9 healthy recipes to light up your toddler’s Diwali this year

Check out these 9 healthy Diwali recipes to make the festival of lights truly delightful for your toddlers the lip-smacking way!

Toddlers often are fussy eaters, making it a task for parents to feed them with nutritious food. However, try to understand that this is a perfectly normal phase and that they will eat enough to keep them going, so try not to worry unless your child is not gaining weight or is obviously unwell. Children need a healthy balanced diet containing foods from each food group so they get a wide range of nutrients to help them stay healthy.

What better time than this festive season to feed your toddlers with creative and healthy recipes that not only please their eyes and tastebuds but also satiates their nutritional need. Check out these 9 healthy Diwali recipes to make the festival of lights truly delightful for your toddlers the lip-smacking way!

Ragi dates laddoo

Millets are the best of their kind of functional foods. What better than power-packing the sweet craving with a nutrient-rich laddoo?

Ingredients and method

*Soak 1 cup of dates in lukewarm water for a few minutes.
*Drain and grind the dates in a blender.
*In a pan, dry roast 1 tbsp each of chopped almonds, pistachios and sesame seeds. Keep aside.
*Then heat one tbsp ghee and roast ½ cup ragi flour on a low flame.
*Add the dates, sesame seeds and cook for two minutes.
*Add roasted almonds and pistachios and mix well. Turn off the flame.
*Grease your palms, take small portions of the mixture and roll into balls.

Coconut Cookies

The go-to food for kids at any hour of the day is a cookie. Let’s pack it with the goodness of electrolytes and the many nutrients of coconut.

Ingredients and method

*In a bowl, sieve a cup of whole wheat flour and ¼ tsp baking powder.
*Add 3 tsp of coconut oil and mix well. To this, add ½ cup of powdered jaggery, ½ tsp of cardamom powder and mix well.
*Add a cup of water to the mixture and knead the dough.
*Make small-sized balls from the dough and place them on a greased tray.
*Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Bake the cookies for 20 minutes till the tops are golden brown.
*Cool the cookies at room temperature and store them in an airtight jar.

Multigrain Vegetable Cheela

If not rotis, cheelas never lose the game in being the preferred food for children. Here’s a delectable recipe to make it nutritious a notch higher.

Ingredients and method

*Heat a sauté pan and add little oil to it.
*Add 1 tsp finely chopped onion, 2 tsp finely chopped green capsicum, and 2 tsp grated carrot and sauté for some time.
*Now add salt to taste and mix well. Remove the pan from the flame and let the vegetables cool.
*Once at room temperature, add 3 tsp grated paneer to the mixture and mix well.
*Mix 2 tsp wheat flour, ¼ cup gram flour and 2 tsp oats flour in a bowl.
*Add turmeric powder, Ajwain and salt in the bowl and mix well. Keep adding water to form a thick batter-like consistency.
*Mix all the ingredients well to prepare a batter. There should not be any lumps in the batter. Make sure the consistency of the batter is thick.
*Once the batter is formed, cover with a lid and keep it aside for about 10-15 minutes.
*Heat a pan on medium flame, smear 1 teaspoon oil and pour 2 tbsp of the batter. Spread the batter in a circular motion till a thin layer is formed.
*Now pour some oil on this pancake and turn it to another side. Cook the cheela from both sides, ensuring that it doesn’t burn.
*Once cooked, put a spoonful of filling on it and flip one side onto the other to close it. Remove it from the pan once it is crispy and appears brown.

Follow this method for making more cheelas. Serve cheela hot with mint coriander chutney or tomato chutney.

Dry Fruit Ladoos

Proteins are the body-building nutrient needed by everyone and dry fruits are an important source for the same. Feed your toddlers these for an energy-packed day.

Ingredients and method

*Grind 1 cup of chopped dates in a blender for 4-5 pulses and keep aside.
*Now, finely chop ¼ cup each of cashew nuts, almonds, figs, pistachios, and raisins.
*Heat 1 tbsp ghee in a wok on low flame, then add in the chopped dry fruits and sauté for 4-5 minutes.
*Add the coarsely blended dates to the above mix and give it a nice stir, mashing the dates well.
*Add ½ tsp cardamom powder and mix it well. Turn off the flame and let the mixture cool for 2 minutes.
*Transfer the mixture to a large dish and make the laddoos. Store them in an airtight container.

