For the next three weeks, we’ll be posting some allergy-friendly meal ideas, starting with breakfast. While it can be difficult to come up with meal ideas for standard diets or choosy children, a diet that has allergy restrictions is even tougher! Here are some breakfast ideas that might help you add variety. As always, check with your little one’s health care team to make sure they are appropriate.
Neocate-Only Breakfast Ideas
For children whose diets are strictly limited to amino acid-based formula, it’s helpful to have ideas that add variety. For instance, mixing some of the flavors and formats that Neocate offers can help fight the formula monotony. One of our favorite ideas for children over one year is mixing Neocate Nutra with Neocate Junior Tropical, Neocate Junior with Prebiotics Vanilla, or Neocate’s E028 Splash Grape. A ratio of about four scoops of Nutra powder to every one ounce of a prepared Neocate formula provides you with what we like to call “almost-yogurt.” You can of course adjust the ratio to your child’s tastes. For children older than six months but below one year, you might try mixing Neocate Nutra with a pasteurized fruit juice that they tolerate.
Top Eight Allergen-Free Breakfast Ideas
If your child is on an elimination diet for eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) or is avoiding all of the eight major allergens, you can try mixing a Neocate product with pureed fruit. By mixing Neocate Junior with fruit you can come up with some great breakfast shakes and outstanding flavor combinations. Or by mixing Neocate Nutra with pureed fruit you can come up with a great alternative to oatmeal. If you want to serve it warm, we still recommend against using a microwave: start with warm juice instead to avoid the hot spots and lower nutrient levels microwaves can cause.
Less Restrictive Breakfast Ideas
For children who avoid dairy and only one or two other allergens, we have some great breakfast suggestions in our online Neocate Food Allergy Cookbook, a compilation of recipes submitted by families. Mallory posted her top 5 breakfast ideas from the cookbook, many of which use wheat, in a previous blog. One great thing about a lot of these recipes is that many can be made in a large batch, portioned, and frozen or refrigerated for later use. The Apple-Oat Muffins on page seven would definitely be in my top five! We’ve also had a few breakfast recipes appear in blog posts, such as Banana Bread Muffins.
If your family has a favorite “standard” breakfast recipe that involves milk but is otherwise allergy-friendly, you may be able to substitute Neocate formula for the milk. While this might change the final result a little bit and may require some experimenting, it will provide the high levels of most nutrients from Neocate that other milk substitutes (such as water or rice milk) can’t provide. Just be aware that the high heat from cooking will lower some of Neocate’s nutrient levels, especially some vitamins. Again, check all recipes to be sure that the ingredients are safe for your child and ensure that the health care team is on board.
What allergy-friendly breakfast ideas have helped your family in the morning?