I remember when I was in Elementary School, and I would wait for the school bell to ring so I could rush home and watch my quartet of favorite cartoons: Gummi Bears, Tale Spin, Chip and Dale Rescue Rangers and Darkwing Duck. These shows were an enjoyable, albeit not particularly healthy, way to enjoy my afternoon and a background for my homework. Like so many kids coming home from school, the other thing I looked forward to was an after-school snack. It was always a painfully long time from our school lunches around 11:30 until dinner with my family around 6:00. My stomach would grumble and beg for the bus to drive faster to my stop so I could race up the driveway to a food feast. I was always fortunate enough to have my mom or dad at home waiting for me when I got home from school and they always had a great snack prepared for me. To their merit, our snacks were generally healthy, and yet I enjoyed and looked forward to those snacks everyday of the week.
Here are some snacks that you can make for or with your kids that they will look forward to having after school AND that will be healthy for their growing bodies and minds.
The Sweet Tooth: Buy vanilla yogurt and fruit toppings, along with granola and raisins and let the kids create their own toppings each day. The yogurt and fruit can give kids things they need, like milk and fiber, while still satisfying their craving for something sweet.
Substitute Tastes: Try healthier alternatives to their favorite snacks. If they love cookies, try graham crackers. If its chips they like, try Soy Crisps or Wheat Thins.
Keep it Fresh: For the kids who just love Oreos or a Cookie after school, its okay in moderation, but add some fresh strawberries or carrots to the plate, to ‘combine’ flavors and ‘intensify’ the amazing after-school snack experience:
Combo Kings: Some of my personal favorites that blend sweet tastes with healthy foods: Apples and Peanut Butter, Apples and Cheese, Peanut Butter and Celery or Wheat Thins and Jelly. Just some personal favorites, but healthy snacks that keep your kids satisfied and excited.
Check out Top 10 After-School Snacks for more fun ideas that get your kids involved in the snack-making process, teaching them healthy choices while having a good time with you and their siblings.
Have a great after-school snack you’d like to share? Leave a comment below.