Food

Easy Nutrition-Packed Evening Snacks For Kids

by Dr. Shanthi Thomas

The time of the day when most kids are hungriest is usually evenings. It is very easy to just buy something from the store or bakery to satisfy these evening hunger pangs, but we all know that home-made food is healthier. For this reason, smart mothers get evening snacks ready by the time kids are back from school or some other activity.  Let us look at some of the tea-time snacks that are healthy and nutrition-packed. They are easy and simple to make, and can be stored in an airtight container for a few days.

1. No Bake Energy Bites

Incredibly easy to make, these energy balls taste so good and are super healthy.

Ingredients

  • Dry oatmeal -1 c.
  • Peanut butter (or other nut butter) – 1/2 c.
  • Toasted coconut flakes -2/3 c
  • Honey – 1/3 c.
  • Chocolate chips -1/2 c.
  • Vanilla essence – 1 tsp.
  • raisins (optional)  – 1/2 c.

Instructions

Combine all the ingredients until well-mixed.

Let the mixture cool in the refrigerator for at least half an hour.

Once chilled, you can roll it into balls of any size you like.

You can store these energy balls for up to 1 week in an airtight container.

2. Banana oat cookies

Homemade banana oat cookies are sweet, and healthy as they get their sweetness from the bananas, not refined sugar.

Ingredients

  • Ripe bananas – 3
  • Coconut oil – 1/3 cup (80 ml)
  • Rolled oats – 2 cups (160 grams)
  • Mini chocolate chips or dried fruit – 1/2 cup (80–90 grams)
  • Vanilla essence – 1 teaspoon (5 ml)

Instructions

Mash the bananas well.

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl. 

Place spoonfuls of this mixture onto a cookie sheet that has been greased well, and bake at 350°F (175°C) for 15–20 minutes. Your home-made banana oat cookies are ready in a jiffy!

3. Baked sweet potato fries

Sweet potato fries are a very healthy alternative to French fries and can be prepared easily at home.

Ingredients

  • Sweet potato – 1
  • Olive oil – 1 teaspoon (5 ml)
  • Sea salt

Instructions

Slice the peeled sweet potato in the desired thickness.

Toss the pieces in olive oil, and sprinkle with sea salt.

Bake on a greased cookie sheet for 20 minutes at 425°F (220°C).

4. Banana and peanut butter quesadilla

A quesadilla with peanut butter and banana gives your child healthy fats and protein, as well as potassium.

Ingredients

  • Banana -1
  • Whole-wheat tortilla -1
  • Peanut butter – 2 tablespoons (30 grams)
  • Cinnamon – 1/8 tsp.

Instructions

Spread the peanut butter on the tortilla.

Cut the banana into thin slices.

Arrange the slices on one half of the tortilla.

Finally, sprinkle the cinnamon over the bananas, then fold the tortilla in half.  For better looks, you can slice it into triangles before serving.

5. Puffed Rice and sesame bar

This super healthy and crunchy snack bar is very easy to make.

Ingredients

  • Sesame seeds – 1/4 cup
  • Puffed rice – 1 cup
  • Powdered jaggery – 1/3 cup
  • Powdered cardamom – 1/4 spoon (optional)

Instructions

Dry roast the sesame seeds on medium heat using a heavy based skillet until they turn golden.

Melt the jaggery in a heavy based wok till it is sticky.

Add the puffed rice, sesame seeds and the powdered cardamom and mix quickly before the mixture hardens.

Place the mixture on a greased surface (your counter top will do) and pat the surface quickly, shaping it into a rough rectangle.

Once it is cooled, use a greased knife to cut the mixture into shapes. Once completely cooled, you can store these healthy bars in an airtight container.

6. Grilled mushroom sandwich with herbs

Grilled mushroom sandwich is a simple and quick snack that is healthy and tasty.  

Ingredients

  • Whole Wheat Brown Bread slices – 8
  • Button mushrooms, chopped – 400 grams
  • Green Chilies, finely chopped – 2
  • Coriander leaves –finely chopped
  • Butter (Salted), as required
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil – 1 tsp. for cooking

Instructions

Heat one teaspoon of olive oil in a heavy bottomed pan on medium heat and add the chopped mushrooms. Sauté until water has evaporated.

Add the green chilies, coriander leaves, black pepper and salt, and sauté until all the ingredients are well-blended.

Spread the butter finely on the slices of bread and add 2 tablespoons of the mushroom mixture on one slice. Cover with the other slice and press lightly.

You can now grill the mushroom sandwiches and serve warm.

Also read: Perfect Evening Snacks For Kids

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