My name is Ashley McLaughlin and this is my blog, Edible Perspective. To learn more about my journey head on over to my about + FAQ pages. I'm thrilled that you stopped by. Enjoy!


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protein for the kiddos

Ahhhhhhhh, my lovely Scottish Oats!  Be on the lookout for an oat post in the next few days.  Many have you have asked about it, so you will be seeing it soon!

Until then…here is a plate of the delicious Scottish Oats…in all of their creamy glory.

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Remember how I said that the rolled oats don’t get nearly as fluffy!!?  This was 1/4c Scottish Oats…compare that to yesterday’s 1/3c rolled oats on a plate that is the same size.

Does not even come close to comparing my friends!!

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Creamy fluffy goooodness!!

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In the mix:

  • 1/4c Scottish Oats
  • 1 1/4c water
  • 1/3c hemp milk
  • 1 egg white
  • 1T chia seeds
  • 1/2 sliced banana
  • 1/2t cinnamon



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Still loving summer plated oats.  It cools them off just enough to keep me from sweating!

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Interesting looking, no?  Any guesses?

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I made a sauce for kale chips!  I usually just coat them with a little oil, s+p and maybe a few other spices.  Today I decided to jazz it up a little. 

Sweet + Salty Kale Chips

  • 1 bunch kale, washed + destemmed
  • 2T tomato paste
  • 2T nutritional yeast
  • 1-2T hemp oil [or other cold pressed oil]
  • fresh ground pepper
  • ~1/4+tsp salt [can always add more when they’re done]
  • 1T balsamic vinegar
  • 1-2T apple cider vinegar
  1. Whisk sauce together.
  2. Massage into kale.
  3. Bake at 300* stirring every 10-15min for around 45min until they are crispy.

When using a sauce like this, it takes longer to crisp them.  I normally bake them at 350* for about 20min but that isn’t enough time to crisp them up with this sauce.  A lower oven temp + longer cook time solves this problem.


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Box #3 of the samples Lundberg sent.  I love this couscous!!  My favorite so far, has been the curry.  I feel like this was very similar in taste to the herbed couscous.  Although, both were still delicious.  There will be a giveaway for this product very soon!

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Fluffy + flavorful with a great texture.

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I added in 1T of tomato paste + 1T of garlic scape pesto and then…

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Topped it with an egg! 

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My lovely chippers :)

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Recently, my good friend Megan, came to me with a question.  She told me that her 4.5yr old son does not enjoy meat very much and she was wondering how to make sure he’s getting enough protein in his diet.

This is a great question, so I thought I would address it on the blog!  I know I don’t have any kiddos of my own, but I still feel that I can answer this question! 

I have found on a few different sites, that the approximate protein needs for the average 4-6yr old is 22g of protein.  You can definitely achieve this amount everyday and without meat!  I’m going to list some ideas + tips and then link to some kid friendly recipes. 

Non-meat protein sources

  • eggs
    • 6g per egg
  • dairy [preferably organic]
    • yogurt - preferably whole milk yogurt + Greek is best because of it’s higher protein content + a much lower amount of added sugar
    • milk [8g per cup of 2% milk]
    • cheese
  • beans + nuts
    • Lentils [17g per cup] 
    • Black beans + Navy beans [15g per cup]
    • Chickpeas/Garbanzo beans [14g per cup]
    • almonds [10g per 1/2 cup]
    • peanuts [17g per 1/2 cup]
    • walnuts [9g per cup]
  • grains + seeds
    • quinoa [8g per 1c cooked] Meg – quinoa is also a good source for magnesium, which has been shown to help with headache…we know how many headaches the 2 of us get!
    • rolled oats [11g per 1c cooked]
    • brown rice [5g per 1c cooked]
    • millet [6g per 1c cooked]
    • sunflower seeds [10g per 1c]
    • pumpkin seed kernals [aka: pepitas – 34g per 1c]
  • breads + pasta [varies by brand – aim for the least processed, shortest ingredient, most natural products available]
    • whole wheat bread
    • sourdough
    • whole wheat pasta
    • buckwheat pasta [found in the Asian aisle]
    • whole wheat english muffins
    • whole wheat bagels
    • frozen waffles [look for brands with no high fructose corn syrup or hydrogenated oils – Nature’s Path are awesome!]
  • veggies
    • spinach [5g per cup, cooked]
    • broccoli [4g per cup, cooked]
    • potato [4g, medium size]
    • sweet potato [4g per cup, cooked]
  • fruits [when buying dried fruit, remember to look for un-sulphured, no sugar added]
    • avocado [4g, medium size]
    • banana [~1.5g]
    • blackberries [ 2g per cup]
    • dates [3.5g per cup]
    • grapes [1g per cup]
    • nectarine [1.5g]
    • raspberries [1.5g per cup]
    • dried apricots [4g per cup]
    • raisins [1.3g – 1 small box ~1.5oz]

