It’s that time of year again! (How do the days/weeks/months fly by?!) Summer is here, which means school is out and the kids are back at home all day. With the kids home for the next few months, we want to make sure that our kids are continuing to eat healthy and learning more about healthy eating habits, especially when it comes to snacking. An important part of fostering healthy eating habits is to make sure that your pantry is stocked with healthy staples. When your pantry is filled with delicious, nutritious ingredients that also happen to be super versatile, you’re much more likely to make something nutrient-dense for you and your family. We decided to create a list for you of some of our pantry staple must-haves. That way, you know what to stock up on so that your kids can make healthy meals and snacks for themselves!
Dried fruits are delicious by themselves, but they’re also perfect to add to homemade trail mix, bars and energy balls. Some of our faves include raisins, apricots, mangoes, papaya, bananas and medjool dates. Just make sure that there is no added sugar and that it’s only the fruit!
P.S. We highly recommend stuffed dates with nut butter!
Try this recipe:
Let’s be honest, a pantry is not well stocked without some nut and/or seed butter. Nut butter is packed with healthy fat and protein which fill you up and keep you satisfied and full. Try to get organic nut butter with no added sugar, salt or oil. The only ingredient on the label should be the nut itself! Our fave nut butter is Nuttzo, as it’s a blend of various nuts and seeds.
Try these great nut butter recipes:
We love adding granola to yogurt and smoothie bowls and even enjoy eating it with some milk. Granola is also satisfying and delicious just on its own. Some of our fave granola brands are Purely Elizabeth, Lark Ellen and EffiFoods.
Be careful when selecting granola as a lot of brands have hidden sugars!
Try these great recipes topped with granola!
Rolled oats and quinoa flakes
Both of these flaked grains are delicious in smoothies, breakfast foods, and baked goods. They’re high in fiber and complex carbohydrates which digest slower in your system, thus keeping you fuller for longer. We love baking oat-based cookies and bars for a yummy snack. (But I can totally eat oatmeal for a midday snack, too!)
Try these great rolled oats recipes:
Nuts and seeds
We love incorporating nuts and seeds into smoothies, oatmeal, breakfast bowls, sprinkling them on salads, and even just gobbling them up solo as a snack. Both nuts and seeds are packed with protein and healthy fats, containing important nutrients for a balanced meal or snack. Our fave nuts are almonds, cashews, walnuts and pecans. When it comes to seeds, we love pumpkin, sunflower, chia and hemp.
Try these great nut & seed recipes:
Brown Rice Cakes
You can’t go wrong with rice cakes, as the toppings are endless! Some of my fave combos right now are: nut butter with banana, strawberry or apple slices; cream cheese with cucumber slices; hummus with cucumber or bell pepper slices; melted slice of cheese; mashed avocado with hard boiled egg; mashed avocado with sliced radish; and chocolate Nuttzo power fuel spread with banana slices. What did I say? I’m sure you’ll find a favorite flavor combo!
I love having canned beans on hand to make a simple, quick and satisfying snack. One of our fave combos at the moment is mashed up chickpeas and avocado. So so yum! Just mash up one can of chickpeas with one avocado and eat it like a dip with carrots, cucumbers and/or crackers.
Tip: When shopping for canned beans, look for organic, no salt added, and BPA free cans. You can also rinse your beans thoroughly before eating them so as to control the flavor, sodium level and seasonings.
IN THE FRIDGE/FREEZER
Kidzshake whips are a really easy, fun, and yummy treat or snack during the hot summer months. Keeping coconut milk and frozen fruit available (and Kidzshake, of course) will make it easy to “whip up” these whip recipes anytime!
Written by Gelsey Plaza