How My Eating Habits Have Changed Since Becoming a Mom

Mastermind Weekend 1/16

Hey there!

I'm Tina

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.

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As a Stonyfield blogger ambassador, I was compensated for writing this post as part of my partnership with the brand. The thoughts and opinions expressed are honest and all my own.

Hi, friends!

This month’s Stonyfield blog post topic is all about balance and what it means for a busy running mother. Right now, I’m raising a little boy, managing a small business, and training for a marathon, so I am all about making the most of my time and using it wisely. So, when it comes to my diet and feeding my family, I’ve noticed that a lot of what and how we eat is based on quality and convenience. And, personally, my eating habits have changed quite a bit since Quinn arrived, so I decided to talk about these things in my post today. Perhaps some of the moms can relate? Let me know in the comment section below!

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I don’t make a lot of new recipes. Ok, so I make some new crock pot recipes here and there, but, other than that, I don’t make too many new recipes. I just don’t have time””or, well, the desire. I’d rather be with my boys than in the kitchen. Plus, we have quite a few recipes that we like and work well for us, so I typically stick to those or make variations of them. I don’t know if this is a good thing or a bad thing, but it’s working for our family right now!

I am a big fan of frozen food. I used to hate frozen vegetables, but now I’m all about them, especially since frozen organic produce is typically quite a bit cheaper than the fresh stuff, and I don’t have to worry about it going bad. I often substitute frozen veggies in recipes and just steam them when we need a healthy side dish for dinner. Easy-peasy. I also love frozen breakfast burritos and chicken meatballs and patties for quick meals.

I love my crock pot even more. Oooh, yes, I do. I swear, at least once a week, I google ”˜skinnytaste crock pot’ or ”˜real simple crock pot’ or some variation of the two. Cooking with a crock pot is the easiest thing ever, so it’s my go-to for weeknight meals and lunch leftovers. Some favorite recipes: Crock Pot Sante Fe Chicken, Crockpot Buffalo Chicken, Chili for a CrowdSlow Cooker Soy-Braised Chicken with Bok Choy, and Chicken Tortellini Soup.

I’m willing to pay more. I’m all about convenience when it comes to feeding our family, so I’m willing to pay a little more if it means we eat healthy, like hitting up the prepared foods section at Whole Foods when I don’t feel like cooking or buying the more expensive peanut butter just so I don’t have to take a trip to Target for Teddie.

I seek out satisfying meals and snacks as much as possible. I want whatever I eat to fill me up and keep me full for as long as possible. I would rather eat a more substantial meal or snack than a bunch of little ones. You know what I mean? My favorite go-to meals and snacks: Crock Pot Steel-Cut Oats with nut butter, egg sandwiches, FlapJacked Protein Pancakes, Stonyfield Greek yogurt with Cheerios + Ancient Grains, protein shakes made with iced coffee and almond milk, Perfect Food Bars, peanut butter and banana on an English muffin, homemade guacamole with rice crackers, smoothies with protein powder, and Shepherd’s Pie (we eat it at least once a week in our house).

I eat really fast or really slow. With a little one, I’m either wolfing down my food or it takes me an hour to finish. Haha!

I drink a lot more wine. Ok, I’m kind of joking about this one, but I definitely look forward to a glass of wine at the end of a long day. There’s just something so relaxing about it””feet up, glass in hand, good show on TV. It’s the best.

Question of the Day

Moms: How have your eating habits changed since you had a baby?

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53 Comments

  1. I’m with you on the frozen veggies… used to hate them, but its so nice to have! We try to buy organic frozen veggies when available.
    I also used to live trying new recipes, one if my favorite things to do is experiment in the kitchen, not so much anymore.
    I don’t buy sweets as much since having a baby cause I don’t want my daughter to ask for them too! I do indulge in treats of course, but less frequently and mostly not at home.

  2. I’m working on a similar post because this has been on my mind lately!

    I subscribe to Blue Apron now and have it delivered every other week to relieve myself of having the figure out what’s for dinner. We have our staples and favorites, but every other week it’s really nice to have the recipes and ingredients just show up!

    I’ve been snacking MUCH less since having a baby, mostly because I’m distracted… a big improvement for my diet.

      1. @Tina: I’m getting either Blue Apron or Hello Fresh next week for the first time. I realized what I hate most about cooking is planning the meals so I’m excited.

