Balanced Diet

After-School Snack Ideas: Quick And Healthy Treats To Refuel Your Kids

Written by Kaushiki Gangully
Published: May 23, 2024

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School has become a half-day battle for kids with multiple periods and complex chapters crammed in a few hours. But what happens when kids are too tired to make it beyond midday, exhausted to continue with more tuition, outdoor activities and classes lined up for the day? Instead of letting your kids burn out by overcompensating, ensure a safe space for them to speak out about their mental health and dietary needs.

And since food plays a main part in maintaining the body’s energy levels, mood, and immunity system, it is necessary to pay special attention to it, especially to their mid day meals and snacks. Here are some quick and healthy after school snack ideas that will help your kids refuel to race through the rest of their day.

After-School Quick And Healthy Treats To Refuel Your Kids
1. Celery and Peanut Butter

Very low in calories, celery is known for its health benefits. It also has certain pharmacological characteristics, like anticancer, anti-obesity, anti-hypertensive, and anti-hepatotoxic properties. Thanks to its promotion of nerve cell health and prevention of memory loss, celery is a superfood that pairs perfectly well with peanut butter, both taste and texture-wise. The refreshing combination of crunch celery with luscious peanut butter is hard to say no to, especially with its stamina-enhancing traits.

2. Whole Wheat Pasta Primavera
whole-weat-pasta-primavera

A pasta dish traditionally made with a creamy sauce and fresh vegetables, parents can always opt for healthier alternatives, by making the sauce at home, using Greek yoghurt, olive oil, parmesan cheese, and more. Add as many green and healthy veggies as you can, as this dish is known for its simple yet addictive taste. Swapping maida-based pasta for a whole wheat one makes it easier on the carbs and calories, while ensuring that your school kids remain satiated and at the top of their game.

3. Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese Sticks

Tomato soup and grilled cheese is classic comfort food. But even this dish can be used to sneak in some vegetables via the soup. Puree some extra veggies, while blending the onions, garlic, tomato, vegetable broth, and some herbs and spices. The latter will help mask the taste of the former. As for the grilled cheese, opt for multigrain or whole-wheat bread and mozzarella or cheddar cheese to ensure a nutritious and filling after-school snack.

4. Dry Fruit Mix
dry-fruits-mix

Dry fruits are a wide term consisting of dried apricots, raisins, apple slices, orange slices, cranberries, dates, as well as nuts, like pistachios, walnuts, cashews, and almonds. This rich combo, full of proteins, calcium, antioxidants, fiber and more micronutrients, helps prevent heart diseases, strokes and other diseases. Thanks to their nutritious food value and energy-giving and immunity-building properties, dry fruit mix makes a perfect after-school snack for refuelling.

5. Bananas and Dark Chocolate Chips with Yogurt

Bananas and dark chocolate chips yogurt can be a nourishing, tasty yet guilt free after-school snack option. Not only do they protect your little one’s body from all kinds of diseases, help in digestion, have a cooling effect on the body, boosts metabolism and workings of the brain, but also maintain blood sugar levels and calories. Adding a small amount of dark chocolate chips only enhances its food value as well as the intended foodie’s mood.

6. Apple Nachos

Apple nachos are nothing but a fancy name for sliced apples with a few thoughtful, smart, healthy and tasty toppings. Pair fresh, cold slices of apples with a moderate drizzling of warm and gooey nut butter, coconut flakes, dark chocolate chips and a sprinkle of cinnamon. The dessert not only provides the kids with necessary vitamins and minerals, but also adds an indulgent touch to fruit without loading it with unnecessary calories. The small amount of coconut flakes, dark chocolate chips and nut butter only serve to enhance the cool after-school snack’s taste, reputation, and nutrition.

7. Homemade granola bars
homemade-granola-bars

Homemade granola bars are some of the best and most convenient after-school snacks out there, that can be prepared and stored in advance. Since granola bars are essentially made from rolled oats, cereals, sweeteners, nut butter, dry fruits, nuts, and seeds, they carry the nourishment and energy of a full meal. Thanks to their low sodium level, cravings stay at bay and keep kids feeling full longer. Make granola bars easily at home with dates, honey, creamy salted peanut butter, roasted unsalted almonds, rolled oats, dry fruits of your choice and chocolate chips.

8. Homemade sorbets

Sorbets are the best thing to happen to ice-cream as they are convenient, easy-to-make at home, dairy-free, and low calorie. Add the puree of frozen fruits of choice, honey, and lemon juice to a blender. Blend till all smooth and chill in the refrigerator or serve fresh. You can also put them into cool molds and serve them as popsicles. This will not only ensure your kids’ after-school ice-cream craving is satisfied, but will also incorporate more vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants in their diet.

Conclusion

In summer, ensuring wholesome nourishment for kids after school is no mean feat. It is hard enough to make kids attend tuition and co-curricular classes every day, without worrying over their depleting energy levels too. If they are burned out after returning from school in the middle of the day, their minds will learn and evolve little.

Rather than increase your kids' stress levels by imposing authority constantly and force-feeding them nutrition, sometimes give them a break. Offer your kids a period of rest after school every day, before any other activities. Feed them these nutritious, quick and healthy after-school snacks to refuel. Remember, if the tummies and hearts of school children are filled, they will soar with flying colors in life.

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The views expressed are that of the expert alone.

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