Sunday, March 1, 2015

Healthy Kids Snacks

Who doesn’t love to snack?  Many people think snacks are bad for your health but they don’t have to be.  And for kids snacks are needed as they have small stomachs and really need to fortify themselves between meals.  A website called Zesterdaily has some good ideas for kids’ snack that are not only healthy but ones they can help make.  
      1.   GORP doesn’t sound appetizing but what kid wouldn’t want to make some GORP?  It seems to stand for “Good Old Raisins and Peanuts”.   Or you can say it is kids’ trail mix.   Easy to make and easy to take along on a car trip or hiking.
      a.       Basic recipe:
            ·   ½ cups roasted, lightly salted peanuts or whole almonds (or nuts you like best)
             ·   ½ cup raisins
             ·   ¼ cup dried cranberries or chopped dried apricots (or dried fruit your kid likes best)
              ·   ¼ cup Corn Chex, Rice Chex, Wheat Chex
              ·   ¼ cup toast green pumpkin seeds (also called pepitas)
2.  Hummus and veggies  
            a.       Hummus + cut up carrots (carrot chips work great), celery, zucchini, cucumbers
      3.   Make your own Parfait – a fancy parfait glass makes it extra special.  A great after school snack.
                a.       Layer yogurt, fruit (their favorite), granola    
       4.  Granola bars – a do it yourself granola bar.  Great to pack in a lunch, take to after school sports practice, pack for a picnic.  Kids will love to help mash the mixture into the pan.  Good idea to cover the mixture with wax paper and then let them mash it flat.  Let your kids help choose the ingredients they prefer.  Allergic to nuts?  Then choose sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, or sunflower seeds.
       ·         ½ cup lightly roasted nuts (almonds, walnuts, pecans or a combination).  To toast, put
            on baking sheet, in a 350 degree oven for about 5 minutes. 
      ·         ¾ cup dried fruit – one or a combination of raisins, currants, dried cranberries, chopped
                  dates,  prunes, dried apricots, or/or dried peaches)
       ·         ¾ cup quick-cooking oats
      ·         ¾  cup crispy rice cereal
      ·         2 T.  unsweetened coconut (optional)
      ·         ½ cup almond or peanut butter
      ·         ¼ cup honey
      ·         ½ tsp vanilla extract
      ·         See the mixing directions at:  Granola - Energy Bars
       5.    Fruit Kabobs what  fun way to get kids to enjoy fruit.  Let them choose the fruit they want to put on their kabob stick, and then let them help prepare the fruit.  They can peel and slice the bananas, wash the grapes, wash and cut up strawberry halves, cut up peaches, apple slices and other fruit. 

Kids that help prepare a snack will be more likely to eat the snack. 

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