Korey Kealey is a Co-Author of The Ultimate Cookbook for Hockey Families (along with her friend Erin Phillips) - a book with endless tips for the busy lifestyle that a hockey family lives, including recipes from your favourite professional hockey players.
CARHA Hockey had the opportunity to dive even deeper into hockey nutrition with Korey!
Tell us about The Ultimate Cookbook for Hockey Families – the book you co-wrote!
Erin Phillips called me out of the blue saying we needed to help busy hockey families - she’d provide the nutrition requirements and get all of the professional’s recipes and tips and I would fill in the blanks with meal preparation, easy weeknight meals, eating on the run and quick tips!
The combination of a pro hockey lifestyle combined with solid recipes resulted in our book!
What suggestions do you have for families when they’re tight for time and need a quick meal before heading to the rink?
Think of assembling rather than cooking in busy times. Bowls are an amazing concept and large resealable containers make it easy to take on the road as well.
A little advance food prep makes for quick meals. Have veggies prepped and in easy access containers. Cook extra proteins (chicken, beef, fish, pork, tofu) and have sliced and ready to go. Have bases like quinoa, rice or pasta cooked in bulk along with favourite salad dressing or sauces (curry, tomato, pesto).
Then throw it all together! Easy and delicious.
Many of our kids are playing other sports and activities on top of hockey – how do we properly manage their diet to keep them energized throughout the day?
This can be tricky depending on the child and the school environment which sadly doesn’t always allow enough time for a full meal.
Trying to get a big breakfast in can help. Smaller snacks that can be eaten throughout the day and then a larger pre-game/practice meal right after school can do the trick.
Keep a wide mouth stainless thermos in the freezer for smoothies. Add a snack bag of homemade granola and some coconut or chopped fruit and you have a smoothie bowl on the run.
Baking nutrient dense muffins and freezing for grab and go is also a popular snack.
Do you have any easy meals with nutritional value for kids who might be a tad pickier?
We have an entire section in the book for picky eaters. Feeding kids can be one of the most frustrating things but try to get to the root of the dislike with any particular foods. Ask some questions and don’t accept “I don’t like it”. Find out why if possible and you might be surprised.
For example - apples - perhaps they don’t like the feel of the skin on their teeth so peeling the apple could work. Maybe the apple hurts their teeth when the bite into it so slicing could help. Perhaps the apple is tart, look for a sweeter variety. Maybe cooked apples appeal more than raw so chopping up and putting in the microwave for a couple minutes with a little cinnamon could be the ticket!
If it is an important food or food group dig a little to find a solution.
Additionally, we have had many parents tell us that their kids have been converted after seeing pro players eat something.
Smoothies and puréed soups are a great way to incorporate foods as well.
What’s the proper balance for snacks and meals on a Saturday or Sunday where our children are potentially busiest?
Big breakfast, light snacks through the day. Make a bowl to go with the sauce or dressing on the side.
Try the smoothie bowl to go as well, it's a big hit!
Hummus is an excellent protein paired with cut veggies and nutrient dense crackers like enerjive quinoa crackers.
Lastly, what advice do you have for families that are potentially on a tighter budget?
The most expensive food is food that is thrown in the garbage.
Try to use the freezer and have meals for the next time.
Make soups and stews with less expensive cuts of meats.
Beans and lentils are amazing sources of protein and super inexpensive. They can be puréed and added to sauces for those who don’t care for them!