When preparing for puberty, inspiring our kids to eat well is vital. Eating a balanced, nutrient-dense diet will support their physical health, mental health and hormonal balance.
While we can’t force our kids to eat more vegetables, we can teach them about the benefits of eating real food (not packaged or processed).
We try to create create meals that are filled with veggies and still taste delicious—like this baked mac'no'cheese recipe—as a "secret" way to give our kids the veggies and nutrients they need without the complaints....
In the lead up to puberty it's also a great idea to add in plenty of leafy greens and some cruciferous veggies to meals.
Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, brussels sprouts, kale and watercress (just to name a few), all contain molecules that help clear excess oestrogen in the body. Balanced oestrogen levels help support a more balanced menstrual cycle. We've added cauliflower as the base of our 'cheese' sauce.
Dairy Free Mac'No'Cheese Recipe
- 2-3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- 400g cauliflower, roughly diced
- Salt and pepper
- Olive oil
- 1 cup (150g) cashews (we recommend pre-soaking overnight or for at least one hour)
- 1L unsweetened nut milk (we used cashew milk)
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast (you can get this at Countdown, New World or any health store)
- 1 heaped teaspoon English mustard
- 350g gluten-free macaroni
- 2 cups baby spinach leaves (about 100g)
- ½ a bunch of fresh thyme
- Splash of olive oil
- 1 cup of gluten free breadcrumbs
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
- Break cauliflower into florets and place on baking tray with garlic cloves. Sprinkle salt, pepper and drizzle with olive oil.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until golden.
- Cook macaroni according to the packet instructions. When al dente, turn off the heat and drain.
- Place roasted cauliflower, soaked cashews, nut milk, nutritional yeast, garlic, mustard and salt in a food processor and blend until smooth. Set aside.
- Combine cauliflower sauce and pasta in a try or cast iron pot and stir until it is well-coated. Season to taste with salt & pepper.
- For the topping, pick the thyme leaves and compost the stalks. Add to a medium pan over a medium heat with a splash of oil. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden.
- Add thyme leaves and gluten free breadcrumbs to your food processor and add splash of oil and pulse. Sprinkle over the pasta.
- Place your pasta in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes—it should be nice and golden on top. Leave to stand for around 5 minutes, then serve with steamed broccoli and a seasonal green salad.
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