In all this Sticky Summer Heat, kids want snacks, snacks and more snacks. "Snacking" can actually be a great way to eat in the summer. A snack is just a small meal. A small meal that's FUN to eat, full of FLAVOR, COOL and REFRESHING and, with a little creativity from you, HEALTHY! Turn "junk snacking" into cool kid eating. Fresh, juicy fruits and veggies from our Harvest Home Farmers' Markets can help you make small tasty meals (snacks) that satisfy hunger and keep you and your children cool, hydrated and healthy all summer long! (Click HERE to find a farmers' market near you)
SLURP: Juicy peaches, plums, blueberries, raspberries and watermelon. Eat them plain or have FUN! Serve them as faces on a plate: Peach slices for mouths, a plum nose and blueberry eyes. Use cookie cutters to make watermelon or any melon into irresistible shapes like stars.
LICK: Refreshing Popsicles are healthy and loaded with real fruit and even a few veggies.
- All Fruit Popsicle: Mix together in a blender or mash together 2 cups of berries and banana with 2 cups of plain or vanilla yogurt and 1/4 cup of sugar. Pour into a Popsicle mold, paper cups or an ice cube tray. Add sticks for easy eating. Freeze for 5 hours.
- Green Goddess Popsicle: Blend 1/2 cup sliced pineapple, mango or banana, 1/2 cup sliced strawberries and 1/3 cup raw kale or spinach with 1/4 cup of milk or yogurt. Flavor with 1/4 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract and 1 Tbsp of honey or maple syrup. Put in paper cups or Popsicle molds and freeze for 5 hours. (You won't taste the kale!)
Quick Tricks: Adding avocado makes Popsicles smoother, plus it adds healthy fat for energy, along with lots of vitamins, like C, E, K, and B for better health. Read more about avocados HERE.
CRUNCH: Tortilla pizza beats chips. Mound a little salsa and cheese on a small corn tortilla. Cook on a foil-lined tray in a toaster oven until cheese has melted and is brown at the edges. (Kids love to help make these.) Decorate with a bit of green pepper, cilantro, avocado or sour cream.
SIP: Fruit slushies are better than soda. Blend fruit and ice for a refreshing and healthy way to cool down. Try 2 cups watermelon, cut into cubes with 1-2 cups of ice. Less ice makes it easier to sip through a straw. More ice makes it easier to eat with a spoon. Try different fruit combos.
Have FUN and snack your way through a healthy summer. Remember healthy eating and exercise (PLAYING too) help fight obesity, diabetes and other lifestyle ailments.
Raspberry Oatmeal Cookies
Breakfast that's loaded with protein and fruit.
- 1 cup instant oats
- 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 2 Tbsp butter or coconut oil
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 honey
- 6 Tbsp fresh raspberries*
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- Line a cook sheet with parchment paper.
- Whisk together oats, flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.
- In separate bowl whisk together oil, egg and vanilla.
- Add flour mixture and stir. Fold in raspberries.
- Drop cookie dough into 15 rounded scoops on the cookie sheet and bake for 13-15 mins.
- Cool on a wire rake for at least 15 mins.
*Works great with blueberries too!
For "Cool" Kids
- Making Popsicles: Molds can be helpful and inexpensive. You can get them online or in stores that sell housewares. You may also use ice cube trays or paper cups. Just add Popsicle sticks when your mixture is half frozen.
- Try almond or coconut milk for a different flavor.
- Make your own lemonade or any fruit drink :
- Start with a simple syrup: Mix 1 cup sugar to 5 cups water. Bring to a slight boil so sugar dissolves. Cool. Add 1 cup lemon juice or a mixture of lemon and lime juice. Pour over ice! Add mint, slices of fresh ginger, basil or rosemary.
- Add fresh fruit and make ice Popsicles.
- Freeze blueberries, cherries or peas for a frozen, refreshing snack.
More small meal helpers:
- Drink Breakfast: A cool smoothie is a great start on a hot day.
- Peanut butter adds protein. Use it as a dip for carrots or spread it on celery sticks.
- Deviled eggs are a kid-friendly lunch with lots of protein. Hard boil the eggs. Scoop out the yolks, add a dash of mayonnaise and mustard. Top with dill or cilantro.
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