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Ask a Dietitian Anything ft. Katie Brandenburger and Shelby Hauge

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This is my invariable advice to people: Learn how to cook β€” try new recipes, learn from your mistakes, be fearless and above all have fun!

Julia Child


Shelby Hauge & Katie Brandenburger

Would love to pick a dietitian’s brain? Us too, which is why we brought in Registered Dietitians and National Board Certified Health & Wellness Coaches Shelby Hauge and Katie Brandenburger to talk all things food. Whether you’re single cooking for one or a parent of picky eaters- this week’s episode of the Ivy Unleashed podcast covers it all. Find our top planning, shopping, prepping, and cooking tips below.

Episode Highlights

Tips for planning

  • Plan ahead.
  • Aim to plan out your meals for the week every Sunday (or a specific time you’re going to set aside to plan).
  • Have a budget and plan it out- know where your money is going.
  • Pick 5 meals and make sure you have those ingredients on hand.
  • Shopping on a budget- there are clearance racks at grocery stores, use them.
  • Find your staples.
  • Make it easy on yourself – plan 3-4 dinners (ask yourself what ingredients you need) and have one night takeout and one night leftovers.
  • Use the internet/Pinterest/our blog for ideas!
  • Bookmark a folder on your internet browser full of recipes that you can quick reference.
  • Keep a running list of top 10-20 go-to meals in the notes of your phone.
  • Look at and use coupons. Plan with those ingredients.

Tips for shopping/saving money-

  • Take advantage of CSA’s and support local agriculture. You can work with a farmer and get produce at a reduced cost.
  • Costco- buy in bulk!
  • Utilize Aldi or chains similar that have reduced prices.
  • Don’t be afraid of canned chicken, salmon, tuna- you can get these at a lower price and get quality.
  • Look at labels and see where it’s been sourced- wild vs. farmed (personal preference). Do what is right for you and your budget. What’s most important to you and your family?
  • If you’re busy- order your groceries online and pick them up to save time (this also helps with impulse buys).
  • Buy meat on sale/stock up on nonperishables when they go on sale.

Tips for prepping-

  • Freeze your meat, vegetables, and fruit to help them last longer.
  • Let frozen fruit thaw out over night and you can treat them similar to if it was fresh fruit in the morning.
  • How can you make multiple meals from one thing (i.e. a rotisserie chicken)?

Tips for cooking-

  • Frozen vegetables- throw some olive oil in a pan and easily whip up some vegetables.
  • Have quick meals on hand (i.e. microwave meatballs, frozen veggies, etc.).
  • Make meals in bulk when you can.
  • Make a big pot of soup and freeze it to make it last longer.

Tips specific for kids-

  • Have your staples- easy breakfast/lunches with kids (i.e. pasta and pasta sauce always on hand, eggs and fruit in the morning).
  • Easy to chop in vegetables and introduce kids to them in eggs and sauces.
  • Exposure is key. Expose your kids to fruits and vegetables. Studies show it can take kids 11-14 exposures before they’ll try it.
  • Try not to hide healthy foods- kids should be aware of what they’re eating. Let them know that’s what a well rounded meal looks like. Let them decide if they’re full and when they’re done. Offer all the foods at once and treat them as equal.
  • Eating dinner as a family is so important. Have your kids eat the same thing you’re eating.
  • Get creative- get your kids more adventurous with food. Let them cook with you. Have them help you and show them the process.
  • Offer choices- let the kids pick out. Ask your kid what fruit they want with breakfast or what vegetable they want for dinner.
  • Let them touch and experience food in different ways that’s not only eating it (i.e. observing the color, what it feels like, smells like, etc). Young kids are exploring their independence- this is exciting for kids.
  • Studies show if you offer less food, kids will eat better. Make sure portions aren’t super overwhelming.
  • Container gardens- plant and grow your own fruits and vegetables. Inexpensive way to have your own produce and to make it an activity with your kids. You can get seeds online or at grocery stores. Target has inexpensive pot starters (herbs, strawberries, tomatoes). It’s a science experiment for kids- they get to see it start from a seed and grow into a plant. You’re also more likely to try it yourself if you’re the one growing it!

