11 Dietitian-Approved Pantry Snacks Your Kids Will Love, Too
As we kick off the New Year I thought I’d share a peek inside my bag to share my favorite healthy snacks for kids and adults made with good-for-you ingredients.
These snacks are made with wholesome ingredients and provide nutrition benefits which means they receive my registered dietitian nutritionist seal of approval. Fun shapes, crunchy and interesting textures, and portable packaging makes them ideal to store in your car to hand out between after school activities. Plus, none of these snacks require refrigeration when you’re on the go.
Here are 11 of my favorite wholesome snacks for kids
Crunchy and Savory
Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Veggies Crackers in Sweet Carrot: Goldfish crackers are always a staple in our home. I was excited to see this new veggie variety on our last trip to Target. They are just as tasty as the cheesy counterpart and I love that they are made with wheat flour and carrot powder. One serving provides an excellent source of vitamin A and about 1/3 serving of carrots. I dig the cute carrot shapes, too.
Harvest Snaps Green Pea Snack Crisps (Gluten-free): I always have these on hand as a veggie side option for meals. They’re a baked crisp made from green peas that are crunchy with a hint of salt. They come in a bunch of flavors and varieties (my personal favorite is the Black Bean Snack Crisps in Chili Lime). Check your produce aisle (not the snack aisle) for all the flavor choices. One serving provides a good source of dietary fiber and protein.
Bare Baked Crunchy Sea Salt Beet Chips (Gluten-free): I always look for ways to eat more veggies throughout the day and these chips hit the mark. They’re savory and taste like oven-roasted beets. One serving provides an excellent source of dietary fiber and potassium.
Parm Crisps, Cheddar (Gluten-free): If you hadn’t noticed yet, milk and dairy foods are a hit in our house (my husband is from Wisconsin after all) so any variety of cheese is adored like these 100% cheese snacks. They’re savory and filling. One serving has 7 grams of protein and is a good source of calcium. I also love to add these to salads and soups when I cook at home.
Sweet and Refreshing
Welch’s Fruit ‘n Yogurt Snacks (Gluten-free): These yogurt snacks are made with fruit and covered in a low-fat yogurt coating. I grab a pack when I crave something chewy and sweet. Hint: the blueberry favor tastes like Swedish fish. They’re also a yummy addition to a homemade trail mix. One pouch is an excellent source of vitamins A and C and a good source of vitamin D and calcium.
Horizon Organic Low-Fat Milk Box (Gluten-free): You may be surprised to find these on the grocery shelf and not in the dairy aisle. While my kids love them chilled, they don’t require refrigeration which makes them easy to pack in lunches. One box delivers eight grams of protein and is a good source of vitamin A and D. Not a fan of white milk? Give the chocolate, strawberry and vanilla flavors a try for the same nutrition goodness.
Freeze Dried Strawberries (Gluten-free): The kids adore their “astronaut fruit.” It’s tricky to carry around fresh berries in your bag all day, but the freeze dried version makes it a breeze. Strawberries are a favorite, but we also like freeze dried raspberries, bananas, grapes and mango. I find these in all different brands and varieties from my local grocery stores like Target, Aldi and Trader Joe’s. One serving provides an excellent source of dietary fiber and vitamin C.
Sweet and Refreshing (continued)
Dried Mango Strips (Gluten-free): This tropical fruit is delish in all forms, but the dried version is a fave in my house. It’s chewy and sweet and you will always find a bag of it on me especially for flights and long car trips. Mangoes contain over 20 vitamins and minerals and one serving (about 1/4 cup) provides 2 grams of dietary fiber and is an excellent source of vitamin C.
GoGo Squeez Smoothiez (Gluten-free): The Smoothiez are made with a combo of yogurt, fruit and gluten-free oats so it provides a more substantial pouch snack option for my littles. One pouch has a good source of vitamin D with 4 grams of protein and 6 grams of whole oats.
Perfect Bars (Gluten-free): I’m not a protein bar person at all so you know these have to be super delicious to make the list. I love them because they taste like a spoon full of PB and there’s no gross aftertaste or unsavory texture. This is my go-to mini meal to keep me satisfied during a day in and out of the car with 330 calories, 17 grams of protein and made with 20 superfood ingredients (think kale, kelp, papaya and spinach, to name a few). The Perfect Bar Kids is just the right portion for my kids with 7 grams of protein and made with 8 superfood ingredients. (P.S. I find these at Aldi for about $1.70/bar compared to $2.00 or more at other stores).
Good & Gather Date Bars (Gluten-free): The minimal ingredient date bars from Target’s new better-for-you brand, Good & Gather, are tasty and I love that they have only a handful of plant-based ingredients. The Lemon Date bars contain dates, cashews, almond and lemon. While I wasn’t exactly sure how all those ingredients would taste, the bar is sweet (but not overly), fresh tasting and totally satisfying. No fake flavors here. One bar has 5 grams of protein and is a good source of dietary fiber. I’m eager to try the Apple Pie and Banana Chocolate Chip bars next!
These are some of my favorite portable, wholesome and healthy snacks for kids and adults. They are all delicious and receive both my registered dietitian nutritionist and mom seals of approval.
Will you add any of these snacks to your grocery list? What are some of your favorite snacks to help keep you fueled on busy days?