Snacks for Kids
Kids have a small stomach capacity. Most kids will need to eat at least four to six times a day or more. Nutritious snacks are as important as healthy meals.
In planning smart snacks, avoid serving snacks that always represent just one food group, such as crackers or toast. There are many good choices in all four food groups. Offering both protein and carbohydrates at snacks provides longer lasting energy. Foods containing carbohydrates include: grains, vegetables and fruit. Good examples include bread, crackers, rolls, toast, muffins, cereal and raw, canned or partially cooked fruits and vegetables. Equally important snacks come from the protein groups: milk products and meat and alternatives. Good choices include milk, soymilk, yogurt, pudding, cheese, rolled-up lean meat or boiled eggs.
Try some of these delicious and nutritious snack ideas:
- Hardboiled egg and mandarin orange pieces
- Edamame and cherry tomatoes
- Almonds and dried apricots
- Fruit and yogurt parfait made of layers of yogurt, chopped fruit and granola
- Homemade fruit juice or fruit smoothie popsicles
- Crackers (triscuits, Kashi or Mary’s), cheese and cucumber rounds
- Pita chips and hummus
- Chicken and cheese quesadilla with salsa
- Canned peaches and Vanilla yogurt
- Cereal and milk
- Pizza bagels: toasted mini bagel topped with tomato sauce, ham and cheese melted under the broiler
- Celery topped with grated cheese or peanut butter and raisins
- Finger sandwiches cut with cookie cutters into interesting shapes
- Vegetable sticks with dip—kids love dip! Try Bolthouse yogurt and kefir dressings.
- Cheese strings and cherry tomatoes
- Chocolate milk and arrowroot cookies
- Banana roll-up: Whole wheat tortillas spread with almond butter wrapped around a banana
- Fruit kebobs and yogurt dip
- Healthy oatmeal cookies and a glass of soymilk
- Healthy muffins made with nuts, mashed bananas or grated zucchini
- Apple slices spread with peanut butter and dipped in cheerios
- Applesauce or fruit cups or milk pudding (very portable!)
- Sliced turkey wrapped around a cheese stick
- Steamed broccoli with melted grated cheese
- Sandwich art. Make a scene on an open-face sandwich using cream cheese, grated carrots, cheese bits, broccoli for trees, bell pepper strips etc.
If you have older kids that are helping themselves to snacks after school, keep a list of healthy options on the fridge to help give them ideas.