Tips for on the go-

  • Bring water wherever you go.
  • Keep bowls in the car with a bin of whole grain/healthy/easy snacks.
  • Pack lunches (bring a cooler in the car).
  • Drive-thru’s are okay- your family needs to eat and life happens!

Tips for social settings-

  • Scope out the food situation and ask yourself what you really want to have and focus on that.
  • Ask if you can bring something and bring a vegetable tray/something you want to eat.
  • Eat ahead of time.
  • Give yourself grace.


Audit who you follow on social media. Is what/who you’re following making you feel good? If not, unfollow. Know that your relationship with food is your relationship with food- it has to be true and work for you. Learn what makes your body feel good and satisfied. Do what works for you and your family. There is no one right way.


If you had a chance, what would you ask a dietitian? Andrea and Brooke brought in two Registered Dietitians and National Board Certified Health & Wellness Coaches, Katie Brandenburger and Shelby Hauge, to answer all kinds of questions about food and what determines our preferences. They tackle questions about planning, prepping, budgeting, and how to get creative with food for kids and adults. This episode highlights the power and influence of food in our lives all the way back to our childhood. Listen in as Katie and Shelby provide a variety of ideas for nutritious options, the science behind portions, and will get you thinking about your relationship with food.

Behind-the-Scenes Video

3 Gold Stars

1. Try a new fruit or vegetable or one you didn’t like as a child.

2. Get your children, partner, friend or whoever you’re sharing a meal with involved, making it way more meaningful.

3. Grow something (fruits, vegetables, container gardens).

Ivy Reflections

  • What vegetable or fruit haven’t you had since you were a child and how can you prepare it in a new way?

  • How can you add variety into your diet? What new food can you add into your diet this week?

  • How can you make grocery shopping easier on yourself (i.e. plan out 3 meals every Sunday for the following week, download a shopping list app, have someone shop for you or order your groceries online and pick up at the store)?

Piece of Gold

Cooking with kids is not just about ingredients, recipes, and cooking. It’s about harnessing imagination, empowerment, and creativity.

Guy Fieri

Healing Food of the Week-

Close-Up Photo Of Sliced Pineapple


Pineapple is an excellent source of vitamin C and manganese, which aids in antioxidant defenses.

Healing Properties: Some of the incredible healing properties of pineapple include- digestion aid, reduction of inflammation, improves respiratory conditions, and has been known to help speed up recovery from injuries and surgeries. 

Fun Fact: The pineapple is native to South America and the only state in America that produces them is Hawaii. 

New Recipe to Try!

Vegan Pineapple Ginger Green Smoothie

Pineapple Ginger Green Smoothie



Child of Mine: Feeding with Love and Good Sense, Revised and Updated  Edition: Satter, Ellyn: 8601419522477: Books

π˜›π˜©π˜¦ 𝘦𝘯𝘀𝘺𝘀𝘭𝘰𝘱𝘦π˜₯π˜ͺ𝘒 𝘰𝘧 𝘏𝘦𝘒𝘭π˜ͺ𝘯𝘨 𝘍𝘰𝘰π˜₯𝘴 𝘣𝘺 π˜”π˜ͺ𝘀𝘩𝘒𝘦𝘭 π˜”π˜Άπ˜³π˜³π˜’π˜Ί π˜”.π˜‹. π˜‘π˜°π˜΄π˜¦π˜±π˜© π˜—π˜ͺ𝘻𝘻𝘰𝘳𝘯𝘰 π˜•.π˜‹. 𝘒𝘯π˜₯ π˜“π˜’π˜Άπ˜³π˜’ π˜—π˜ͺ𝘻𝘻𝘰𝘳𝘯𝘰 π˜”.𝘈., π˜“.π˜”.π˜›.⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣⁣

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We thank you for joining us in the fearless pursuit of self-discovery and growth and hope that you transform our lessons into your gold. 

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Listen to your truth and go chase your gold.

– Gold Ivy Health Co.

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