It is hard to type out this list and not also list all of the other amazing benefits of each of these foods.  So many of them are also rich in calcium, iron, zinc, magnesium, vitamins, etc, not to mention low in fat and high in fiber.  Such a win-win here! 

Cooking for kids - TIPS:

  • when making a pasta dish, grate or finely chop carrots/zucchini/mushrooms/etc.
  • you can do the same when making a pasta sauce
  • add beans to pasta dishes + salads
  • add beans to burritos or tacos
  • make bean dip
  • hummus!
  • have fun mix-ins that they can add to their yogurt – maybe some toasted oats, or a low sugar granola, fresh fruit and nuts
  • top toast or frozen waffles with peanut butter instead of butter + syrup
  • when baking breads, like banana bread – load it up with extra banana and finely chopped seeds + nuts, sub out half of the oil or butter with unsweetened applesauce
  • use whole wheat pastry flour when baking – if using white, get unbleached
  • reduce sugar by at least 1/4 for baking recipes – and try not to use highly refined white sugar
  • make fruit smoothies with yogurt or milk and even add a cup of spinach – just make sure there are no spinach chunks and your kid will never taste it!
  • have fun mix-ins for hot oats – granola, fruit, nuts, etc
  • make frozen smoothie popsicles – make a smoothie, put in popsicle molds + freeze
  • make chocolate pudding with avocado, banana and pure cocoa powder
  • when packing “to-go” snacks, pack things like
    • dried fruit
    • nuts
    • apples
    • peanut butter sandwich crackers
    • low sugar, whole grain cereal
    • granola bars – look for short ingredient lists

Kid Friendly Recipes:

From Mama Pea 

From Angela

From Emily

From Kath

From me!

There are SO many recipes + other fabulous blogger I could add to this list, but this is a great place to start.  I hope this helps give the parents out there with a few kid-friendly ideas.  These are also adult friendly :)  Enjoy!


Chris and I hit the rock gym today.  I bouldered for about 30min and got through a few problmes, which I was really excited about.  I went to the upstairs gym and did a little lifting, ab-work, and some chin-up practice, [thanks to Ashley].  After, I took Kenna on a walk [Chris walked Dakota] and also did a minimal amount of running [~.25m] in the VFF’s…it felt great!

Also –> Check out the latest header project that I just finished up for the lovely Cailtin over at Twenty Fifth Year.  I had SO much fun working on her header.  It was so lucky that she trusted my crazy explanation as to what I was going to do and lucky that she ended up loving it :)  The header is made up of 2 separate photographs, that I took, edited + stitched together. 

Time to read + do a quick yoga session + go to bed!! I have a new goal to actually read more.  Not blogs, but books.  I have SO many that I want to read and somehow never get around to opening up a book too often.

On my list: I have started all of these, but need to start finishing them 1 by 1!!

  1. Animal Vegetable Miracle
  2. The Kind Diet
  3. Thrive
  4. Barefoot Running
  5. The Barefoot Running Book



Reader Comments (57)

Ahhhhhh!! Where was this FANTASTIC post 12 hours ago?!? haha I did a little grocery shopping today and before I left I was trying to find healthy kid recipes for my boys. I even stopped by your recipe page to see what I could try and make for them! My 3 y/o has never liked meat and he is one of the most pickiest eaters I have ever met. I stress daily trying to figure out if he's getting enough to eat? Is he getting enough protein? How else can I sneak in veggies into one of the few meals he'll eat regularly? And no, I have absolutely NO problem sneaking veggies and other healthy foods into things Jake will willingly eat. Is it ideal? Nah. Do I care? Nah! A Mom's gotta do what a Mom's gotta do ;)

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKimberly

Thanks for the great lists. It's still a mystery how 1/4 c. oats can fill ya up...

