After-School Snacks

Cooking How-To, For Moms, Healthy, How-To, Recipes
on March 1, 2008
Snack Crunchers

Tired of spending money on over-packaged, individual kids’ snacks? Make your own. Or better yet, have the kids make their own. Forget the machines and mixers—your kids will get even more of a thrill whipping up fun snacks using only a single bowl and their hands. These easy-to-pack balls can go anywhere, from school lunches to soccer practice.

They’re best really cold and will keep up to a week sealed in a zip-top plastic bag stored in the refrigerator. And best of all, you’ll feel good knowing that your kids are noshing on nutritious snacks. So grab a bowl, call the kids, and crunch, mash and roll away.

From coconut to peanut butter to chocolate, there’s a flavor for everyone.

Top Toss-ins

Customize these snacks by mixing and matching your kid’s favorite foods. Add Cocoa Puffs in place of Rice Krispies or peanuts in place of cashews. In addition, toss in any of these nutritious extras:

  • Sesame seeds add a soul-satisfying crunch. These little powerhouses boast more protein than any nut, as much iron as liver, plus vitamin E, phosphorus, niacin and thiamin.
  • Sunflower seeds burst with plentiful vitamin E, magnesium and selenium. And kids love to crunch on them.
  • Dried cranberries, cherries, raisins or dried fruit bits add natural sweetness, fiber, potassium and a satisfying chew.
  • Whole grain cereals add crispy crunch plus fiber, vitamins and minerals.
  • Nut butters are high in monounsaturated fats and Vitamin E, interchangeable and rich in flavor—try peanut, sesame, soy nut or cashew and almond butters.

—By Christine Gable, a food writer in Lititz, Pa.