I tend to have 2 methods for packing snacks healthy snacks for my kids.
Happens 5 minutes after we are supposed to leave for a playdate and I am frantically opening my cabinets and fridge and pulling out anything that can be categorized as a snack into an oversized tote that I double as a cooler. Sometimes healthy snacks get tossed in, but most of the time it’s a variety of opened boxes of crackers, a rotten apple and a bunch of string cheese. It’s pretty much a hot mess.
When I take all of 3 minutes and prepare a snack box for my toddler. The snack box has 3-4 simple and healthy snacks that fit right into pre-portioned sections that are colorful and appealing to the eye. I had this small bento box already, but this system can take place in any container or in baggies.
Let’s just say that method 2 is a lot easier to carry around in my purse then an entire tote of snacks;)
Reasons to love these on-the-go healthy snacks for kids and toddlers:
- great snacks to take to school
- great snacks for on-the-go
- great snacks for after school
- healthy and balanced
- will give kids energy
- contain both homemade and store bought foods
- great for both toddlers and kids
- can pack several days worth of snacks all in one go
What’s In each of these on-the-go healthy snacks for Kids:
I try to balance out each box so they each have a protein, a fruit or veggie and then something fun. And because we are making these in 3 minutes or less, I tried to keep each box loaded with foods that you could have on hand during the week
- chopped fruits
- sliced or chopped veggies (with a dip)
- dried fruit
- variety of cheese slices or sticks
- pre-made or homemade pouches
- special treats:)
What you need to make these on-the-go healthy snacks for kids and toddlers:
- A Bento Box Container – I have both of the Steeltainer and Innobaby versions of the bento box pictured below, and they are basically the exact same snack box. But my one word of caution is that the divisions between the food do not keep the food separated, especially if you use the muffin molds. But all I do to prevent that is fold a paper towel to fit into the box, place it on top of the snack and close the lid. This totally prevents the solid food from moving around (this won’t work with yogurt of liquid foods), plus they get a napkin to use during snack!
- Reusable Muffin Containers – great for snacks, lunches or as a muffin mold.
- Reusable Pouches – my kids have been using these for years and still love when I pack them for a snack.
- Small Dip/Treat Containers – these are the cutest containers and my kids love them. We have had ours for over 5 years and they are still going strong!
But before we move on, I would love to know (in the comments) what is your favorite snack to pack for your kid or toddler?
Now, let’s get snacking!
Top – raspberries (cut in half for younger toddlers), granola bar cut into small chunks and half of a banana. This granola bar is from Cliff Bars for Kids, but any granola bar that is lower in sugar and has a good amount of protein in it is a good choice for toddler snack time.
Bottom – apple and celery slices with almond butter dip and raisins. I like to cut my apple and celery into long strips as toddlers seem to have an easier time holding and dipping these longer pieces of food.
Top – multi-grain chips and sweet pepper dippers with hummus and a strawberry apple pouch. If you don’t want to serve chips to toddler, you can easily sub in a few wedges of pita bread or some whole wheat crackers. These chips made by Late July and are made with chia, quinoa, millet, amaranth and flax so I feel pretty good about serving a couple to toddler as a special treat.
Bottom – spinach oat muffin (or any healthy muffin you prefer), yogurt covered raisins and mandarin orange sections. This muffin was made by using this pumpkin blender muffin recipe and adding in a couple handfuls of spinach. I sometimes cut my toddlers muffins or sweet bread into chunks if she will be eating it on the go, it’s a little less messy this way.
Top – apple slices and a homemade trail mix made with cashew pieces, craisins and dried blueberries. I always squeeze a little lemon juice on my apples to help them from discoloring before snack time.
Bottom – Carrot strips with ranch, crackers and kiwi chunks. This snack box doesn’t have a ton of protein in it, so I would probably carry a cheese stick with me just in case this snack doesn’t have enough lasting power in it, cuz we all know that a hungry toddler is never any fun.
Top – blackberries (cut in half for younger toddlers), cheese circle and pirates booty. Pirates booty is my toddlers favorite snack ever! So it’s an extra special treat for her to get some for snack time.
Bottom– cut grapes, cut cherry tomatoes, half of a hard boiled egg and string cheese. The only way my toddler will eat cherry tomatoes is if I cut them in half (kids are so weird). So instead of assuming your toddler doesn’t like a food, try serving them it in a different way.
Top – snapea’s crunchies, pineapple chunks and cubes of cheddar cheese. I was completely out of fruit when I was making this snack, so I took some frozen pineapple and thawed them in a bowl with some warm water right before packing this box up. We always have frozen fruit on hand for smoothies, but I always forget to use them in their thawed state for easy snacks.
Bottom – blueberries (cut in half for younger toddlers), dried apricots (can also cut these for younger toddlers) and graham cracker sandwiches with cream cheese. I called these graham cracker sandwiches ‘cookies’ for a long time before I got busted by my older daughter;)
Top – avocado chunks, strawberry chunks and some organic animal crackers. Just like with apples, I use a squeeze of lemon on cut avocado from keeping it from discoloring.
Left – shelled pistachios, dried cherries (can be cut in half for younger toddlers) and sliced cucumbers. Pistachios (shelled, roasted and unsalted) are one of my favorite nuts for toddlers because since they are a softer and smaller nut, they tend to be easier for younger toddlers to eat.
Right – dried pineapple, multigrain cereal, purple carrot sticks and a frozen yogurt tube. Purple carrots are always a big win with my toddler!
MORE HEALTHY TODDLER RECIPES YOU’LL LOVE –
- 7 Healthy Popsicles for Baby + Toddler
- Strawberry Lemonade Slushies for Toddlers + Kids
- Easy Watermelon Slush for Toddlers + Kids
- Sweet Beet Dreamsicles for Baby + Toddler