Wow, you must have super oats! All the brands here have 11g per 100g, which is about 1 cup uncooked - so a 1/4 cup would have like, 3g...I don't get how it keeps you full! I realllllly want some proper oats now :P
Good post!

OMG! Totally trying those kale chips!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJessica @ How Sweet

I have read the top 2 books on your list. I loved Animal, Vegetable, Miracle but wasn't too crazy about the Kind Diet, although I agree with many parts and some of the recipes do look delicious. You should post your thoughts when you are done, I'd love to hear what you thought!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

Don't forget cottage cheese.

Cottage cheese is probably the best source of dairy protein you can get.

I love that simple dinner you make with the couscous and egg, so easy but so delicious looking!

I LOVED the thrive diet, the kind diet and am looking to read animal, vegetable, miracle... and hopefully I will get vibrams for my birthday and I can get into barefoot running :D

Will you do reviews of the books? I would love to hear them :)


I think people really overthink protein. It is definitely doable to meet protein levels without meat. Most people get too much meat, especially those who eat it at every meal. And if your friend's son eats a varied diet he'll get all the necessary amino acids without meat. Maybe he'd enjoy a little protein powder like Spirutein, which seems really kid friendly, in smoothies.

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMaya

Great great post. So many amazing tips in there for parents. And great protein alternatives for vegetarians. Love it.

um, i know what i'm bookmarking and coming back to in about a year and a half :) and i would definitely love to hear some book reviews as you finish that great reading list!

Those are a great list of books you have on your agenda! I love Barbara Kingsolver's other books, so I can't wait to hear if you enjoy Animal, Vegetable, Miracle.

thanks for this post, i worry sometimes about my daughter and her protein intake as well. not only does she not eat much meat but she's picky about pretty much everything else too lol.

& yummy oats! i don't think my grocery store carries scottish oats, but i've seen steel cut, maybe i'll try those.

also, wanting to try kale chips now. never had them before!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterrachel

Wow thanks for all the useful links!

I'm also reading a million books at once right now - including The Kind Diet! (Well .. I've marked recipes I want to make, at least). Can't wait to hear what you think of them all!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBrynne

That is such a delicious idea. That brown rice and egg, so easy but tasty. Love your kale chips!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNichole

i really admire your posts because you take so much time to put them together beautifully, I can tell you spend a while writing and putting them together and it really pays off! everything is always perfect in here!

I am having steel cut oats this morning for the first time and LOVE them! next up? scottish!! you are so right that they fluff up so nice!

the sauce for the kale chips sounds and looks perfect as well!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNaomi(onefitfoodie)

I had steel cut oats this morning! Mine came out a little soupy today, though. Could be a number of variables. Ah well.

Love the list of protein sources. I'm certainly not going vegetarian, but every once and a while I do supplement my diet with vegetarian meals for the sake of cost efficiency.

Looked your post with all the protein sources and kid friendly recipes! Very nicely done! Also, how crunchy do you want the kale to get for the chips?

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHealthy Heddleston

What a helpful list of protein sources! When I first went vegetarian 3 years ago I had to do a lot of solo research to figure out where to get my protein. If only I had someone like you to help me out!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCamille

What great protein lists! I need to start getting creative with my oats.. do you reccommend a certain brand to get started with?

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMichelle

Just wanted to say thank you for this post! I don't have any kids, but I do have a picky (most-vegetable-hating) nearly 30-year-old boyfriend. This post is perfect and I've bookmarked it. Thanks again!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterClea

LOL I think this was your longest post ever!!! Truly epic. Thanks for the shout out!
You have finally convinced me to get some scottish oats. I will look for them in our natural foods section of the grocery store. Bob red mill?

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAngelaOSG

I have seen it a lot in the blogosphere but what exactly does an egg white do to the oats?? I'm curious. Great protein post, it can be surprising how much protein non-meat foods contain.

