Sunday, July 27, 2014

{Healthy} Snacks for the Road


So, you are heading on a road trip but want to keep things healthy{ish}. This can be especially challenging with children that are extremely susceptible to the guiles of mass marketing. With some advance planning, though, you can keep things a little healthier. Getting the kids involved will also be more beneficial. If the kiddos are able to give a little input and make some of their own choices {withing parameters}, they will be more likely to eat healthy snack choices.
One place to start is to to compile a list of healthy snacks your kids already eat. Next, you will want to consider if these treats are easily portable or can be crafted into a portable form rather easily. If our daughter can help us with selection or preparation, we like to let her because she tends to be more excited about eating the snacks later.

We don't always bring the same items with us on every trip but here is a general idea of what we like to pack:
  • Mixed berries: I recommend rinsing, drying and cutting the berries before you leave. Berries are pretty compact and easy to bring. We often will put a little napkin at the bottom of the container to soak up moisture.
  • Trail Mix: You can actually take the kids to a store like Whole Foods where they can mix their own combos. Or, you can even make your own at home.
  • Fruit bars: We have found some fruit bars at Whole Foods called That's it that contain several pieces of fruit and nothing else. Pretty handy and healthy!
  • Nuts: We aim for nuts that are already shelled and not too messy. 
  • Dried fruit: Dried fruit not only is a healthy option but is less mess than some other options. However, depending on preferences, you may want to read labels looking for added sugar.
  • Granola bars: You can even make them yourself to cut down on sugar and throw in some fruit!
  • Cheese cubes: Who doesn't love cheese cubes? Having you cheese cut up already will save you headaches on the road. We like to bring a selection of different cheese so our daughter feels like she has a cheese plate!
  • Lemons: We often bring lemons, a knife and portable juicer (you know the old school kind) so that we can have some fresh squeezed lemon in our water. 
  • Hardy fruits and vegetables: We pick fruits and vegetables that last long and you can cut in manageable pieces. Cutting them small makes them pretty appealing to the little ones! We try to cut what we can ahead of time so that they are ready to go. However, it is important to have a bit of a reasonable idea of what you will use so you do not waste.
  • Hummus: If you are packing a cooler, hummus is a pretty good snack to bring along. You can easily dip veggies in hummus for a little protein.
  • Dark chocolate squares: Ok, this is not necessarily healthy per se--but a treat of a square off of a dark chocolate candy bar may satisfy your kid's sweet tooth and keep them honest. 

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