Fun Back-to-School Snacks
It’s time for the kids to go back to school! Help them make the most of this school-year by boosting their brain power with healthy snacks. Research shows that food affects your brain power, so make sure you give your kids nutrient-rich snacks for recess and after-school snacks. As much as possible, choose snacks that have a low glycemic index to keep them from crashing later on and help them power through afternoon classes and homework.
Here are some easy school snacks you can pack in their lunchboxes:
- Apple “cookies.” No time to bake cookies from scratch? These are a quick alternative without all the refined sugar. Slice apples into rounds and squeeze lemon on the flesh to keep it from browning. Spread peanut butter (or any nut butter) on one side then top with chocolate chips. Instant crispy cookies!
- Flourless banana muffins. In a blender, mix 2 bananas, 1 egg, ¾ cup rolled oats, 2 tablespoons flaxseed meal, ¼ cup almond butter, 2 tablespoons honey, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, ½ teaspoon baking soda, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon until smooth. Pour into greased muffin pans and bake in a preheated oven at 375F about 10 minutes.
- Homemade trail mix. The best part about homemade trail mix is that you control what goes into it, so you can make sure you only put in stuff that your children will actually eat. The possibilities are endless: cereal (preferably whole-grain), nuts, dried fruit (like raisings, apricots, or cranberries), candy-coated chocolate… The trick is mixing mostly wholesome ingredients with a sweet treat or two and combining textures and flavors for an addictive sweet-salty snack.
- In a bowl, mix together 1 cup of rolled oats, about a tablespoon of oil (preferably coconut), 1 ½ tablespoons of maple syrup or honey, ¼ cup nuts, ¼ cup dried fruit, ¼ teaspoon of vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt. (You can add other ingredients like seeds and chocolate chips.) Spread evenly on a baking sheet and bake in preheated oven at 300F for 10 minutes.
- Ready-to-eat snacks with wholesome ingredients. No time to prep? Ditch the chips coated in fluorescent orange powder and sugar-packed cookies and instead reach for healthier alternatives. A few to try: Bitsy's Crackers, My Super Cookies, Snackimals, and Envirokidz (all available at Healthy Options).
You can have these treats waiting for them at home as an after-school snack to power them up for homework time:
- Chia pudding. This coco-papaya chia pudding has a delicious tropical flavor and takes 5 minutes to make (outside of chilling time): Mix 1 teaspoon chia seeds and 1 cup coconut milk. Top with diced papaya and a sprinkling of brown sugar. Chill for a few hours. You can prep this in the morning or the night before. Try other fun flavors like chocolate or mango—whatever your kids enjoy!
- Green smoothie. A sneaky way to up their vegetable intake: Mix them into a smoothie! Try spinach mixed with frozen avocado, bananas, pineapples, and milk.
- Banana and peanut butter “ice cream.” Try this recipe from the BBC [https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/healthy-banana-peanut-butter-ice-cream]: In a blender, mix 4 ripe frozen bananas and 2 tablespoons almond milk until smooth. Add 1 tablespoon organic peanut butter and 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (or to taste), then blend again. Transfer to freezer-proof container and freeze for one hour. Remove from freezer and top with grated dark chocolate and almond flakes, if desired.
- Healthy fruit salad. No condensed milk or heavy cream in this one. Mix sliced watermelon, bananas, kiwi, and mangoes (or any other fruit your children like) with Greek yogurt and a bit of honey.
- Sweet potato fries. You can slice them and deep fry them like regular potatoes, or bake them for a healthier version. Toss them in oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and paprika, spread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (make sure not to overcrowd them), and bake in a preheated oven at 425 degrees for about 20 minutes, turning occasionally. If your kids like chips more than fries, consider giving them taro chips.
Not only will these snacks for kids make them happy, fueled, and full but they’ll also make you rest easy knowing that they’re eating something healthy. You might just want to pack some in your own lunchbox!
Product You Might Be Interested In
Organic Valley Chocolate Good to Go 1% Milk
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Apple and Eve 100% Apple Juice
Apple & Eve 100% Apple Juice delivers a delicious blend of tart and sweet apples. No sugar added and no artificial flavors or colors!
R.W. Knudsen Sensible Sippers
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Barbara's Snackimals Cookies
Snackimals are USDA organic, made with the highest quality ingredients, keep all the nostalgia of your favorite animal cookies without the artificial flavors, colors, preservatives or trans fats. It comes in oatmeal, chocolate chip and vanilla.
My Super Cookie (Honey)
Cookies that are both delicious and healthy! My Super Cookies are made with coconut oil and chia seeds. The best part is that it's USDA Organic - 100% nut free and diary free, containing 16 grams of whole grains.