by Alissa Pemberton – Midwife, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant & Holistic Sleep Coach www.motherandmilk.co.uk
It's always that moment just after your baby latches on that you realise a) you are thirsty like you've just spent a month in the desert, and b) that you're starving - and have nothing within easy reach! Fear not! After 2+ years of breastfeeding I have started compiling my favourite healthy, breastfeeding friendly recipes (all of which can be eaten with one hand - win!). Check out these quick easy recipes. They can all be prepared in advance and stored easily in the fridge or freezer to grab when you need them :)
Raw Chocolate Brownies
These are packed with protein, give you a natural sugar boost and best of all - taste so chocolately!
200g dates 200g raw almonds 2 1/2 tbsp peanut butter (try to use 100% peanuts, or look for a variety without added sugar) 3-4 tbsp Dr Oetker cocoa powder (you can substitute other cocoa powders but this one is by far the most chocolately!) 3 tbsp coconut oil
Place almonds into food processor/Nutribullet and blend until forms the consistency of almond meal, pour into large bowl. Add cocoa powder to almond mixture and stir well. Melt coconut oil in the microwave (approx 30-40 seconds depending on microwave power) Blend dates with tsp of water, plus peanut butter and melted coconut oil. Pour date mixture into bowl and combine with almond/cocoa mixture.
Line a slice tray with greaseproof paper or a reusable baking sheet. Press the mixture in firmly, and spread evenly across the tray. Refrigerate for 4-6 hours, or overnight.
Then cut into squares and enjoy!
Keep refrigerated - this will last approx 2-3 weeks in the fridge and can also be frozen.
Try swapping the almonds for hazelnuts to give it a real ‘nutella’ taste!
Savoury Muffins These eggy muffins are filled with veg, and make a great snack for breastfeeding mamas. 200g cheddar cheese
2 cups of self raising flour (or use 2 cups of plain flour with 2 teaspoons of baking powder) 2 eggs
1½ cups of milk
1-2 cups of veg - spinach, brocolli, onion, peas, mushroom, capsicum (you can combine whichever veg you most enjoy!)
Salt and pepper to taste 1 tsp garlic puree 1 tsp chilli paste
Preheat oven to 180°C Whisk eggs, then add in veg and grated cheese. Sift flour into a separate bowl, make a well in the centre and add liquid mixture Stir to combine. Place into a greased muffin tray and bake for 20-25 minutes at 180°C
Store in the fridge or in an airtight container out of direct sunlight.
(note - due to the high egg and cheese content these tend to stick if you put them into paper muffin cases so best just to well grease the tray)
Cinnamon Banana Bread Muffins (low sugar!)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
2/3 cup mashed banana
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 2/3 cup Self Raising Flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 teaspoon ground ginger 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius. Combine sugar, oil and eggs then stir in banana and vanilla essence. Add all remaining ingredients and stir well to combine. You may like to use a sieve for the flour/spices. Place paper muffin cases into a muffin tray and evenly divide the mixture amongst them. Sprinkle a little extra cinnamon on top before baking. Bake for 18-20 minutes until a skewer inserted in the centre of the muffins comes out clean.
Store in an airtight container for up to a week or freeze and defrost as needed!
Whilst no food is ever a substitute for a full breastfeeding assessment, some mums with an established milk supply who feel they need a little boost find benefit in consuming certain 'galactogogue' foods which work to temporarily increase milk supply.
Some mums (like me!) also just enjoy a delicious cookie!
Either way this recipe is a winner!
Ingredients 1 cup self raising wholemeal flour (if you have plain flour, add 1/2 teaspoon baking powder)
1/2 cup butter (you can use organic virgin coconut oil instead if you prefer)
3/4 cup brown sugar (if you want to reduce sugar, you could try just 1/2 cup)
2 tablespoons flaxseed meal
2-3 tablespoons of water (depends on how moist you prefer the cookies to be)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract (optional, for flavour)
1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional, for flavour)
1-2 tablespoons of brewers yeast (you can purchase this on Amazon or from health food stores)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups oats
1/2 cup of chocolate chips (optional)
In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar, then add the egg and vanilla. Mix well.
In a separate bowl, combine the flaxseed and water, let them sit for a few minutes before adding to mix.
Add the dry ingredients (apart from the oats and your additional ingredients) and mix well again.
Stir in the oats and your additional ingredients.
Using a dessert spoon, scoop the mixture into your hand and roll it into a ball.
Place the biscuits onto a lightly greased or lined baking tray. Flatten them a little with your fingers or a spatula. If you like a soft centre, don’t squash them down too much.
Bake the lactation cookies for around 10-12 minutes, depending on how well cooked or crunchy you like your biscuits.
300g dried apricots
50g pitted dates
100g desiccated coconut
2 tablespoons desiccated coconut for coating, optional
Place everything into bowl.
Blitz in food processor on medium speed for 20 seconds. Then increase speed for 30 seconds.
Line a small loaf tin with baking paper.
Spoon mixture in and smooth out using the back of a glass (or you fingers!)
Refrigerate for 1 hour.
Remove from tin.
Slice into 12 bar shapes and then into pieces.
Place squares and coconut into a bowl. Toss until coated.
Refrigerate in an airtight container.
If the mixture is too dry, process a little longer or add an extra date of two. Enjoy!
Allergy Friendly Black Bean Chocolate Cookies
These are a delicious healthy alternative. They're a soft squishy cookie, with plenty of delish chocolate flavour - plus fibre from oats/nuts and protein from black beans. They're dairy free (great for mamas of reflux/allergy babies!) and can be made egg free too!
Ingredients: 2 free range eggs or 2 tbsp of chia seeds 100ml maple syrup/agave 1 tsp vanilla extract 400g tin of black beans, drained. 2 tbsp coconut oil
40g cocoa powder (Dr Oetker's is amazing!)
1 cup oats
1 cup ground nuts/coconut
Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius
Line baking tray with greaseproof paper/a reusable baking sheet.
Mix eggs, vanilla and maple syrup in a bowl and set aside (if using chia seeds mixed with four tbsp of cold water and allow to soak for a few minutes)
Place oats, nuts/coconut & cocoa powder into food processor (such as Nutribullet with grinding blade) and blend until finely ground. Add to wet mixture.
Place black beans and melted coconut oil into food processor and pulse until forms a smooth mixture.
Add black bean mix to bowl with eggs, maple syrup and dry ingredients. Stir to combine.
Spoon mixture into small circles on baking tray. Makes approx 12-14 cookies.
Bake for 15-20 minutes at 180 degrees.