Kid-Friendly Make Ahead Meals

Monday, May 2, 2016

Coming up with lunches and snacks for kids, or even yourself for that matter, that provide variety from that standard PB&J or ham and cheese sandwich can be tough. With the busy summer months fast approaching, I have some great plan-ahead meals and go-to snacks that are kid-friendly and mom-approved.

When I’m creating my meal, I try to incorporate the colors of the rainbow so it can be nutritiously well rounded. Something to also think about when creating a meal kit is to have a balance of carbs, protein and healthy fats.

Something that I like to do for myself, because my son is still a baby, is make “meals” that I can snack on when I’m busy. That way, I can get in my nutrition and work on my never-ending task list! These options should be a hit for your kiddos, and the kid in you as well, because kids love finger food.

Meal Kit Mediterranean Mix                      Mediterranean Mix
Cucumber, cherry/grape tomatoes, olives, mozzarella pearls, hummus, whole-grain cracker or pita bread
Meal Kit Deconstructed American Classic  
Deconstructed American Classic
Cottage cheese, blueberries, raspberries and/or strawberries, peanut butter and whole-grain crackers or bread.

Breakfast Option 
Hard-boiled egg, Greek yogurt and granola, banana

These ideas are like homemade Lunchables, so you could easily put them together on a Sunday for the week. It’s easy to substitute something if your child is allergic or hasn’t developed a taste for a certain food yet. Another option is to make either egg salad or tuna salad for kids to dip crackers or bread into. Dipping food is way more fun than a regular sandwich. I know I share my love of sweets with many kids, so to satisfy my sweet tooth I’ll add a treat to enjoy at the end of the meal as well. You could add a small serving of chocolate chips, a cookie, or one of my favorites, dried fruit.

I hope these fun food options will encourage you to try creating your own healthy, yet delicious meal kit. You might enjoy learning more about healthy eating and physical fitness at Healthy Kids Day, May 7 (2016) at Shopko Hall – it’s free. See you there!

Cassie Kupsky  Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, Personal Trainer
Greater Green Bay YMCA