Finding new, healthy snacks that the whole family will enjoy can be a challenge. It can also become boring to prepare and eat the same old snacks day after day, and it may seem easier to pick up pre-made, packaged items while grocery shopping. Food that is freshly prepared often tastes better and is typically better for you. Mixing up snack time options will provide your family a variety of healthy ways to enjoy time together.
As the weather starts to cool down, the fresh fruits and vegetables you normally snack on may no longer be in season and difficult to find. There are many in-season options throughout the fall and winter that make for great snacking. They include: apples, figs, pears, grapes, pomegranate, mushrooms, sweet potatoes and cauliflower. Frozen fruit is also a good option –you can eat it plain or mix with yogurt. Make sure to purchase frozen fruit with no added sugar or other additives. Choose the fruit over fruit juice when you can because eating the fruit provides you with the optimal nutritional benefits from the food, including the fiber contained in the flesh of the fruit.
Benefits of eating fresh.
The benefits of eating fresh foods with minimal processing abound. As foods are processed, breakdown begins and nutrients are lost. Using unprocessed foods can also help you avoid added sugar and food additives. The American heart Association reported in 2009 that the average American eats more than 22 teaspoons of added sugar each day.
Making snack time fun.
Along with discovering creative ways to eat the foods you know the whole family likes, branching out and trying new things will help to keep snack time satisfying, rather than leaving you wanting more. Getting everyone involved helps to encourage trying new things. Make a snack time assembly line, and split up the duties among family members – turning snack time into a full blown family activity.
Here are some great recipes for the whole family to enjoy:
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Our favorite snacks are apples, oranges, bell peppers with ranch dressing, snap peas, or bananas.
We love to have apple slices with peanut butter in our house. :)
We like hummus and peppers, it would be great to have the snack-a-pillar to separate the two when traveling :)
My son LOVES cheese so we get cheese cubes and pears, sometimes we’ll do whole grain crackers with em, just something good to pair with cheese!
November 5, 2011 at 6:17 pm
My little one loves peas, especially since I let him grab them on his own. He is a big 8 month old, with 8 teeth already and feeling so much like a big boy. Allowing him to grab his peas and place them in his mouth gives him the independence that he seeks and likes. :)