For most families, summer is a really busy time of year. We are running from work to summer camps to the pool and everything in between. If your kids are anything like mine, things fall apart quickly when we forget about snack time! Nobody wants a hangry child to deal with! In addition to warding off cranky moods, snacks play an important part in our diets. Children should be eating every 2-3 hours. They have smaller stomachs and can’t eat as much at one sitting. Snacks are also a great opportunity to sneak in an extra serving of fruits and veggies or low fat dairy. When making snacks, try to always include food from at least two different food groups. It is also a good idea to include protein in your snack – it will keep you feeling full longer. So before your next outing, grab one of these snacks to eat on the go!
- Whole pieces of fruit: apples, bananas, peaches, pears
- Unsalted nuts
- Dried fruit
- Whole grain crackers
- Peanut butter
- Plain popcorn
- Low-fat mozzarella sticks (if you eat them right away or have a cooler)
- Fruit pouches
- Cut up veggies: carrot sticks, celery, whole cherry tomatoes
- Whole grain pita chips
- Low fat yogurt pouches (if you eat them right away or have a cooler)
- Whole grain muffins
*Of note, some of the above are not age appropriate for young eaters. Toddlers should not be eating nuts, popcorn, hard uncooked veggies or round foods like whole grapes and whole cherry tomatoes because these are choking hazards. You can cut tomatoes and grapes in half or in fourths to make them safer to chew.