Badam Halwa

Ingredients and method

*Blend 1.5 cups of almonds with 2 cups of water to make a smooth paste.
*In a heavy bottom pan, cook the almond paste until it thickens. Now add sugar and combine well.
*Add water or milk and keep stirring. Then add ¼ cup coconut oil and stir until the mixture becomes thick and lumpy.
*Finally, add 4 strands of saffron and 5-6 crushed cardamom and stir again.

You can serve the halwa straight away or cool it and cut it into a diamond shape.

Moong dal ladoo in coconut sugar

Ingredients and method

*In a pan add 1 cup moong dal and roast over medium heat until the color changes to a golden brown. Spread the roasted moong dal on a wide plate and allow it to cool.
*Powder the roasted moong dal to a smooth texture using a blender. In a bowl, add powdered moong dal, ½ cup coconut sugar, 2 crushed cardamom powder, and mix well.
*Heat the ghee slightly in a microwave oven or in a small pan, but do make sure it’s not hot. Now add it to the powdered moong dal mixture and mix well.
*Shape them into small balls and serve.

It can be stored for 2 weeks in an airtight container.

Banana halwa

Method and ingredients

*In a blender, add 6 long overripe bananas and blend them to a smooth paste. Blending gives a smoother consistency to your halwa.
*You can also mash the bananas instead of blending if you desire a chunky halwa.
*Add ghee and pureed banana in a pan and continuously stir on medium-low flame for about 15 minutes. The banana will cook during this process, and the mixture slowly starts changing its colour.
*At this point, add sugar based on the sweetness of the banana, and then add ¼ cup chopped cashews and continue to stir. The colour and texture of halwa change during this process.
*Around 25 minutes mark, i.e., after adding sugar, the mixture becomes thick, sticky, and leaves the sides of the pan. Switch off the flame then.
*Transfer this to a greased plate or plate lined with parchment paper and spread the halwa to desired thickness. Once it cools down completely, cut them into desired size and shape. Serve and enjoy.

Chocolate Appe

Method and ingredients

*Wash and soak ¾ cup of rice in water for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Then drain it completely.
*Grind the soaked rice and 3 tbsp grated coconut while adding water to form a medium-thick batter. The consistency of the batter would be similar to any dosa/pancake batter.
*Transfer this to a bowl. Add 1 tsp vanilla extract, ½ tsp cinnamon powder, ¼ cup brown sugar, ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder, a pinch of salt and mix well.
*Keep this batter aside for 20 to 30 minutes. Then add baking powder to the batter and mix well.
*Heat appe pan and add butter/ ghee into all the molds. Pour a teaspoon of batter in each mold, add 3 to 4 chocolate chips and then top it with another teaspoon of batter.
*Cover the pan with a lid and allow it to cook on a medium flame for 2 minutes.
*When the edges are cooked, flip the appes, add some butter and cook on the other side for another 2 minutes. Repeat the process for the remaining batter.

Ragi Nan Khatai

Method and ingredients

*In a bowl, combine ¾ cup each of ragi flour, all-purpose flour, 2/3 cup of vegetable shortening, ¾ tsp baking soda, ¾ cup sugar, cardamom powder and a pinch of salt to form a dough. Do not knead.
*Note that water was not added while preparing the dough. Vegetable shortening binds everything together.
*Cover it and keep it aside for at least 30 minutes. Preheat the oven for 300 degrees F/ 148 degrees C.
*Form golf-size balls from the dough and press to flatten it slightly.
*Place an almond at the center of each nankhatai. Keep it in a baking tray lined with parchment paper or on a silicone mat.
*Bake these cookies for about 20 to 25 minutes or until cracks form at the top or bottom turns golden brown in colour.
*Allow it to cool down for about 10 – 15 minutes. Cookies will crisp up upon cooling.

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