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Half-term saw my kids go absolutely nuts (!) for Californian Walnuts which helped keep them full and (less moan-y) during their week off school, the other week.

Honest Mum and kids in Windsor

It can be hard graft finding wholesome snacks without hidden sugars and additives in them for little people, but nuts are the perfect choice as they’re completely natural and healthy too. 

walnuts

We packed these walnuts along with fruit for several days out by the river in Windsor when the sun came out, and these bad (good) boys, kept the hunger pains at bay of my own (mostly) good boys as they enjoyed long walks and a kick-about. 

kids with California walnuts

Walnuts, like all nuts, contain ‘good fats’ that the body needs such as polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs).

Walnuts also contain 2g of fibre per serving and are the only tree nut to contain significant amounts of the plant-based essential omega-3 ALA (2.5g/30g), which research has shown to have a beneficial role in the prevention of heart disease and strokes. California Walnuts also have the heart-healthy seal of approval from the heart health charity, Heart UK making them an absolute no-brainer when it comes to brain-food for your babes. Alexander think they even look like little brains and he’s right huh! 

So, why Californian Walnuts?

California walnuts

California is the second largest producer of walnuts globally and provides two-thirds of the world’s trade volume. More than 99% of the walnuts produced in U.S. are grown in the fertile soils of California.

A handful of California Walnuts a day (30 grams) can help maintain normal blood cholesterol levels, help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease  and are the only tree nut high in Omega-3 fatty acids (ALA) – important for heart health.

To encourage you to try walnuts as a simple snack and in your meals and sweet treats, check the recipes below for Chunky Monkey Overnight Oats and Toasted Walnut, Corn and Black Bean Salad you guys will love!

Both have been given the ‘heart healthy’ seal of approval from award-winning dietitian Sian Porter too. Over to Sian,

 

Chunky Monkey Overnight Oats

Chunky Monkey Overnight Oats

Dietitian Sian Porter says: “The essential omega-3 fatty acid ALA in California Walnuts helps maintain normal blood cholesterol levels*. Walnuts are a rich source of magnesium which helps normal muscle function including heart muscle. A type of fibre found in oats; Oat beta-glucan, has been shown to help maintain normal blood cholesterol levels*. Oats are a good source of Thiamin (vitamin B1) which contributes to the normal function of the heart. Bananas are a rich source of potassium which contributes to normal blood pressure.”

Serving: 4 People Cooking time: 5 Min

This simple make-ahead breakfast combines oats, bananas, walnuts and optional dark chocolate for a tasty and satisfying way to start the day.

Ingredients

Oats
500ml skimmed, 1% or semi-skimmed milk or fortified unsweetened soya milk
175g rolled oats
2 medium sized ripe bananas, cut into chunks
60g California walnuts, chopped 

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Assembly
2 medium sized ripe bananas, sliced
30g California walnuts, chopped

Preparations

Add milk, oats, banana, walnuts, and vanilla extract equally to four mason jars. Cover and shake jars to combine ingredients. Refrigerate overnight. 

When ready to serve, top with banana slices, chocolate chips (if using) and walnuts.

Nutrition information

Typical values

per 100g

per 296g serving

%RI per serving

Energy

684

kJ

2026

kJ

24%

163

kcal

484

kcal

24%

Fat

7.2

g

21.3

g

30%

of which saturates

1.2

g

3.7

g

18%

Carbohydrate

18.7

g

55.3

g

21%

of which sugars

8.0

g

23.7

g

26%

Fibre

2.0

g

5.9

g

Protein

4.9

g

14.5

g

29%

Salt

0.05

g

0.14

g

2%

*as part of a healthy balanced diet and lifestyle

 

Toasted Walnut, Black Bean, Corn and Tomato Salad

corn, tomato, black bean and walnut salad

Dietitian Sian Porter says: “Walnuts provide plant-based protein in this salad and boost the fibre content. Replacing foods high in saturated fat, such as fatty meat, with foods high in unsaturated fat, such as a handful of California walnuts, can help lower cholesterol levels*. The essential omega-3 fatty acid ALA in California Walnuts also helps maintain normal blood cholesterol levels*. In order to stay heart healthy a variety of foods, including a rainbow of fruit and veg is recommended. Providing vitamins, minerals, fibre and phytochemicals these have a protective effect against cardiovascular disease. This salad provides just under half (14.5g) of the UK adult daily fibre recommendation(30g) and over 3 of your ‘5 a day”.

