If you have a small child, it may be hard to tempt them into healthy snacking choices. After all, they’re inundated every day with ads and commercials and their friends’ food opinions. How can carrot sticks compete with chocolate-covered cartoon characters and pizza pockets?
Try fighting fire with fire. Food companies spend billions on bright, colorful packaging. Why not spend a few extra minutes to make your snack time just as exciting?
Make healthy food fun.
The way food tastes and smells is important, but the way it looks can also make a big difference, especially to toddlers.
- Use mini cookie cutters to cut sliced cheese, lunchmeats, crackers or bread into fun, bite-sized shapes.
- Arrange different foods in colorful cups, or use decorative food picks to make mini kebabs out of grapes or blueberries.
- Take some inspiration from Japanese bento lunches and create fun scenes or characters on a plate.
- Choose brightly colored foods when you can.
- Don’t be afraid to search for ideas from others!
Put your freezer to work.
Even healthy snacks can seem like sweet treats, once they’re chilled.
- Try washing and freezing grapes, blueberries, cherries or sliced strawberries and pineapple. If they freeze too hard, simply microwave them for 10-15 seconds.
- Homemade ice pops are another fun way to slip some nutrition into your kids’ snacking. Frozen pop kits like these are available from many stores, or you can make your own from ice trays and straws or craft sticks. Recipes range from simple frozen juices to sophisticated gourmet treats.