Children, especially young ones, often need snacks in order to satiate real hunger between meals. Kids shouldn’t be able to grab for just anything though, because some snacks are more nutritious than others. In fact, certain snacks provide empty calories that won’t give your child the energy he or she needs to get through the day. The best snacks have a combination of fiber, protein and complex carbohydrates. Below are 20 healthy snacks that kids love. Try out a few to see which your child likes, or mix and match for variety.
- Homemade trail mix with raisins, cranberries and nuts
- Whole-grain crackers, mango slices and string cheese
- Whole-wheat pretzels and peanut butter, sunflower seed butter or almond butter
- A bowl of edamame
- Whole-grain cereal with low-fat milk
- Low-fat Greek yogurt
- Smoothie with low-fat milk, vanilla low-fat yogurt, frozen or fresh pitted cherries, and dark chocolate chips
- Vegetables with low-fat ranch dressing and one hard-boiled egg
- Low-fat microwave popcorn with Parmesan cheese
- Low-fat frozen yogurt or ice cream topped with fresh fruit
- Whole-wheat pita chips and hummus
- Slice of pizza
- Half a sandwich and 100 percent orange juice
- Mini bagel with low-fat cream cheese and jam
- Pistachios in the shell with a glass of chocolate milk
- Hard-boiled egg and a whole-grain roll
- Oatmeal with cocoa powder and raspberries or strawberries
- Whole-wheat pretzels and a snack size box of low-fat milk
- Baked snack chips or broken up toasted whole wheat pita bread, and guacamole or low-fat bean dip
- Celery with peanut butter and raisins in the center
Snacks don’t have to be exceptionally complicated to be healthy. The next time you find yourself reaching for something easy, see what you can do to add to the snack’s nutritional value in just a few small steps. These steps give children energy without crashing soon after, as the snacks will keep them going longer. In fact, you may want to make some of these go-to treats for yourself as well!
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