At the grocery store this weekend I noticed how many people were buying lunch box snacks. The boxes of crackers, granola bars and fruit cups were packed in carts as people were trying to get prepared for the start of school and other September busyness. While there are lots of good healthy and often inexpensive options, some people discount what they can make themselves and the goodness of having healthy snacks on hand. I've scouted out these great recipes to share with you.
Trail mix cookie bars
These are full of good stuff to fuel kids at recess or keep you going over that 3:00 hump in the day. You could replace the chocolate with yogurt coating if you prefer. Also, make sure you check with your child's school about their nut policy. Many schools are now "nut free zones".
Apple Oat bars
Another healthy and hearty snack. Keep some of these frozen so you can just grab it and go if you're in a hurry. It will be ready by the afternoon and you won't be stuck choosing something from the vending machine.
Hummus and pita
Hummus isn't just good for you, it's delicious and easy to make. If you want to keep it lower fat, replace half of the oil with a tablespoon of light peanut butter. Also, I've blended sun dried tomato in there and it adds a great flavor.
Children will have fun helping with this one. They can choose their favorite fruit and put it on a skewer. It's a great way to offer some variety without fussing with fruit salad in a bowl and a fork.
All of these snacks should be paired with balanced meals of course. I find homemade snacks to have much more substance than the store bought ones and often offer more nutrition. Most people aren't going to spend their evenings baking for the following day, I am definitely not, but with a little planning you can make sure you have some good snacks on hand. Double your recipes and freeze your baking too. If you're curious about how your pre-packaged snacks measure up, check out this interactive lunch box. Share some of your favorite recipes for grab and go snacks.