Sensible Snacking for Children :: Nationwide Children's Hospital

Sensible Snacking for Children

Snacking is a very important part of growing children’s diets. Choosing healthy and nutritious snacks is equally important. Snacks help to prevent hunger in between meals as well as provide daily requirements for energy, protein, vitamins and minerals.

Take snacks to go:

  • String cheese
  • Dried fruit
  • Granola bars
  • Whole grain crackers
  • Trail/Cereal Mix
  • Graham Crackers
  • Box of raisins
  • Baby carrots
  • Banana/Apple
  • Low-fat popcorn

Opt for low-sugar & low-calorie beverages

  • Water
  • Low-fat milk
  • Crystal Light
  • 100% juice
  • Sugar-free hot cocoa
  • Apple cider

Most snacks served to children should be fruits & vegetables

  • Most kids don’t get the 5-13 recommended servings of fruits & vegetables per day.
  • Try offering a variety of fruits & veggies & pair them with other snacks such as peanut butter, low-fat dips or low-fat cheese.
  • Canned, frozen or dried fruit require minimal preparation & still provide many important nutrients.

Snack Ideas from the Different Food Groups

  • Milk/Dairy: Low-fat milk (regular or chocolate), string cheese, yogurt, pudding cups, low-fat cottage cheese
  • Meat/Protein: Boiled egg, bean dip, peanut butter with crackers or fruit, lean lunch meat
  • Fruit: Sliced fresh fruit, applesauce, canned fruit, fruit salad
  • Veggies: Cut-up fresh vegetables with low-fat dip, vegetable juice
  • Grains: Whole grain crackers (Triscuits), low-fat popcorn, animal crackers, graham crackers, pretzels

Fun Snacks

  • Spread a pancake with peanut butter & applesauce. Eat with a glass of milk
  • Toast an English muffin topped with a tomato & low-fat cottage cheese
  • Cut up celery slices & top with peanut butter, raisins & marshmallows
  • Stuff a pita with a scrambled egg & low-fat cheese. Eat with a piece of fruit.
  • Trail Mix made with dried fruits, low-fat granola, whole grain cereals, & sunflower seeds
  • Low-fat yogurt mixed with low-fat granola & fresh fruit
Nationwide Children's Hospital
700 Children's Drive Columbus, Ohio 43205 614.722.2000