Great, Nutritious Summertime Snacks

Columnist Kellyanne Koemp has some ideas for cool snacks for the kids when the weather is hot.

The kids are home from school for a few more weeks.

They have been driving you crazy all summer with, “I’m bored!” or “I’m hungry!” Normally, when we are dealing with moderate weather in any other season I am a huge advocate of getting out the mixing bowls and making some cookies. Let’s face it, the last few weeks have been so warm TV stations are baking their cookies in a car! Who wants to warm up the kitchen needlessly? 

Not I! So I have come up with some “cool” (both figuratively and literally) snack ideas to make your kids smile, and make you happy that they aren’t filling up on junk. 

The first idea is a HUGE one in my house. Hummus and carrots! Even my hot dog and “Chippie” (tortilla chips) child LOVES baby carrots. I’m quite sure it has something to do with the word “baby” but, none the less, it gets her to eat something good for her.

If chickpeas aren’t your thing (since sometimes they are a No-No for those with peanut allergies) then you can make a “hummus-like” dip out of black beans or cannellini beans. The simple recipe is as follows: 

Basic Bean Dip:

  • 2 cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained (or black beans)
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed or to taste
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tsp cumin (for black bean version)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Put into a food processor and pulse until smooth.  

U.N.K.S.- The Ultra Nutritious Kids Snack! Okay people, this snack “invention” won me the 6th grade Woodbury Middle School Invention Convention! A large part of it might have been my two adorable younger siblings photos used on the triboard, but I like to think the snack is a stroke of genius in getting your kids to eat “the good stuff."

  • 2 carrots (washed and peeled)
  • 1 cup peanut butter (crunchy or creamy)
  • 1/8 cup dry milk
  • ¼ cup raisins

Spread on rice cakes or bread of your choice. As you can see ALL major food groups are represented here. First, grate up the carrots and put in a bowl, add the peanut butter, milk and raisins. Have your kids take turns stirring until completely incorporated. The kids will have no clue it is good for them and they are getting the basic food groups all in one snack! 

Trail mix… careful with this one, though: whenever I make this it’s gone almost immediately between my husband and two kids! Possible additions include but are not limited to:

  • dried cranberries
  • dried blueberries
  • dried pineapple
  • dried apple pieces
  • sunflower seeds
  • peanuts or cashews
  • chocolate candy coated treats
  • almonds
  • chocolate, white or peanut butter chips
  • pretzels
  • tiny crackers

The possibilities are endless, really. It all depends on what you want to allow your kids to eat. The most important thing to remember is make the snacks fun and keep the kitchen cool in the hot summer time. 


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