supervision if ready)
  • Cup soft fruits and vegetables (with much supervision if ready)

5-7 Years Old

  • Crack eggs
  • Form patties and meatballs
  • De-seed peppers (be sure to use gloves for hot peppers!)
  • Chop vegetables
  • Grease pans
  • Garnish dishes
  • Pour sauce
  • Use measuring spoons and cups
  • Shuck corn
  • Use microwave
  • Peel vegetables

8-10 Years Old

  • Use stove (to prepare eggs and other simple meals)
  • Use pizza cutter
  • Open can with can opener
  • Beat eggs
  • Pound chicken
  • Skewer food
  • Slice bread

10-12 Years Old

  • Boil pasta
  • Search for and follow simple recipes
  • Use oven
  • Use chef's knife
  • Simmer ingredients on stove-top
  • Make dressings
  • Cook a full meal!

If you're super confident in your new sous chef, give them the responsibility to plan and cook a full meal! You can relax in the living room, and enjoy having dinner made for you for a change. Regardless how involved your child was in their cooking responsibilities, they will come to the table proud of their participation and ready to try their creation.

Bon appetit!

 

Where to Donate Halloween Candy

Your Candy Will Bring Smiles

No matter how fun trick or treating is, the aftermath can lead to late nights, sour tummies, and fights over who gets the last mini kit-kat. So what’s a Mom or Dad to do when the candy long outlasts your little slugger’s costume? Donate it! It might be hard to believe (for candy-loving speed walkers) but donating your kids candy can help soldiers far from home feel warm and fuzzy, put a smile on a sick kid’s face who didn’t get to go house-to-house wearing their favorite superhero getup, and help families feel a little closer together when they don’t have a place to call home. Also, you can “donate” candy to science – there are some super cool experiments you can do with skittles, starbursts and lifesavers!

Operation Gratitude – Send candy to the troops around the world. No matter where a soldier is stationed, it’s probably far from home. What better way to celebrate a night of fun and frivolity than to send a sweet treat to those keeping us safe?! Operation Gratitude will gladly take your leftover candy (if you’re so inclined send some toothbrushes, toothpaste and floss too to keep their smiles sparkling and a handwritten note {reminding them to floss is optional}) and include it in the care packages they send to soldiers throughout the year.

Ronald MacDonald House – Families with sick kiddos can stay here for little to no cost during hospital stays to ensure that all kids have a “home-away-from-home.” Donating your candy to a local chapter of the RMHC can help put a smile on a face who might have had a tough day, long test schedule or just need a pick me up.

Local Homeless Shelters –If you want to donate your kids candy, and teach them a lesson in humility, try checking if the local homeless shelters accept donations of prewrapped candy. Little ones can make up goody bags with their leftover candy, and help out people in need. Many shelters have volunteer hours for high schoolers, families or just those who want to lend a helping hand. It never hurts to teach kids about life and how to make the world a better place.  

Science Experiments – Bring back the good ‘ole days by dropping Mentos into a bottle of coke (make sure you stand back!), drop Skittles in water and watch the S’s float to the top, and see if Lifesavers really do spark in the dark! 

Throw a Howlin’ Ghoulish Halloween Party

Hosting a Halloween party doesn’t have to stress out the head Mummy. 

Ask friends to bring their favorite dishes, whip up some spooky Witches Brew, throw together some meatball mummies, wrangled up your ghosts and goblins and you’ve got yourself a scary fun party. You can even help your fellow mom-sters by suggesting some creepy dishes to bring – such as severed fingers, spooky snakes, stuffed jack’o lanterns and even some brains! Your mini-brides, knights, Elvis’ and ponies won’t be able to stop talking about all the “gross” stuff they got to eat! Disclaimer: we take no responsibility for Junior telling strangers you made him eat “brains” for dinner.

Party Prep

No one wants to clean up after a party (major buzzkill), so order some scary easy paper plates and silverware that you can just bag up and recycle when the ghosts float home. Amazon has some great patterned party kits that can add a little spark to a super spooky night. We also found these awesome invitations on Paperless Post that will be easier to send out to potential partygoers than gathering howling wolves during a full moon.

