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Light meals

These recipes have been designed as a resource for care settings who care for children aged 1-4 years. Please note, each recipe makes 12 child size portions.

Spicy potato wedges and tomato salsa (12 child-size portions)

8 medium sized old potatoes
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
70ml orange juice
4 teaspoons mustard powder
4 teaspoons paprika powder

  • Heat the oven to 200.C/400.F/Gas 6
  • Scrub the potatoes and cut each one into about 8 or 12 wedges
  • Place the remaining ingredients in a jug and whisk together
  • Put the potato wedges in a roasting tin. (They must be in a single layer.) Pour the dressing over them and toss to coat the wedges well.
  • Cook at the top of the oven for 15 minutes.
  • Turn and mix, scraping all the flavourings that nay be browning in the tin, and cook for another 15 minutes or until tender.

Tomato salsa

1 small (200g) can chopped tomatoes.
3 spring onions, finely chopped
1 small red pepper, cored and finely chopped
2 tablespoons of chopped fresh parsley
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
½ teaspoon ground black pepper

  • Mix all the ingredients together, chill before serving.

Serve with salad and sliced ham / chicken pieces

Suggested portion sizes:

Spicy potato wedges 65g, Tomato salsa 30g

Pitta bread pizza (12 child-size portions)

12 mini pitta breads
12 teaspoons tomato puree
2 teaspoons basil
1 garlic clove, crushed
180g grated cheddar or mozzarella cheese
Toppings: Sweetcorn, ham, pineapple, peppers, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes

  • Mix together the tomato puree, basil and garlic in a bowl.
  • Spread the tomato sauce over each pitta bread.
  • Add selected toppings and sprinkle with the grated cheese.
  • Place under a pre-heated grill until golden and bubbling

Mini egg and cress sandwiches (12 child-size portions)

12 hard-boiled eggs
5 tablespoons reduced-fat mayonnaise
1 punnet of cress
12 large or 24 small slices of bread
Mash together the eggs, mayonnaise and cress.
Fill the sandwiches and cut into small pieces.

Suggested portion sizes:

Egg and cress sandwiches – 80g, Lettuce- 25g, Cherry tomatoes- 40g

Vegetable and lentil soup (12 child-size portions)

1 large onion, chopped
1 large garlic clove, crushed
4 carrots, chopped into small chunks
200g butternut squash, diced
200g sweet potato, peeled and diced
4 sticks of celery, chopped
100ml water
200g red lentils, rinsed
1400ml vegetable stock (click here for recipe)
2 bay leaves
1 sprig of thyme
Freshly ground black pepper

  • Put everything into a large saucepan, cover with lid and bring to the boil.
  • Simmer for 30 minutes, or until the vegetables and lentils are soft.
  • Remove the bay leaves and thyme and blitz in a food processor until smooth.

Serve with lightly fried mycoprotein strips (meat alternative) (300g for 12 child size portions) sprinkled on the top and fingers of toast.

Fish pate with toast fingers and salad (12 child-size portions)

4 cans mackerel fillets in oil, drained
100g full fat soft cheese
Juice of 1 lemon

  • Drain the mackerel fillets in a sieve.
  • Flake the fillets in a bowl, checking for bones
  • Add the soft cheese and lemon juice and mash together thoroughly with a fork. Season with pepper.

Suggested portion sizes:

Fish pate -50g, Toast fingers - 40g (1 slice), mixed salad – 40g

Pasta with chickpea salad, cucumber and carrot sticks (12 child-size portions)

600g pasta twirls

1 small red pepper
9 spring onions, diced
2 large cans of chick peas, drained
2 tablespoons tomato puree
2 tablespoons curry powder
1 teaspoon lemon juice

  • Cook the pasta according to instructions on the pack
  • Mix together all the other ingredients in a separate bowl and chill in the fridge until ready to serve.

Suggested portion sizes:

Chick pea salad- 50g Pasta twirls- 50g, Cucumber and carrot sticks- 40g

Tuna and sweetcorn pasta (12 child-size portions)

300g pasta shapes of choice
350 g frozen sweetcorn
3 (185g) cans tuna in spring water, drained
90g mayonnaise
90g full fat yogurt

  • Boil the pasta until tender
  • Boil the sweetcorn until tender
  • Drain the pasta and rinse with cold water. Mix the pasta, sweetcorn and tuna together with the mayonnaise and yogurt.
  • Chill before serving

Suggested portion sizes:

Tuna and sweetcorn pasta 145g Cucumber and pepper sticks 40g

Fruity couscous with chickpeas and mixed salad (12 child-size portions)

170g couscous
100g raisins
100 dried apricots, chopped
1 large red pepper, de-seeded and chopped
1 large yellow pepper, de-seeded and chopped
100g frozen peas, defrosted
500g can chickpeas, drained
1 ½ teaspoons allspice
2 tablespoons olive oil
300ml boiling water

  • Place all the ingredients except for the boiling water in a large bowl.
  • Pour in the boiling water and mix very gently. Cover and leave to stand for 5 – 10 minutes until all the liquid in absorbed.
  • Mix well with a fork until fluffy. Chill before serving.

Suggested portion sizes:

Fruity couscous 120g, Mixed salad – 40g

Savoury omelette with cheese, peppers and cherry tomatoes (12 child-size portions)

12 eggs
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 small onion, peeled and finely diced
50g frozen mixed peppers
1 medium potato, cooked and diced
100g grated cheddar cheese

  • Beat the eggs in a bowl.
  • Place the oil in a non stick frying pan and fry the onions and peppers for a few minutes until they soften.
  • Add the diced potato and pour over the egg mixture.
  • Sprinkle with cheese and cook until set through placing under a hot grill to set the top it necessary.

Suggested portion size:

Savoury omelette – 70g, cherry tomatoes – 40g

Other ideas:

Chicken strips, wholemeal toast, red pepper and green salad

Chicken strips- 40g
Wholemeal toast (1 slice) - 20g
Red pepper- 20g
Green salad- 40g

Sardines on toast with cherry tomatoes

Sardines- 40g
Wholemeal toast (1 slice) - 20g
Cherry tomatoes- 40g

Jacket potato with cheese, spring onion and carrots

Jacket potato- 90g
Cheese- 30g
Spring onion- 10g
Carrots- 40g

Brown roll with houmous, mozzarella balls, green beans and carrots

Brown roll with houmous- 60g
Mozzarella balls- 20g
Green beans- 20g
Carrots- 20g

Cheese on toast with cucumber and pepper sticks

Cheese - 15g
Toast (1 slice) - 20g
Cucumber- 40g
Red pepper- 40g