If there is one constant throughout the various stages of childhood, it’s that kids get hungry. For preschoolers, moms everywhere battle nutrition and portion control in an attempt to establish good eating habits. Preschoolers can be very fussy little eaters, too! How is a mom to break out of a snack-rut? Read on for a few ideas on how to switch up snack time for your preschooler.
Ants on a logs
This is a preschool teacher favorite, because this veggie/fruit/nut snack is cleverly disguised by a slightly disgusting name that little tots dig! Simply fill a celery stalk (a.k.a. “log”) with peanut butter and top with raisins! (Sounds questionable, huh? Makes you wonder about the desperate woman who pioneered this snack?) With nut allergies on the rise, cheese may be switched out for peanut butter. There are no real “log” rules. Ask you preschooler for suggestions and see what they come up with. (Celery filled with ice cream, anyone?)
Apples and cinnamon
This one is pretty straight forward, as it uses cinnamon to get picky eaters to eat apples! Slice up a green apple, sprinkle with cinnamon and watch your little preschooler’s face light up! Is it a healthy snack, or is it apple pie? It’s hard to tell. Which is why your 3-year old will look at you like you’re Mom-of-the-Year when you serve this up!
If there was an instruction book on how to be a parent, this would be on page 1, right? Surprisingly, a lot of preschoolers do not like milk. What’s a parent to do? You want Little Sally to have great teeth, strong bones and lustrous skin, but she scrunches her face up and sticks her tongue out each time you bring the milk out of the fridge. Squeeze a little chocolate syrup in there, and ease your conscious with the justification that Sally is at least ingesting milk. You can spin this idea by making a shake. Throw in a banana, a few ice cubes, maybe a couple chocolate chip cookies. Being a parent is all about being creative…and courageous!
This delightful snack is a nicer, friendlier relative of the potato chip. Kids love them, and you can feel better because they have the word “veggie” in them. They also have 30 percent less fat than potato chips, have all natural ingredients and no artificial colors or preservatives. There. Don’t you feel better about all the chocolate syrup you just squeezed into Little Sally’s milk? It’s all about checks and balances.
Ham/cheese/pickle roll ups
It’s Saturday mid-morning, your babies are whining about how boring the snack selection is, and you have a couple extra minutes you don’t ordinarily have. Wow those little fussbudgets with this idea: Smear cream cheese on a piece of deli ham. Place a dill pickle on one end of the piece of ham. Roll the pickle up. Slice into 1/4-inch slices. Place slices on crackers. These are real crowd pleasers, so make sure you have enough leftover ingredients to make another batch in about 2 hours when the kids start yipping at you again.