How often do you bake homemade bread for your kids’ meals and snacks for online distance learning? The global pandemic of 2020 has forced us to change the way we do things. Including mealplanning. And that can cause stress. What do we do when we’re stressed? Eat. Snack. Fill the tummy with comfort food. Like homemade bread. Garlic bread. Buttered toast. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. You’ll love this yeast bread recipe, fresher than any loaf full of preservatives. Hungry yet? Jump to Recipe
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Foods Help Kids’ Emotions
Study gut-brain health to understand how food helps kids’ emotions. Read the article, “The Gut-Brain Connection: How it Works and The Role of Nutrition” to see how food could have an effect on the brain.
How many times do you hear your kids say, “I’m bored?” Staying at home all the time can affect their emotions. Even children who are going to their schools after several months may deal with boredom. They could feel tired from sitting at a desk most of the day.
Kids’ School Social Distancing and the Playground
My granddaughters expressed sadness to me about not getting to play outside on the playground at school. Because of Covid-19, schools require children to wear masks and learn social distancing with classmates. The oldest grand-little, a second-grader, said playing on the playground at school (something she misses from the way school was for her earlier this year) makes her feel happy.
Providing children with well-balanced meals and healthy snacks won’t solve all your pandemic problems. Baking homemade bread in your house, however, is one small thing you can do. What it does? Fills the senses and the whole house with a sensational aroma. Satisfies hangry feelings.
Naturally, kids are going to dig in the pantry, fridge, and freezer for their own comfort foods. While you aren’t looking, they will sneek sweets, chips, and sodas if you keep those things on hand. What kid-friendly foods do you feed your kids when they are hangry?
Flexibility has allowed me to help my little granddaughters with online school during the pandemic. It brought back memories. Years ago I homeschooled their mom, and her go-to comfort food was cereal. We were fortunate to have flexibility in our homeschool. My husband’s line of work required full-time travel annually. So we lived in a 40-foot two-bedroom RV and traveled the U.S. Great for learning geography – and experiencing a variety of foods. As long as there was a Taco Bell wherever we went, my daughter was happy.
Now in 2020, there is a greater need than ever before for flexibility in homeschooling children. Whether your children are back at normal school (not sure how normal it can be at this point) or at home doing school online, they need a variety of nutritious foods.
Homemade Bread, Meals, and Snacks – Feeding Kids During Distance Learning
Stock your kitchen with bread pans so that you can bake your kids homemade bread because home-baked bread is the best kind and is great as meals or snacks.
“Nutrition Experts Share What to Feed Kids While Distance Learning,” a HuffPost article by Julie Kendrick, is an excellent article on feeding kids nourishing foods.
The Amazon book shown below, “Nourish Your Tribe”, is an excellent choice for this pandemic season and strengthening your child’s immune system. Click on the book to order from Amazon.
Distance learning has its advantages but has put the pressure on parents. Change of routines. Entertaining kids. Monitoring what they eat. More meals to cook.
Registered dietician nutritionist, Vickie Shanta Retelny, shared advice that we all could benefit from: ‘A focus on whole, unprocessed foods can help your kids maintain stronger immune systems.’
Unprocessed food isn’t a new thing. But the coronavirus has caused us to be more aware of what we’re eating and feeding our families. Mealplanning for your family and kids is easier to do when you stock your pantry with these foods:
Katja Rowell, a family doctor and childhood feeding specialist, said: ‘To maintain even levels of blood sugar that support the ability to pay attention, kids need food for short-term and long-term energy.’
Figuring out the foods needed for energy and to keep the blood sugar levels even is a science. It’s good that kids begin early to learn about nutritious snacks and foods.
Prepare veggies ahead of time for recipes, and save some for snacking.
Set up a shelf or bin in your fridge with jars and bags of snacks such as these:
- celery sticks
- sliced carrots
- pickle slices
- cheese sticks
- pickled okra
Let Kids Eat Foods They Like
It’s okay to let kids eat foods they like. Check out the kids eating “garbage” article on healthline.com. The article says “food restriction and dieting in childhood can contribute to a higher risk of binge eating later in life.” See, there’s hope for all of us binge-eating bread and cake eaters. Your kids will not mind so much that you are incorporating whole foods in the mealplanning for them when you allow them to eat the foods they like.
