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Natural Awakenings Hudson County NJ

Bambino Chef’s Secret Ingredient Is Nutrition

As a certified chef and youth nutrition specialist, Rene Gonzalez knows that one of the best ways to get kids to eat healthy food is to get them involved in the preparation process. That’s also been her approach as a mom, simply because she enjoys spending time in the kitchen with her family.

“I love developing kid-friendly recipes and getting creative in the kitchen with kids,” she says.

So she started a Jersey City business, Bambino Chef, as “that place where children can cook up a delicious storm, add a twist to traditional recipes, build memories and experience the magic of the kitchen.”

Bambino Chef’s team offers something for every kid: virtual cooking classes; in-person cooking classes at their studio (temporarily suspended, but back soon); after-school enrichment programs and field trips; private group classes; and cooking-themed birthday parties and celebrations.

Bambino Chef also sells scone baking mixes in chocolate and cranberry, so kids can whip up a batch of six scones in their own kitchen. All they need is a few common ingredients (butter, milk and optional egg) plus a spoon and a whisk. The package comes with instructions and two cookie cutters.

Gonzalez was kind enough to send us one of her kid-friendly creations just in time for Valentine’s Day. She calls it “the perfect February recipe.”

“Since everyone is all about chocolate around Valentine’s Day, I thought to make something with chocolate but with a healthy twist,” she explains. “Also, I wanted to create a recipe that’s versatile enough that you could make a vegan option. I’ve tested this on many people, including children, and I got a thumbs up.”

Below we’re excited to share Bambino Chef’s recipe for Chocolate Red Quinoa Squares.

Location: 213 Newark Ave., Jersey City, NJ. For more information about Bambino Chef, call 201-333-9090 or email [email protected].

Chocolate Red Quinoa Squares (or Muffins)    Makes 9
Chocolate Red Quinoa Squares (or Muffins)    Makes 9



1/2 c butter (melted)

1/4 c cocoa powder

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 c coconut milk

1 c flour

1 c coconut sugar

1 tsp powder

1 egg

1/4 c coconut yogurt

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 c red quinoa (cooked)

2-3 tbs chocolate chips
(optional but recommended)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Melt butter, set aside to cool. Combine milk, yogurt, vanilla extract, egg. Add butter, sugar and red quinoa. Mix well with a whisk until smooth. In a separate bowl combine flour, salt, baking powder, cocoa powder and chocolate chips. Pour the milk mix to dry ingredients and stir. Grease baking tin or place baking liners. Pour the batter all the way to the top.
Bake for 18-20 min or until the toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the squares cool for 10 minutes before removing from the pan. And enjoy!

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