Spaghetti O’s are kid food, not adult food, right??? Nope, not in my world. Spaghetti o’s are like the perfect food, no matter how old you are and if you’re in diapers or not. Ok, maybe they’re not perfect. In fact, the canned stuff is basically processed to the point of no nutritional value, AT ALL. But I get why people give it to their kids, it’s easy! And I bet most kids gobble it up, so it makes meal time pleasant. I get it.
I’m not hear to tell you why you should or shouldn’t give your kid processed food. Listen, as a mom, I realize that meals need to be so easy it only requires the use of a can opener. HOWEVER!!!!!! This doesn’t mean we need to serve our kids dinner from a can. You can make homemade spaghettios that are filled with vegetables, but that taste like the comforting spaghettio’s we all enjoy from time to time (admit it, you knooooow if push came to shove, you’d stick a spoon right in the can and eat them, cold!). You, yes YOU, can make this at home! And it’s soooooo easy! You don’t need any special equipment or fancy ingredients. You can make the sauce one day, and the noodles the next if you’re short on time and want to slowly assemble this. You might even be able to cook the noodles in the sauce in the crockpot. I’ve never made noodles in the crockpot, so I don’t know how well this would work. If anyone tries it, let me know!
As I was eating this, I couldn’t stop thinking that it totally tasted like it had cheese in it (even without the topping of parmesan). The pureed roasted veggies have such a great flavor that really makes the dish super tasty, and apparently makes my tastebuds think it has cheese in it.
Oh, and just so you know I’m human, and do not judge you if you do give your kid dinner from a can, psssst, so do I sometimes. Because some days it’s more important for me to sit on the floor and play lego’s with my kid than make dinner. Some days it’s more important for us to go to the park and eat sand, than make dinner. But with recipes like these homemade spaghettio’s, you can make a big batch in advance, and eat leftovers all week. You can spend quality time with your kids AND feed them dinner that they’ll actually eat AND that has nutrients, REAL vegetables!
And sometimes it’s more important to paint your kid’s toes. (I took this picture yesterday and posted it to instagram).
Yes, my 16 month old not only sat still, but literally, in her best baby babble way, asked me to do this. You see, I bought a new color at Target and my target bag was on the ground in the living room and she was rummaging through the bag. She found the polish and SHOVED it in my face. I said, “yes Wave, that’s purple nail polish.” She wouldn’t accept my answer (she nodded and acknowledged, but that wasn’t enough) and kept shoving it back at me, with her whines getting louder and louder. I knew what she wanted. So I opened it and started to QUICKLY paint her toes. She sat perfectly still. This is her first pedicure, I’m so proud.
Recipe Adapted from Tracey’s Culinary Adventures
I didn’t use ‘O’ shaped noodles because I couldn’t find any in whole wheat. And also, the little elbows (which are whole wheat) are easier for the baby to grab).
This is dairy free and vegan if you just don’t top it with the cheese (like the picture above).
To use up leftovers, layer the pasta with ricotta and mozzarella cheese ina casserole dish and make a ‘mock lasagna.’
To make the dish soupier, use only about 3/4 of the amount of pasta noodles I did. I wanted it to be thick, more like pasta than soup.