Thursday, September 13, 2018

Healthy After-School Snacks: A Grandparent's Request

My dear friends Ann and Gerry are wonderful grandparents.  They moved away a few years ago to be close to their grandchildren.  They are blessed to be involved in the daily lives of their grandchildren.  I hope, some day, to have the same connection with my grandchildren.
Gerry recently asked me about healthy options for snacks.  Being the awesome grandparents that he and Ann are they want to provide the most delicious and healthiest food options to their grandchildren.  Ann is worried about the high levels of sugar in baked goods.  I agree, with her concern.  Kids are offered lots of treats on a daily basis- school snacks, birthday treats, etc.  My kids are teenagers and I like to have lots of healthy(ish) options ready for them to grab when they get home from school.  Teenagers are ALWAYS hungry. 
I do love to bake! Many recipes do indeed have lots of sugar but for the most part the amount is substantially less than a store-bought/processed treat.  Homemade cookies are always appreciated by my kids but so are ready-to-go fresh fruit options.  The "ready-to-go" is the key.  If you slice up the apple (especially for little kids) they will eat it and perhaps choose it over the candy or cookie.  (YES, I have experienced this in real life!)  I prepare little mason jars filled with berries ready to pop into a lunch box or grab for snack anytime of the day.  These are always a hit with kids and adults.
Whether you are making snacks for a school treat or after-school offering, here are some good options that are lower in sugar or are fresh-fruit ideas.

No-bake Chia Seed Granola Bars

Frozen Grapes

Chia Seed Pudding with Fruit Compote

Kiwi Bowls


Pears filled with Berries

Energy Muffins

The BEST Irish Soda Bread

American and German Soda Breads (YUM!)