Summer Time Snacks
Summer usually provokes thoughts of warmer weather, outdoor fun and vacations. For parents, the idea of Summer may bring feelings of snack anxiety as we battle the need for an endless supply of crave worthy munchies that are both pocket-book and kid friendly. To aid in your search to cure the snacking woes, check out these healthful ideas for the whole family.
Frozen Fruit. This sounds pretty simple, and maybe a bit boring, until you consider the endless opportunities an unassuming bag of frozen berries can hold. You can do it yourself and buy, wash and bag your fruit of choice, or pick up a ready-to-go version from your local grocery. Snack on these refreshing treats as is or try one of our suggestions: add to yogurt or low fat ice cream, use as an enticing addition to water, blend to your texture of choice to make a sorbet or add a bit of milk to create a smoothie. Frozen fruit also makes a great addition to pancakes, cereals, oatmeal and salad.
DIY Trail Mix. If you buy the pre-made versions of this snack, you may be getting more preservatives and fillers at a higher price than if you go with your own original blend. Buy shelf stable ingredients in bulk and have fun mixing into bags or jars of your choice. Consider a variety of nuts (go unsalted – you won’t miss the added sodium), banana chips, coconut flakes (lightly toasted), dark chocolate pieces, dried cherries, sun flower seeds, granola, raisins, cereals, dried pineapple, gogi berries and chia seeds. The beauty of this snack is that it not only is super portable and will last all Summer – but you control the contents!
Create Fresh Flavors. Capitalize on the seasonal produce and use this Summer as a chance to get your family to try some unique flavor combinations. Focus on make-ahead options that are no cook, no fuss and can fill in as a snack or side for any meal. We recommend: diced watermelon sprinkled with feta cheese, sliced heirloom tomatoes with balsamic drizzle and fresh mozzarella or chunks of cantaloupe wrapped with prosciutto ham. Consider diced cucumber and avocado tossed with salt and lime juice or diced tomato with fresh corn (off the cob) and red onion both as great combos on their own or as perfect pairs for tortilla chips.
The key points to Summer snacking success are to be as fresh as possible, as easy as possible and above all – have fun exploring new flavors!