No mom wants to see her kids wound up tight on sugar and junk food from their afternoon snacks. Every mom wants her kids to eat healthy. To a kid, though, healthy equals yucky. Therefore, Moms must be sneaky in order to slide healthy foods by an alert kid.
There are dozens of healthy after school snacks moms can make, though. They taste good in addition to looking good, which is the first thing a kid notices. Don’t even mention the word “healthy.” The kids will just eat them up, making moms feel a lot better.
You can use any combination of dried fruits and nuts that your kids will eat. You’ll need:
- Wax paper
- Dried fruits and nuts of your choice (for this recipe, we’ll go with dried pitted dates, dried cherries, and pecans)
- Tablespoon of water if needed to make a paste
Pulse fruits and nuts in food processor until a paste is made. Place on wax paper by spoonsful to form bar shape or roll into balls. Separate each bar on wax paper. Drizzle chocolate or other taste treat over top of bars. Store in tightly sealed container either in pantry or fridge. They’ll keep for about two weeks.
No Bake Energy Bars
- Parchment paper or plastic wrap
- 1 ½ cups rolled oats
- 10 pitted dates, soaked overnight to soften and then processed
- 1 cup peanut butter
- 1 cup raw almonds
- 1 cup peanuts
- ¼ cup maple syrup or honey
- ½ cup mini chocolate chips
Process nuts until they’re the right size. Process dates to make a paste. Bake oats and nuts at 350 degrees for ten minutes. In a medium sauce pan, cook peanut butter and maple syrup or honey until smooth. Pour over oats and nuts and stir until well blended. Pour onto baking sheet lined with parchment paper or plastic wrap. Place in freezer to set, two to three hours. Cut into bars. Store in tightly sealed container. They’ll keep in the pantry or fridge for about three weeks.
Here’s a healthy dip the kids will love to get their tortilla chips or pretzels into.
- 4 oz. Neufchatel cream cheese
- 1 ½ cup non-fat Greek yogurt
- Refried beans, fat free and vegetarian
- 2 cups shredded cheddar
- Taco seasoning
- 4 to 5 small Roma tomatoes, finely diced
- ½ red onion, finely diced
- chopped bunch of cilantro
Mix well the taco seasoning into yogurt and cream cheese. Place refried beans into baking dish. Place on top the cream cheese mixture. On top of that place the cheese. Bake at 350 degrees until cheese is melted. Top with tomatoes, cilantro and onion and serve.
- Three apples, sliced
- Three carrots, julienned into strips
- Two yellow squash, julienned into strips
- Two pears, sliced
- Block cheese, sliced
For the dip:
- ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
Blend well the cream and maple syrup. Add the yogurt and vanilla and blend well. Serve. Store in tightly lidded container in fridge. It will last about three days.
Popcorn Chocolate Trail Mix
- 4 cups popped popcorn
- ½ cup chocolate pieces or chips
- ½ cup cashews
- ½ cup pecans
- ½ cup sunflower seeds
- 1 cup dried fruit of your choice (you can use raisins, dried cherries, dried strawberries, dried pineapple, etc.)
- ¼ cup M&Ms
The M&Ms won’t add that much sugar, and it gives the mix some color. The chocolate pieces you can break off of sugar-free candy bars. Use your favorite nuts and fruits. The kids won’t notice it’s healthy.
Make Your Own Nutella
The kids can have this with whole-wheat crackers or toast, apple slices, or on a peanut or other nut butter sandwich.
- Can of mixed nuts
- Dark chocolate bar
Place nuts in food processor. Process until a paste is formed. Break up chocolate bar in pieces and add to food processor. Process until smooth and creamy. Place in tightly lidded container at room temperature. It will thicken in a day or so. Store in the fridge for a week.
Quick Ice Cream Sandwiches
The kids want something cold in the last few hot June days of school. We offer this handy snack they can make themselves.
- Graham crackers
- Ice cream
All the kids have to do (or you, if you’re home) is scoop the ice cream onto the graham crackers. Try chocolate graham crackers, graham crackers with your homemade Nutella on one side and ice cream on the other, or place sliced bananas or strawberries on one side and ice cream on the other. The possibilities are endlessly delicious.