Guest post by Keri Houchin, One Mama’s Daily Drama
Healthy Snacks for Kids
By the time my kids get home from school, just after three in the afternoon, they are wiped. They spend a full day learning new things, remembering old things, following rules and building relationships. The first thing we do every afternoon is sit down and take a break. It gives them time to unwind and a snack provides the energy they need to do homework and chores. It also gives me a chance to ask them about their day.
When choosing an after school snack, I look for foods that are easy to serve and eat, but also healthy. Before I really started thinking about what we were eating, our after school snacks were often sugar-packed, processed foods that came with a small novel in the ingredients list. Back then, both kids were prone to a 3:30 meltdown. Go figure.
Now our favorite snacks are whole-grain pretzels or popcorn, organic yogurt smoothies, and lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. As my kids have become less picky and are more excited about vegetables – no joke – I’ve tried to come up with creative ways to make them. This recipe combines two of our favorite foods: basil pesto sauce and avocado. It’s also a wicked shade of green, naturally.
Avocados are high in monounsaturated fat – the kind that is good for you and that growing kids need for brain development. They are also high in fiber, have more vitamins that you can probably name, and leave you feeling full for a while.
Pesto avocado dip recipe
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves, stems removed
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese, grated
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 clove of garlic, grated or minced
- 2 avocados
Combine everything but the avocados in a food processor and pulse until it forms a paste. Put the paste, bowl and all, in the refrigerator to chill for about an hour, or until you are ready to serve it. At snack time, return the bowl to the food processor. Peel, pit and dice the avocado and add it to the paste. Pulse until everything is combined, but still a bit chunky.
Serve the dip with raw veggies or organic corn tortilla chips. I like to make my own by cutting day-old tortillas into triangles and baking them in the oven at 350 °F for about 15-20 minutes, or until crispy.
Assuming you have any leftovers, the dip can be covered and refrigerated for a day or so. If it discolors, just scrape the top layer off and it will be green again underneath.
Keri Houchin is a freelance writer and lifestyle blogger. Her blog, One Mama’s Daily Drama, is about the ups and downs of parenthood and includes crafts, recipes, and diy projects. Connect with Keri at Facebook.com/FortWorthMama, Twitter.com/KeriHouchin and Pinterest.com/KeriHouchin