If you are tired of constantly preparing snacks for your kids or anyone else (including yourself!) here is an abbreviated list of Chef Alison's snacks you can prepare ahead and how to store them.
We snack for a few reasons:
Boredom, to celebrate, we’re actually thirsty, stress, loneliness, to procrastinate, oh and sometimes even because we’re legitimately hungry between meals are many of the reasons we snack.
Is it actually thirst?
They say we often eat when really we just need some water, so one of my “rules” for myself and my kids is to offer a glass of water while we’re talking about getting a snack or before we actually sit down to eat one. It’s usually happily received and we move on.
Once our thirst is quenched, we can talk food.
Much like for my dinner menu planning, I enlist both kids (5 and 2.5 years old) to give me an idea of what snacks they would like during the upcoming week. Watermelon or pineapple? Raspberries or strawberries? Veggie straws or string cheese? When they have some input and see that I listen to them as part of the process it’s easier to get them to eat it! It’s not perfect, it’s a process.
Twelve Snacks You Can Prep Ahead
(You can do these the night before or make enough for a week)
- Cut up fruit and veggies on Sunday night and have it ready to go in tupperware. You will never casually slice up a watermelon between zoom calls, so prep it ahead! There’s almost nothing that can’t hang out for 3-5 days in the fridge, sealed in a pyrex dish.
- Skewers - Rainbow Fruit or Savory with cubes of cheese, olives, maybe ham/salami
- Smoothies are a great way to use up bruised or extra fruit and veggies (you'd be surpised what you can sneak in. Two ways:
- Small jars or bags of smoothie prep. Just add ice, blend and enjoy
- Blend up and store in 1 cup portions. Put in a cup in the fridge when you wake up and by 10 am you should be able to shake it into a drinkable icey.
- Yogurt or fruit based homemade popsicles
- Egg Frittata or Carrot Muffins (Make them ahead they last all week)
- Rolled ham and cheese sandwiches sliced in pinwheels (or turkey, or hummus, or rice and beans)
- Rolled and foil wrapped egg, bean and cheese burritos. Heat in the toaster oven.
- Mac and cheese – spoon into muffin tins and add more shredded cheese. Bake so they stick together. Reheat in the microwave or toaster oven. See our tip for Reviving Mac N Cheese
- Roasted Garbanzo Beans – empty a can, pat dry, season with oil and salt and your fave spice blend, roast at 425 until dried and crispy – about 40 minutes.
- No Bake Peanut Butter Balls or some kind of vegan rolled fudge (google it)
- Kale chips
- Popcorn! Make a big batch and divide it up – add parmesan, garlic salt, chili powder, drizzle with butter and dust with plain white sugar (trust me it’s so good), or pumpkin spice, or everything spice, nutritional yeast
Read the full blog post on Ends and Stems: SNACK ATTACK: TIPS FOR MAKING KIDS SNACKS EASIER (AND HEALTHIER)
Also check out Chef Alison's Food Tips for Remote Learning.
Chef Alison is a StopWaste, food waste prevention partner. Visit Ends + Stems for more meal planning tools, recipes, and inspiration to reduce wasted food in your kitchen.