 

Decorations!

Tick tock, tick tock – throw on either Hocus Pocus, or Casper to get the family in the Halloween mood. Then….put the kids to work…err….let them help….decorate the house by creating some handmade ghosts with tissues, black markers and string. Make spiders with construction paper, tape and red markers. String black and orange streamers from wall to ceiling to create a festive Halloween hall. Place “spider webs” around the house and complete the look with spider rings and fake flies. Et voila! You’re very own haunted house and party central!

 

The Witching Hour!

Mix up a cauldron of Witches Brew a few hours before your goblins arrive, dress in your favorite costume (we are in love with this one, and this one, and this one!) and fire up @pandora or @iheartradio’s Halloween stations to get some spooky good tunes pumping out of the house as your partygoers and trick or treaters start ringing the doorbell. Bonus points for pulling out your old Rocky Horror Picture Show album and spinning those retro vibes. 

Meatball Mummies

Looking for something so yummy it's scary this Halloween? 

At Halloween, it can be challenging to get kids eating healthy. When sugary treats abound and veggies seem scarier than normal, treat your kiddos to a tasty dinner packed with protein, good fats, and just the right amount of 'fright'!

Cook Time: 10-15 Minutes

Total Time: 20-30 Minutes

Yields: 8 Skewers

Ingredients:

  • 1 box Mom Made Turkey Meatballs
  • 1 box Linguine Noodles
  • 1 cup Marinara Sauce
  • Ketchup or diced olives (for eyes, as desired)

Instructions:

Cook linguine noodles according to box directions, drain the add olive oil to coat the noodles preventing them from sticking together. Warm Mom Made Meatball Bites as directed on box. Place four meatballs on each skewer. Wrap linguine noodles around the meatball "body," leaving a space near the top of the skewer for eyes. Dot the opening with marinara sauce, ketchup or diced olives to create eyes.

Dip mummies in marinara sauce and enjoy!

No need to be frightened, Mom Made is in a store near you!

Healthy Twist on Frozen Kid Favorite Meals

New Product Launch!

Mom Made is proud to introduce two new Mom Made Meals - Buttered Noodles with Chicken Meatballs and Cheesy Noodles with Beef Meatballs - that are now available in freezers at select Walmart and Safeway stores.

“We’re excited about these two new kid-favorite meals launching into stores nationally. These are the familiar, tasty meals that kids are clamoring for and that parents will turn to, knowing they'll result in big smiles and happy tummies,” said company founder and CEO Heather Stouffer. “With Mom Made’s Buttered Noodles with Chicken Meatballs and Cheesy Noodles with Beef Meatballs, we continue to broaden access, expand our product line and create a destination for health-conscious parents in the freezer aisle. These antibiotic-free, low sodium, protein rich and nutritious meals were tested extensively with kids and received excellent feedback.”

Seventeen kids came to celebrate the launch of the meals. Watch their reactions in this recorded live tasting. 

Caprese Meatball Kabobs

Looking for a deliciously kid-friendly spin on the classic Caprese Salad? Enjoy this Mom Made favorite. And don't forget--it's so simple the kids can help with this one too.

Prep Time: 5 Minutes      

Cook Time: 1-3 Minutes      

Construction Time: 10 Minutes       

Total Time: ~20 Minutes

Yields: 4 Servings

Ingredients:

1 (8 oz.) box Mom Made Turkey Meatballs or Beef & Cheese Meatballs
Cherry tomatoes
1 cup fresh mozzarella balls, small
12 fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup balsamic dressing

Directions:

Follow directions listed on Mom Made Meatball box to heat.

While meatballs cook, clean tomatoes and basil. Once meatballs are cool, spear a single cherry tomato, meatball, mozzarella ball, and basil leaf. Repeat until all ingredients are utilized.

Lay skewers on platter and dribble balsamic dressing atop (optional). Serve immediately. 

For more fun recipes on a stick, click here.

Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy Playdate

A simple & tasty summer playdate your kids will love!

