Kids need snacks. These little “mini meals” in between meals (eating opportunities should be spaced out every 2-3 hours) help to fill nutritional gaps and provide energy between meals. Should snacking be an all-day grazing event?
NO. Should balanced snacks be offered between meals? Probably.
But what does a balanced snack look like? Well, I think of snacks sort of like little “mini meals” containing 2-3 different foods. It’s important to include a protein-rich food so that tummies can be satisfied for a good amount of time, and carbohydrate for energy and to help kids concentrate and focus.
So I suggest pairing a protein rich food with a fruit or vegetable AND/OR a whole grain or starch.
Here are some examples:
- Protein-rich blender muffin + blueberries
- Homemade trail mix (nuts/seeds, unsweetened dried fruit, whole grain cereal)
- Protein-rich granola bar + strawberries
- Hardboiled egg + peach
- Roasted chickpeas + crackers and cheese
- Cheese strings and length-wise cute grapes
- Watermelon “fingers” + proteins ball/bite
- Nut butter and banana tortilla wrap “sushi”
- Nectarine with yogurt dip
- Leftover pancake strips with cream cheese + hemp hearts
- Raw veggies, whole grain crackers and hummus
- Whole grain mini pitas + seed butter + jam
- Apple slices with cinnamon sprinkled on top of cheese cubes
- Leftover French toast or waffle strips with dip (greek yogurt + seed butter + honey)
- Apple + nut or seed butter
- Energy/protein balls + honeydew melon
- Mini Greek yogurt parfait
- *Chia pudding + pineapple
- Cottage Cheese + Cantaloupe
- Cucumber + tzatziki + wholegrain cookie
I hope you enjoy!