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Healthy Snacking for the New Year: Prune Energy Ball Recipe

This post was sponsored by the California Dried Plum Board. All opinions are my own 

Happy New Year! If you have resolutions this year to feed your family better, I encourage starting small. For example, one good area to start with could be daily snacks.

Snacks are a struggle for many of the moms I work with, when feeding their kids. One step to healthy snacking for kids is to offer set "snack" times, rather than allowing your child open access to the pantry. This will allow them to have an appetite come meal time.

As for what to offer for snacks, it doesn't have to be chocolate-dipped granola bars and fishy crackers. Keep it simple, and just think of offering 2 food groups. Here are a few simple ideas:

Balanced Snack Ideas

1) Peanut butter on whole grain crackers

2) Boiled egg and fruit

3) Berries and yogurt

4) Fruit smoothie

5) Veggies and hummus dip

6) Energy balls with nuts and fruit (see recipe below)

California Prune Energy Balls

These prune energy balls taste...

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After School Snacks

Does your child come home from school hungry? Mine often does. Sometimes his lunch kit comes home empty and other times it’s only half consumed. I will often offer him any veggie, fruit or grain (like muffin) hasn’t  been eaten from his lunch kit first. No use in throwing them out! If it’s a yogurt or perishable sandwich that comes home, unfortunately that needs to go straight to the garbage, as it’s likely gone bad sitting in a warm backpack all day.

After school snack is a GREAT time to get in veggies. They won’t ruin your child’s appetite for dinner, and since your child is quite hungry after school they will be more likely to eat foods they would usually turn down. Slice some veggies and serve with a bean dip. Or one of my childhood favourites was ‘ants on a log’: celery filled with peanut butter and topped with raisins. Since so many schools are nut-free, offer your child nuts and nut butter at home, as they are so...

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5 Top On-the-go Snacks for Kids

Whether your summer is full of road trips or day-trips to the park, if your kids are like mine, their first question is “Do you have any snacks mom?” Us moms have to be prepared to avoid hangry kids and repeated, expensive trips to the lake ‘snack shack’ store. Here are some ideas for easy, portable snacks:

1) Fresh fruit is easy to grab and healthy. But can be a mushy, juicy mess at the bottom of your diaper bag! I love dehydrated fruit, which is becoming easier to find at your Cost-co or grocery store. Bonus –it’s very light to lug around!

2) Dried fruit and nuts (or trail-mix) are another go-to for my kids. It’s energy and nutrient-dense, and doesn’t take up too much space in the diaper bag! You can also make your own snack mix with add-ins like: whole grain cereal, popcorn, pretzel sticks pumpkin or sunflower seeds, nuts & your favourite dried fruit.

3) Keep baggies of sliced veggie sticks in the fridge for easy-to-grab...

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