Summer’s here and to keep the kiddos having fun and not glued to the TV, it's time for some playdates! We call this our “Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy Playdate” because it takes minimal time and effort to host a super fun afternoon with friends. Mom Made Meatballs, lemonade and old fashioned games create an easy way to pass the time, feed hungry bellies and entertain the young and young at heart. 

Whether you pre-make the snacks and lemonade, or send the kids out to play while you and the other Moms tackle snack time together, it shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes to get everything ready.

We started making the lemonade then meatballs, and finished with playtime, but don’t be afraid to mix it up! Lemonade not your thing? Try some iced herbal tea or add some cucumbers to water for a spa like treat. Sliders not your thing? Sauté the meatballs and give the kiddos toothpicks and dipping sauces. The sky’s the limit with what you can create for your very own Mom Made “Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy” playdate!

Happy Summer!

Playdate Games:

T ball – create backyard memories with a good ole’ fashioned game of T ball
Pitch a tent – Fill with books, puzzles and coloring books
Yard games – grab some outdoor darts, corn hole or ring toss for a fun mini-carnival
Tag – tag you're it!

Mom Made Meatball Sliders

Ingredients:

1 package of Mom Made meatballs – we used Beef and Cheese for this, but any flavor will do!

1 package of 8 count slider buns

1 jar of marinara sauce (bonus points if it’s homemade!)

3 tablespoons of olive oil

3 tablespoons of Italian herbs (basil, oregano, thyme, chives – fresh or dried)

1 – 2 cups of Mozzarella / Italian cheese

 

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a pan large enough to fit all 8 buns (we used a round 9x9 cake pan). Layer bottom of buns around the pan, and drizzle 1 cup of sauce across buns. Add 3 meatballs to each bun and top with mozzarella cheese, remaining sauce and bun caps. Brush sliders with olive oil, and sprinkle with herbs. Cover with foil and put in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove foil and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Let rest for 5 minutes for before serving.  

Mom Made Meatball Kabobs

Ingredients:

1 package of cooked Mom Made meatballs – your favorite flavor!

3 cups of your kids' favorite veggies cubed

1 cup of cubed cheese

½ cup of your favorite dipping sauces – BBQ sauce, Ranch, etc

10 Skewers

Gather the family around and make your own Meatball Kabobs! Bonus points for using extra veggies or creating your own recipe!

 

Organic Blueberry Lemonade

Lemonade:

½ pint of blueberries

8 lemons – juiced to 1 cup

8 cups of cold water

1 cup of blueberry simple syrup (recipe below)

1 large pitcher

Blueberry Simple Syrup:

Ingredients:

¾ cup of sugar

1 cup of water

½ pint of blueberries

Directions:

Bring water and sugar to a boil until sugar is fully dissolved. Add blueberries and cook for an additional 5 minutes until berries break down. Strain through a sieve and let cool. In pitcher, mix together cold water, lemon juice and simple syrup. Stir till well combined. Serve chilled and garnish with blueberries if desired!

Wondering where to find Mom Made near you? Click here.

Mom's MORNING MUFFINS

Fuel your kids with a healthy, quick breakfast

A tasty spin on the traditional egg and meat breakfast, Mom's Morning Muffins are packed with protein and plenty of flavor.

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

Yields: 12 Muffins

Ingredients:

3/4 cup shredded hash brown potatoes

6 eggs

1/4 cup milk

3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1/2 cup green onion, finely chopped

16 Mom Made Foods Beef & Cheese Meatball Bites

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease muffin pan well. Microwave Mom Made Foods Beef & Cheese Meatball Bites according to package instructions, allow meatballs to cool, cut into quarters and set aside. Beat eggs in mixing bowl, add milk, shredded hash browns, meatballs, green onions and shredded cheese. Stir well. Scoop egg mixture into muffin pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until “muffins” are set. Serve immediately, or, let cool and freeze for quick breakfasts all week!

To reheat frozen muffins, microwave on high for one minute. 

Head out to get some Mom Made today!  Here's where we are!