Seeds are a pack full of essential nutrients that are important for growing kid’s and their brains. But getting children to eat a variety of seeds a can be a challenge, which is why this 5 seed sprinkle blend is such a convenient way to add them to their food. Just mix, grind and stir to get all the benefits from the seeds!
If you’re wondering how to get your kids to eat more seeds, then you’ve come to the right place. This simple food hack has made a huge difference in the variety and amount of seeds my kids eat – and that includes a 1-year old.
Seeds are awesome and I really do mean that. They’re packed with healthy fats, fiber, plantbased proteins and a bunch of different essential minerals and vitamins. And I’m not just talking about the hyped seeds like chia. They’re great too, but lets not forget forget about the more common seeds like flax, pumpkin or sunflower which are all full of these wonderful things and often much cheaper.
Adding more seeds is really just a a great way of optimizing the nutritional value of a snack or meal, which is why I’ve started adding seeds to both my own and my kids food here and there. I rarely use whole seeds – especially not with Anton who’s still a baby. Instead I grind them in a coffee grinder with blades and mix them in our porridge, spread them on our toast or sometimes add them to a dip, smoothie or in a bun or muffin recipe. So easy. I usually grind them into a powder for Anton, but leave bigger and bigger pieces in for myself and my 3-year old to add some crunch.
After starting adding seeds to our meals it didn’t take me long before I got tired of having to open different bags and containers to get a mix of seeds. Fortunally it one day dawned on me; why not mix all the seeds we like in one big container instead of having them in 5 different bags? It almost felt silly not to have thought of it before and perhaps even more silly to make a blog post about it, but if anyone out there needs an aha moment like this, I thought I would share to spare them. It really is a very simple hack, but it made a big difference in the variation of seeds we eat. Before I often ended up adding the same 1 or 2 seeds, where as we now eat this 5 seed mix.
I sometimes grind a smaller portion to use over a week. The seeds are best used straight away to optimize the absorption of nutrients and when it’s so easy to just grind a small portion at a time, it’s a task easily overcome. But sometimes convenience just beats optimization, so on occassation I find myself grinding a portion to use over the next couple a days. It’s better to eat them pre-grinded than to not eat them at all! I definetely recommend just using a simple electric coffee and/or spice grinder (but not the same you use for coffee), but a flax mill, a morter or even a food processor are great alternative options as well. I use a coffee bean grinder with blades like this One-Touch Electric Coffee Grinder and it gets the job done perfectly.
About the seeds in the blend
The internet is full of information and nutritional values for seeds and the many benefits of eating them. But I’ve decided to highligth a few of the many nutrients each seed provide to illustrate why adding a small amount of them to your and your children’s diet can be a good idea. I do feel like I should mention that too much of anything is never good – and this goes for this blend as well. Be aware that especially flax and sun flowers seeds, but also other seeds, contain a high amount of cadium, which is not recommended in high doses. So please don’t overdo it and do your oen research if in doubt. I’m not a dietitian. I would however like to point out that at least one study shows that eating a diet rich in fiber can significantly reduce the absorption of cadmium and other heavy metals like lead, so remember to eat your whole grains and veggies.
- Sesame seeds contain a high amount of essential minerals like calcium, manganese and magnesium.
- Flax seeds, also known as linseeds, are an outstanding source of omega-3 fats, soluble fiber and minerals like zinc.
- Pumpkin seeds, also called pepitas, are rich in especially magnesium and zinc and are packed with antioxidants.
- Sunflower seeds are high in vitamin E and are a good source of copper and B vitamins.
- Hemp seeds is a great source for omega-3 fats and are a complete source of protein, meaning the provide all the essential amino acids, which is otherwise hard to come by in the plant world.
Other seeds to consider for older kids and adults
- Poppy seeds are a very good source of calcium, iron and magnesium. Poppy seeds come from the same plants used to make opiates. It’s however not the seeds used for medicinal purposeses but the pods which contain much higher doses of the compound used for medicinal purposes, so don’t fear the little seeds. Just don’t eat as many as the other seeds, so if adding to your mix, maybe only use 1/4 of the amount, or less, of the other seeds or add once in a while. Just to be on the safe side.
- Chia seeds are an excellent source of omega-3 fats, iron and soluble fiber. If I was making this blend for me only or for older kids I would also consider adding these little seeds. But because they soak up water so well it’s important to remember to drink water or add liquid to your food as you eat them to avoid constipation. And I can’t guarantee my kids will do that. Another way to add chia seeds to your diets could be by eating the sprouts. I made a guide on how to sprout chia seeds with your toddler if you need some inspiration.
All in all seeds contains a lot of important fats, fibers and proteins and provide you with a bunch of essential minerals and vitamins that for many people can be difficult to come by in a standard diet. Especially with picky eaters or fuzzy kids adding up to ½ a teaspoon to their diet once in a while can be a great supplement. You can of course add more, just remember everything in moderation and according to age. I like to add up to 1 tablespoon for myself and less for my 1-year olds porridge. Just remember to eat lots of fibers too.
Recipe for super seed sprinkle blend
I’ve chosen to call this blend a super seed blend since most edible and easily available seeds that I know of are quite super nutrituion vice – and not because this blend only contains seeds that have been more or less officially declared superfoods.
Ingredients for the super blend
- 1 part sesame seeds
- 1 part flax seeds
- 1 part pumpkin seeds
- 1 part sun flower seeds
- 1 part hemp seeds
I usually go for a deciliter (about 0,4 cup) of each since it then fits perfectly in my designated seed jar and last a good amount of time, but there’s no right amount. You can also add more of one seed than others, leave some out or maybe add some in. Whatever rocks your boat.
You could also add nuts, but my kids eat sooo much homemade nutbutter that it would just not make sense. But if yours don’t then definitely go for it!
How to make the blend
- Add all the seeds to a container with a lid and shake it so the seeds mix well.
- Whenever you want to add some seed sprinklesto a meal add the desired amount to a coffee grinder, flax mill or morter and grind to desired consistency. Remember to shake the container before each use since the smallest seeds will often fall to the bottom.
- Sprinkle the ground seed mixture on toast, on yogurt, on porridge or in a smoothie bowl. It’s that simple.
My kids never seem to notice a change in taste when I add the seeds sprinkles. They see me add the seeds to their food or Eva will add it herself, but they have never commented on it. Well, of course my baby hasn’t, but my 3-year old hasn’t either. She just wants to press the button for the coffee grinder and sometimes stir the seeds in, but has never once refused to eat anything because of it. I asked her if she liked it or if it tasted different with the seeds than without and she just said yes and then added she couldn’t taste it. Of course the more you add the more the taste and texture stands out, but in smaller amounts I hardly notice it either. Especially not on rye bread or in oatmeal which is my two favourite wayw to add this super seed sprinkle blend.