After School Snacks Parents Can Enjoy Too

October 05, 2015

Shop for snacks that are right for the whole family.

School is in full swing and SupermarketGuru wants to remind parents of the importance of healthy after school snacks. Hey! They are important for parents too! We all want to set a good example for the younger eaters out there, so that they grow up with healthy eating habits and a good relationship with food, especially fruits and vegetables.

Make it as easy as possible for your children, at any age, to make the right choices for snacks. When you make snacks you like to eat, your children will capture your enthusiasm as they mimic your eating habits. Here are some easy tips that will have you and your family on your way to health even faster than you could open up a bag of chips!

Fresh fruit. Just peel a banana and enjoy! Munch an apple or sink your teeth into a juicy pear or peach. There's always something from the fruit world in season. Frozen berries and other fruits taste great defrosted and mixed in with a scoop of ricotta cheese or plain yogurt. Make sure to shop for what’s in season, it’s more delicious, nutritious, and your body will thank you.

Try low-fat cottage cheese sprinkled with your favorite savory seasonings like chili pepper, or Italian spices, or serve with pineapple, chopped pears or apples, or a small handful of green or red grapes. Other good dairy choices are 4 ounces of plain yogurt, one to two ounces of cheddar cheese with apples or whole grain crackers or a thick slice of mozzarella with fresh tomato.

Some other great snacks include a small bottle of kefir or mozzarella string cheese. Teenagers can enjoy fruit smoothies made with milk, or plain yogurt, with or without a dollop of protein powder. Recipes for smoothies are as plentiful as fruit itself; just use fresh fruit, unsweetened dairy products, and whip it up, no extra sugar needed!

The blender is also a great tool for freshly made vegetable soups. Use it for blending leftover veggies or use fresh ones with water or add a little vegetable or chicken stock, blend, heat and serve as a pureed soup or hot drink.

Veggies aren't just for grownups. Cut up stalks of celery, buy some baby peeled carrots, slice some colorful bell peppers and tell the kids to dive in. Lightly blanched cauliflower or broccoli florets are also delicious for snacking. Hummus makes a great dip and comes in many varieties.

Peanut, almond, sunflower and other nut butters aren’t just for sandwiches. Slather sliced apples, or fill celery stalks, or add it to delicious whole grain crackers. Nut butters are excellent sources of protein, healthy fats, minerals, and vitamins. Shopping tip: Look for nut butters with simple ingredients, i.e.: nuts. Avoid jarred nut butters with added oils, sweeteners like fructose or corn syrups.

Happy snacking for the entire family!