  3. Just stumbled upon your blog because I used one of your recipes and I love it! Will definitely keep coming back. We have a lot in common, mostly that I’m also a CrossFit addict, mom, and pug owner ☺️

  4. Thanks for linking some crock pot meals! I’m not a mom, but I do have a full time job and lots of projects/hobbies on the side, so some nights I don’t have time to prepare a full meal. I’m always looking for new crock pot recipes! The soy braised chicken looks delicious! And I don’t blame you for the wine..sometimes you just need it 🙂

  5. I am with you on this! My husband travels for work during the week and is doing an online MBA program on the weekends, so I am constantly running around working a full time job and taking care of our 14-mo old. For me, the biggest change was no more time-consuming cooking. If I can’t fix it in less than 30-min, I am not making it! I have my “go to” meals now that I fix so that I am in and out of the kitchen in no time. Since it is just myself and the baby during the week, there are a lot of leftovers to eat through the week and I heat up our organic frozen veggies for a quick side.

  6. Thanks for the post! I’m not a mom yet, but we are planning to start a family in the next few years and I want to make sure that I am able to keep my healthy eating habits. Good to see that it is obtainable!

  7. I totally agree with your changes. I thank the creator of the crockpot for that invention at least 3x per week. It’s literally the only way we eat dinner some days. We use it just to make chicken sometimes (chicken, salt, pepper, broth). Makes life so much easier. I also am less about saving at the store now, too. I am also using Instacart and Safeway.com to have our groceries delivered. It is SUCH a time saver vs. going to the store on the weekend!

  8. I definitely agree and relate as a new mom myself. My truck is meal prep and cooking in big batches. We used to be a lot more creative with our food, but now it’s just about getting good nutrients. If it’s still warm that’s a bonus- ha!

  9. I’m not a Mom, but I completely agree with everyone one of these. I’m single, work full-time, run my own small business, blog and have long commutes plus I train daily. I just don’t have the time to bypass on anything convenient. I’m always looking for ways to make cooking and eating healthy easy.

  10. I wish Blue Apron and similar services delivered to where I live, but nope. I find I cook more as a hobby since I’m home with my kids quite a lot (I don’t own a business or work outside the home). It’s a great money saver too. I’m all about the frozen organic veg these days because dicing fresh vegetables is not super high on my priority list. As for fast favorites for me – I eat plenty of tofu and cook a spaghetti squash or roast sweet potatoes so I can thrown a bunch of healthy stuff in a bowl. Sauce suggestions welcome.

  11. I’m wondering if you could do a recap post of what worked / didn’t work for you in the Fit For Life challenge you posted about in January?

    I know in that post you had said that you were cutting back to one glass of wine a week, for instance.

    As a fellow new mom, I’d love to hear what your experience with a 6-week “nutrition plan” was for you, how closely you adhered to it, etc.

  12. What small business are you managing rift now? I would love to hear more on that! Entrepreneurs are so admirable- good for you for managing it all!

    Given that I am a freshman in college, I have found that convenience is my number one priority as well!

  13. My kids are older, but we are busier than ever, so I rely on the same dozen or so meals that I know everyone will eat and are relatively healthy. And I love my crock pot too! Once in awhile, I will try a new recipe, but most will have to wait for another day and time!

  14. I’m certainly not a mom yet, but I’ve found that convenience has become a huge priority for me since coming to college. I love frozen meats/burger/sausage and steam-in-the-bag vegetables. Also, I’ve found that I’m willing to get the squeeze packets of nut butters and buy more expensive nutrition bars for the sake of their portability and calorie density.

  15. Echoing the frozen veggie and crockpot love. I’m not a mom yet, either, but like others am single, work full time + a part time job a couple nights a week. Also, I used to HATE broccoli and now steamed-from-frozen broccoli with garlic salt or a little bit of pesto is one of my favorite sides ever. The only problem is it’s so quick to heat up that sometimes I finish it all before the rest of my dinner is ready 😉

  16. I definitely don’t have the energy to try as many new recipes. I used to make a new recipe almost every night but now I stick to simple recipes. Also, I love using services like Plated and Blue Apron because they send you all the ingredients and the recipes, which takes all the guesswork out of dinner. And 30 minute or less meals are key.

  17. I’m not a mom, but I can definitely see my eating habits changing as my schedule gets more/less hectic. I’m a wife who works full-time, I take 2 grad school classes each semester and am training for races pretty much year-round. I always try new recipes during spring break or when I don’t have a ton of homework for the week. I can only imagine how much crazier it will get once we start having babies! Crock pots are definitely a savior!

  18. I eat a lot more meals cold, that should be warm, because I stand up and have to get things for my kid or clean up messes. I don’t make new recipes as much and I fall back to tried-and-true things more frequently than I should, just because I don’t want to deal with food refusal sometimes. I eat more convenience items than I used to as well… not ideal, but sometimes I have to do something to just get food in!

