How to Make a Healthy Snack for Kids

How to Make a Healthy Snack for Kids

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  1. It’s easy to make a healthy snack for kids.  The trick is to make it delicious, so they want to eat it.  They may be extremely prejudiced against something they perceive as a "fruit," or a "vegetable."  If their idea of a healthy snack is French fries from Macdonald’s because potatoes are a vegetable, you’ve got your work cut out for you.

    As a parent, you want them to eat whole grain bread, fruit snacks, and healthy, homemade recipes which will not add fat or excessive sugar and salt to their diet or to their bodies.   

    One thing you can do, and do it immediately, hopefully while they are still young, is not to have any of the unhealthy snack foods in the house.  It is also not a good idea to take your children with you when you go food shopping.  They quickly learn which aisles they want to visit, and which snack foods they want you to buy.  Should they request snacks that aren’t good for them, simply learn to say "We do not eat such things in our house."  If they ask why, give them the "healthy foods lecture."  This is something along the lines of: "That food will make you fat, and if you are fat you can’t move and play ball, and you have to go to the doctor and maybe even the hospital.  Fat people die young."  I don’t mind scaring kids into not craving things that aren’t good for them.  After all, you are not lying to them.  You just want to turn off the spigot that keeps saying, "Buy me this, buy me that," when they are requesting  things with too much fat, sugar and salt.

    Frozen Fruit Bars

    Instead, make healthy snack foods they will enjoy.  For example, you can make frozen fruit bars.  The molds for the bars are readily available in department stores in the kitchen accessories section.  Then just put strawberries, peaches, or bananas in the blender and fill the molds.  Freeze them, and when they are ready, just remove the top part of the mold, and voila!  an ice pop! 

    Homemade Granola

    Or you can make your own granola snacks.  Simply mix raisins, cranberries, dried fruit and nuts.  Fill little plastic bags with the snack in appropriate=size portions.  These make-ahead snacks are easy for children to grab and tempting too, especially if you tie the top of the bags with colorful ribbon to make them attractive and fun.  Snack sacks can be taken to school or carried to their rooms when the children have homework to do.  

    Peanut Butter, With or Without Jelly, on Whole Grain Bread

    Once in a while, you can prepare sandwiches of peanut butter and jelly on whole grain bread (NOT white bread).  Then cut them into small portions, either in quarters or on the diagonal.  Be careful not to hand out too many of these before meals, as they are very filling. 

    Broccoli, Spinach and Zucchini

    Children generally like cheese, and may be tempted to eat vegetables if they have a light coating of melted cheese.

    But remember:  Children learn by example.  So be sure you are setting the right example by eating healthy foods, in moderation.  And that includes snacks!  

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