Fitting Tater Tots onto a CARE Balanced Plate - Part 3
This is our third and final post for our series on how to use a beloved favorite, tater tots, in a balanced meal. As we talked about in Part 1: Extend with Leafy and Tender Veggies (with CARE recipe: Tater Tot Hash, Therapeutic White Veggie Skillet) and Part 2: Watch the Sodium (with CARE Recipe: Sausage Tater Tot Hash with Avocado), the goal of a therapeutic lifestyle is not to avoid favorite foods. The goal is to learn how to use them modestly, to know “where they fit” on your plate.
First, we extended the tater tots with leafy and tender veggies, then we watched total sodium in the meal, and finally we are going to keep an eye on nibbling!
When using denser foods like tater tots, its especially important to keep an eye on your nibbling as your putting the dish together! In this recipe – Tater Tot Hash Egg Bake – you use 4 cups of tater tots, starting by quickly microwaving them before adding them to the skillet. How easy, if not automatic, is it to nibble on a few tots here and there as you prepare the recipe.
But… keep in mind that only 1/2 cup of tater tots (only ~7-8 tots) is a full serving of carbohydrate AND fat AND ~300mg of sodium.
Nibbling on them out of the microwave adds up quickly and it is these little bites here and there that can make you stall on weight loss. If you are going to nibble (which let’s face it we all will), just account for it. 1-2 doesn’t matter, but if you have more than 5 or 6, it needs to be counted as another carbohydrate and fat (and sodium) for the meal.
CARE Recipe: Tater Tot Hash Egg Bake
Here is another way that I like to use the CARE Tater Tot Hash. At least twice per month, I have an egg bake on my meal plan. Their versatility is endless. My husband is actually the one that discovered using tater tots with riced cauliflower while making brunch one weekend. He paired the hash with bell peppers and eggs. It was delicious. Here I turn it into a bake for easy make-ahead weekday breakfasts.
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
- 4 garlic clove, minced
- 4 cups tater tots, (~16 tots per cup)
- 4 cups riced cauliflower, (fresh or frozen)
- 1 onion, minced
- 2 bell pepper, minced
- 8 large eggs
- 1/2 cup low fat milk
- 8 ounce lean turkey breakfast sausage, crumbled (humane rated or certified recommended)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
- Crush garlic with the back of a knife and remove peel. Mince and set aside.
- Thaw tater tots by placing them on a large dinner plate and microwaving on high for 3 minutes. (If using frozen cauliflower, also microwave it at this time to thaw; drain cauliflower once finished in the microwave to remove excess liquid).
- Place thawed tater tots into a large nonstick skillet and crumble by breaking up with a wooden spoon.
- Add minced onion and cook until onion is translucent and begins to brown (about 5 min). (To keep the total fat content of the meal down, you are using the fat from the tater tots here to help sauté the onion).
- Add garlic, cauliflower, and bell pepper to skillet. Cook together over medium-high heat for an additional 5 min.
- Lightly grease a 9″x13″ baking dish.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk eggs with milk. Crumble sausage into egg mixture.
- Place prepared hash evenly on the bottom of baking dish and top with egg mixture.
- Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove foil and bake an additional 15minutes or until center of eggs are firm and set.
- Portion into 8 servings and enjoy!
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Category: Breakfast
- Method: oven
- Diet: Gluten Free
- Calories: 347
- Sugar: 15g
- Sodium: 573
- Fat: 16g
- Saturated Fat: 4g
- Unsaturated Fat: 4g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 39g
- Fiber: 3g
- Protein: 15g
- Cholesterol: 232mg
Keywords: making tater tots fit a balanced plate, how to use tater tots in a healthy diet
This recipe is a favorite of mine and is also enjoyed by my kids. If you are looking for a fast breakfast for the week or if you have company over for brunch, this is a fast and easy dish that everyone will enjoy. If you are not a fan of egg bakes you could take just the ingredients, then top with an egg to make a hash, I have made it this way and it gives it a different outlook on the dish. My whole family would highly recommend this dish to everyone.