Are you looking for snack ideas for after school, the lunch box, for a family get-together or just to eat at home? This list below is a result of several years of trial-and-error with my own daughter, in finding tasty snacks that she will actually want to eat. Each child is obviously different, so you may look through this list and think "My child won't eat that", however it may give you an idea of something new to try, using ingredients they like.
I would like to say that all of these snack ideas are healthy, but our main aim has been to fill her up with protein and carbohydrates after school, or before a sports game. If you have more ideas to add to this list, I would love to hear them. Just make a comment at the bottom of this article and share your snack-making tips. As parents, we all need all the help we can get!
Please note: This list doesn't take into account any allergies, so please be aware of the ingredients if your child has any food allergies.
Cold Finger Food & Snacks
1/ Carrot Cake Balls are handy to eat after school, as they are jam-packed with oats and nuts and are easy to eat. In a food processor, blitz together 3 sliced carrots first, then add 1 cup oats, 1 cup unsalted cashews, 1/2 cup dates, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/2 teaspoon of ground ginger. Blitz together and add water if it needs moisture to stick together. Remove the blade and roll into balls.
2/ Smoothies are a great before-school snack to fill them up and give them hydration to start the day. Use filling ingredients such as frozen bananas, Weet-bix, Milo, oats and yoghurt to keep your child fuller for longer.
3/ Make Your Own Sushi with tinned tuna and mayonnaise, or their favourite ingredients inside. We purchased a Sushezi Sushi Maker which makes the whole experience of making sushi fun for kids. They also taste delicious for everyone in the family!
4/ Pikelets are a quick snack that all ages will enjoy. In a bowl, combine 1 cup of self-raising flour, 1 cup of milk, 1 egg and a tablespoon of sugar. Add a handful of frozen berries for colour and sweetness, or keep plain. Spoon into a hot frypan and when they start to bubble, flip over and brown the other side.
5/ Mini Oat Cakes are perfect to take in a snack box and eat on the way to swimming or sport. In a bowl, combine 1 and 1/2 cups of rolled oats, 1/2 cup of sultanas, 1/2 cup of chopped dates, 1/4 cup of self-raising flour, 1/4 cup of raw sugar, 2 egg whites, 2 Tablespoons runny honey and 20g melted margarine. Combine all the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Combine all the wet ingredients then stir into the dry ingredients. Spray a mini muffin tin with oil and spoon mixture in, pressing down firmly. Cook on 200 degrees, fan forced, for 20 minutes until brown around the edges. Allow to cool.
6/ Cabanossi, Cheese & Jatz Sandwiches always disappear quickly in our house. On a plate lay out jatz biscuits, then top with thinly-sliced cabanossi and cubed cheese, or mix them all up so your child can assemble each one themselves.
7/ Homemade Ice-Cream is easy to make in the food processor - just throw in 2 frozen bananas (sliced prior to freezing), 3 Tablespoons runny honey, 3 Tablespoons milk and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon. Blend for a couple of minutes until smooth, adding more milk if it is hard to blitz. Drizzle with honey.
8/ Bread Sticks with Cream Cheese is a favourite after school snack, as kids enjoy dipping their crunchy breadsticks into their own "dip".
9/ Porridge is a filling food that can be eaten at any time if the day, not just at breakfast. Add sliced bananas or frozen fruit and then drizzle honey over the top for extra sweetness.
10/ Crunchy Pizza Toasts are loved by everyone in our family. Cut up a long french stick or a baguette into slices and place on a lined baking tray. Spread tomato paste onto each slice, then sprinkle with mixed herbs and grated cheese. Put under the grill for a few minutes to cook and for the cheese to melt.
11/ Homemade Chicken Bites are a great snack before a swimming lesson or after school when they are starving! Cut up a chicken breast into nugget sizes then roll in egg wash and breadcrumbs. Fry in oil until cooked all the way through and browned. Soak up the excess oil on kitchen paper and serve with their favourite sauce.
12/ Bunnings Sausage Sandwichs are popular with kids, so why not make them at home for a snack, lunch or party food? Wrap it up with a serviette and sit in the garden, for a different eating experience.
13/ Soup & Fingers is a good after-school snack in winter, which fills them up until dinner time. In a large pot, melt a tablespoon of margarine or butter (not oil), then add 1 sliced leek (white part only) and 2 sliced carrots. Cook until leek is soft. Add 4 potatoes (peeled and chopped) and stir for 1 minute. Add 3 cups of chicken stock and bring to the boil. Simmer for 30 - 40 minutes, until liquid has reduced. Use a stick blender to make smooth. Serve with bread cut up into "fingers' to dip in. Freeze the leftover soup for other days.
14/ Puff Pastry Shapes are fun for kids to eat, while they are watching you cooking in the kitchen. Use cookie cutters to cut out shapes from a sheet of thawed puff pastry and lay them on a lined baking tray. Cook at 180 degrees for 5 minutes or until puffed up and brown.
15/ Party Sausage Rolls are easy to make for a party, snack or for lunch. In a bowl, use your hands to combine 8 of your child's favourite sausages (casings removed), 1/2 cup grated carrot and 1/2 cup grated cheese. Cut 2 sheets of thawed puff pastry in half. Spread the sausage meat evenly down the long side of each pastry piece, leaving a small gap from the edge. Start rolling until you get to the end and then use egg wash to seal it together. Place the sausage rolls on the baking tray so the join is underneath. Rub the rest of the egg wash over the top. Cut each log into 6 rolls. Cook at 180 degrees fan forced, for 25-30 minutes. Rest on tray for 5 minutes. Makes 24.
Did you get any snack ideas for your child(ren)? The best part for parents and carers is that you will enjoy eating them too!
Sue, I really enjoy your articles, We have tried several of your easy to make recipes. The peanut biscuits have been favourite so far. We will make the carrot cake balls today. Sue keep up the good work. David