Monday, March 28, 2011


During my college years, I had the opportunity to spend spring break traveling in Europe and staying in youth  hostels.  Our first morning, we headed to the breakfast tables and saw a large bowl of what looked like melted chocolate.  A fellow student, who had traveled to Europe in the past, said "Oh, yea, that's Nutella.  It's just like Ovaltine -- full of vitamins!"  My friend and I looked at each other, spread some on a croissant and immediately fell in love.  We told each other "Hey!  It's full of vitamins!" and we enjoyed it every chance we got.

Once back in the States, I looked for it in the grocery store, and realized that it was NOT full of vitamins like Ovaltine.  That didn't take away from its deliciousness, however.  Nutella is a creamy, hazelnut spread flavored with cocoa.  It's wonderful spread on a croissant, toast, or paired with peanut butter for the perfect sandwich.  And, while it may not be full of vitamins, in moderation it is a wonderful food to add to the breakfast table.

I recently had the opportunity to share some Nutella and breakfast recipes with some friends of mine.  I had every intention to have the party at home (but have  you noticed how busy our family is lately?) so I had the party in my office instead.  My work friends appreciated the break and loved having the chance to sample Nutella and learn more about good breakfast choices.

Moderation is the key for everything, and there is no reason I can't reasonably enjoy a bit of chocolate as part of a well-balanced meal.  In some of the material I received, Connie Evers (child nutrition expert & mother of three) answered the question "What is the best breakfast to serve my child in the morning?" with the response: "The 'best' breakfast is the one that will be eaten!"

That made me laugh, because it is so true.  When we first started school this year, mornings were a definite struggle.  I know the importance of starting the day with a good breakfast, so I worked hard to find breakfast foods that 1. the boys would eat and 2. they could make themselves.  Toasting a piece of bread and topping it with Nutella and sliced bananas is definitely a breakfast my boys are not only able to make themselves, but also will eat!  Pour a glass of milk and breakfast is served. Another favorite breakfast are toasted waffles with nutella and peanut butter, sometimes with sliced strawberries. 

Some nutritional information about Nutella:
  • Each 13 oz jar contains more than 50 hazelnuts
  • NO hydrogenated oil or trans fat
  • No artificial colors or preservatives
It can be found in most grocery stores near the peanut butters and jellies.  If you haven't tried it yet, I suggest picking up a jar during your next grocery visit! 

*Disclosure: I received a party pack with samples and information, thanks to Nutella and Mommy Parties.  No additional compensation was provided.*

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