Courtesy our friend Kayla Graves MS, RD, LD, Balls Food Store Dietitian
Fall tends to be busy with kids going back to school, after-school activities and homework. Throughout all the busyness it can be hard to make sure our kids are getting nutritious snacks, especially ones packed with fruits and vegetables (the fruit flavored gummy bears don’t count). Try these kid-friendly snack ideas to get your little ones to eat their fruits and vegetables and stay fueled for their summer activities. The best part … no cooking required!
Frozen grapes: Wash, de-stem and freeze grapes for a portable sweet treat. This snack would be appropriate for children over the age of 5, as grapes can be a choking hazard for younger children.
Vegetables/fruit and dip: Cut up various vegetables/fruits. Remember the more colorful the better! Use plain Greek yogurt as a base for a kid-friendly, protein-packed dip. To make a savory vegetable dip combine 1 Tbsp. of a ranch seasoning packet to one cup (8 oz.) of plain Greek yogurt. To make a sweet fruit dip, combine 1 tsp. honey, ½ tsp. vanilla, and ½ tsp. ground cinnamon to one cup of plain Greek yogurt.
Smoothie: Smoothies are great as you can customize them using any ingredients you like. Add a variety of fruits, vegetables and liquid ingredients (any kind of milk, 100% fruit juice or coconut water). Add avocado for a great non-dairy alternative to make a creamy smoothie and to increase intake of healthy fats.
Popsicles: Popsicles are an easy, make-ahead snack! Another bonus is that they will help keep you cool in the leftover summer heat. Make your own using fresh, seasonal fruits and vegetables.
Cucumber cups: For a heartier snack, fill cucumber “cups” with hummus, egg salad or chicken salad. Peel cucumber, slice into 1 ½ inch sections and scoop out the inside with a melon baller. Add a spoonful of your favorite filling. My favorite is avocado chicken salad.
Here’s my Cucumber Cup Avocado Chicken Salad recipe.
Cucumber Cup Avocado Chicken Salad Recipe
2 cups shredded chicken
1 ripe, Fresh California Avocado, seeded and peeled
½ tsp. garlic powder
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
2 tsp. lime juice
1 Tbsp. fresh cilantro
½ cup plain Greek yogurt
- Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate for at least 20–30 minutes to let flavors blend together.
- Fill cucumber “cups” with the mixture and enjoy!