Find over 18 different ideas for what to give your kids for healthy snacks after school. Satisfy their hunger without ruining their dinner.
When my children get home from school, they are often hungry. And by hungry, I mean STARVED.
School takes a lot of mental focus and that can leave your child famished. My children get home only 1.5 hours before dinner time, however, so I am not good with my children coming home and eating away.
A snack is great, but I want it to be healthy so if it does impact their dinner appetite, I at least feel good that the snack was healthy.
I really want it to be small enough they will still eat dinner.
I also want the snack to be easy. I want them to be able to eat it with little effort from me. I am about to be prepping dinner at this point, so I want quick and easy.
Healthy After School Snacks for Kids
Here are 18 healthy options for after school snacks.
- Smoothie (just be wary of the size of a smoothie. They are great, but a typical smoothie easily has 300 calories in it. While it is healthy, it is a lot of calories to have if you are close to dinner time)
- Fresh Fruit
- Dried fruit
- Vegetable (I am pretty much okay with my children eating vegetables at any point in the day). Pro tip–kids will eat a lot more vegetables if they are already washed and cut up for them. Get a veggie tray and have some fresh veggies always cut up for your kiddos.
- Pickles (this gets its own mention because my kids love pickles. They have a ton of flavor and zero calories, so the child can feel like something was eaten and still be hungry for dinner! This can need to be paired with something else if there are real calories needed by your child to reenergize)
- Small “quesadilla”. We always have some smaller tortillas on hand. I am okay with one of these being filled with cheese or peanut butter for a snack.
- Nuts–trailmix can be a good snack
- Peanut butter spoon (just scoop up some peanut butter and eat away. Or use it as a dip for apple or celery slices)
- Crackers and cheese
- String cheese
- Energy bites/balls (there are a lot of these snack recipes for this type of thing out there on the internet)
- Hummus (we aren’t actually hummus eaters here, so this idea is one we don’t eat)
- Chocolate-dipped bananas (just freeze, dip in melted chocolate, and freeze again. Use small bites of bananas with a toothpick stuck inside to make it easier)
- Frozen yogurt
BONUS! Something sweet! Every once in a while, it is fun to have something sweet. Cookies, cupcakes, rice krispie treats…whatever. These aren’t healthy, which is why it is just a bonus, but it can be fun to have chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal cookies, or another treat every once in a while.
You can have any rules and policies you think are best for your kids with the snacks. You can set out the snacks they will get or you can let them choose their snacks.
You can limit it to one snack or you can have multiple snacks–you can even compile the snacks to make fun little animals and such.
When it comes to snacks, just keep in mind goals you have for your kids and make sure the snacks do not interfere with those goals.
- Overcoming the Difficulties of Feeding Healthy Snacks to Kids
- Snacks for Babies and Toddlers
- Tricks to Getting Family Meals on the Table
- Easy Breakfast Meals
This post originally appeared on this blog August 2017
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