  19. I know about time crunch, I run my own business plus have another job, 2 year old twins and a 45 minute commute ( on a good day). The things that have helped include crock pot, old favorites, convenience food ( healthy ) and training my hubs who is home well before me and the kids that he can cook at a temp other than high AND follow a recipe! one of CNC favorites is Cheesy Brussels Sprouts and chicken sausage- so simple and so yummy! I don’t think I ate a warm meal the entire first year of mother hood!

  20. I have a 9 month old as well and nothing really has changed for how my husband and I eat. We were already a family that spent little time on cooking, just heading up some chicken breasts and veggies in the oven. We aren’t big on fancy stuff.

  21. I’m a newer mom too (baby is 5 months old) and work full time and agree with so many of these, including convenience. That best thing is a new Whole foods opened up across the street from my work which is great if I need to get some vegetables or something for dinner. I’m a healthier eater since giving birth because while on maternity leave, I often didn’t have the time to sit down and eat as much as I did before so I chose foods that would keep me fuller longer. I’ve also learned how to eat with one hand 🙂

  22. Ben often jokes that I cook soley for survival during the week! I always make the same foods and are often boring (but at least nutritious and everyone will eat it!) He cooks the “nicer” meals on the weekend when there is more time to dedicate to recipes. Finding a balance is hard!

  23. You are so right. I work full time and I LOVE to cook. But when I get home is precious time with my little ones. I used to strive to get a homemade protein, starch, and veggie on the table every night. While I still do, I am using frozen veggies and quick cooking rice a lot more. Frozen veggies are the perfect quick side dish!
    And yes, definitely more wine!

  24. I have also discovered my love of frozen veggies. Most loved? Diced onions! I ALWAYS diced my own onion, and didn’t even know I could buy a bag for under $1 which equals about 2 small chopped onions. Such a time saver! These are always in my freezer, along w/frozen chopped spinach for eggs, soups, pasta……

  25. 4.5 months into being a new mom and its been quite the adjustment, especially since our little guy goes to sleep now when we would typically have dinner, so dinner is closer to 8pm instead of 6pm. And I hate going to sleep soon after I eat but it is what it is for now. I would say that frozen foods have become my new friend, its very easy to pull out something last minute and it still be healthy.

    I just went to a pampered chef crockpot party this past weekend! My friend hosted and we prepped 10 frozen meals that we can throw in the crockpot whenever. All you have to do is pay for the spices and buy your groceries (they provide you with a list) I actually made 20 meals because its just two of us eating right now so I split the meals up. We made everything from shepherds pie and mongolian flat iron steak to lemon garlic chicken. Pampered chef even offers a paleo menu! 3.5 hours of prep and 20 meals in my freezer=a very happy Mom!

  26. When did your little guy start sleeping through the night so you can actually enjoy a glass of wine, I need something to look forward to in terms of me time.

  27. Frozen veggies and convenience are where it’s at for us over here, too. We don’t try too many new recipes either, just because we like to keep things quick and easy. We’re also on the Blue Apron bandwagon – love it, and it’s a nice way to switch things up a bit without having to put much extra thought into it!

  28. For me recently my eating has changed b/c as my children have gotten older, they’ve gotten pickier. It’s so hard to find a meal that all 5 of us will eat. I’m not into forcing my kids to eat what they don’t like but I do all I can to encourage them to try things. Anyhow, we seem to eat the same things over and over because there are just a handful that everyone will eat. If I make anything “fancy” or different then I end up having to make something separate for the kids. It’s just too much.
    I also enjoy wine at night since I’ve had kids. It all started 10 years ago with my oldest. There really is just something relaxing about sitting down with a glass of wine when they are all in bed. It’s part of my winding down routine.

  29. Wow- this hit home! I am 7 months pregnant and already see myself falling into some of these categories. I used to be against anything convenient and felt the need to make everything homemade. Those days are quickly disappearing and I am 100% okay with it! I love your honesty and it is nice to hear someone else that has the same thoughts about food. Thanks for sharing!

  30. I’m so with you on the wine – HA! seriously, I find it so relaxing. I love the crockpot, too. will have to check out some of your favorites.

  31. This is an interesting post! Now that my “normal eating” is back as of the 16-18th week of pregnancy, I am just tired and working as much as I can before I have to stop (I am a fitness instructor). I find that I am looking for frozen foods again (which I was “against,” find that I eat more regular yogurt (I was always Greek, Greek, GREEK!)… little things here and there so I can only imagine when baby comes!

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