“I was too busy at recess to eat my snack. There wasn’t enough time to eat my snack today. I set my container down on the ground while I was playing and forgot to pick it up again. Why can’t I bring candy for my snack? Dessert means chocolate, not fruit. Can you please pack me a non-healthy snack today?”
Seven years as a parent of school-aged children and two children later, I have discovered that packing snacks can be just as challenging as packing lunches. Having nutritious snacks throughout the day is especially important for school-aged children because they help to keep their energy levels up and their minds alert.
Here are a few of our favourite lunchbox or recess snack ideas.
- Fruit: whole fruit, such as bananas, apples, grapes, and clementines. We haven’t had much luck with cut fruit in plastic snack bags, but they are perfectly suited for small containers in their lunchbox.
- Vegetables: grape tomatoes, mini carrots, celery sticks, sugar snap/snow peas, cucumber spears, and sliced peppers.
- Protein: cheese cubes, cheese strings, edamame, ham or turkey rolls.
- Carbohydrates: as many whole grain, high-fibre, low sugar options as possible, such as cookies, mini-muffins, crackers, air-popped popcorn, pretzels, and rice cakes.
What kinds of snacks do your children like to take to school?