Let Kids Bake the Snacks
I love to bake for my grandkids, but it’s also fun to let the kids bake. My little Kinder grand-little learned about different types of scientists while attending class online. She discovered that one kind of scientist is a food scientist. The teacher instructed the children to draw what type of scientist they wanted to be along with a picture of what that scientist does. She drew herself, a cake, and an oven. As soon as the class ended, she asked me, “Can we bake a cake?”
“Sure,” I said.
We baked this German chocolate cake that afternoon.
I set the ingredients, bowls, and utensils out on the counter. She brought a stool to stand on in order to reach the counter. And I let her do the pouring, mixing, and stirring.
Use this back-to-school season to delegate baking to your children as much as you can. Sure, it takes effort and patience from you. But it’s worth all the effort because baking memories last a lifetime. Fond baking memories are what stirs up comfort food nostalgia. Purchase a kids’ cookbook like “Kid Chef Bakes for the Holidays”, available on Amazon:
Cake won’t be listed on nourishing food lists (though bread might be), but the baking project did teach a little girl that baking is part of food science.
What to Feed Kids During Distance Learning
What to feed kids – during distance learning or any other time – is more than just coming up with a list of healthy foods. They need to see that we, their parents and grandparents, are also consuming the same healthy foods. If we have a weakness with cake or bread (preaching to myself), likely, they will, too. The key, according to the healthline.com article, is eat the bread or cake but limit it to one piece.
So go ahead and allow your kids to eat their junk food, dessert, or whatever their comfort food is. But pair it with a protein, a meat or slice of cheese. It will help keep them full and, perhaps, make them want less junk food.
Check out “20 Secrets for Eating Bread Without Getting Fat” on eat this.com. Bread doesn’t have to be off limits. It can help, though, to eat it with protein and/or fiber. And what kid doesn’t like a sandwich?
Bake Bread for Meals and Snacks
Occasionally, I bake banana bread. When I’m at home and baking for my hubby and me, I bake with sugar alternatives and raw honey or raw maple syrup but very seldom with white granulated sugar. However, since assisting my daughter and her family with online distance learning, I’ve adapted somewhat. Though she cooks nutritious and delicious meals (like her awesome chicken soup that the whole family is crazy about) for her husband, kids, and herself, she isn’t into baking like me.
One day my three-year-old grandson opened a loaf of bread, pulled out two slices, and stuffed them into his mouth, (while he waited for me to make him a PB&J sandwich), and that’s when I decided it was time to bake bread for our meals and snacks. I baked two loaves of bread made with organic unbleached all purpose flour. A fan of Pinterest recipes, I scrolled through my pins and others and loved reading about the homemade white bread recipe from Crazy for Bread (click here for the link). Inspired, I took out my baking ingredients (I sneak a few of them in my daughter’s pantry when I’m visiting ’cause I love baking with and for my grands.) like the organic unbleached all purpose flour and honey. Ah, the aroma of that bread was amazing – and the taste…mmmm good.
Double-Loaf Yeast Bread
Recipe for two loaves of white yeast bread
- 6 cup Organic unbleached all-purpose flour
- 3 tbsp Granulated sugar
- 2 packet Platinum Superior Baking Yeast (Net WT 3/4 OZ) Premium Instant Yeast With Dough Enhancers
- 2 tsp Salt
- 1-1/2 cup Water
- 1/2 cup 2% Milk lactose free
- 2 tbsp Unsalted butter
Mix 2 cups of flour, sugar, instant baking yeast and salt in a stainless steel mixing with a whisk. Add to flour mixture.
Heat the water, milk and butter together in a microwave for 30 seconds to 45 seconds until the mixture is warm and the butter has softened to almost melting.
Combine the liquid with the flour mixture
Blend with a whisk for 2 minutes.
Add 1 cup flour and blend with a whisk for 2 more minutes.
