I’ve been slowly trying to cut sugar out of my family’s diet. It’s a hard process for me because not only do I love sweet food, but I am obsessed with baking. I certainly don’t want my sugar addictions to rub off on my children, so there is a lot of work to be done around here. I am aiming to feed my son (and future children) the best quality food in hopes that when he makes his own decisions, he will make healthy ones.
When it comes to feeding our toddlers, It’s easy to become repetitive. There has to be more to life than apple slices and baby carrots! I get bored with food and I bet our kids do too, because you know…they are human. I put this list together for any moms out there looking for some fresh ideas that aren’t just sliced fruit and veggies (even though those are amazing options). These are snacks that my son loves and more importantly, they are healthy.
Smoothies are a great snack because you can sneak healthy ingredients into them. My son Loves green smoothies and they are packed with spinach. I usually make mine with a frozen banana, a handful of spinach, some canned pineapple chunks and the juice. Sometimes I use almond milk (I use MALK brand) instead of the pineapple juice, or both. It’s fool proof and complete smoothie perfection.
2. Veggie straws
I don’t buy these very often because I will eat ALL OF THEM and Russell probably would too if I let him. I consider Veggie Straws a healthier, more delicious version of a potato chip. These contain a small amount of added sugar, but not enough to give my family a reason to completely avoid them. I’m sure you’ve heard of these. They are at most grocery stores.
3. RX bars
I originally started buying RX Bars for myself during the Whole30. They are made with simple ingredients and have no added sugar, or any junk at all. All they are made up of is egg whites, almonds, cashews and dates. That’s it! I was surprised when my son wanted a bite of my salted chocolate RX bar recently and then ended up eating an entire one himself. He loves them!
4. Homemade popcorn
I have recently come to own a popcorn maker for the fist time in my life and It has proven to be a great investment. Popcorn is an incredibly cheap snack option and oh-so delicious. My son likes popcorn plain so that’s how I make it for him. I store it in an airtight container for up to 3 days. If you don’t own a popcorn maker or don’t want to pop your own popcorn, I’d recommend this brand.
5. Raisins/ dried fruit
We buy packs of the 1oz portions from Sun Made. Sun made also has a ton of other dried fruit products that would be a great option.
6. Peanuts and other nuts
Russell gets a kick out of trying to crack open peanut shells and making a mess of them, so if you don’t mind a mess, I’d recommend buying a bag of peanuts. Any nuts would be a great nutritious option, but they are not as fun if your kid can’t work his fine motor skills while he eats them! If you have a Five Guys in your area, stop by and grab a bag of peanuts for free.
7. Rice cakes
We generally keep things simple with the lightly salted rice cakes. My favorite brand is Lundberg but we usually get Quaker because that’s available where we shop. Quaker has a few more flavor varieties that your kids might like if they don’t like plain. Rice cakes are also a great alternative to toast. You can add peanut butter or jam on top, or anything else your heart desires.
Because who doesn’t adore a good cookie? This is another great snack you can prep and eat all week. There are plenty of healthy cookie recipes on Pinterest or anywhere on the internet. My current favorite is Nutty Paleo Chocolate Chunk Cookies-they are made with organic, simple ingredients and your toddler will go crazy for these. If you are trying to steer clear of any processed sugar, even raw coconut sugar, I’d look for a recipe that uses dates and/or bananas as the sweetener-either is a great healthy alternative.
What are your toddler’s favorite healthy snacks?