When it comes to healthy food, kids are picky eaters. Most parents feel guilty knowing they should feed their children healthy foods, but simply don’t know how to do it.
Making healthy snacks for kids’ lunches and filling their lunch boxes with food they’ll actually want to eat is a great way to introduce fruits, vegetables, grains and legumes into your child’s diet.
Kids love to snack
Findings by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) from the latest survey on increasing caloric intake showed that today’s children snack twice as much as kids 20 years ago. Like it or not, snacks have become an important part of daily diet. Children take in more calories than ever before, yet their basic vitamin and mineral requirements necessary for healthy physical and psychological development are not being met.
The trick is to make healthy snack food for kids; let them enjoy treats but enable them to eat well. If you make it visually appealing as well as tasty, your kids will probably eat even those veggies they usually resist and reject.
5 tips on healthy snacks for kids’ lunches
A good guideline for any kids’ healthy lunch idea is 80% presentation and 20% taste. Lunch boxes should be creative, interesting and colorful.
1.Get rid of junk food and stuff your home with healthy snacks. Healthy snacks are easy to make. The main obstacle is usually that you don’t have the right ingredients at hand so you (and your family) reach for the next best thing – junk food. All this can easily be avoided by planning ahead. Take a little time to search the internet for interesting healthy snacks recipes, make a plan for a week and go shopping. Include kids in this adventure; let them choose what they’d like to eat, shop and prepare it with you – it will make them feel important and proud for making those yummy snacks.
2.Play with colors, shapes and creative serving. Include whole grains, dried fruits, bright yellows and reds. There are numerous recipes for healthy snacks for kids’ lunches. Enjoy experimenting with countless options of kid food recipes and see what’s their favorite. Listen to what they like. Sometimes plain water can taste better than any soda if it’s served in a favorite superhero bottle.
3.Kids eat more veggies with dips. If you serve tasty and healthy dips for kids alongside with otherwise disliked and rejected veggies, kids are twice more likely to eat it than when veggies are offered alone.
4.Serve it in small portions. A great way to keep your child interested in healthy food is to serve a variety of options in small portions. It’s always better to offer a few different small snacks than one large bowl of the same ones. This way, new smells, tastes, forms and creative ways of mixing and matching healthy snacks for kids’ lunches will always be something new and exciting and kids won’t get bored of it.
5.Spices can be healthy too. Healthy doesn’t have to mean bland. Satisfy the sweet tooth by adding healthy spices: honey, frozen fruit bars, fruit yogurts, smoothies with milk, dried fruits. Also, don’t be afraid to experiment with herbs to spice the veggies and see what your kids like the best.
Give your kids something to look forward to at lunch every day
Kids can enjoy snacks and get their vitamins and minerals at the same time. Snacks don’t have to necessarily mean saturated fats and high calories without any nutritional value – snacks can be good for kids! All it takes is a little bit of planning and organization. Your children can enjoy their lunch time every day and get the healthiest nutrients at the same time!