Eating with your kids doesn’t mean resorting to chicken nuggets, hot dogs and animal crackers. There are plenty of healthy snacks for kids that even adults can enjoy.
Healthy snacking and weight loss can go hand-in-hand. Snacks that are rich in protein, healthy fats and fiber can aid your weight loss goals by keeping you full while fueling your family to feel their best.
Read on for some healthy snack ideas for adults and kids to consider adding to your repertoire!
If you’re a Jenny Craig member, check with your coach before adding these snacks to your plan to ensure you stay on track!
1. Yogurt parfait
Kids’ yogurt is often high in sugar or high fructose corn syrup. Why not make a healthier version at home? With plenty of protein, fiber and antioxidants, this snack can help fuel both you and your kids — whether for breakfast or as after school snacks!
1. Scoop a half cup of plain, nonfat Greek yogurt into a cup.
2. Add fresh or frozen berries in bite-sized portions.
3. Top with a tablespoon of granola for a sweet and filling treat!
Jenny's Tip: You can keep this treat in the fridge for up to a week – just be sure to cover the top with lids or food wrap.
2. DIY trail mix
Trail mix often makes everyone’s list for healthy snack ideas for adults and kids but has hidden sugars throughout! Instead of adding milk chocolate bits and raisins to your eating pattern, try making your own healthy trail mix at home.
Photo by Evrymmnt on iStock
All you need is a couple bags of your favorite unsalted nuts and some spices and seasonings. Toss them into a bowl and voila — you have your own trail mix to munch on as after school snacks. Separate out your trail mix into smart portion sizes (we recommend a quarter cup for weight loss) and don’t forget to save some for the kids!
Jenny's Tip: If you want to add some sweetness to this salty mix, try adding a pinch of dark chocolate chips, cocoa powder or dried banana chips. Pretzels and unsweetened dry cereal are great additions, too!
3. Fruit & veggie smoothies
Summer may be coming to an end, but smoothies still make our back-to-school list for healthy snacks for kids and adults! Healthy summer snacks can be enjoyed year-round.
Plus, they’re a great way to sneak in some veggies without kids knowing that they’re in there while reaping all the health benefits.
1. Pour in a nonfat or low-fat dairy base (1/2 cup) or a dairy alternative such as unsweetened almond milk or oat milk (1 cup) into a blender.
2. Add a half cup of fresh or frozen fruit of your choice! Some fan favorites include mangos, berries, pineapples and papayas.
3. Sneak in some leafy greens such as spinach, collard greens or kale. Add as much as you want!
4. Add ice cubes (or frozen cauliflower rice) and low-calorie sweeteners as desired. Blend and enjoy!
Jenny's Tip: If you have popsicle molds at home, you can also pour your smoothie into these and stick them in the freezer to enjoy fruit and veggie ice pops at any time!
4. Fruit or veggie chips & straws
Many of us often crave that bag of potato chips but want something on the lighter side. Thankfully, beets, sweet potatoes, zucchinis, apples and carrots are close contenders to the potato chip.
1. Slice your fruit or vegetable(s) or choice with a mandolin or knife.
2. Add to a mixing bowl and toss with a teaspoon of olive oil and seasonings of your choice. Hint: Dry ranch dressing, sea salt/vinegar, red pepper flakes/paprika and salt/pepper combinations all taste great on veggies (or cinnamon spice for apples!).
3. Bake at 400F for 20 minutes (or to preferred crispiness). Alternatively, you can toss them in an air fryer. Store in an air-tight container and eat within a couple days.
If you’re strapped for time, you may want to consider Jenny Craig’s new Veggie Straws! With no added artificial preservatives, no artificial colors, no artificial flavors, zero cholesterol and 1 gram of fiber per serving, healthy snacks for kids (and adults!) don’t have to be boring.
Jenny's Tip: Consider pairing this snack with a tablespoon of hummus or string cheese for a more filling snack and check out additional healthy snack ideas for work including low carb snacks.
5. Ants on a log
Want a little helper in the kitchen for after school snacks? Well, you’re in luck because kids love making “ants on a log!” Celery is rich in dietary fiber to help you and your kids stay full. And nut butters are high in healthy fats that may support brain health for your kids and heart health for adults.
1. Wash and cut up some celery stalks into bite-sized sticks.
2. Spread 1 tablespoon of your favorite nut butter on top of the sticks (e.g., almond butter, peanut butter, cashew butter). Kid Tip: If you’re worried about your kiddo(s) getting a mess everywhere, try filling a plastic bag with the corner cut off or a pastry bag and pipe the nut butter onto the celery!
3. Instead of raisins, which are high in added sugar, top with some healthy toppings such as dark chocolate chips or unsweetened granola.
Jenny's Tip: Another fun variation instead of nut butter is to apply hummus to the celery sticks for a savory snack! Be sure to check the nutrition label as some nut butters and dark chocolate chips can be high in added sugars.
6. Organic popcorn
Air-popped organic popcorn made with fresh kernels doesn’t require added oil or flavorings until after it’s made, which makes it healthier than store-bought microwave popcorn.
While there are several kitchen gadgets to help make this treat including popcorn bakers and air fryers, you can also add kernels to a paper bag, fold the bag over and microwave it for similar results! You can sprinkle your favorite seasonings on top once it’s done.
Jenny's Tip: If you’re looking for a ready-to-eat option, try Jenny Craig’s delicious new Organic Popcorn snack. It is flavored with organic olive oil & sea salt, contains only 130 calories and is a good source of fiber with 4 grams of dietary fiber to help you stay full in between meals or as a nighttime snack. It’s a great addition to your list of healthy snack ideas for work!
7. Fruit & cheese kabobs
Step aside, top chefs. Fruit and cheese kabobs look fancy but are easy to make. Plus, they are filling and nutrient-dense snacks for the entire family!
1. Buy cheese cubes at the grocery store. Look for lower fat options.
2. Wash (and cut up as needed) your favorite fruits. Cantaloupe, honeydew, strawberries, pineapple, watermelon and grapes are all great ones to start with. Make sure you keep children away from the knives.
3. Arrange cheese and fruits on a plate and add them to wooden skewers. This is the part where your kiddos can help!
Jenny's Tip: If you’re trying to lose weight, we recommend sticking to 1 ounce of cheese per serving.
The bottom line
Whether you’re looking for healthy snack ideas for work or healthy snacks for kids, there are many nutritious and delicious options out there!
What other tasty snacks come to mind? We’d love to hear from you (and your kids). Jenny Craig also offers a chef-crafted food menu that offers convenient, healthy snacks for adults.