In many ways, science says, kids are what YOU eat.
Kids’ eating behaviors are shaped by their own experiences with food and watching what others—like their parents—eat. If you eat a healthy diet, chances are your kids will too—and not just because you’re in charge of the shopping and cooking. Parents are their kids’ first role models. Even if you’ve had some bad habits in the past, your kids will be observing all the healthy changes you’re making now and may want to join in.1
Since you ARE in charge of the shopping and cooking, you can help yourself and your kids by not bringing tempting snacks into the house. It’s tough to be satisfied with an apple when your kids are crunching your favorite chocolate chip cookies.
It’s time to up your snack game! Stock up your kitchen with healthy snacks for kids that also fit into your healthy weight loss plan. Here are some easy snack ideas and healthy snacks for kids—plus some recipes—that will keep you and the kids happy, healthy and satisfied.
1. Fruit Kabobs with Yogurt Dip
Fruit kabobs are a fun and creative way to get in fiber and nutrition. All you have to do is grab some skewers and slide on your favorite fruits! Slice up any combination that you enjoy into bite-sized pieces. Sliced grapes, strawberries, bananas, watermelon, cantaloupe, whole raspberries and blackberries are all tasty options.
Houston Family Nutrition recommends serving fruit kabobs with a side of vanilla yogurt for dipping.2 Just make sure you are choosing a low-fat option that isn’t loaded with a ton of sugar. You could also purchase a plain low-fat yogurt and sweeten it up with a little stevia and vanilla extract.
2. Fruit Parfait
Instead of filling up on store-bought baked goods and sugar-filled desserts, consider making a healthy parfait at home. They are a tasty snack that doubles as sweet treat! Simply layer low-fat yogurt in a glass with fresh berries or fruit, then top with a sprinkling of granola.
Try to find a low-sugar granola at the store for the kiddos, or consider making this homemade Chocolate Granola recipe! > If you’re on the Nutrisystem weight loss plan, you can prepare your own personal parfait using the Nutrisystem Granola while the kids enjoy a different kind.
3. Homemade Potato Chips
Satisfy your sweet and savory cravings with a homemade chip recipe! When you make chips at home instead of buying them at the store, you can control the ingredients and calories that are added. Better yet, using an air fryer can really cut down on the fat by eliminating the need for tons of oil.
Lucky for you, The Leaf Weight Loss Blog has several healthier chip recipes that fit into your weight loss plan! They’re so good, even the kids will love them. Our BBQ Sweet Potato Chips recipe is easy to make and can be made in the oven or the air fryer. Get the full recipe here! >
4. Air Fryer Desserts
If your kids are always asking for a sweet treat, healthy dessert recipes are a must for your meal prep menu. Air fryer desserts are a great option because they’re quick, easy and fun to prepare.
Give our Air Fryer Skinny Chocolate Donuts a try! You and your kids won’t believe that this is a healthy snack, but it is. These whole wheat donuts are topped with a homemade chocolate glaze and taste just like you picked them up from the local bakery. Your kids will love how great they taste, and you’ll love how they fit perfectly into your Nutrisystem plan!
5. Veggie Sticks with Dip
A delicious dip is the ultimate hack for helping you and your kids get in your daily veggie servings. Simply chop up vegetables like carrots, celery and cucumbers into sticks and whip up an easy dip recipe to dunk them in. Buy pre-cut vegetables and you have a quick pick-me-up!
Our Buffalo Blue Cheese Dip recipe makes your veggie sticks taste like hot wings. Can’t handle the heat? Explore this list of 20 healthy dip recipes to find one your whole family will love! >
6. Energy Balls
Energy balls are sweet healthy snacks for kids that really pack in the nutrition! It’s all healthy stuff—oats, nuts, dried fruit and spices—but you and the kids will think you’re eating cookies. Most energy ball recipes only require a food processor and a little time in the fridge. Check out some of our favorite energy ball recipes below:
7. Homemade Granola Bars
Sure, you can buy granola bars at the grocery story. However, then you have no control over the fat and sugar content. Making your own granola bars at home is a much better option, as you can pick and choose the ingredients and flavors that your family loves.
Our Homemade No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Granola Bar recipe is easy and quick to make—just combine peanut butter, honey, rolled oats and semi-sweet chocolate bits in a saucepan, cool and press into a pan which sets in the freezer. You can make a couple of batches at the same time to last the entire week (unless the kids go back for seconds). Each bar is 199 calories. They even fit into your Nutrisystem plan as one Smart Carb and one PowerFuel.
8. Apple Slices and Nut Butter
Apples and peanut butter are a snack time staple. The dynamic duo pairs fiber-rich fruit with the healthy fat and protein that is found in nuts. This balanced snack is a great option to pack for s school or office lunches. Want to switch things up? Almond butter makes this old standby special. You can buy a jar of almond butter and smear one tablespoon on a sliced medium apple, or look for single-serving almond butter packets at the grocery store.
9. Ants on a Log
Every kindergartener’s favorite treat! Smear peanut butter on a celery stalk and stud with raisins. Just like the last snack, you can swap in almond butter for something different. You can even use different types of dried fruit instead of raisins. It’s a simple, three-ingredient treat that the kiddos will be asking for all week!
10. Healthy “Ice Cream”
Stop buying tubs of ice cream that are loaded with added sugar, fat and calories. If you have a powerful blender, you can easily make your own ice cream at home that’s just as delicious! “Nice cream” is the trendy frozen treat that everyone is blending up in their kitchen. Most recipes use bananas as the base as they create a creamy and decadent consistency that’s just like real ice cream. Then you can have fun and add all of your favorite toppings and additions.
To make a peanut butter and chocolate version of nice cream, grab your blender and combine a quarter-cup of powdered peanut butter with one medium frozen banana and a tablespoon of sugar-free chocolate syrup. Blend until creamy and then eat it right away. It doesn’t keep.
11. Black Bean Brownie Dip
You might want to keep the black beans as a secret ingredient when you serve this healthy snack to the kids. They’ll never know! They’ll also never know that medjool dates and maple syrup supply the sweet to this Black Bean Brownie Dip, which also includes unsweetened vanilla almond milk, Dutch processed unsweetened cocoa powder and chocolate chips. Serve it up with strawberries or graham crackers.
12. Spicy Buffalo Deviled Eggs
If your family loves buffalo wings, they’ll love this egg version made with hardboiled eggs, buffalo sauce and light mayonnaise. Each satisfying serving (one whole egg) is only 81 calories. You can count it as one PowerFuel if you’re on the Nutrisystem plan. Get the full recipe here! >
13. Banana Pops
This “popsicle” is healthier than any other option you will find at the store. Featuring fresh bananas and low-fat vanilla yogurt, Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego recommends peeling and cutting the bananas in half and sticking a popsicle stick in the flat end. You will then roll each banana in the yogurt.3
After coating it in the yogurt, we think these tasty pops would be even more delicious with a coating of chopped nuts or granola. Pop them in the freezer when your done so they can firm up before eating. Yum!
14. Chocolate-Covered Fruit
Fruits covered in chocolate are great healthy snacks for kids. They can even help out in the kitchen with this one! Simply melt some semi-sweet or stevia-sweetened chocolate in the microwave. Once it’s cool enough to handle, let the kids dip their favorite fruits in the chocolate. You can even use dried fruit like dried pineapple slices, mangoes, oranges, apricots or raisins. You can even sprinkle them with chopped nuts, seeds or even sprinkles!
Looking for more healthy snacks for kids? Click the link below for tons of after school snack ideas!: