Snacks for kids are as important as meals. On average, kids snack three times per day. Currently, most of these snacks are junk food such as chips, pop, chocolate and candy. Indeed, the increase in snacking between 1977 and 2006 added 168 calories per day to kids’ diets. It explains much of the soaring childhood obesity rate. Roughly 17 percent or 12 million American children are considered overweight. The solution to each of these problems is healthy snacks for kids. These will help your child stay fit and healthy, and shape their eating habits and good health for the rest of their lives.
Choosing healthy snacks for kids can be tricky. There are many readymade snacks that can be bought in stores. However, homemade snacks for their kids will ensure that the snack will be fresh, healthy, nutritious, and artificial ingredient and preservative free. While some parents feel put off by the time it takes to make healthy snacks, in reality there are many homemade snacks that parents can easily prepare. Two options are home-made granola mix or fruit slices. It only takes a little creativity to make simple healthy foods that can be turned into a delicious looking snack that kids will like. The best part about making homemade healthy snacks for kids is that the kid can help, making it a fun and creative family activity.
- Cheese – Cheese is a great snack for kids. It is rich in calcium, and it can provide kid’s energy, which will last until their next meal. To make the cheese snack more interesting, try cutting the cheese into different sizes and shapes. It could also be mixed with other things such as fruits to make it more interesting. Cheese and fruits can be mixed together and made into a delicious looking kabob.
- Homemade cupcakes and muffins – This is a good idea to make kids something that they do not normally like. Baking cupcakes or muffins mixed with vegetables or fruits is a creative idea to sneak some essential nutrients into your kid’s diet. An example would be baking a carrot cupcake or a banana cupcake The kids wouldn’t know that they are eating vegetables or fruits this way.
- Peanut butter – Kids usually love the taste of peanut butter. A simple and low cost snack is a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on whole grain bread. However, there are other ways that parents can make this simple favorite more exciting. Try adding some fresh fruit bits into the sandwich. Another great peanut butter treat are frozen peanut butter and jelly popsicles. They are easy. Get some popsicle molds and put alternating layers of peanut butter, and jelly then freeze them. Fun and tasty!
- Yogurt – Yogurt is a healthy snack for kids that can be prepared in different ways. It can be flavored with different fruits or mixed with nuts and other ingredients to make it different every time. It could also be served as a frozen snack the kids will love. Yogurt is rich in calcium which helps build strong, healthy bones.
- Snack Mix – Kids will love to eat snack mixes because they contain different things. Pretzels, nuts, cereals, seeds, popcorn, raisins and other dried fruits are all healthy options for a homemade snack mix for kids.
- Fruits – There are many nutritious fruits that can be served as is. Or they can be turned into unsweetened jams. Or combined with milk and yogurt to make smoothies. Kids usually love fruits but you can also make them more fun by cutting them into funny shapes. Another easy fruit snack to prepare is frozen grapes.
- Tiny Sandwiches – Nice things always come in small packages, right? Tiny sandwiches can also be made by cutting them into special shapes with a biscuit tin. Ham and cheese, chicken, tuna spread, the options are endless. Tiny sandwiches are great with a glass of milk or fruit juice.
- Raisins – Kids love raisins. They are easy to bite, chew, or even play with while being eaten. And for parents, raisins are good because they are rich in fiber and antioxidants.
- Granola bars – If you don’t have time to make a snack, granola bars are full of grains and fiber. However, some granola bars are healthier than others. Look for low sugar granola bars and avoid ones with ingredients like chocolate and marshmallows.
How to Make Low-Sugar Granola Bars
The growth of kids snacking on unhealthy foods such as chips, sodas, candies and chocolates is a leading cause of the soaring childhood obesity rate. Roughly 17 percent or 12 million American children are considered overweight. Luckily, the solution — healthy snacks for kids – are fun, simple and easy to prepare. Healthy snacks for kids don’t just help provide your child with good nutrition they shape their healthy eating habits and diet for the rest of their lives.