Who has a child who comes out of school ravenous? When we put ourselves in their shoes it is hardly surprising they’re hungry at that time of day. Not only are they fairly active during the school day, their schedules mean that some may have eaten their whole lunch before even midday. Other children may have eaten a snack mid-morning then their lunch at lunchtime but their body is expecting another snack come 3-4pm. Added to this that younger children tend to need more frequent feeding. There are many reasons for this not least the size of their stomachs. As children get older they should need less snacks but we know that’s not always the case when many may not have had sufficient breakfast before school, and some will have forfeited a full lunchtime in favour of football or dance practice for example. It’s no wonder they head straight for the snacks after school. So how can we make sure they choose healthier snacks and don’t ruin their appetite for a healthy evening meal? The answer is the healthy snack has to be more easily available and accessible than the less healthy alternative. In this day and age that’s not easy. Even before they’ve left the school or sports ground there may be biscuits on offer, a vending machine. Outside the school there will be newsagents strategically placed on the school route and sometimes even fast food outlets. The key is to make sure a variety of options are available that don’t require  much effort from adult or child. Here are my top ideas and recipes:

  1. Easy Cheesy Flapjack
  2. Oatcakes, Cheese and Grapes
  3. Carrot and Cumin Muffin with Cheese or Avocado
  4. Apple (wedges) and Peanut Butter
  5. Banana Bread
  6. Hummus and a Whole Carrot to dip in
  7. Protein Packed Flapjack
  8. Natural Yogurt mixed with Compote or Fruit Spread
  9. Fruity Kefir Shake
  10. Dried Fruit and Nut/Seed Bars/Balls – homemade or shop-bought