Healthy snacks for kids: 10 child-friendly tips

Healthy snacks for kids don't have to be dull. Consider 10 tips for quick and healthy snacks.

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Snacking is a major pastime for many kids — and that's not necessarily bad. Nutritious snacking can help your child curb hunger throughout the day, as well as provide energy and important nutrients. Find out how to make healthy snacks for kids.

1. Keep junk food out of the house

Your child won't clamor for cookies, candy bars or chips if you don't keep them on hand. Set a good example by choosing healthy snacks yourself.

2. Go for the grain

Whole-grain foods — such as whole-grain pretzels or tortillas and high-fiber, whole-grain cereals — provide energy with some staying power.

3. Mix and match

Serve baby carrots or other raw veggies with fat-free ranch dressing or hummus. Dip graham cracker sticks or fresh fruit in fat-free yogurt. Spread peanut butter on celery, apples or bananas.

4. Broaden the menu

Offer out-of-the-usual fare, such as avocado, pineapple, cranberries, red or yellow peppers, or mangoes. Have kids choose a few foods and mix them together for a colorful snack.

5. Revisit breakfast

Serve breakfast foods as healthy snacks for kids in the afternoon. Consider dried cereal mixed with dried fruit and nuts or microwaveable oatmeal made with low-fat milk and mixed with unsweetened applesauce and cinnamon.

Apr. 12, 2014 See more In-depth