I'm also a mean mom. I don't buy Pop Tarts or Toaster Strudel or any of the other things that kids WANT to eat. It's just not healthy. As a general rule, I use as little processed food as possible. That's not to say it's 100% processed free, but I cook from scratch as much as possible. I'm trying to teach her better eating habits that I have developed.
This is what I made today. Starting in the center and going left... Stone Fruit Pancakes (peaches, nectarines, and plums), peanut butter and banana oatmeal squares, pumpkin scones, ham/egg/cheese biscuits, blueberry muffins and oatmeal raisin muffins. This will last about six weeks.
My daughter has taken an interest in cooking, so she has started helping in the preparations. The only processed food is the biscuits.
Press some canned biscuits into the bottom of a muffin tin, top with scrambled eggs, ham and cheese and bake at 350 for 10 minutes.
All of these things will be frozen and she will just microwave them in the coming weeks. These are all things she likes, and they're easy to make. They are certainly healthier than many other options, and gives her servings of fruit she might not eat otherwise. They are much higher in protein than cold cereal and have nutrients that aren't high in other foods.
And because I cook with the seasonal ingredients, I can save money. The cost per serving is significantly lower than pre-made things, especially when you have a child who eats larger quantities.
The best thing is, you cook once and clean up once. I'm not the June Cleaver type who is going to get up every morning and cook a hot breakfast and I certainly don't run a short order kitchen!! My daughter can choose what she wants, and she gets some input into what I make. She also takes great pride when she eats something she helped prepare. If she wants to help cook, I'm not going to turn down help. What do you think I am? Crazy?