DIY Healthy Kids Snacks

When it's hot outside and your little one is very active, you may find he has a hankering for popsicles and other frozen treats. While many of the items on display in the supermarket aisles can be high in sugar and low in nutrients, you can make your own desserts that look just as appealing and are good for him, too. Better yet, you can involve your child in preparing these recipes. This can provide a wonderful opportunity to teach him the basics of nutrition so he'll understand more about what his body needs.

Make Your Own Healthy Kids Snacks

Please review the following ideas of health kids snacks you can make at home. You can also tailor these with your own creative touches to meet your child's specific preferences and tastes.

  • Pour orange juice (or some other type of natural fruit juice) in plastic Popsicle molds or in an ice cube tray and freeze. This makes a very easy- to-eat and refreshing summer treat. Better yet, these "DIY" popsicles will hydrate your child while providing a serving of the vitamins and minerals his body needs to stay strong and healthy.

  • Make push-up pops at home that are more healthful than the supermarket variety by combining just a few simple and inexpensive ingredients. Use your blender to mix up a cup of yogurt and add in two cups of fresh or frozen strawberries or blueberries. Blend until the consistency is smooth, then pour into push-up pop molds and freeze. This is an easy way to give him the calcium, protein and the antioxidants he needs.

  • Ice cream doesn't have to be high in fat, at least not if you make your own special version. Some dieticians suggest using bananas as the base for a non-dairy frozen treat that looks and tastes really great. Freeze bananas without the skin, then blend them into a creamy texture. Let your child decorate with chopped nuts, and fresh fruit to add some extra taste. Not only is this is a healthful way to meet his ice cream craving, but it also provides plenty of potassium, too.

  • When your child has the munchies, forego high-fat chips and opt for homemade trail mix instead. This is easy to create by combing his favorite whole grain cereal with other tasty foods, such as raisins, nuts and dried cranberries. You can serve the mix a little paper cup or fill a small plastic bag so it's easy to take on the go.

  • Ensure your child meets his recommended daily fruit intake by offering a variety of fruits served in fun and creative ways. For instance, try using a melon scoop to serve round "balls" of cantaloupe, watermelon and honey dew. (Just watch out for a choking hazard.) Carve out a watermelon rind to make a big "bowl" for your fruit salad, or make individual servings in a hollowed out orange peel. Let your child use his imagination to help to design the final product.

Don't Forget the Drinks

In addition to helping your child eat well this spring and summer with such healthy kid snacks, it's also important that he stays well hydrated throughout the day. Therefore, always offer plenty of fresh water along with these and other healthful treats.


Fresh For Kids

Food and Nutrition Research Institute