Or maybe they are hitting an after-school program, and you know they will be scrounging in their bags for something delicious to eat. It can be tempting for busy moms and dads to pack packaged and processed snacks. Easy-to-grab snacks don’t need any prep or take much thought. But, all that sugar, added salt, preservatives, GMOs and lack of good stuff means they don’t make the grade for nourishing young bodies and brains for learning.
For healthier packaged snacks, read your labels. Look for products with sugar alternatives and made from more nourishing ancient grains like these amazing quinoa bars from Wise Bites, a Canadian maker of allergy-free snacks perfect for kids. Every bite counts and after school is an opportune time to get the healthy stuff in.
Here are 10 great after-school snack ideas that really are nourishing:
1. Apple slices and pumpkin seed or almond butter;
2. Organic rice cakes spread with hummus or another fave bean dip;
3. Carrot sticks and cucumber with homemade yogurt dressing (mix 1 part mayonnaise with 2 parts greek yogurt, garlic and dill seasoning);
4. Homemade granola bars like Sprout Right’s Go Faster Granola Bars;
5. Lettuce wraps with diced egg, carrot and cucumber with homemade yogurt dressing;
6. Yummy kale chips – kids will love the crunch. Wash and thoroughly dry kale leaves. Remove the leaf from the stem and place on an oiled cookie sheet. Massage olive oil into the kale and sprinkle with salt. Place in a 325 degree oven until crispy (watch them so they don’t burn!);
7. Dried apple slices, or other favourite fruit slices with nuts and seeds;
8. Assortment of fresh cut fruit, with greek yogurt mixed with honey as a yummy dip;
9. Sprouted grain wrap with salsa and grated cheese;
10. Yogurt-covered frozen blueberries – dip blueberries in plain greek yogurt and freeze on a cookie sheet in the freezer. Once frozen, store in a bag in the freezer until ready to eat!
The key to a good snack is to offer some protein to keep blood sugars stable. A focus on fruits and vegetables will fill grumbly bellies with nutrient-rich food. Serve them first before any requests are taken for the not-so healthy stuff.
What’s your kids fave after-school snack?
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Guest post by Lianne Phillipson-Webb, founder of Sprout Right.