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Oh, the never ending struggle…what to feed the kids in between meals?!
It’s always a fight between what they want to eat and what you want them to eat and often it ends with Pringles… (no judgement here!) I get it, life is busy enough to begin with, the last thing you want to have to think about is what to feed your kids for a snack every day.
That’s why as a nutritionist, who also happens to be a mommy, I wanted to share with you my top 10 go-to healthy snack ideas for kids. They are officially “Kid-Approved”, by my very own mini snack taste tester (aka my 7 year old boss), but also “Mom-Approved” and are better than feeding your kids stale Oreos for the third time this week!
Top 10 Easy and Healthy Snack Ideas for Kids
What are some fun, healthy snacks for kids? As a dedicated foodie and lover of all things food, I’ve tried tons of different snack options for kids that I thought would help my fellow moms, as well as myself, in the never ending snack battle. Through many trials and errors, these top 10 snacks take the cake…not literally, there will be no cake on this list (sorry!)
I love the idea of a high protein snack that also includes fruit, which is why yogurt popsicles are at the very top of my healthy snacks for kids list. They are super simple to make, and once you make a batch you can use them all week, which is amazing for meal planning.
And my very favorite thing about them is that the kids will go crazy for ‘em! Although they obviously thrive in the summertime, my daughter eats them year around and does NOT complain.
You can easily google a recipe for making them, but I can just tell you right now that this is one thing you really don’t need a recipe for. I think they are much better if you make them based off of your kids’ preferences and what you want to put into them because you only need 3 main ingredients and can substitute with whatever types you like.
Three Necessary Ingredients:
That’s it! I personally use Yoplait Vanilla Yogurt, fresh strawberries, and honey, because that’s what my mini-me seems to like the best, but you should definitely experiment with different variations because you want your kids to enjoy them.
Another super simple, healthy snack that I love to make for kids is apple chips. Apple chips are just sliced apples baked in the oven with a pinch of cinnamon… sounds delicious right? They are! Kids love them because they’re both sweet and crunchy.
Just like the yogurt popsicles, you don’t really need a recipe for these, either. Simply slice apples into thin strips, lightly coat with cinnamon (sugar as well if you prefer) and then bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes, and voila! You have yourself a super simple, and super healthy snack!
Crackers with Peanut Butter
If you’re looking for a really quick, on-the-go snack that doesn’t require any cooking or prep, I always suggest crackers with peanut butter. I like to get the Jif individual packets and then just toss a few Ritz Crackers in a Ziploc baggie for my daughter as an easy snack to bring it in the car. But if you’re just staying at home, you can even spread the peanut butter onto the crackers for your kids and let them help themselves.
I found this super yummy recipe online for oatmeal bars, and let me just tell you… they were a HIT. This recipe uses rolled oats but for a more simple approach to it, I just used instant oats and they still turned out great. I also found that my daughter likes when I put a few chocolate chips in them as well, so as usual, don’t be afraid to tweak this recipe to fit the needs and preferences of your children!
The full recipe can be found here.
This one is not for the picky eaters, but I had to share it because my family loves it and it couldn’t be a healthier snack option. Avocados are superfoods meaning they pack a lot of nutrients underneath that tough, green skin! When spread on a crunchy piece of whole grain toast and topped with an over easy egg, this healthy snack is very filling and will definitely keep your kids’ bellies full until dinner.
Full recipe can be found here.
Gluten-free version (just add the avo!) can be found here.
This one sort of seems like a no-brainer, but trail mix is an excellent healthy snack option for your kiddos. Particularly one that you put together yourself.
As you can already tell, I like to emphasize keeping things in tune with your individual child’s preferences so it’s obvious that creating your own trail mix is the best option here.
Try to use high protein foods like peanuts, pistachios, almonds and sunflower seeds and limit the amount of sweets you put in it to keep it super filling but also low in sugar.
Smoothies are a really fun and nutritious snack option for kids because you can add all kinds of different fruits and veggies in them without your kids even knowing!
There are tons of different smoothie recipes I could list here but my favorite is this Triple Berry Smoothie. I make this one all the time at home and it never disappoints!
Although there are many versions of this snack that can be deemed “unhealthy”, there is also a way to make popcorn a healthy snack option as well.
I like to buy plain popcorn without any butter or salt already on it and then add my own so that I can control how much is on it, but I know there are some pre-popped packaged popcorn that are low-sodium that could work, too.
Popcorn is nice because, like the crackers, it can easily be taken on the go and doesn’t require too much pre-planning or preparation.
Pizza bagels are exactly what they sound like; a bagel made into a mini pizza. YUM! This is great for kids because, well… What kid doesn’t like pizza?
They’re easy to make, too, because you can buy sauce in a resealable jar to save for future use, and mozzarella cheese and bagels can be bought pre-packaged as well.
Simply toast the bagel, spread some pizza sauce on it and then top with shredded mozzarella and pepperonis, if your child likes, and you have yourself a good, wholesome snack!
My final, and most simple snack suggestion is dried fruit. This doesn’t just mean raisins… dried cranberries, blueberries and even cherries are all really tasty dried fruits that will help keep your kids’ snack attacks under control!
If your kid doesn’t like raisins or any other dried fruits you’ve tried, look into some flavor infused raisins (yes this really is a thing!). SUN-MAID makes all kinds of different flavored raisins, although you may have to order them online, they are super fun and will likely keep your kids occupied trying to choose which flavor is their favorite! (You can find a variety pack on Amazon!)
So stop stressing over snack time and start WOWing your little ones with these delicious, easy, and healthy snack ideas for kids!