Sometimes it is so easy to just grab some fruit snacks (which are basically pure refined sugar), or some candy, even granola bars for a snack. For quite sometime, I would take an easy route and give my kids gold fish, candy, fruit snacks for an afternoon snack --- my husband kindly told me that they were really not healthy choices. I agree. I desire to give my kids healthy snacks, but also wanted it to be easy and readily accessible for them.
So, I really thought through some ideas to create easy healthy snacks for myself and my family.
Pre-cut, wash your fruits and veggies!
Fresh fruits: We have a basket on the counter that my kids are welcome to grab at: oranges, apples, bananas, etc. I also like to have already washed grapes cut and ready to eat in the fridge. Chunks of fruit like pineapple and melons already cut and prepared --placed in a container in the fridge.
Fresh Veggies: Cut up them up ahead. Slice cucumbers, celery washed and cut, baby carrots, sugar snap peas.
What goes better with these fresh fruit and veggies??
My kids LOVE to eat anything with dip! There are a lot of things that make a good dip already prepared:
Peanut/ Almond/ Cashew Butter
OR you can make up some dips ahead time too. Here are a few recipes:
Basic Cream Cheese Fruit Dip1 8-ounce package cream cheese,softened
3 tablespoons sugar or Agave Nectar
1 cup sour cream or Mascarpone
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Combine all ingredients and beat until smooth and creamy.
Almond Fruit Dip:
Add 3 tablespoons finely chopped almonds and 1 1/2 teaspoons almond liqueur to the basic recipe. Garnish with 1 tablespoon finely chopped almonds, if desired.
Raspberry Fruit Dip:Puree 1 cup sweetened raspberries (aprox. 1 10-ounce package). Spoon half the basic recipe into a serving dish and smooth. Top with half the raspberry puree and smooth. Repeat.
Lemon Fruit Dip:Add zest of 1 lemon, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and 1 extra tablespoon sugar to the basic cream cheese fruit dip recipe.
Marshmallow Fruit Dip:
Add 1/2 cup marshmallow creme to the basic recipe.
All recipes: Chill and serve with assorted fruit dippers such as bananas, grapes, kiwi, apple, pineapple, strawberries, raspberries, and papaya, cut into bite-size pieces, if necessary. Bagel bites are good, too. Makes 2 to 3 cups.Honey-Yogurt Dip
- 2 cups vanilla yogurt
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 C. softened cream cheese (4 oz., or half a block)
1/2 C. sour cream
1/2 C. sugar
1/2 C. sweetened shredded coconut
Combine all ingredients well.Veggie Dip
1 8oz container of Greek style yogurt (1 cup)
2 tablespoons grated onion (sweet preferred)
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoon fresh chopped mint
2 teaspoons of honey
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
In a medium bowl, stir all ingredients together and serve immediately or chill in refridgerater.
A FEW MORE SNACK TIPS:
Some other healthy "grab" snacks are healthy homemade muffins, or bagels or I like to make a pre-made dry snack-mix -- it is less expensive to make than to buy the already made chex mix! AND...it is more healthy too! You can moderate what you put into it!
SNACK MIX RECIPE
What you will need:
1 large bowl
1 container to hold mix
Choice of snack mix favorites:
Seeds: Sunflower, Pumpkin,
Dried Fruits: Cranberries, Apricots, Raisins
Choc. Chips, Butterscotch chips
Nuts: Cashews, Almonds, Peanuts, etc.
I choose from the list of my snack mix favorites and place them in a big bowl. I will mix them up and add them to the container to store for easy snackin'. You can sometimes add spices to create different flavored themed snack mixes.