After School Snacks
Do your kids thunder through the door after school or after a play at the park looking for snacks right now!
Snacks, especially for young kids, are often far more appealing than full meals because of their size and sometimes because of their ingredients.
While the focus in our society is on three meals a day, that may not suit your child. Whether because of appetite at a given time of day, schedules or because of intimidation by large amounts of food (which is common, especially with the younger set), frequent snacks may be your best bet to supply the daily nutritional needs. Homemade is more budget-friendly and nutritious too.
Drinking your food is just so much faster for some busy kids. There are loads of smoothie recipes online, but a good standard is to add about a cup of frozen fruit, a handful of fresh fruit, about a quarter cup of yogurt and about a cup of milk (adjust for consistency). Yum!
Popcorn (the chip’s sneaky, nutritious cousin) is actually a healthy snack and counts as a serving of grains, according to the Canada Food Guide.
Kettle or air-popped is best, but there are nutritious, low-sodium, low-fat microwave options out there too. To keep the health quotient up, avoid slathering it with butter. Put melted butter in a spritzer and mist the popcorn to give it a little flavour.
Sliced Fruit with Vanilla Yogurt
Kids and their dips. Ask any pint-sized diner, what is more fun? An apple slice, or an apple slice you can dip? Plan vanilla yogurt is healthy, and gives a little extra flavour (not to mention protein). For a little variety, put a few splashes of orange juice and some grated orange rind in the yogurt.
Ask any athlete. The go-to post exercise drink right now is chocolate milk. Stacked with protein, vitamins, a little sugar and necessary hydration, chocolate milk has become a snack with a purpose.
Greek Yogurt Bars
Greek yogurt is a good choice, because it is higher in protein than regular yogurt. Fill up a popsicle tray with yogurt and berries (or whatever fruit you fancy). Freeze and take out of the freezer for a fun, fruity snack.
For young kids, use an ice cube tray and toothpicks for the same snack, but smaller!
Sweet Potato Fries
Sweet potatoes pack a nutritional punch to take note of. Cut sweet potatoes in wedges. You can either have them plain, drizzled with a little olive oil, or experiment with some spices (I like tossing them in balsamic vinegar and adding a touch of garlic and onion salt). Bake for about 20 mins and you have a hot, tasty treat.
Who doesn’t love cheesecake?
Make a mini (and more healthy) variety, by taking graham crackers and slathering them with cream cheese. Add a dollop of strawberry or raspberry jam.