Preschool Snack Ideas

Logan started preschool this year, and along with that came a whole new world for me – homework, packing snacks, washing and filling his water bottle, notes to and from his teachers, washing uniforms, making sure he keeps his uniform clean, remembering that he has to wear his ID card, making sure his backpack has all the items his school requires for the day, and so on.
Most of it is pretty straight forward and just requires that I make the effort to remember things that he isn’t ready to handle himself yet. And then there is the snack …. His school is very strict about only sending healthy snacks. In the handbook they only mention sending fruits and veggies, and at first I felt limited by that. But there are so many other healthy snack ideas out there, and it does get boring packing the same thing daily – and for him to eat the same thing. (Since this is preschool and he only attends for the morning, he only has snack there.)
Unless you have a child who absolutely wants the same snack daily, it is good to have some variety. Here is a list of ideas of things you could pack for a snack.

Fruits – go for the non-messy ones and cut into bite-size pieces, or if your child eats neatly already, you could add some that might be considered messier. I have used grapes (picked off the stem), bananas (cut in half with the peel left on), guavas (left whole or quartered), apples (quartered), oranges and tangerines (peeled and separated). A fruit salad could be nice, but Logan still doesn’t like to use utensils so I consider that too messy to send. Other fruits that you could try would be berries, pears, peaches – really anything you can leave whole or that is not too runny and juicy when cut would work.

Vegetables – veggie sticks are great, and many snack boxes provide a space for a dip if your child likes that. Logan’s favorites are carrot sticks, so that is usually all I send since it is all he will eat, but your options are really only limited by what your child likes and will eat. Cucumber, brocolli, and celery are great.

(One thing that was mentioned at his orentation was that even if a child normally won’t eat fruits or veggies, they will pick up on it quickly if they see the other children eating them, and hunger will sometimes make them try something they normally don’t like.)

Nuts and seeds – highly nutritious and packed with energy. Logan loves peanuts and eats them almost daily. Most any kind of nut is ok to send as long as they are shelled. (Don’t send nuts if your child has a hard time chewing them or tends to swallow food without chewing.)

Dried fruit – raisins and dates are favorites here. Other ideas are figs, apricots, apples, prunes – whatever you like.

Chickpeas – Logan loves these plain; he will eat them by the bowlful if I let him. Cooked with salt and drained, these will keep a few days in the fridge. I get all my beans dry and have to soak and pressure cook them, but you can find many varieties of canned beans that you can use instead. Just drain and add some seasoning if you like.

Pancakes – yes, I have sometimes sent my baby pancakes with him cause he likes them. And the other day I make him a snackbox full of pancake dots – I just dropped small dots of batter on the pan, about the size of a small coin or smaller.

Cookies – cookies can be either healthy or not, depending on the kind you get. I sometimes give him Horlicks cookies, or others that are made extra-healthy with whole wheat, bran, or oats. I avoid any with fillings or chocolate (though I do sometimes give those at home). You can also make cookies with oats, wheat germ, nuts and rasins, and you have the satisfaction of knowing they are healthy because you know what you put into them.

Yoghurt – a small tub or as a drink. I don’t send it to school as I make my own and don’t buy it in tubs, but my kids eat it plain daily. Avoid presweetened yoghurts and instead add some fruit or honey if your child won’t eat it plain.

What healthy snacks do you send with your child to preschool? And for those of you who send lunches, what healthy lunch ideas do you have to share with us?

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2 Comments

  1. Great snack ideas! My preschooler has to bring snacks on Friday so I needed the help. My kids's favorite snacks are apples with caramel, strawberries with cool whip, bagel with cream cheese, or string cheese. We're only partially healthy. 🙂

    Reply
  2. Oh love this! Always needing new snack ideas.

    Reply

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