Welcome to Tasty Tuesdays, a place to put the food posts that don’t quite fit on the Monday or Saturday lineup. For our opener, here’s an article instead of a recipe.

Happy Toddler turned two last month. Rather than throw a full-blown party, Hubby and I opted for a day  of low-key fun. Hubby decorated the living room before Happy got out of bed, and he set out the presents. We let Happy open them as she thought of it throughout the day, and we took the time to help her play with/explore each one as she opened it. Then we ended with a mini-party—birthday dinner, treats, and final presents—which the grandparents gladly attended.

Please know that I don’t insist that Hubby and HT eat low carb and sugar-free—and I certainly don’t insist that my guests do! But I do usually insist that I be able to eat the foods that I cook, and this night was no exception. So I created a menu of mostly-finger-foods that I know Happy likes, and I kept it simple so that I could focus on that all-important dessert.

For that dessert, I opted for mini-muffins instead of a full-blown cake. I had learned the hard way last year that a double-layer cake was just too much for that number of people. What’s more, I thought a toddler might find mini-muffins more fun—and the rest of us might find them less messy.

In the interests of full disclosure, I must note that Happy did get a small cup of sugar-laden chocolate milk that night. (There’s a long story behind that cup of chocolate milk, but that’s for another time.) The rest of the food, though, was quite healthy.

Here is the low carb, sugar-free, gluten free menu for the evening. Each item is a link; the links should take you further down the page to more details about each food.

Toddler Sugar-Free Birthday Menu
Easy Slow Cooker Roast Chicken
Buttered Green Peas with Mushrooms
Buttered Cooked Baby Carrots
Cauliflower Mash
Strawberry Almond Meal Mini-Muffins
Sugar-Free Strawberry Whipped Cream

Easy Slow Cooker Roast Chicken

This was, of course, my roast chicken recipe. I smeared it with some bacon grease in the final couple of hours. Then sometime in the last hour, I sprinkled it with a commercial sugar-free rotisserie seasoning that Hubby had lucked into ages ago. Happy Toddler usually loves chicken, but she ignored it this night (go figure). The adults, on the other hand, all pronounced it delicious.

Buttered Green Peas with Mushrooms

The title pretty much says it all: frozen green peas heated on the stove with some canned mushrooms. Drain a little water if you need to, then add butter to taste after it’s hot. Happy eats the peas and ignores the mushrooms. The rest of us ate both.

Buttered Cooked Baby Carrots

The Birthday Girl loves steamed baby carrots, so I tried carrots on the stovetop with butter. She ignored them that night, but happily munched the leftovers the next day.

Cauliflower Mash

Happy Toddler didn’t get any of this! I decided that a roast needed something resembling potatoes with it, so I used this as an excuse to try making that popular low carb mashed potatoes replacement, cauliflower mash. I glanced over a half-dozen recipes, then made my own version. It involved garlic, butter, cream, and salt and pepper to taste–and I need to make it again before I can be sure of exactly what I did. Whatever I did,though, there was only a spoonful left when we were done; everyone loved it!

Strawberry Almond Meal Mini-Muffins

For these, I adapted the Grain-Free Blueberry Muffins recipe from Jan’s Sushi Bar. I made the following changes:

  • substituted liquid stevia and stevia/erythritol blend for the coconut sugar;
  • substituted coconut oil for the olive oil;
  • substituted one cup chopped fresh strawberries for the blueberries; and
  • baked in lined mini-muffin tins for about 10 minutes.

The recipe made 24 mini-muffins.

Sugar-Free Strawberry Whipped Cream

I have posted this whipped cream recipe. I used a spoon to dollop a little on top of each muffin. Then we set up a plateful with a candle in each of two center muffins. After the ritual candle-blowing, Happy got her share. She mostly ate the whipped cream off with a spoon, ignoring the muffin part. The adults ate muffins and all, and pronounced them Very Good.

I had forgotten that, as a breakfast muffin, the muffins would be less sweet than a cake. But the whipped cream helped make up for it, and on the whole I was pleased.

In Summary

All in all, it was a great day and evening. And while part of me wishes I could report that we were 100% sugar free, it’s nice to know that a child’s birthday party doesn’t have to be completely filled with junk!

Your Turn

Do you have children in your life? What do you do about birthdays (and other special occasions)?

One Response to Tasty Tuesday: A Toddler’s Mostly-Sugar-Free Birthday Dinner

  1. Tessa says:

    Thanks on your marvelous posting! I really enjoyed reading it, you can be a great author.I will be sure to bookmark your blog and will often come back from now on. I want to encourage continue your great work, have a nice morning!

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