Getting kids to eat healthy, nutritious foods can be difficult, especially at snack time. While it may seem counter-intuitive, disguising fruits and vegetables as something unhealthy is often the only way to get kids to eat nutritiously. The key to getting kids to eat nutritious foods is to present them in “kid-friendly” ways. The following snacks focus on presenting fun, tasty foods that will encourage kids to try new things and turns snack time into play time:
Fruit and Cheese Kabobs
Make a fun arrangement of different fruits and cheeses on a skewer. This fun treat even offers a kid-friendly prep. Select a few different fruits – strawberries, blueberries, and grapes – and a couple of cheeses – Swiss and Colby jack to use. Wash and dry the fruits and use cookie cutters to make fun shapes of the cheese. Slide all of the snack bites onto a skewer, and kids have a fun healthy snack to enjoy.
Smoothies and Drinks
Smoothies are a great way to hide some good nutrition in a fun, refreshing package. Pair a few favorite fruits with a little bit of coconut or almond milk. Drop in a few ice cubes and even a handful of spinach, blend and enjoy. Kids will never know how good this treat is for them; they’ll just love the great taste. If you want to get the kids involved, they can help you with making some home-made juice—after all, kids love to pulverize things until the juice comes out. Have them help you make fresh-squeezed orange juice, or use an apple grinder to make your own apple juice or cider.
Another treat that kids can help make, yogurt parfaits combine rich, nutritious yogurt with fresh fruit for a unique snacking experience. Children can choose their favorite fruits – berries work especially well – and layer them between yogurt for a delectable snack. Topped with granola or even nuts, parfaits also offer a healthy carbohydrate or fat source too. Add all of these ingredients into a small plastic container, and you have a perfect on-the-go snack for the park or playgroup.
Most kids jump at the chance to have “pizza.” This is an easy and healthy snack using whole grain English muffins. Topped with a sugar free pizza or pasta sauce, low-fat cheese and any variety of veggies and popped in the oven until warm, this snack is a winner for kids of all ages. Set out the ingredients and tell the kids they have to choose at least two veggies to put on their pizza. This helps you sneak the veggies in there while letting the kids choose which ones they would like to have on their own personal pizza.
Ants on a Log
An old classic, ants on a log features celery, peanut butter, and raisins. Celery is cut into 3 or 4 inch chunks slathered with natural peanut butter and dotted with raisins. A little cinnamon can be sprinkled on as a dirt and to add extra flavor. This is a great snack for the kids to put together themselves, and their more likely to eat something that they had a hand in making.
Getting kids to eat fruits and vegetables can be difficult, but when it is made into somewhat of a game, everyone is happier. These fast, easy snacks can be made any time of the day and are great ways to get kids used to eating fruits and vegetables. You might have to sneak nutritious foods into your kids’ diet for a while, but once they get used to eating fruits and vegetables, they will start to make healthy choices as they get older.
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