7 Easy Back-to-School Snacks

7 Easy Back-to-School Snacks

By now you are probably back in the full swing of the school year! Let’s get our kids (and ourselves!) back to school fueled with healthy snacks to keep them on their toes and with optimal energy for learning!

Kick the Sugar Treats to the Curb

Snacks should fuel your energy, your ability to learn, and optimize your concentration when you are in school. Let’s think about doughnuts and cookies-- they might taste good, but they are full of sugar, which will spike sugar levels before making your kids tired, hungry, and unable to focus. They also lack any proper nutrients or health benefits that will aid our brains and bodies. When we pack snacks for our kids that are lacking in nutrients, we are setting them up to have trouble in school. As adults, when we eat these things we notice feelings of immediate energy from the sugar and then a crash afterward that leaves us wanting more. Kids feel the same way!

If you are buying prepackaged food, read your labels. You’ll be amazed at how much sugar is in some of these “health foods.” For reference, 4 grams of sugar is equal to 1 teaspoon of sugar. So something with 16 grams of sugar is like eating 4 teaspoons of sugar for snack. Ick. So let’s skip the sugar-laden snacks in our lunchboxes, okay? Opt for things not in packages when you can in order to get the most nutritious bang-for-your-buck.

Optimize Your Snacking

Okay, so we shouldn’t have a bunch of sugar, but what should we be looking for in our snacks? All meals that you consume, including snacks, should have fiber, protein, and fat. Fiber fills you up, protein gives you energy, and fat keeps you feeling fuller longer and helps to stimulate your brain cells for optimal function! Aim to pack snacks that meet these goals every day to help keep your kids and yourself engaged and ready to learn!

Let’s get right to some great and easy ideas of snacks to pack at home! While packing good snacks might sound overwhelming, it’s not as hard as you think. It will take slightly more effort than grabbing a bag of cookies from your cupboard, but the benefits are exponentially worth it. Let’s be willing to give up an extra 5 minutes of our time to help our kids be successful!

Easy Snacks to Fuel the Day
Kids love to dip things! Try out these great snack ideas!

Apples with Almond butter & Cinnamon (nut-free school? Use sunflower butter instead!)
Cut Veggies with Pizza Hummus
Carrot sticks with Pesto
Berries with Dairy-Free Yogurt

These are easy to make in batches ahead of time. Plan for the week and make several so you can grab and go.

Almond Butter Chia Pudding
Easy Peasy Granola Bars
Homemade Smoothies packed in small jars and frozen the night before (they will thaw just in time for snack!)

For more info on Packing Healthy Lunches, check out my post on the Academy of Culinary Nutrition Blog. You will also find a smoothie recipe there for you to easily make for snacks!

Do you have other ideas for easy, healthy snacks? Leave a comment below or send me an email at karenscolorfulkitchen@gmail.com I’d love to hear from you!

 

Weekend Roundup-- Snack Edition

Weekend Roundup-- Snack Edition

Coconut Lentil Quesadillas with Jalapeno Cashew Cheeze

Coconut Lentil Quesadillas with Jalapeno Cashew Cheeze