Every day when kids watch television, see a magazine or walk through the supermarket they’re being bombarded with visual advertising for chips, chocolate and other junk foods.
It’s no surprise then that they usually crave these foods when they want to snack. Now as a parent you need to make sure that your child eats these foods in moderation, and one simple way to do this is to make sure they aren’t seeing them as a healthy or regular snack item. Then there’s the fact that those junk foods are much more expensive than healthy snacks, a killer for parents on a budget.
So here are some fast and frugal after school snacks for hungry kids which are loaded with vitamins and minerals as well as affordable and effortless to prepare.
1. Honey Butter Popcorn
Is there anyone who doesn’t love popcorn? As well as being delicious popcorn is also rich in dietary fibre that helps kids maintain a healthy digestive tract. Plus when it isn’t soaked in butter it’s very low in calories.
2. Fruity Soda Drink
There are so many sugary drinks on the market these days, it’s easy for kids to fall into the habit of drinking them regularly. Many children like the feel of the carbonated beverage, more so than the sugary taste. So, why not make your own healthy version of sugary soda at home? All you need is soda water, a fruit of your choice (juicy fruits like oranges are great), and some fruit nectar. Mix slices of the fruit with a small amount of nectar and add soda water on top. Yum!
3. Frozen Fruit Yogurt
Yoghurt is so good for kids, but the store-bought fruit yoghurt varieties are often expensive and packed with sugar. You can easily make your own fruity yoghurt at home, and freeze it for the perfect summer snack. All you need to do is buy a plain greek yoghurt of your choice. Pop it in a blender with some fruits like berries or banana and give it a rough blend.
4. Peanut Butter Snowball
An easy and quick snowball recipe that the kids will love! Tasty, chewy and delicious!
5. Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie
Smoothies are an easy snack that is guaranteed to fill the belly of any child until their next meal. They’re also a really good way to get a serve of fruit and milk into their diet. For a delicious banana smoothie just combine milk with one banana in a blender. You can also add chia seeds or yoghurt to make it more interesting. Simple, but so good!
6. Quick Mac and Cheese
Perfect for when the kids get hungry and need a quick mac and cheese fix!
7. Pizza Toast
One look at this pizza toast and you know this is going to be a winner. You can choose to follow the recipe or choose to modify it a bit.
Some Tips on How To Keep Snacks Affordable
Many parents struggle to keep snacks affordable, especially when their children are growing and seem to need more and more snacks to conquer their appetites. However there are a few simple tips that we’ve discovered to really help keep your snack bill down.
If You Can, Make It At Home
We pay a crazy amount of money for snack foods that, in many cases, can be easily made at home for less than half of the cost. Items like muesli bars, muffins, rice pudding are more aren’t really worth buying. Just find a recipe that works for you and get busy in the kitchen. If your children are a bit older, encourage them to help out as well to ease the load.
Bulk Preparation Is Cheaper
For anyone with a decent-sized freezer, it makes more sense to prepare snacks in bulk. Although it might be a bit of a challenge at first, it’s cheaper to buy ingredients in bulk and less time-consuming to just do it all at once. After you’ve made the snacks in bulk, just freeze them in containers that can be brought out every week to be eaten.
Take Advantage Of Specials
The special deals that are available in supermarkets often mean that you can save an impressive amount of money off your bills. But with specials it is important to think long-term. For example, if bananas area heavily discounted you could buy several kilos and freeze them for later use. If peanut butter is on special take several jars home with you in one shop. Things that last in the pantry or can be frozen are always worth buying in multiples, especially if they’re ideal for homemade snacks!
Keep It Simple
Not all snacks need to be the result of slaving in the kitchen. Your kids might have cravings for chocolates and sweets, but boiled eggs, carrot and cucumber sticks, and fruit all make wonderful and affordable after school snacks for kids . If you live close to a farmers market you might be able to save even more money on your produce. It’s a win for the frugal lifestyle.
How do you snack frugally?
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