Quick & Healthy Toddler Meals: #1 Pan Seared Beef Tenderloin with Garlic Green Beans

Beef Tenderloin with Garlic Green Beans

A healthy toddler meal in under 15 minutes

Multiple times a week I am faced with trying to create a healthy meal for Faye in less than 15 minutes. Sadly, I’ve been hesitant to share because the limited time I have before a meltdown (from hunger, exhaustion, or a combo of both) occurs doesn’t allow for me to set up for a nice photo shoot.

After coming to my senses, I decided that a non-ideal photo was a ridiculous reason to not share these ideas and recipes with other time-crunched caregivers.

Last night’s dinner is a pretty good example of what Faye gets when I am cramped for time: a well seasoned protein and a flavorful vegetable. (I limit non-nutritious carb heavy foods like pasta and rice, and sugar in every form except whole fruit is never offered.) She sits right up against the table in a Stokke Tripp Trapp highchair, a dishtowel secured around her neck with one of these clips, and serves herself from main dishes.

This is the first recipe in the series, but I’ll try my best to load it up as often as possible. Please let me know if you find recipes like these to be helpful!


  • For the Beef Tenderloin
    • 1″ thick piece of beef tenderloin (highest quality you can afford)
    • 1/4 or so tsp of coarse sea salt
    • 1/8 tsp of black pepper
    • 1/8 tsp of Herbes de Provence
    • 2 Tbsp olive oil
    • 1 Tbsp salted butter*
  • For the Garlic Green Beans
    • 1 large handful of green beans, washed
    • 1 Tbsp salted butter*
    • 1 Tbsp olive oil
    • sea salt to taste
    • garlic powder to taste

*NEED IT DAIRY-FREE? Omit the butter and sub with extra olive oil.


  1. Fill a medium pot halfway with water, cover, and place on the stove on high to boil. Proceed with the next steps, adding the string beans to the water when it reaches a boil. Cook for 7 minutes.
  2. Pull out your salt, pepper, Herbes de Provence, and tenderloin. Liberally sprinkle both sides of the tenderloin with the salt, pepper, and Herbes.
  3. Pull out a small frying pan (and a splatter screen if you like to keep things clean). Put the olive oil for the beef in the pan. Heat the pan on high. When the oil is hot (in about a minute) add the tenderloin and sear for one minute on each side (2 minutes total), flipping with tongs. (Check the water. Add beans of boiling and set your timer for 7 minutes.) Reduce heat to medium low and continue cooking beef for 1 1/2 minutes a side (3 minutes total). Add 1 Tbsp butter to the pan during the last 1 1/2 minutes.
  4. Turn off the heat, move the meat from the pan onto a dish, pour over the oil/butter/juices mixture, cover (with a small bowl, aluminum foil, whatever you have on hand), let rest for 5 minutes, and move your attention back to the beans.
  5. When the 7 minutes is up, kill the heat and use the tongs to pull the beans out of the water and into a bowl. Add the 1 Tbsp olive oil, 1 Tbsp butter, salt, and garlic powder, and toss with the tongs until green beans are covered.
  6. Cut up food to desired size (I use kitchen shears for a super easy and fast cutting job), place in bowls near your toddler, and let her scoop it out onto her dish or mat. Pat yourself on the back for avoiding a meltdown.








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