9 Healthy All-in-One Snacks

9 Healthy All-in-One Snacks

In one of my last posts I shared some snack inspiration.  I simplified snack prep with a mix & match list of foods to combine - foods that included a protein + carb + fat. Being a nutritionist, I love that list of simple ideas that I (and you) consisting mainly whole foods. Being a foodie, I love THIS list with fun combinations of whole foods with healthy all-in-one snacks.  No need to pack 2-3 separate foods because these snacks contain carbohydrate, protein and fat - in every bite. It’s so easy to fall into a rhythm of offering similar foods over and over. I recently noticed I was getting a little lazy and uninspired when it came to packing snacks.  Clementines, avocado, roasted chickpeas, pear, hardboiled eggs were the staples being rotated around throughout the week.  That gets boring for everyone - and doesn’t help my little ones expand their palate. So I had to give myself a kick in the butt and start thinking outside the snack box.  Starting with these yummy all-in-one snacks. Healthy All-in-One Snacks No-bake energy balls (Raspberry Coconut Balls) Granola balls (Made Good Granola Minis) Smoothies (Blueberry Hemp Smoothie - you can omit maca powder) Egg muffins (Zucchini Frittata Cups) Cookies (Pumpkin Cookies) Dip (Roasted Red Beet Hummus) Pudding (Avocado Carob (Chocolate) Pudding) Granola bars (No-Bake Hemp and Chia Protein Bars) Brownies (Black Bean Brownies) Do you have any quick, healthy and complete snack favourites for your family?  Please share them below! If you’re feeling stuck on what to pack for lunch grab this FREE Cheatsheet.  You will learn which 5 things are needed to create a balanced lunch (and meal) for your...
How to make quick and healthy snacks for kids

How to make quick and healthy snacks for kids

I’ve had the pleasure of meeting with loads of awesome moms lately at local workshops with Mommy Connections, MumNet, and other “mommy groups”.  At every single one of those workshops, I can bet my bottom dollar that I will be asked this ONE QUESTION: What quick and healthy snacks can I give my kids [before bed, on the go, for school]? I’ll rhyme off a list of my favourite quick and healthy snacks for kids, often forgetting most of them.  So I thought it would be wise to get this list of snacks for kids down on ‘paper’ as a reminder for me and a reference for parents. Before I dive, let me step back and give you a few pointers: Food for Thought: Every snack should have some protein (or fat) to keep kids satiated longer, and those blood sugar levels stabilized.  In other words, a banana or a biscuit on its own isn’t sufficient.  You’ll feel satiated briefly and then the sugar cravings (and tantrums) will rush in. Include a veggie or fruit in all snacks for nutrient-density.  Crackers, bread, and cookies have their place but don’t offer the same nutrition bang for every bite. Quick and Healthy Snacks for Kids This mix & match list will help you crete quick & dirty clean healthy snacks for your kids (most with no cooking required)! Pick one of these 10 foods These foods contain mostly carbohydrates. Fresh fruit (berries, banana, melon, plum, pear, etc) Fresh cut veggies (peppers, cucumbers, carrots, snap peas, etc) Dried fruit (apple chips, banana chips, prunes, unsulfured apricots, mango, etc) Roasted nori sheets Crackers (TIP: choose a brand like Mary’s Crackers for more nutrition)...
Sneaky Spinach Muffins (without being sneaky at all)

Sneaky Spinach Muffins (without being sneaky at all)

If only our kids ate more green vegetables we wouldn’t have to go to crazy lengths, like making gluten-free “Spinach Muffins”. If you’ve seen my Picky Eating 101 Webinar you know my stance on getting sneaky in the kitchen.  It can totally work if the goal is to get our little ones to EAT something green.  On the other hand, it’s not an ideal strategy if we want our little ones to LEARN to like green stuff (or what it is). My girls have a well-rounded list of preferred foods, but spinach isn’t one of them.  No surprise there.  Geesh, I don’t even know a lot of adults who gush over raw greens of any variety (excluding my social circle of kale-obsessed nutritionist friends). If a child isn’t big on veggies, we start with the basics like these 5 great veggies for kids (and picky eaters).   And with these Spinach Muffins.   Admittedly I was nervous when I slid Sienna up to the counter to see my latest experiment.  Green Muffins. I worried that she would run away when she saw 4 cups of blended spinach going into the muffin batter, but instead she was intrigued by the bright green concoction. Even better, when they came out of the oven she willingly tasted these green muffins and happily ate one (although her expression below would suggest otherwise?). Spinach (like other raw greens) has a distinct texture making it difficult to chew for kids.  So finely chopping or blending spinach leaves into foods is a-ok…..if we Show our little ones we are putting green stuff in the blender Let our little ones help add greens to the blender (and...
Made Good Granola Minis Recipe

