When you close your eyes and think back to your cherished holiday memories, what comes to mind? Gatherings at grandma’s, treasured traditions, classic Christmas movies, and the smell of that sweet breakfast-bake straight out of the oven may be familiar.
With more than 700 dairy farms in the Hoosier state, our Indiana dairy farm families know what it takes to provide healthy, nutritious foods throughout the year, and they appreciate time around the holidays to continue their beloved traditions with those they love the most. Every holiday season, there’s effort paid to end the year on a high note. This year, why not make the conscious effort to continue your traditions with milk?
Here are five easy (and almost daily!) ways your family can incorporate milk into your holiday season:
Oatmeal. Every year, oatmeal makes the list for the 10 most popular breakfast item in America. Whether it’s the old-fashioned variety or instant oats, making oatmeal with milk not only enhances the consistency, but one serving of milk adds 8 grams of protein and 13 essential nutrients to that sweet or savory dish! Recipe to try: Creamy Maple Cranberry Oatmeal.
Side Dishes. Many holiday meals will be on the table this year, and not every family eats meat. For some families, the side dishes make the meal, so why not add milk? Looking for creamier mashed potatoes? Add milk. Wanting to thin out grandma’s gravy? Add milk. Craving a more decadent mac and cheese? Add milk. Recipe to try: Decadent Mac ‘n Cheese.
Gifts. The holiday season is about more than food and gift giving. The holiday season is also about spreading good cheer to those in need. Milk is the most requested, least donated item in food banks, and you can make a difference. Contact your local food bank and see how you can help! A gallon of milk will make the difference in a family’s holiday season.
Dessert. The American Dairy Association Indiana Inc. (ADAI) is hosting a “Baking Holidays from Scratch” cooking contest, and the recipes encourage two to three dairy items per dish. Some of the sweetest holiday memories are rooted in baking with family memories, decorating cookies and even delivering plates of treats to neighbors down the street. Making holiday favorites with milk and dairy products adds flavor while simultaneously supporting dairy farmers in your community. Visit WinnersDrinkMilk.com/recipes for some tried-and-true traditional treats. Recipe to try: Mom’s Cut-Out Cookies.
Milk for Santa. Perhaps the most well-known and treasured holiday tradition is leaving a big, ice-cold glass of milk out for Santa, accompanied by cheese and carrots for the reindeer. Nothing compares to the benefits of providing nature’s perfect beverage to the big, jolly guy. Santa needs that wholesome milk to quench his thirst and consume enough protein to keep him going throughout the night! Remember, #WinnersDrinkMilk, and no one is winning more than Santa Claus on December 24!
We wish you a very merry holiday season filled with delicious dishes, memorable moments and the taste of health and wellness through milk. If you’re making a new dish with milk this year or simply sharing milk with friends, tag @INDairy on social media or use #WinnersDrinkMilk. ADAI will be on the lookout for good boys and girls, and just may send some treats your way!