It may not be every mother's worst nightmare, but it is horribly annoying: you've realized too late that you are out of supplies for school snack time. Rather than panicking, understand that your kitchen is sure to contain the basic building blocks of a healthy snack for your children, if you only know where to look. Search your refrigerator, mine those cupboards and reuse leftovers to throw together a school-day snack that will keep your children satisfied and boost their energy levels throughout the day.
Fruits and Vegetables
If you keep your kitchen well-stocked with produce, fruits and veggies are a quick and easy way to guarantee your child has a healthy day. Apples, orange, bananas and grapes all provide energy that your child will need to maintain peak performance. Carrot and celery sticks -- a healthy and crunchy snack -- deliver nutrients. Find them lurking in your fridge or on the counter, give them a thorough wash and pack them into a reusable container. Jazz up vegetables in a hurry by giving your child a dollop of hummus or creamy salad dressing to use as dip.
Miniature versions of lunch make a filling last-minute snack. Slap some peanut butter and jelly on bread and cut into four sections. Give one or two pieces to your child as a snack. If you have leftover roast beef, chicken or turkey in the fridge from dinner, cut off a small piece and make mini-sandwiches with lettuce. Scour the cupboards for a can of tuna or chicken for tuna or chicken salad mini-sandwiches. Add some pizazz by using flavored creamy dressing in place of the traditional mayonnaise. Leftover pizza can be cut into extra-small slices as a snack as well.
More conventional snack foods that you may have in your kitchen also come in handy. Pretzels or trail mix can be thrown into a sandwich bag for an easy snack. A container of your child's favorite cereal will do in a pinch, as will a handful of unsalted almonds, cashews or pistachios. Search your pantry for popcorn kernels. Pop them on the stove top or in a popcorn maker for another quick and fun school snack. Sprinkle the nuts or the popped popcorn with a seasoning mix for an additional treat.
Other Snack Ideas
Search your fridge for other healthy and quick snack ideas. Pita and dip make a wonderful pair. Use hummus or creamy dressing as the dip. Corn chips and salsa can also be a delicious and fun snack to eat. For a healthy alternative, put a spoonful of applesauce or yogurt, either flavored or plain, into a container. Crackers and cheese will please your kids, as will sugar-free or low-fat pudding, if you have any lying around in your fridge.
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