Serves 6

 

This delicious make-ahead salad is a fresh mix of toasted walnuts, black beans, corn, tomatoes, mozzarella (omit if you’re vegan like I am) and spring onions, all tossed in a zesty dressing. 

Ingredients

Salad

120g California walnut halves

2 x 400g cans black beans, drained and rinsed

450g frozen sweetcorn, prepared according to directions, then cooled

50g fresh mini mozzarella balls

250g cherry tomatoes, halved

1 bunch spring onions, white and green parts, thinly sliced

25g coriander, roughly chopped

Dressing

125ml rice vinegar

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1/4 tsp pepper

Assembly

125g baby spinach and kale mix

1 lime, cut into wedges

Preparation

Salad

Preheat oven to 180°C, gas mark 4. Place walnuts on a baking sheet in a single layer. Roast for 8 minutes or until lightly toasted and fragrant. Remove from oven. Chop roughly when cool.

Add walnuts, black beans, sweetcorn, mozzarella, tomatoes, spring onions and coriander equally to 6 lunch containers. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Dressing

Add rice vinegar, extra virgin olive oil and black pepper to a small bowl. Whisk until well combined.

Divide equally into 6 individual salad dressing containers. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Or, keep in original container, shake well and pour into each lunch container when ready to serve.

Assembly

Add baby spinach and kale to toasted walnut, black bean, corn and tomato salad containers.

Drizzle each salad with salad dressing.

Serve with lime wedges.

Nutrition information

Typical values

per 100g

per 299g serving

%RI per serving

Energy

508

kJ

1522

kJ

18%

122

kcal

367

kcal

18%

Fat

7.9

g

23.6

g

34%

of which saturates

1.3

g

3.9

g

20%

Carbohydrate

5.4

g

16.2

g

6%

of which sugars

1.6

g

4.8

g

5%

Fibre

4.8

g

14.5

g

Protein

5.1

g

15.1

g

30%

Salt

0.04

g

0.13

g

2%

Sian also has these tips for snacks for kids if you’re in need of some inspo:

‘Snacking can be an effective, not to mention tasty, way to manage appetite between mealtimes, but some options are better choices than others.

Swapping snacks which are higher in fat, salt and sugars for healthier alternatives will help ensure you keep things in balance. This can be easier said than done, so it can help to have some healthier options up your sleeve if needed when the biscuit tin starts to beckon mid-afternoon.

With that in mind, California Walnuts has teamed up with award-winning dietitian Sian Porter to bring you six suggestions on what to snack on instead of chocolate. Simple to store and quick and easy to prepare, these snacking options will see you through hunger pangs at work, at home and when out and about.

A handful (30 grams) of Californian Walnuts – eat them one by one and really savour the flavour

A smoothie – whizz up a handful of frozen berries, or whole fruit and leafy veg of choice and a small pot or 3 tablespoons of natural unsweetened live yogurt

Veg sticks of pepper, cucumber, celery and carrots dipped in walnut butter

A small pack of plain popcorn (around 20g)

Wholegrain toast or crackers and hummus

¼ mashed avocado with a sprinkle of chilli flakes or black pepper with veg sticks’.

Are you guys into walnuts like my two?

Honest Mum and boys

 

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2 Responses

  1. Kyra Rodriguez

    I love walnuts too!!!! Will try that oatmeal walnuts!
    Kyra Rodriguez recently posted…Fish Oil Philippines: Mental Benefits of Taking Fish OilMy Profile

    Reply

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