Hahaa, sorry I was 12hrs late! I hope you can find it helpful in the future. Good luck with your little one!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Egg whites fluff up the oats, make them super creamy, and add a nice little protein boost! I only use 1 and I whisk it in, in the last 2min of cooking and then let it sit and simmer for those 2min. Some people get freaked out by the white pieces from the egg but I don't notice them at all. It leaves no flavor but adds to the volume + creaminess!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

YES yes, BRM!!!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Yay, I hope it comes in handy for you!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

For rolled oats...I just use any organic brand and usually buy them in the bulk section for the most cost effective approach. For Steel Cut + Scottish, I go with Bob's Red Mill. My mom did buy me a can of Irish Steel Cut oats, which were just as delicious as well :) They have the can at whole foods + trader joes and bob's red mill come in bags.

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

I guess it depends on personal preference, but I get them as crunchy as possible. They almost look a little burnt and have no sag to them. They crumble very easily + are soo delicious that way!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Don't stir too much + let them cook a little longer? Definitely understand about cost efficiency. I'm not vegetarian either...just not in the mood for meat the past few months!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

This means SO much, Naomi!! This post did take awhile but it was really fun and I learned a few new things along the way as well. I just love the fluff + texture of the steel cut + scottish. Hope you like the Scottish as well!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

I hope this can come in handy for you + your daughter! Steel cut are good but take awhile to cook. You could make a big batch on the weekend and use them all week. Just add a little liquid for each serving in the morning.

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

I'm about 1/4 of the way through..maybe less, and am enjoying it so far!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

HAhahaa :) Yes, I'll let you know what I think of the books!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

I definitely agree about over-thinking protein as a society, in general, but I think it's great for parents wanting to make sure their kids are getting enough of what they need.

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

As I finish the books I will write up my thoughts on them! Oooh, let me know when you get the Vibrams!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

OMG!! Totally forgot this one and it's one of my favs!!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

So far what I've read from The Kind Diet, I haven't been too impressed with. There have been a few parts where I really don't like her tone on how she explains certain things. We'll see how the rest of it goes.

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

1/4c scottish oats = 36g = 140 cals, 6g protein, 4g fiber, 2.5g fat - I also usually round the scoop a bit. Scottish + Steel Cut are different from rolled oats. They are less processed and the serving size is smaller because of it. They keep me fuller for longer even with the smaller serving. My whole bowl in the morning adds up to right around 500 calories.

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Wow, Ash, thanks for all the links...not only mine, but the others too and their brilliant ideas. Sounds like someone needs a copy of Peas and Thank You in August 2011... (OMG, am I really plugging myself a year in advance?)

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMama Pea

Wow! This is such an awesome post--I'm so excited to look through it more. I can't believe how much more you got out of the Scottish oats, that's amazing! I still haven't found any around here :(

Ashley - I've recently discovered your blog (I've probably been reading for the past 2 weeks) and I LOVE it!!! You talk about Oats so much and you reallllly make me me want to make them, b/c they look so delicious! However I wanted to ask you - since you seem to be a big fan of Scottish oats, what brand do you buy? And are certain brands better than others? Thanks! :)

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAryn

I *love* Animal, Vegetable, Miracle! It's one of my favorite books. There's a section on...turkey sex that's one of the funniest things I've ever read. ;) Hope you enjoy it!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHelp Meghan Run

LOVE this. Many parents are so worried about protein without meat, but I think you've calmed their fears with this one! There is protein all around us, who needs the meat. :)

Thank you so much for the protein content list for all of those foods!!! It will definitely come in handy.

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterColleen

p.s. i loved The Kind Diet; it's a wonderful book :)

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterColleen

Holy crapola...what an awesome post!!!

What a great post!!
I too have about 4 books on the go at the moment - all half finished. Need to finish them 1 by 1 too!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLisa

Exxxxcellent post!! I'm starring this in my reading for that day down the long, long road when I have kiddos! That's actually a very scary thought! :)

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAbby

whoa! that egg with the couscous looks crazy-delicious!

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterYum Yucky

This was such a great post lady...kinda makes me excited to be a mama....someday...far away. I can't wait to hear how you liked the Kind Diet.

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterClaire

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