Healthy Snack Ideas For Kids

Being on the go is no excuse to eat poorly. Having a healthy convenience snack on hand is not only practical, but it keeps you from visiting the snack machine down the hall every fifteen minutes. Let's take a look a ten of the healthiest convenience foods around to keep you active, on the go and, of course, healthy:

1. Natural Nut Clusters

These little nut clusters are full of nutrition and great taste. Available at most stores, and in different nut assortments, nut clusters are naturally made and limit the amount of preservatives needed in the bag. With just the right amount of natural sugars and different nuts, a handful of these snacks will leave you satisfied.
Nut Clusters

2. Yogurt Raisins

A favorite of grownups and kids alike, yogurt covered raisins hold a host of benefits. The sweet and salty flavors mesh well together and provide a range of antioxidants. Great to grab and go, yogurt covered raisins can provide a healthy snack for anyone with a sweet tooth.
Yogurt Raisins

3. Trail Mix

Trail mix is a great source of protein as well as providing your fruit servings for the day. Grabbing a small bag of trail mix will give you the fiber needed to fill your stomach and keep you satisfied between meals. Choose varieties that are heavy on the nut, whole grain, and dried fruit, and light on the chocolate.

4. Protein Smoothie

Perfect for the morning rush, protein smoothies are easy to make and quite versatile. Adding different fruit to the mix can change your drink from a strawberry banana bliss to a peanut butter banana dream. You can buy protein powder to boost the nutrition.

5. Dried Fruit

Drying fruit is different than cooking it. When fruit is dried, the nutrients remain intact because it is not heated over 170 degrees. Fruit has plenty of antioxidant properties and amino acids, and when dried, the best parts remain. While you wouldn't want to overload on dried fruit because of the natural sugars that run rampant, a few servings of dried fruit is a healthy way to tide you over until dinner.

6. Bean and Cheese Burrito

While there are plenty of different bean and cheese burritos on the market, all of them are pretty much the same. You can find organic, all natural burritos, but most are fairly healthy; just read the labels. Of course, you can easily wrap up a stash at home and keep them in the freezer for quick snacks, lunches, or dinners.

7. Soups

It is amazing how satisfying soup can be. When choosing a soup to take along, choose the low sodium and low fat varieties. It is also important to stick with clear broths or stocks to cut down on the additives which are needed to keep the milky sauces from expiring.

With the reduction in fat, salts, and additives, you will be able to enjoy a great bowl of soup without sacrificing health. Make your own soup simply at home by mixing a can of broth with some vegetables, rice, or pasta. Store in single serving containers in the freezer and you can have a healthy cup of soup in minutes.
Check out our soup recipes.

8. Veggies and Dip

You can enjoy veggies with lots of yummy dip without sacrificing your good, healthy eating habits. Substituting hummus, baba ganoush or yogurt for the traditional ranch or blue cheese dressing, you will be able to enjoy your favorite veggies without all of the guilt.
Easy Dip Recipes

9. Food Bars

There are a plethora of food bars to choose from. Many of them are extremely health-conscious and can be a healthy snack.
Fig Bars

10. Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a fantastic snack. Not the instant kind, filled with sugar and artificial flavoring, but the actual kind you make on the stove. Sure, not often considered a convenience food, but when you think about the eight minutes it takes to make instant oatmeal and let it cool and then look at the nine minutes it takes to make regular oatmeal, you can decide the convenience for yourself. You may also just like to nibble on raw oatmeal, or toast it quickly and turn it into a quick granola feast.
Homemade Oatmeal Recipe

No matter what your schedule, you can afford a few minutes each day to eat a healthy snack or two. The nutritional needs of an adult differ from that of a child. These snacks are meant to keep an adult satisfied without adding too many calories, fat, salt, or sugar to their diet. If maintaining a healthy weight is a concern, eating a couple light snacks during the day can help burn fat and keep you from eating larger meals than you have to. Snack smart with these convenient foods and stay healthy and fit.

