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Snack Mom! Healthy Ideas for Preschool Snacks in an Allergy-laden World

blueberries

Don't all toddlers love blueberries?

I’m snack mom again tomorrow! This means I have to bring snack for thirty three and four-year-olds. Our school is also nut-free so I have to be extra careful about what I choose. I want it to be healthy, but I also want these kids to eat it!  I usually send two or three choices just to balance things out. I don’t want anyone to starve.

Our preschool also has a lot of rules regarding the environment. You can’t send juice or milk boxes/bags, nor those squeezable apple sauces–they’re not recyclable (or so I learned when ours was returned uneaten). I’m cool with that. The earlier Shnook learns about recycling, the more likely he’ll do it from an early age. We recycle in our house too, I just didn’t know about those pesky apple sauce bags.

I have come up with a few ideas here, but I think it would be really helpful to brainstorm great healthy snack choices for toddlers, since many of them are such picky eaters. Here are my go-to snacks. What’re yours?

  • Ants On A Log 1 of 12
    Ants On A Log
    This tasty classic is always a hit with the toddlers, even if they just lick out the insides and leave the log. If your kid's school has nut issues, use sunflower butter instead of nut butters. This photo features chard instead of celery.
  • Baked Tortilla Chips 2 of 12
    Baked Tortilla Chips
    Better than fried chips, baked chips are crunchy and can be served with a mild salsa, mild guacamole, or just eaten plain.
  • Cheese and Crackers 3 of 12
    Cheese and Crackers
    A round cracker and a square piece of cheese. A math lesson and a snack!
  • Just plain cheese 4 of 12
    Just plain cheese
    Skip the crackers and have a cheese triangle, or a string cheese stick.
  • Dried Fruit 5 of 12
    Dried Fruit
    Sometimes easier than fresh fruit, dried fruit can be a big hit with the toddler set. It's sweet and it doesn't drip all over everything. Plus, could be good for staying regular (wink).
  • Edamame 6 of 12
    Edamame
    Edamame are a great way to get your kids to eat something green. It's fun for them to take out the beans, and my kids love the salt.
  • Hummus and Veggies 7 of 12
    Hummus and Veggies
    Hummus and veggies are a terrific healthy snack for little ones. I'd advise giving each kid a little dixie cup with the hummus to avoid double (triple, quadruple, bowl-licking) dipping.
  • Fresh Fruit 8 of 12
    Fresh Fruit
    Always a hit in my house. Thank goodness for fresh fruit. Oranges, apple slices, banana chunks, grapes, berries, all make awesome kid snacks at school.
  • Rice Cakes 9 of 12
    Rice Cakes
    Rice cakes can be spread with sunflower butter or hummus or cream cheese.
  • Sunflower Seeds 10 of 12
    Sunflower Seeds
    These are about the only 'nut-like' things that are allowed at our school. I'd advise getting the shelled ones. It's a bit of a pain for toddlers to do it. Heck it's a pain for us grown-ups, too.
  • Tea Sandwiches 11 of 12
    Tea Sandwiches
    Tea sandwiches are a good way to get your kids to have a little vegetable (cucumber) at snack time. They are a little high maintenance for a snack for thirty, but if you have the time, the kids would love them!
  • Yogurt 12 of 12
    Yogurt
    Yogurt is an awesome way to get some calcium into snack time. Plus you can avoid having milk AND a snack.

Photo Credits:
Berries-Jeff Kubina/Flickr
Oranges – maesejose/Flickr
Yogurt- brenbot/Flickr
Sandwiches- SheriW/Flickr
Edamame-FotoosVanRobin
Sunflowers- jamesrundquist/flickr
Dried Fruit- storem/flickr
Tortilla Chips- treehouse1977
Rice Cakes- Arria Belli/Flickr
Bugs on A Log -shredded77/flickr
Hummus and Carrots -norwichnuts/flickr
Cheese and Crackers- cluczkow/flickr
Cheese Wheel – rosmary/Flickr

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