My Food Can Shut Up Your Mom

Did you ever have one of those moments when you’re feeding your kids, and the Rockwell song starts blaring in your head? You know the one . . . “I always feel like somebody’s watching me . . .” Because you never know when the sanctimommies are going to strike.

This is where our parents had it better. They were blissfully unaware of the evils of white bread and high fructose corn syrup, able to dole it out with reckless abandon. In their day, they were giving us better than they got, real treats that their parents couldn’t afford. I hold no ill will toward my parents for this. They tried their best to limit us to 100 percent fruit only juice and something green on the plate every day.

But it’s left me with an uncanny need to find suitable versions of my favorite foods to share with my daughter.
Case in point, my family’s renewed obsession with FruitaBu, the newer, healthier version of the fruit roll up. I was sent a box of these awhile back when I worked at Babble. I feel in the food version of love, but when the box was through, I had to come to grips with the fact that I couldn’t find these suckers anywhere in my area. So we gave up. Sadly.

And then a box of Stretch Island’s fruit leather showed up a few weeks ago (disclosure y’all — they came from the company). And suddenly the $79 fee for Amazon Prime doesn’t look so bad. It gives me the opportunity to buy this stuff in bulk. And Mama needs her fruity sweet snack.

Everything that pulled me in to the FruitaBu stands for the Fruit Strips. Real fruit. No added chemical crap. And it tastes like a fruit-splosion in the mouth. Basically, good enough that I’m actually writing about it on Inside Out instead of just saying “thanks for the free crap, I ate it, what more do you want?” They make me feel like a better mom . . . or at least one who is trying. (If you want another reason to get ahold of these babies, check out the adorable “sushi” recipe/craft for kids that my buddy Louise over at MomStart has put up)

I’m officially adding FruitaBu to the list of “appropriate substitutes for the junk I want to share with my kid.” Also on that list?

Country Wheat Bread from Arnold: It’s far from perfect with 4 grams of sugar per slice, but there’s no high fructose corn syrup, there’s no saturated fat, and there are 2 grams of fiber in a slice. Why I bother? It’s the only “healthy” option I’ve found that doesn’t have seeds or similar sticks and twigs-type crunchy bits inside as you bite. It’s about the closest I’ve come to the consistency of the white crap.

Homemade Chicken Nuggets. Fresh chicken breasts. Homemade breading. No more of this “lips and assholes” of the chicken for my kid.

Homemade Mac & Cheese. So it’s still fattening. But it’s got bona fide amounts of calcium, and I can use skim milk, low-fat cheese, and add vegetables. Sorry Kraft box.

What replacements for the crap-tastic yumminess of childhood have you crafted? I need help here people! Have you tried the FruitaBu stuff to replace your candy-coated urges?

Disclosure: Stretch Island provided me with a box of fruity candy that my kid and I fought over. They didn’t pay me for this review; all snarky opinions are my own.


  1. Hey, I buy Arnold's country wheat for my mom (and for the daughter to eat at Grandma's)…I see the secret is out. I like to make my own marshmallows but okay, the kid doesn't like marshmallows so those are for me. I wish Kashi would make Cap'n Crunch! It was my childhood favorite although I don't know if I could take the damage to the roof of my mouth.My attitude is that the kid can eat whatever she's offered at other people's houses…but we were staying with a friend who offered "Fruit Loops or Apple Jacks" and the girl looked like someone had offered her crack. In front of her mom, even!Still totally love the blog! (a very northern Dutchess mom)

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