More Snack Ideas

Kids Healthy Snacks
List of snacks- print off and add to your fridge for a quick reference
Preschool snacks
Snacks with 6 or less ingredients
More snack recipes and ideas blog posts

Healthy Snacks for Kids

For so many years, convenience foods have been considered to be chips, canned meats and other, rather unhealthy foods. The fact of the matter is, today many foods have become convenient, but the stigma behind unhealthy convenience foods is still hanging around.

Childhood obesity is a problem in our culture today and we blame it in part on these convenience foods. In attempts to shed some pounds from the myth that all convenience foods are bad for kids, here are 10 healthy convenience foods great for keeping kids fit:

1. Raisins

There is a little bit of sunshine in every box. Raisins are a great snack for kids. They are ultra-portable and packed with vitamins and nutrients. It doesn't get much more convenient than grabbing a little box of raisins on the way out the door.

2. String Cheese

Prepackaged cheese is one of the best convenience foods around. String cheese is made with skim milk so is low in fat. It is not neon orange color; it is natural. When you see cheese that is neon orange, it has dyes added, which you don't need.

3. Yogurt

A helping of dairy in a single portable cup. Yogurt is a tasty and healthy option for kids; it provides calcium, healthy bacteria and makes for a great fruit dip. Mix in a bit of fruit, add a topping of granola, and you've got a complete treat.

4. Trail Mix

A hand full, or three, of a natural trail mix can be the perfect on-the-go snack for kids. With the fiber to fill them up and the nutrition to keep them going, trail mix is a handy energy snack for active kids. Resist the temptation to buy the ones with lots of chocolate, coconut, or other sweets. A little sugar goes a long way. Opt for trail mix with lots of grains, nuts, and even dried fruit.

5. Popcorn

A light and filling snack anytime day or night. Void of the oils and salt, popcorn is an incredibly healthy snack. If you need something for flavor, try some of the all-natural seasonings. Parmesan cheese packs a lot of flavor in just a few sprinkles. A combination of dried herbs can make this healthy snack even better.

6. Applesauce

Mix it with cinnamon, stir in some strawberry puree, no matter what you do, applesauce will always be a healthy, convenient comfort food. Remember how good it was when you were a kid? It still is one of the all-time favorites. Just keep it handy and your kids will gobble it up.

7. Fruit

Nature's convenience food. Oftentimes wrapped in its own convenient package, fresh fruit is easy to tote around and great for you. To boost the convenience factor for kids, peel a variety of fruit and package it in zip-lock bags or plastic food containers. Be sure to squeeze a touch of lemon juice in to make sure everything stays fresh.

8. Beef Jerky

You might not automatically consider this a healthy convenience food, but it is. The reason is because in order to prevent the jerky from going rancid, the process calls for trimming the fat off before it's cured. It's also a great source of protein without the carbs. The jerky is first marinated and then smoked which is a preferred method of cooking for people who are health conscious. Most kids like bacon, and this is a healthier alternative which is also convenient for on-the-go nibbling.

9. Pretzels with peanut butter

Just the right amount of creamy-crunchy goodness, pretzels dipped in peanut butter are nutritious and quite portable. Choose fat free pretzels and natural peanut butter and you'll have a healthy snack perfect for those days filled with soccer practice, guitar lessons, or other things that keeps kids and parents on the run.

10. Fig Newtons

Available in a wide variety of flavors, fig newtons are a great way to pack in some fruit. With only about 20 calories from fat, this is a great snack for kids with a sweet tooth. These little nuggets are a very nice option for sugary treats.

If your kids are on the go as much as you are, having healthy convenience foods on hand will make life much easier. Choose some of these healthy convenience foods the next time you are at the store to keep your kids satisfied, active, and healthy.

Reader's Favorite Snacks

Apple Cheese Sandwiches
By Barbara
Core an apple, cut into rings, can use cheese slices or block cheese and layer between two pieces of apple. For a variation- spread with peanut butter or cream cheese. Can dot the cream cheese version with a dried fruit like a cranberry, cherry, raisin etc. This one could be served open faced if desired.

Orange Cups
By Barbara
Cut off a small section of the top of an orange (lid) and then take out the insides of an orange. Leave the skin intact as a bowl.

Fill with food of your choice- we did a variety of fresh fruit at the time but with today's kids you could easily do yogurt and fresh fruit.