Everyone has been there….it is snack time and your kids are hungry for something to eat. You try to be healthy most of the time, but you were tired and frazzled one day at the grocery store with kids whining and begging for things, and somehow Star Wars fruit snacks and Pringles managed to find a spot in your grocery cart. Of course as luck would have it, this seems to be what your children clamor for in front of the grandparents. Why aren’t they begging for the organic cheese sticks and whole grain crackers that they asked for yesterday? You want to scream, “I swear they eat healthy!”
We have all occasionally seen disapproving glances from grandparents, our own parents and our in-laws, and felt embarrassed by what our kids are eating. As hard as it is to admit, there was a time when my own kids were addicted, yes addicted to Horizon vanilla milks. I am a firm believer in kids having treats in moderation, but we were so far beyond that it was scary. I couldn’t even justify the fact that they were organic, because each of my kids was having at least two a day, which is about 60 grams of sugar. That is a lot of sugar, and trust me, I know because my family members made me feel like I was poisoning my kids every time they saw my boys suck down a box. I laugh now at the memory of them inhaling each box in one sip, like their very existence depended on not pulling that straw out of their mouth until every drop was gone. I stressed about trips home because I would have to ask my family to buy cases of the boxed milks to have readily available. I had countless conversations with my mother about “the milk” and the subject even came up with my twin sister during the only fight I can remember having with her since she ripped a necklace off of my neck when we were ten. So…needless to say, as confident as I was in my mothering capabilities this was a serious area of stress for me. But, like everything else in life, it was a phase. One day when I couldn’t take one more trip to Costco for the milks, I cut my kids off cold turkey. We had a few rough mornings, but after a few days they stopped asking for the them, and I found a corner of my pantry that I forgot existed.
Children mature and so do their palates. My son that wouldn’t touch a vegetable to save his life now eats carrots and cucumbers, and I hope the list will grow beyond that soon. I continue to offer healthy snack options and expand the variety of choices I give my kids. I have found a few wonderful snacks online and on Pintrest, and am excited to share them with you. I am pretty sure these snacks will satisfy your little one’s sweet tooth, but will also be “grandparent approved!” Just be sure to make extra for yourself, too!
Dried Strawberries fromTheWorldWideGourmet.com
- Halve or quarter the strawberries, depending on their size; place on a baking sheet; season with salt and pepper;
- Dry in the oven for three hours at 210° F.
2 kiwis, peeled and diced
2 Golden Delicious apples – peeled, cored and diced
8 ounces raspberries
1 (16 oz) carton of strawberries, diced
2 tablespoons white sugar (more or less to taste)
1 tablespoon brown sugar (more or less to taste)
3 tablespoons fruit preserves, any flavor (I used strawberry)
10 (10 inch) flour tortillas
melted butter or butter flavored cooking spray
1 cup white sugar
2 Tablespoons cinnamon
1. In a large bowl, thoroughly mix kiwis, apples, raspberries, strawberries, white sugar, brown sugar and fruit preserves. Cover and chill in the refrigerator at least 15 minutes.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
3.Coat one side of each flour tortilla with melted butter or butter flavored cooking spray. Sprinkle tortillas with desired amount of cinnamon sugar. Cut into wedges and arrange in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Spray again with cooking spray (not necessary if using melted butter).
4.Bake in the preheated oven 8 to 10 minutes. Repeat with any remaining tortilla wedges. Allow to cool approximately 15 minutes. Serve with chilled fruit mixture.
This salsa can also be served with cinnamon graham grackers or cinnamon pita chips. Best when made and eaten the same day otherwise the fruit gives off so too much juice and it gets runny.
**A time saving suggestion from Daughter-in-Law Diaries is to use Stacy’s Cinnamon and Sugar Pita Chips that you can buy at the grocery store for snack time at home.
Apple Cupcakes by Eat Drink Garden with Valerie Rice
Two choices, either core your apple first and then slice in half or slice in half and use a melon ball tool to scoop out the seeds. If you go the melon ball route your kids will have to eat around the stem at the bottom- some kids will love that idea and others will hate it- so it’s your call.
With almond butter or peanut butter, fill the little hole and smear a layer on top of the sliced half.
Val loves the Trader Joe’s Almond Butter with Roasted Flaxseeds (Crunchy & Salted).
Sprinkle top of apple with your favorite granola.