Tasty, Yet Healthy Treats For Kids Aren’t Impossible!
Summer isn’t over yet. It’s warm and sunny in Denver (and throughout Colorado), and kids and adults still have plenty of time and sunshine to play outside. Whether you’re taking your kids to the pool, going for a hike, or just hanging out at home, it’s important to have healthy snacks around so that your kids stay energized. As pediatricians, we get asked all the time about healthy foods and snacks for little ones; after all, good diet is an important part of health care. Here’s a list of exciting, nutritious snack options you can either stock up on or make at home that your little ones are sure to enjoy!
Do your kids love snow cones? Try this healthy alternative that contains no added sugar. For this fun treat, chop up a watermelon, blend the pieces until smooth, pour the mix into a shallow container, place it in the freezer, and gently scrape the top layer of watermelon with a spoon every two hours until six hours have passed. Add some lime juice into the mix for extra flavor!
Let your kids enjoy yogurt without the mess! Stonyfield Organic’s Yogurt Tubes come in a variety of flavors, including cherry, strawberry and banana, and they are packed with protein and calcium. For an even cooler treat, you can make frozen yogurt tubes by simply putting a box in the freezer.
You don’t even need an ice cream maker for this easy recipe! All you need are frozen bananas, cocoa powder, almond milk and peanut or almond butter. This tasty dessert is vegan, dairy free, and gluten free! For a little extra fun, you can sprinkle chocolate chips over the top when serving.
Let your kids keep “zipping and zooming along” with the energy they need by feeding them CLIF Kid Z Bars this summer. These wholegrain snacks are especially great for when you’re on the go. CLIF Kid Z Bars are loaded with carbohydrates, fiber, protein and healthy fats.
Peel open a layer of red wax to reveal fresh, cheesy goodness. Mini Babybel Cheese is the perfect sized snack for any time of day. You can even go a step further by following one of the snack ideas from Babybel’s website, like their Creepy Cheesy Crawlers Snack, which incorporates veggies, raisins and pretzels.
If you’re looking for a delicious and nutritious granola brand that is safe from the top 8 food allergens, 88 Acres is for you! As said on their website, “All staff are extensively trained in cross-contamination protocols. Additionally, our bakery uses non-latex gloves to protect those with sensitivities to latex.” Enjoy flavors like cinnamon maple, double dark chocolate, triple berry crumble and more!
Annie’s Organic Bunny Fruit Snacks are the most adorable vegan and gluten free gummies. These bunny-shaped fruit snacks come in strawberry, cherry and raspberry flavors. Alongside traditional fruit and vegetables, the inclusion of Annie’s Organic Bunny Fruit Snacks makes for a healthy diet.
Packed with 13 grams of protein, Olli Samueria is a healthy alternative to the Lunchables that kids all love. Each pack contains a type of meat, cheese and crackers. All of these portable snack packs are made with 100% vegetarian-fed pork raised without antibiotics! Some varieties include pepperoni, genoa salami or prosciutto.
Most of us are familiar with the snack “ants on a log.” Traditionally, this snack consists of peanut butter spread across a stick of celery and topped with raisins, but I’m here to tell you that there are plenty of other versions that your family can try at home too! One way you can change it up is by using carrots, hummus and cherry tomatoes. The possibilities are endless!
Add some extra color into your child’s day by making rainbow fruit kabobs! Your kids will love helping you find fruits to complete the rainbow and will surely love eating it all in the end too. Rainbow Fruit Kabobs provide your kids with the essential vitamins and minerals they need in an engaging way.
If you’re looking for a lighter snack for your kids, Angie’s BOOMCHICKAPOP is the perfect option. Available in snack-sized bags, this popcorn contains at least 12 grams of whole grain per serving in addition to being vegan and gluten free.
Mini cucumber sandwiches are a great poolside treat! These sandwiches are easy to make, only requiring cucumber slices, bread and cream cheese of your choice. This snack is a great way to incorporate more vegetables into your child’s diet.
For when kids are looking for a salty snack, Sunchips are great to have on hand. These chips are 100% whole grain and packed with flavor. My personal favorite is Sunchips Harvest Cheddar. Other flavors they make are Garden Salsa, Chili Lime and French Onion … and you can never go wrong with their Original!
On a hot summer day, a smoothie can really hit the spot. For pickier eaters, it’s recommended to steam the veggies first for a smoother texture. You can also add a little honey or maple syrup to naturally sweeten it up.
Another fun thing you can do with your kids this summer is make your own trail mix together! Not only is making this snack a great activity in itself, but homemade trail mix is also cost effective in comparison to the premade mixes you can find at the store. After making a batch with your little ones, you can separate the mix into small bags or containers to make it easy to grab and go!
As integrative pediatricians/holistic pediatricians, we take a holistic approach to your child’s health in the Mile High City. No pediatric care plan would be complete without good, healthy snacks! Of course, no kid wants to eat foods that taste bad (who does?), but these tasty morsels should help sell your kids on the idea. And since we spend a lot of time outdoors in the Rocky Mountains, City Park, Cherry Creek, Colorado Springs or Downtown Denver, snacks that travel well are always ideal. The Denver metro area has tons of food stores (especially health food stores), so there’s no lack of availability here. The United States may have a healthy food problem, but your family doesn’t need to! As always, please get in touch with us with any questions about your child’s diet. Happy Summer!
Thanks to newyorkfamily.com for these great suggestions!