20-Minute Make-Ahead Dinner: Pesto Shrimp Tortellini Salad

Yes, this Pesto Shrimp Tortellini Salad really comes together in just 20 minutes! Using a few pre-made shortcuts, pesto and tortellini, this recipe requires verrrry little effort. Equally delicious warm or cold, serve it over some baby spinach, and you don’t even need a side dish! 

Yesterday was a total disaster. I overscheduled our morning, worked on my grad school research project during nap time, and by the time we hit 3pm I was eating chocolate chips by the handful to try to make it through the rest of the day. I gave myself a stomach ache, and didn’t feel any more energetic afterwards (surprise). Though I managed to make dinner (baked chicken thighs, sweet potatoes, and broccoli), I was riding the struggle bus the whole way through. At 9pm, I was laying on the couch crying to my husband that I was too tired to go get in bed.

So today I was determined to make it a better day. Luckily we had little on the agenda so I took advantage and most of the day we spent hanging out at home. I even made dinner during Teddy’s naptime so I knew I could relax this evening and not be a total puddle by the time my husband got home.  Continue reading

Should You Sneak Veggies in Your Kids’ Food?

As parents we want our kids to eat healthy – and that means eating veggies! But what if your kid refuses them? Should you sneak veggies into your kids’ food? 

Maybe they’re out there…but I haven’t met one yet. Have you ever talked to a parent who said, “my goodness, my child just LOVES her vegetables. Beets, collards, turnips, you name it and she just licks up every last bite. Asks for seconds, thirds even. If only I could get her to try a cupcake!”

I think the most common response I get when asking other moms about their kids eating their veggies is an eye roll, hands up in the air, a shrug, and possibly a snort.

So what should we do?

Continue reading

Collagen Powder: What is it and should I use it?

Collagen powder, also called collagen protein or collagen peptides, is a VERY popular supplement. Have you heard of it? Read to learn about what exactly it is, and how to know if you should use it. 

What is collagen?

Collagen is a structural protein found in the connective tissue, skin, and bone in animals. In plain terms — it is a type of protein.

Nutritionally speaking, collagen and gelatin are basically the same thing. Their differences come in with their chemical properties. Collagen is more broken down, and will dissolve easily in liquid. Gelatin, as you probably know, can form a gel-like substance.

Collagen, and all proteins we eat, are basically just a combination of building blocks called amino acids.

Although a lot of our body is made up of collagen, we don’t need to EAT a ton of it to maintain the collagen in our body, though the people who sell these supplements will obviously tell you otherwise.  Continue reading

Make Ahead Recipe: Paleo Skillet Pizza Shepherd’s Pie

Paleo Skillet Pizza Shepherd’s Pie comes together with a handful of kitchen staples for an easy weeknight meal that fills your kitchen with the intoxicating smell of pizza, without all the grease!

Paleo Skillet Pizza Shepherd's Pie | mamaknowsnutrition.com

You can thank my pregnancy for this recipe. So far, my only real craving has been cheese. No, there’s not any cheese in this recipe (although I bet it would be delicious if you added some in!). There was no cheese left in the fridge, because I’ve been eating it with basically every meal every day.

BUT, I was craving pizza, so I figured I could fool myself into it with some italian seasoning and pepperoni. IT WORKED. This was a perfect no-fuss weeknight meal that satisfied my pizza craving without calling in a delivery order.

It’s like a shepherd’s pie, but with pizza flavors. You on board??  Continue reading

Picky Eating: Help! My toddler only wants snacks

Picky eating is one of the most common complaints about toddlers, preschoolers, and young kids. But you CAN make it better! This is part of a series on picky eating where I’ll be sharing different strategies to reduce picky eating and make mealtimes a little easier.

This morning I asked my son, “are you ready for breakfast?” And you know what he said to me? “No! Snack!” (In his very defiant toddler voice, I might add.)  Continue reading