Adapt that Snack – A few ways to add good stuff on the go!
Miss Roo snacking on the go.
Snack time at our house has always required a little creativity. This challenge evolved because my girls are grazers and rarely sit still to eat their snack at the designated times. Once Miss Roo was born and we determined her gluten sensitivity, I spent a great many days preparing different snacks for Miss Moo and myself. Now that we have removed gluten in our home completely and established better health for all of us, snack time should be a snap right? Not so much. Where before I could cut a few veggies or fruits and supplement with some cheddar bunnies, most of our go-to convenience snacks are out of the equation. So, I’ve tried to compile a list of healthy and grain-free snacks that we use here at our house.
Keep Cold Snacks
Image Credit Cookingfoodie.blogspot.com
We all love the ability to have good, fresh snacks for our children and ourselves. I feel very accomplished on the evenings when I am able to take 20-30 minutes to cut fruit, veggies, and cheese for the next day. Here are a few of our favorite keep cold snacks.
- Fruit — This snack is easy. It’s also easy to do in the summer and fall due to the wonderful fruits that are in season. For small toddler hands like Miss Roo, I will cut grapes, strawberries, blueberries, etc. into bite size pieces and place them in a snack cut or reusable bag. This delivery usually works best for her because she can stay mobile and exercise independence. For Miss Moo, she prefers a big girl bowl. However that doesn’t lend itself to outings quite like Miss Roo’s containers, so sometimes we use the “fancy” kabob sticks. It’s fun for her, easy to pack in a gallon size bag, and makes assembly fairly quick.
- Cheese — Cheese sticks and cheese cubes are a go to at our house as well. One of my biggest reasons for adding this snack daily, besides the girls moonlighting as mice, is the fat content. I am NOT one of the moms who buys the low fat/no fat cheese and cheese sticks. Getting good fats into two very active girls is high on my list and not always easy to accomplish with snacks. It helps that the girls like various cheeses — cheddar, Colby jack, Gouda — so we rotate through then for some variety . I tend to shop at Whole Foods for my cheese. One block of their cheese runs about $2.99. I can cut that cube and it will serve for at least two snacks if paired with another item.
- Veggies — These are probably a no-brainer for most moms. They are quick, always in the fridge, and can pair with pretty much anything. My girls tend to prefer cucumbers and carrots currently, but I think that’s a result of the impending teeth for both of them. If you buy your carrots at the store, remember to get whole carrots if you can for all the good stuff in the “peels”. We eat both whole carrots cut and baby carrots already prepared, depending on what is available in our share and at the farmers markets before heading to the store.
- Eggs — Hard boiled eggs are one of my sneaky fat and protein snacks. The girls like them because we get local, grass fed, free range eggs so they pack TONS of flavor and they like being able to smack the eggs to crack them open. I like them because they get fat, protein, omega-3′s, and a compact snack all at one time. I also like to take them along for myself so I have an extra boost to chase them around. I try to hard boil about 6 at a time so it will last at least two days. If we don’t snack on them, they’re also ready for salads at dinner, which is also handy.
- Frozen bananas — Okay, so these are best served in the summer. But what a great, cold, non drippy snack for the summer! It also is really great for the girls with the teething. I use popsicle sticks for handles and pop them in the freezer at the start of nap. Always a hit- but it doesn’t really travel well. Freezing other summer fruits, like peaches, can also be a huge help for those sore gums.
- Chips and “guac” — Miss Moo is particular about things being too spicy but Miss Roo LOVES to have a little kick in her food. Guacamole have been a difficult balance to maintain. My solution has been to use an avocado, lime juice, and a little bit of a local seasoning called Bangarang. Mush it all together and suddenly you have not too spicy “guac.” Paired with some blue corn chips the girls tear this up! I love to see another good fat getting into their systems and encouraging their palates to tolerate spices.
On the Go Chill-Free Snacks
Image Credit www.fruitsstar.com
Sometimes, its impossible to prepare an on the go snack that requires longer than 30 seconds to pack. These snacks have always been a challenge for me now that wheat is not an option for us. I also try to keep our sugar to a minimum which is even trickier. Here are a few quick snacks that work for us.
- Bananas — I love that I can throw them in any bag, then into a 110 degree car, and they are STILL edible! The girls will never turn down bananas. While they don’t have any fat, they are about 90 calories of natural goodness, rather than throwing in a GF cookie that had grams grams of sugar.
- Homemade Trail Mix — We always have a large variety of nuts in our pantry. Drew loves to roast peanuts and make his own peanut butter. It’s very easy to take some peanuts, raisins, (maybe a few chocolate chips) almonds, and cranberries into a container and mix. We buy our raisins in the bulk section before they have any sugar added to them. I love this snack because it throws more fat into their day, is easy to vacuum up from our van, and is very easy to manage in a park or on a walk. I know that some families have to consider nut allergies, but this snack works for us. If you have a nut allergy, try this next idea.
- Dried fruit — When Drew suggested buying a dehydrator I though he was a little crazy. I was totally against the idea of one more appliance in our house. Was I wrong! Dried fruit has been a life saver! Combined with our fruit shares this summer, we’ve been able to dry strawberries, apples, bananas, grapes, and blueberries. I’m sure we’ve dried more but I’ve lost track. We dry a batch, put them in jars in the pantry, and they’re ready for snacks, salads, oatmeal, etc. If you don’t have a dehydrator, there are tutorials for how to use the oven.
- Beef jerky – This little snack was Drew’s main motivation for the dehydrator purchase. Again, I was skeptical. He has begun working on building his hiking gear and we’ve been researching high protein, trail friendly snacks. This quest led us to jerky. After he made his first batch, I was sure the kids would turn their nose up at it. They ate half the bag! How could I argue with that! We used grass fed london broil with some spices (Drew does all the spicing, I do the eating). One trip over to Google gives you TONS of jerky recipes.
We Even Snack on Junk
Eating veggie straws on a "quick" target trip.
I am embarrassed to say that we do occasionally snack on junk. The girls love Annie’s Gummy Bunnies
and their new PB&J
granola bars. Veggie Booty is quick to grab and go. Gummies and granola are two things that I just haven’t take the time to learn to make. And quite honestly, with two kids under three, sometimes I just need to grab a box I can open when we get to the parking lot because my 30 minute morning errands turned into 2 hours of mutiny. I try be aware of the fact that sometimes I can’t prevent all junk, no matter how much I want to protect them. I just have to make the best choices I can and do my best.
How do you handle snacking on the go? What good fat, good protein tricks do you have?
Like what you’ve read? Subscribe so you never miss a post! You can also follow us on Facebook or Pinterest. Thanks for reading!