Saturday, June 21, 2014

Schlitterbahn! Bring your own food!

Schlitterbahn is one of the most amazing water parks I've ever been to and taken my family to. There are so many reasons to love it. The recycled river water makes it an eco-friendly park. So many rides to choose from for every age means everyone can have fun. I know its safe because of all the friendly life guards standing at the ready at all times. There are plenty of covered areas to rest in to prolong the days activities without exhaustion or overheating striking. And there is FREE parking! Most parks require you to pay for daily parking and its quite pricey. I'd rather save my money for fun inside the park, wouldn't you?
But there is one reason why this park beats out the competition from others. They allow you to bring coolers of food and drinks from OUTSIDE the park! Sure, they offer concessions and restaurants. But some families look to save money by bringing their own. Or families who have special dietary needs can ensure they stay on track without missing the fun. No glass or alcohol as it is a family park! Its a great idea that makes moms happy. It lets you stay ALL DAY so you maximize your fun while saving money. But what would you pack for your families hunger and thirst needs?  I've got my own ideas for the Mom's Ice Chest Challenge.
Start with a cooler and remember to pack the ice! You don't want your food going bad. Water and Capri Sun pouches are a must. Keep your family hydrated throughout the day to ward off fatigue as it greatly depreciates the fun! (And its really not healthy.)
As far as foods? These simple recipes mean that my picky eaters will keep satisfied so I don't have to spend valuable time in lines at the food places instead of riding the water slides.

Pizza or sandwich roll ups
My kids love pizza and pepperoni. So I take a tortilla or wrap, spread on a dab of mayo, add their favorite sandwich meat or pepperoni and a slice of cheese. Roll up several and put into a zip lock bag. They can choose one or more depending on how hungry they are feeling and go back later for more.

Cookie Cutter fruits
Watermelon works best, but cutting fruits with cookie cutters or into shapes makes eating them more fun. Bring a plastic dish full of them to much on throughout the day to provide a healthy snack. They also add to the hydration levels from the natural juices inside.

Macaroni Salad
Its easy to put together, easy to substitute what your family enjoys in it and tastes great even when its cold.
1-2 cups of pasta
1 cup of tomatoes
1/2 cup bacon, chopped
1/2 cup cheese cut in small chunks
2 spoonful's of your favorite dressing to taste

Cook the pasta (my family prefers rotini pasta in the veggie type). Set it aside to let it cool. Chop up tomatoes or add cherry tomatoes cut in half. I like to add chopped bacon to mine. You can add small chunks of cheese, personally I like feta. Add your cooled pasta and mix. To top it off, I like to put a couple spoonful's of Italian dressing. You can choose to add Ranch or another dressing as your family favorite might differ from mine.

For dessert ideas, cookies work well. I make chocolate chip cookies or even a pan of brownies. My best recipe is for brownies with white chocolate swirled in.

White Chocolate Swirl Brownies
1/2 cup butter
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup white sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder

Preheat oven to 350.
Mix the butter, eggs and vanilla extract briskly with a whisk. Add in the sugar, cocoa, flour salt and baking powder one at a time until fully mixed. Batter should be smooth. Pour into a greased pan. Pour about a cup of white chocolate chips into a microwaveable bowl. I spray a tiny amount of cooking spray on top before microwaving them at 15 second intervals stirring in between until fully melted. Swirl the white chocolate in with a spoon. Another way is to use a bag with the corner tip cut off and squeezing it in while swirling. Though this method makes the white chocolate deposit a bit thicker on the top. Bake for about 25-30 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean. These are easy to cut and put in a bag when cooled. They make great finger desserts to take along and finish off your meal!

Feel free to join in the fun by sharing recipes and let me know what you would take on your trip! texanmama08 at gmail dot com.

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