Feeding your kids healthy food, especially at snack time, is just as important as ensuring they do their homework and bringing them to the doctor when they’re sick. If one of your children has a food allergy, be it to peanuts, tree nuts dairy, eggs or gluten, coming up with inventive and nutritious snacks can sometimes seem like a major project. However, it doesn’t have to be. There are plenty of options to create tasty treats your youngsters will love that will allow you to rest easy knowing they’re not being exposed to foods that could make them sick.
Veggies and dip
This classic snack is great for its versatility. You can choose whichever vegetables your kids like, and then pair them with a healthy dip. Hummus may be the best bet, since it’s made mainly of chick peas, and is safe for everyone. Other dips, such as creamy salad dressings or premade options from the grocery store, typically include dairy products and may not be well-suited for lactose intolerant children, so choose wisely based on your youngsters’ needs. Make sure to read the ingredients carefully when you pick up premade hummus from the store, as different varieties may contain pine nuts.
Making your own isn’t hard, either. There are countless recipes to try, and it gives you absolute control over the preparation and ingredients that go into the dip. One food blog, Inspired Taste, recommended peeling the skin off the chick peas for a smoother consistency. This can be a fun way to get your kids involved in the process.
Chips and salsa
Parents magazine stated that some chips may contain gluten in the seasoning, even though potatoes and corn themselves are safe for kids with gluten allergies. This doesn’t mean your children can’t crunch some chips on occasion, but you should pay attention to the brands you buy. Read the ingredients list before you buy, but it can be a safe bet to stick to regular potato chips, and make sure you’re buying corn chips over flour tortilla chips. Since you may be skimping on the flavor, you can make up for it by pairing chips with salsa. This might not work so well with potato chips, but hummus can be a fun, healthy option for dipping chips too. For something sweet and salty, drizzle chocolate sauce over a plate of potato chips. The contrast of flavors is sure to delight your kids, and you may have a hard time resisting taking a handful for yourself.
Granola is a healthy food for people of all ages, and it’s pretty easy to make your own snacks at home, whether you want to make a unique trail mix or craft your own snack bars. Store-made granola bars often contain nuts or are made in a space where nuts are also used, so it may be best to try making your own at home. Not only will you have less to worry about, but you and your kids can create recipes that they are sure to love, using their favorite ingredients. Everyday Health suggested combining puffed rice, granola, honey, sunflower butter and dried fruit like raisins. All you have to do is stir it up to coat everything in the sticky honey, and then press it all together in a small baking pan. After chilling in the fridge for a few hours, the bars will be firm enough to cut up and enjoy.
Make a different recipe each time to keep it interesting. For a dessert-like treat, you could drizzle dark chocolate on town of the bars, or throw some sprinkles or chocolate chips into the mixture.