From the long days back at school to the music and sports practices starting immediately after, fall can be jam-packed without any time to stop and eat.
You’ve been there — busy, energy deficient, impatient — and it’s essentially a recipe for a disaster.
But instead of reaching for unhealthy snacks when your kids are stuck in the sun or on the road, try making some easy homemade snacks ahead of time that you can grab on the go.
Here are the fun snack ideas that you can prepare quickly in advance so your kiddos can stay alert and endure the busy days ahead.
What Makes a Balanced Snack?
The best snacks are those with a balance of whole-grain carbohydrates, healthy fats and protein for lasting satisfaction and a sustained energy boost. This is because protein and fat slow down the carbohydrate release into the bloodstream. This means a longer, continual release of energy. Protein and fat also take longer to digest, meaning you stay full for longer. No more 100-calorie snack packs (often loaded with refined carbs) that make you hungry within the hour!
Frozen Snacks to Cool you Down
Try these simple, overnight recipes for optimal coolness throughout your day. These snacks are not only healthy, but also super refreshing:
Frozen banana, dark chocolate and peanut butter bites (slice bananas and put a mixture of dark chocolate chips and nut butter in between)
Super cookies made with flax meal, nut butter, oats and chocolate chips
Chocolate, protein and raspberry popsicles (mix Greek yogurt with honey and cocoa powder mix with frozen raspberries and freeze in popsicle molds)
Frozen yogurt drops mixed with nuts (mix flavored Greek yogurt with nuts in ice cube trays and freeze, then push them out into a plastic on-the-go container)
Frozen grapes are so tasty (just freeze them in snack baggies and pair with a side of nuts, or cheese)
Frozen pistachios are incredibly delicious and a personal favorite when paired with frozen mango chunks, already washed and chopped, you must try!
No Fuss, No Mess, Just Drive – Cruise Control Snacks
Save yourself the trouble of having to stop for a snack at a gas station or fast food chain by creating these yummy, energy-filled snacks for the car. Best of all, they are created with a low crumb level in mind!
Hummus and peppers in mini-pita pocket
Bean chips and chopped avocado (throw in a small container)
Lettuce rolls filled with deli meat (my kiddos love Land O’Frost Premium Smoked Turkey Breast) with olive oil mayo, bell peppers and Swiss cheese
Trail mix made from mixed nuts, dried fruit, whole wheat pretzels and a small potion of dark chocolate chips
Pair any favorite fruit you have to cut up with string cheese
Bonus tip: I like to keep a package of Deli Snackers on hand (I love the Sweet & Spicy Chicken Breast), for those times when I need a snack with no prep work at all.
One final tip
Don’t load your kid with unhealthy snacks that don’t give them what they need for a long day. Fill them with nutrients and be creative with your pairings!
Remember the formula is simple: Combine carbohydrates (fruit, veggies, whole grains), with fats (avocado, nuts, seeds, dried coconut) and protein (lean deli meat, beans, tofu).
Print out the recipes you would like to try. If you end up enjoying the recipe, then keep the recipe in a folder and discard the ones you don’t. Keep collecting the recipes, and you will soon have a go-to folder you can reach for whenever that snack boredom hits!
Don’t let the stress of back-to-school and changing schedules change your healthy eating routine! Try some of these fast, flavorful snack ideas to keep you and the kids full of energy and ready for whatever the days have to offer.