Tag Archives: avocado


Night Feeding Via Pump

Ok it’s been a while since I been able to add a new recipe so here goes.  I’m dedicating this to 2 young tubie warriors.  This ones for you, kiddos!

Three years ago, right before Matt had his hip surgery, his digestive tract started giving him problems again.  I was trying to avoid putting him on laxatives so I developed a green smoothie that I had hoped would help him.  I originally put fruit in it and offered it to him to drink.  He liked it (sort of) but he only drank 2oz.  I knew that was not enough to work so I went back to the drawing board.  Then it dawned on me.  He has a g-tube!  He doesn’t need to drink it so I can remove the fruit and add more greens!  It worked.  The added greens allowed me to add more fiber without fighting with him about the taste.  Now when I give him a bolus feeding or hang his bag for his night feeding he smiles and says, “Ooh! Mooie!  Yup.  You got it.  That’s where the name came from.

Bolus Feeding

Since each child and adult that are g-tube dependent have different issues, I caution you to check with your doctor before changing a feeding regimen and, if you get the ok to to try this, add small amounts at first and watch for adverse effects.  I do not recommend making this smoothie with anything else but a Vitamix.  The Vitamix blends the greens so finely that there are little or no leave particles to get caught in the filter of the feeding bag.  If the filter gets clogged that feeding stops and the alarm goes off.  It’s less of a problem for bolus feeding but, if there is difficulty in breaking down solids, it could cause issues. All of the ingredients are added to the Vitamix container by weight. That way there is no measuring so it comes out the same every time. It also makes for a quicker blend. Just put the Vitamix container on a food scale and add the ingredients. No more measuring cups and spoons to wash.


  • 3oz + 5oz of peppermint or chamomile tea
  • 6oz of greens (your choice)
  • 2oz of fresh Aloe Vera gel (optional)
  • 3oz avocado (or 2oz of avocado + 4 tsp of organic olive oil)
  • 1oz Organic apple cider vinegar
  • 8oz DIY “Ripple” (split pea milk)


  1. In the 32oz Vitamix container add 3oz of the tea, the greens, the Aloe Vera gel (if you are using it) and the avocado and secure the lid.
  2. Select variable 1.
  3. Turn the machine on and quickly increase the speed to variable 10, then to High.
  4. Blend for 1 minute.
  5. Turn the machine off, return the switch setting to Variable and the dial setting to 1 then remove the lid.
  6. Add the remaining 5oz of tea, the vinegar and the DIY “Ripple” (split pea milk) and secure the lid.
  7. Turn the machine on and increase the speed to Variable 6 and blend for 10-20 seconds or until all the ingredients are combined.

Makes 2 14oz smoothies. Matthew’s night feeding is 500mls so I rinse the container with enough filtered water and add it to the feeding bag to ensure he gets the full dose. I have also added 1 tsp of fresh pureed ginger when Matthew’s stomach was more upset than usual.  Feel free to experiment with different greens.  Sometimes I will buy the large bag of Power greens or spinach from Costco along with Romaine lettuce hearts.  I also keep a close eye on the local farmer’s market for greens that are on sale.  Parsley is great because it helps settle the stomach.

Matthew’s Green Smoothie

ATTENTION: Make sure to get clearance from your doctor before trying any blenderized diet.

My Helper
My Helper

1 cup of peppermint or chamomile tea
2 oz of Avocado
2 oz of fresh Aloe Vera (optional)
3 cups of greens
Makes 2 cups

Bolus Feeding Syringe
Bolus Feeding Syringe

1. Place all ingredients into the Vitamix in the order listed and secure lid.
2. Select Variable 1.
3. Turn machine on and quickly increase speed to 10, then to High.
Blend for 1-2 minutes or until very smooth (no visible leaves).

