Despite our pretty health obsessed culture, sometimes I find it hard to source out great toddler friendly recipes. Basically, it appears, all recipes for toddlers contain cheese or wheat flour and we don’t do much of either of those in our house.
I get most of my inspiration from free magazines at the supermarket, like the Coles or Woolies ones and then I just work my magic, swapping out the ingredients for healthier options. I stumbled across a great little free recipe booklet for toddlers here and found recipe for Banana Bread that included Cannellini Beans which inspired me to get my bake on.
Here are the ingredients I included in my version (and why)
Cannellini Beans – Fibre, fibre, fibre. You know the fancy term everyone is throwing around – “prebiotic”? Its basically french for fibre. You gut bugs lurve to metabolise this stuff to help them to thrive as well as adding bulk to the stool. When your gut bugs are happy, you are literally happy!
Banana Flour – I use the Natural Evolution banana flour in my baking and find it to be really tasty. I include this due to the resistant starch content. Resistant starch does not get absorbed in your digestive tract but instead moves through the gut, interacting with your microbiome. Research shows that it can improve insulin sensitivity and lower blood sugar levels which is exactly what you want to do when you are eating cake!
Coconut Yoghurt – this one is simply because we are a dairy free household and whilst the macronutrient profile of coconut yoghurt is very different from cows yoghurt, it does the job in keeping the recipes integrity.
Spelt flour – Spelt is actually from the wheat family and does contain gluten, but it is anecdotally easier for a lot of people to digest than regular wheat flour. It is higher in fibre than wheat and contains less gluten (depending on which variety of wheat you use).
Cinnamon – I amp up the cinnamon because it is fantastic at helping to regulate blood sugars and is a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. Source your cinnamon from Sri Lanka if you can as this is the variety that has had most testing done on the health benefits.
I’m going to say the “S” word here. Sugar. I used a fraction of what they suggested and had zero complaints from my little human. In all honesty I would usually not use sugar, but xylitol instead, which is extracted from strawberries and birch trees and has almost no glycaemic impact along with the added benefit of being beneficial for gum health. I only used sugar as I didn’t realise we had no xylitol left. If you do use it, xylitol can be subbed for the same proportions as regular sugar.
Makes 1 loaf pan
400g Cannellini Beans
3 Ripe Bananas
1/2c Coconut Yoghurt
1tsp Vanilla Essence
1c Wholemeal Spelt Flour
1/2c Banana Flour
1/4c Brown Sugar
1tsp Baking Powder
1/2tsp Bi Carb Soda
Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Place all wet ingredients and beans in a blender and blend together until smooth. Place all dry ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Mix wet ingredients into dry and pour into a lined loaf pan. Bake for around 60mins. The cake is quite dense so may need a little more cooking time depending on your oven.
Can be sliced and frozen for up to 3 months.
Hopefully your tribe like it as much as mine!