5 Grab-n-Go Healthy School Snacks

by Sally on August 22, 2014

5 Grab-n-Go Healthy School SnacksDoes your child take a snack to school? Many do, to eat in their classroom or between school and sports practices. Sure, it’s easy to wash a piece of fruit–and ideally, it’s good to avoid waste with reusable food containers. But boy, it’s awfully nice to have packaged options on hand for mornings so nutty, you’re lucky if the kids are wearing matching shoes.

It may seem like junk food manufacturers have the market cornered on packaged snacks. But “packaged snack” doesn’t have to be synonymous with mini bags of chips, cookies, and gummy fruit snacks. More companies are creating packaged options that make healthy eating a little bit easier for busy people. I like that.

I’ve written before about snacks at school, how there are many different notions of exactly what a “healthy snack” looks like (read Will The Real “Healthy Snack” Please Stand Up?“).  So you may have other ideas for healthy school snacks–if you do, please share in the comments! But in the meantime, here are five that pass muster with me:

Naturipe Fresh Blueberries: Washed and ready to eat, these are sold in kid-sized packages rigid enough that the berries don’t get smashed in a backpack. But they’re also easy for little hands to open. (Available at retailers such as Wal-Mart, Safeway, and Winn-Dixie.)

5 Healthy (Packaged) Snacks For School

Tillamook Cheddar Cheese: String cheese is all well and good, but this is a yummy change of pace. (Find a store nearby that stocks them.)

5 Healthy (Packaged!) Snacks for School

Sabra Hummus With Pretzels: Kids will dig these little pretzel rings for dunking into protein- and fiber-rich hummus. Sabra also makes single-serve hummus cups sans pretzels, plus a grab-n-go salsa and tortilla chip kit.

5 Healthy (Packaged!) Snacks for School

Single Serving Carrots: Ready-to-eat baby carrots are sweet and satisfying. These are a store brand from Kroger–but other brands, like Grimmway, also makes snack-size carrot bags.

5 Healthy (Packaged!) Snacks for School

Justin’s Nut Butter Packets: These packets are the perfect two-tablespoon portion of nut butter. Just rip open the top and squeeze it onto apple slices, crackers or (the preferred method around here) right into your mouth. Save the sweetened ones for occasional treats–and be sure to ask about the nut policy at your school before packing them. (Go here to find a retailer near you that carries them.)

5 Healthy (Packaged!) Snacks for School

What packaged snacks do you send to school?

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Naturipe. I received blueberries to try and was compensated for my time. As with everything on this blog, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

{ 6 comments }

In Praise of Food Activism, Big & Small by Real Mom Nutrition

School is starting in the next few weeks. Are there are changes you’d like to see in your child’s school, like less sugar in the classroom or more events that get kids moving? If so, make this the year you get involved! Here are three ways to jump in:

1. Attend PTA meetings. It’s the very best way to know what’s going on and have a voice in school functions. Consider these next steps:

  • Suggest an alternative to the typical junk food fundraisers. Check out this guide to healthy (and profitable) fundraisers from Center for Science in the Public Interest.
  • Read this guide for parents from Corporate Accountability International if there’s fast food marketing in your child’s school and you’d like to change that.
  • Work with other like-minded parents to brainstorm solutions to what bothers you. Teachers and administrators hear plenty of griping, but concrete ideas (and offers to help) are much more effective. I started this simple Fruit Ninjas program after seeing how much fruit was going uneaten at breakfast.

2. Join the school’s wellness committee (or start one). You can create wellness programs and even help shape policies concerning food and physical activity. Consider these next steps:

3. Foster good communication with your child’s teacher. Ask (politely!) about how food is used, if at all, in the classroom. Consider these next steps:

  • Get facts about food in the classroom from The Lunch Tray’s Food In the Classroom Manifesto, plus ways educators can help get junk food out of schools with these ideas from Spoonfed.
  • Ask about celebrating birthdays without food–or go the non-food route for your own child and see if it catches on. Read my post 10 Food-Free Ways to Celebrate School Birthdays for creative ideas that kids and parents will love.
  • Arm yourself with the facts on candy rewards in the classroom. This White Paper from Casey Hinds of USHealthy Kids is a terrific summary of the current research and includes food-free strategies for classroom management.
  • Find out how to work with teachers to create a healthier classroom. School Bites created this Healthy Classrooms Initiative that includes resources and ideas you can use in your own school.

Good luck, have fun, and be part of the change!

{ 3 comments }

{Recipe} Whole Wheat Zucchini Muffins

August 14, 2014

This is a guest post by my intern, Hannah Bills, who blogs at Pretty Normal Diet. Over the last few months, Hannah has been helping me create recipes, take photographs, and brainstorm ideas, plus fetching my coffee and picking up my dry cleaning (kidding about that last part).  Hello all! My name is Hannah, sometimes known at Real Mom Nutrition […]

Read the full article →

I Tried It: Produce Delivery Service

August 11, 2014

Having an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables in the house is an absolute must for me–especially in the summer, when I can’t get enough of in-season peaches, melons, and berries. I buy a mix of conventional and organic produce on my weekly trip to the grocery store. In an ideal world, I also supplement with local […]

Read the full article →

{Recipe} Roasted Balsamic Brussels Sprouts

August 7, 2014

Poor, maligned Brussels sprouts. They’ve long been a punchline, shorthand for “yucky healthy food that nobody wants to eat”, and a dinnertime villain in children’s books–most likely because they were served boiled-to-mush one too many times by well-meaning parents. Now Brussels sprouts are finally getting their due. Roasting has become one of the most popular ways […]

Read the full article →

Tune In To Our New Podcast!

August 5, 2014

I’m so pleased to share a brand new project with you: A podcast! I’m collaborating with sociologist and mom Dina Rose, PhD (who writes the terrific blog It’s Not About Nutrition) for a podcast called The Happy Bite. Twice a month, we chat about topics related to kids and food. We combine my take on […]

Read the full article →

12 Signs Your Child is Constipated (And What To Do)

July 30, 2014

Constipation is extremely common among children. It’s the number-one source of belly pain for kids! Here’s something else that might really surprise you: Constipation can be a hidden cause of bedwetting. If you don’t think your child is constipated, you might want to think again, says Steve Hodges, MD, a pediatric urologist and co-author of the book It’s […]

Read the full article →

{Recipe} Real Simple Blueberry Jam

July 28, 2014

Blueberries are, hands-down, my favorite fruit. To me, it’s not really summer until I’ve picked many, many pounds at a local farm–then eaten so many that I get a stomachache. Still, I usually end up with leftovers. So I make muffins, pancakes, and fruit leathers and tuck a few bags away for the winter. I also love […]

Read the full article →

Why I Love My Old-School Recipe Book

July 23, 2014

Did you have a scrapbook as a child? I did. In the pages of mine are ticket stubs to U2 and Depeche Mode concerts, photos from church camp, and dried corsages from high school homecoming dances. I don’t know if kids today keep scrapbooks (at least the paper kind) but I’m so thankful for mine. It’s like a roadmap […]

Read the full article →

Why I Don’t Stress Out About Salt

July 21, 2014

I love salt. I lick it from my fingers after eating popcorn and regularly make a second pass around an ear of corn with the shaker. Apparently this penchant runs in the family, since my dad salts both watermelon and pizza. (Thankfully, we both have stellar blood pressure.) In my profession as a dietitian, my love affair with salt […]

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Read the full article →