Mix in the rest of the flour as needed, until the dough forms into a ball.
Roll out on a floured surface (options: kitchen counter, parchment paper on top of kitchen counter, pastry board, silicone baking mat).
Knead with a rolling pin (or jar) until the dough feels smooth and elastic, approximately 6 or 7 minutes.
Cover the dough with a towel and let set while you preheat the oven to 400ºF and spray two loaf pans with nonstick cooking spray.
Divide dough into 2 equal parts.
Roll the dough with your rolling pin (or jar) into rectangles, about three or four inches longer than the length and width of your loaf pans.
Roll up the kneaded dough, short end to short end (similar to a pumpkin roll).
Press the dough together, making a seam lengthwise by pinching the dough.
Seal the ends also by pinching together then place into the loaf pans, seams going on the bottom.
Set the loaves in a warm spot, cover them with a towel, and let them rise until they double in size, 45 minutes to one hour.
Bake for 25-30 minutes.
Remove the loaves, using a knife to loosen the sides if they are stuck to the pan.
Place the bread loaves onto wire racks to cool (use a gas stovetop grate or cookie sheet that's cool if you don't have a wire rack).
White Flour vs. Whole Grain Flour
Baking with organic unbleached all purpose flour is my preference. But I like the idea that Emily at butterbeliever.com suggests in her article, “Is White Flour Really All That Bad?”. Mix it up – whole grain flour and white flour. She discusses the pros and cons of white flour.
We can consume too much of any food, but bread can quickly pack on the carbs. Carbs turn to sugar If you or someone in your family is a diabetic and you’re concerned about types of healthy flours to bake with, read “20 Healthy Flours from Lowest to Highest Carbohydrates” at thediabates.com.
Although my study of nutrition in my degree plan included Family and Consumer Science, I am not a scientist or a licensed nutritionist. However, I do love to cook, bake, and eat healthy foods. And I enjoy cooking food that my grandkids like.
Homemade Bread – Kids’ Meals and Snacks
The homemade bread I baked was great for the kids’ meals and snacks. The aroma of freshly baked bread first drew all of us into the kitchen for the first slice. No butter. Just hot delicious yeast bread. Next, we ate toasted bread with butter. Of course, my grand-littles were thrilled to try out the homemade bread as a peanut butter and jelly sandwich:
Peanut butter and jelly must be the Number 1 kids’ favorite sandwich in America. How many peanut butter and jelly sandwiches can your child eat in a week – or a day? I think my grandchildren could be perfectly happy with two per day.
Want to cut down on all the bread your children eat for sandwiches? Serve a half of a PB&J sandwich instead of a whole one. Cut it into two triangles. Place it on a plate with a few berries and raw carrots.
You know what else homemade bread is good for? Garlic bread.
Serve it with spaghetti or lasagna and salad. Make your own garlic butter with Italian seasoning. Mix the butter and seasoning into a bowl and microwave it for thirty seconds.
Toast a slice of the yeast bread, and put the garlic butter on (put it on the crust, too).
Homemade Yeast Bread Recipe
A home chef who wants to bake homemade yeast bread and other homebaked goods will benefit from stocking the pantry with baked goods like good parchment paper, a good set of loaf pans, and kitchen utensils for kneading and rolling dough.
Rolling Pin and Mat Set:
I made this double-loaf yeast bread recipe at my daughter’s house and used a gas stove-top grate to cool the bread. If you plan on doing a good amount of baking, you will benefit from having a cooling rack on hand like such as these on Amazon:
This bread recipe is delicious, very kid-friendly, and it doesn’t stay around too long. It’s a healthy alternative to store-bought bread with preservatives.
A full tummy helps kids feel good. Better than feeling hangry. Bread is a temporary filler, so pair it with protein. Top homemade yeast bread toast with peanut butter and jelly or honey for breakfast. Let the kids make their own PB&J sandwiches.
More of Kitchen Southern Hospitality’s homemade bread and cake recipes:
Fall is almost here.
Get ready to make Chicken and Dumplings,
a comfort food recipe with homemade dumplings.
Keep your kids happy with food filled with yumminess.