The kids will love these summer snacks, and they’re healthy too!
It can be a struggle to get the kids to eat their fruits, veggies, and whole grains, especially if they’re dipping into the pantry in between. These summer snacks are coming to the rescue! They score top grade for good nutrition, great flavor, and kid appeal.
Registered Dietitian Liz Weiss shares her recipes for healthy summer snacks.
Find more recipes from Liz on Instagram, @lizweiss.
3 Healthy Summer Snacks
Benefits of Snacking for Kids
Snacks can be the secret sauce to better nutrition for kids and can help to fill in the nutrient gaps in a child’s day. Think of snacks as nutrient-rich mini meals to hold kids over until lunch or dinner as well as an opportunity to explore new foods, flavors, and textures.
The ideal snack should be portable (if parents and kids are on the go), delicious, appealing to the individual child, affordable, in sync with the family’s culture and food preferences, and nourishing to body and soul. Nutrition is just one of several important components to an “ideal” snack.
That said, there are certain nutrients that kids struggle to get enough of including calcium and vitamin D, fiber, iron, and potassium (helps muscles contract and supports normal blood pressure). These so-called “nutrients of concern” can be found in the recipes Liz shared.
Crunchy Summer Veggies with Hummus
Veggies in season can be purchased at the farmers’ market, local supermarket, or grown at home. Veggies provide fiber and potassium, and the hummus is made from chickpeas, which provides fiber, potassium, and iron. Kids love to dip, so this is the perfect choice for everyone at your table.
Garden Green Smoothie
This is the ultimate green smoothie made with 100% orange juice, plain Greek yogurt, frozen or fresh mango, banana, cucumber, mint, and baby kale or spinach. Packed with fiber, calcium, and potassium, this is a great summer thirst quencher for kids. Let your kids help you blend it, and have some fun! Click here for a link to the recipe.
Make-Your-Own Snack Mix
Made with three kid-favorite fortified breakfast cereals (Corn Chex, Rice Chex, Cheerios) plus mixed nuts, bite-sized pretzel, golden raisins, and seasonings. Fortified breakfast cereals can be enjoyed all day long, especially at snack time, and this homemade Chex mix is the perfect example. When compared to children who don’t eat cereal, cereal eaters have higher intakes of key nutrients, including calcium, vitamin D, fiber, and iron, have higher whole grain intake, and get more than 30% of their daily intake for vitamin A, iron, and B vitamins. So enjoy cereal at snack time!
Make-Your-Own Snack Mix
Makes 12 ½ cup servings
- 2 cups Corn Chex cereal
- 2 cups Rice Chex cereal
- 2 cups Cheerios cereal
- ½ cup lightly salted mixed nuts
- 1 cup bite-sized gluten-free mini pretzel (I used Everything Thins)
- 4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ to ½ cup golden raisins
- Heat the oven to 250 degrees F.
- In a large bowl, mix together the three cereals, pretzels, and nuts.
- In a separate small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, onion powder and salt until well combined. Pour over the cereal mixture and mix well until everything is evenly coated.
- Transfer the cereal mixture to an ungreased rimmed baking sheet or roasting pan. Bake 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool, stir in the raisins, and store in an airtight container at room temperature.