Made Good Granola Minis Recipe

I’m going to take a wild guess that you’re one of the hundreds (ok, thousands) of moms who love Made Good Granola Minis and Made Good Granola Bars.  What’s there not to love? Made Good has done a good great job solving snack problems for parents - it’s free of allergens (dairy, nut, peanut, egg, sesame-free, etc.), school-friendly, and healthier than most packaged snacks.  The hidden serving of vegetables is a bonus, especially for parents with “picky eaters”. That’s why I’m a little giddy about this homemade alternative - my successful attempt at a Made Good Granola Minis Recipe (Chocolate Banana flavour).  Otherwise known as the “Poor Mom’s” version or “wannabes”. I don’t keep many packaged treats around because 90% of the time we keep things simple with snacks: essentially mini meals with lots of whole foods. The other 10% of the time we will keep things even simpler and I’ll invest in pre-packaged snacks.   That’s when Made Good Granola Minis make it into my cart and my girls start gushing over those bite-sized granola balls. I’ve always been a big saver, \except when it comes to food.  With all the organic, local, grass-fed, farmer’s market products on my list, grocery bills get expensive.  So, I’m trying to streamline spending a bit and cut back on the non-necessities. At about $5 a box, Made Good Granola Bars and Minis had to go. As they came off my shopping list, I started to envision a homemade replacement and the recipe experimentation started this weekend. My girls were the guinea pigs and I recorded their reaction live after their first bite of my “Poor Moms” Made Good Granola Minis recipe.  Thankfully my eldest uttered the words “I like it mommy” (completely...
Should we make separate meals for picky eaters?

Should we make separate meals for picky eaters?

Yes, our little ones are special.   Every single one of them!  But should we make special and separate meals for picky eaters? However, it doesn’t mean that moms and dads should go out of their way to make alternate meals just for them…and then have to whip up another meal to suit the rest of the family.  Let’s talk about how to handle separate meals for picky eaters. The survey says… 1 in 4 children who are “picky eaters” continue to be picky as adults.  In other words, 25% do not outgrow their reluctance to try new foods unless the right mealtime strategies are used. (Source). And unfortunately, preparing the same few favourite foods (over and over) and separate meals for picky eaters is one sure way to limit their exposure and ability to grow out of picky eating. So, from one mom (with a former picky eater) to another….I have to tell you that it’s super important we set our kids up for healthier eating habits sooner than later.  That’s exactly why I show parents exactly how to do this (step-by-step) in the 6-week online program - The Picky Eater Protocol. Alternate meals can backfire Pressure is one of the biggest reasons why our kids don’t eat well.  Often parents are surprised when I pinpoint things they innocently say or do, that are forms of pressuring their kids to eat.   These are the things that I did at most meals, unaware that they were amplifying my daughter’s pickiness. Well, preparing separate meals for picky eaters can put pressure on them to eat it.   Even more so if we say “Look what mom made JUST for you“. The interpretation for most...
How to Meal Plan for Picky Eaters

How to Meal Plan for Picky Eaters

I have a few “mommy friends” who swear by meal planning, but I didn’t get what all the hype was about.  Nor did I want to add another “to do” to my ever-growing list. But there was no escaping it.  Meal planning was popping up on Pinterest, Facebook, mommy blogs, etc.  Everyone was meal planning and I was…struggling. The FOMO (fear of missing out) kicked in.   I wanted in on whatever miracles “meal planning” was bringing other moms. I am (or was) that mom who planned meals on the fly.  Frantically trying to decide what to make for Wednesday dinner on Wednesday morning.  My challenge wasn’t necessary making the meal.  It was the lack of a plan for those meals. So I jumped on the Meal Planning bandwagon for a taste of what everyone else was raving about. Meal Planning = Sanity Saving Having a plan has been liberating.   Especially when you have a little one who is a selective or picky eater. It’s easy to fall into the trap of making the SAME few recipes over and over and over.   That’s when the “short-term phase” of picky eating can evolve into a “long-term problem”.  Variety is crucial to their willingness to explore and try new foods.  And so is our approach at mealtimes - which doesn’t include bribing, saying one more bite, or throwing on the iPad.  All of the things I was guilty of doing in attempt to get Sienna to eat. I wish I knew then, what I know now My struggles with making meals were exacerbated because I was trying to get something…ANYTHING into my picky eater.  I was doing it all wrong, and that’s why I...