Have you heard of The Sneaky Chef? One word — amazing. Okay, two words — amazing and brilliant! I absolutely love the idea of adding more nutrients into every day foods by adding fruit and veggie purees. I started using recipes from the Sneaky Chef cookbook in an effort to get a few nutrients into my three year-old son who is an incredibly fussy eater. Yes, my poor son was the target of all these strange orange, white, purple and other purees. At times, I’ve felt like a mad scientist, but there’s no denying that we could *all* do with more fruits and vegetables in our diets. It’s become second nature for me to add pureed carrots and yams to all my marinaras (50/50 canned marinara and orange puree!).

I’ve even started making my own Sneaky recipes, based on the principles I’ve gleaned from The Sneaky Chef. And here it is 5:30 am, I’m wide awake and I’m making Sneaky Peach Nectarine muffins for my son’s preschool class. MUHAHAHAHAAA!! Those boys in his class won’t know what hit them! I’m sure I’ll be giggling about it all day!

I grabbed the base recipe from All Recipes. It’s a serviceable recipe that I can adapt with any fruits I’d like. But I couldn’t let this opportunity pass to add more goodies into the batter!

My modifications:

50/50 white/whole wheat flour
1/4 c. wheat germ
Double the fruit, roughly chopped then pulsed in the food processor to a fine dice

Because my fruit wasn’t super ripe and naturally sweet, I let the fruit macerate in the sugar instead of blending the sugar in w/ the dry ingredients.

That’s it! That’s all I did differently. But the kids are getting extra fruit, follic acid and vitamin E that wouldn’t have been in the original recipe along with extra fiber. They’ll never taste a difference but their bodies will welcome the added nutrients.

Next time, I might even get adventurous enough to replace some or all of the sugar with honey!

So, add wheat germ to your grocery list along with some whole wheat flour. Pre-mix 50/50 on the flour and store it for whenever you bake. Don’t be afraid to toss a sprinkle of wheat germ on your grilled cheese sandwich, into your casserole, or your baking. Make some purees and freeze them so you always have some ready to add into your meals.

Bottom line – don’t be afraid of your food! Nutritious meals can be fun and very yummy … but let’s keep that secret to ourselves.

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