Night Feeding Via Pump
Night Feeding Via Pump

Food Tip: When using this smoothie in the enteral feeding pump, it is vital that there are no leaf particles. Because the bag tubing, extension tubing and g-tube are all small in diameter, small bits of leaves can get caught and cause the pump to alarm and stop the feeding due to “No flow out”. Green smoothies do not work well without some type of fat in them. Outside of the health benefits, that’s why the avocado is added.Also, if formula is normally given, it is best to combine the smoothie with the formula and mix well. It has been my experience that straight green smoothies without the formula mixed in tend to separate. The pureed greens are lighter than the water so the water will go though the pump leaving the greens stuck in the feed bag.  If Aloe Vera is used it must be food grade.  Do not use fresh Aloe Vera unless you know how to properly prepare it.

Time Tip: How much smoothie to give depends on total volume and tolerance. It is best fresh within 2-3 days so I store the remaining smoothie in a container that allows me to shake it up before pouring.

Money Tip: Since they are going to be blended, buy greens in bulk and freeze any portion you do not use within 3-5 days. That way there is no waste from greens gone bad in the refrigerator.  Fresh frozen greens such as kale and spinach break up easily once frozen allowing for easy measuring and blending.

Nine Layer Bean Dip

Nine Layer Bean Dip
Nine Layer Bean Dip

This recipe has some serious history behind it.  It all started about 16 years ago.  We had been invited to join my husband’s best friends family for a Fourth of July barbecue/swim party.  It was a pot luck for a fairly large group so I thought the nine layer bean dip would work well as an appetizer.  The dip was a hit and so began a Barton Family Bean Dip legacy.  At first it was just 1 pan but then I found out a family member had an allergy to avocados so I added a small pan that had no guacamole in it.  Soon the dip was disappearing as fast as I brought it out.  Come to find out, people were skipping lunch just to eat the dip when we arrived.

9 layer dip dos


9 layer dip



Fast forward to the present.  We now bring 3 varieties of the dip all weighing between 5 and 7 pounds each to all of our Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Labor Day gatherings.  Three parties every year plus a couple of extra events thrown in by special request.  That’s a lot of dip!  One year we had to miss Memorial Day because Matthew was in the hospital.  One family member jokingly asked, “Well, can you at least bring the dip?”  Yeah.  It’s that good!


Well, now it’s football season and the holiday season is quickly approaching.  The next time you are invited to a party bring “the dip”.  Word of caution, be prepared to be stopped at the door when you are invited back and you decide to bring something else!

3 cups of non-fried re-fried beans
2 cups diced green chiles
2 cups guacamole
1 cup taco seasoning
2 cups chopped olives
2 cups diced tomatoes
1 ½ cups chopped green onion
2 cups sour cream
2 cups shredded cheddar/Monterey Jack cheese

Guacamole directions: Peel, pit and mash 4-5 avocados. Mix in ¼ cup sour cream and salt, Cayenne pepper and black pepper to taste.

Dip directions: Layer each ingredient into a large lasagna pan (13-1/2 in. L x 9-5/8 in. W x 2-3/4 in. H) in the order listed. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before serving.

Food Tip: For those allergic to avocado, eliminate that layer. For those who like a spicier dip, use chopped jalapenos in place of green chiles. This size dip is excellent for parties. If you want a smaller dip, choose the desired size pan and evenly layer all of the ingredients. The beans should measure about ¾ inch deep and each successive layer should completely cover the one below it.

Time Tip: The beans puree and spread much easier if they are freshly cooked and blended. Spread the non-fried re-fried beans into the pan, cover with foil and refrigerate overnight. Also chop the olives, tomatoes, green chiles and/or jalapenos the night before and store in airtight containers. It is best to chop the onions and make the guacamole the day the dip is to prepared and eaten.

Money Tip: When making this dip for a large group it is best to buy the ingredients at club stores or stores that specialize in catering. Making the non-fried re-fried beans fresh from beans purchased at a bulk food store is always more nutritional, less expensive and better tasting than canned.