The soundtrack of my summer is the sound of the kitchen cupboard door opening and closing, the tap of bowls set on the counter, the rustle of hands stuffed into a box of crackers, the slosh of milk poured into a bowl of cereal, and the crinkle of a popsicle wrapper. Yes, to me this season sounds like my kids getting summer snacks. All day, every day, in our house summer means snacks.
It seems like when the temperatures rise and school lets out, my kids suddenly need to eat all the time. Suddenly the regular meals don’t cut it. The kids need to eat every few hours. It’s like having a newborn again, except now the kids can feed themselves.
And they eat lots of food. Seriously, so much food. My first challenge as a mom in summer is to keep the kitchen stocked with food. My next challenge is to make sure that my kids aren’t just filling up on junk food and are getting some semblance of a balanced diet and a bit of healthy options in their summer snacks.
I’ve developed a few snack hacks to keep the kitchen full and the kids healthy and strong. Here are FOUR of my favorite summer snack hacks:
1. Cut Up Fruit
I keep a Tupperware container full of cut-up watermelon in the fridge. Not only is it a favorite summertime treat the kids can grab on the run, but the watermelon is so juicy it helps keep the kids hydrated as well. If watermelon isn’t your favorite, cantaloupe, a bunch of grapes, or seasonal berries will do the trick as well.
2. Meat and Cheese
My kids could eat crackers around the clock, so to add some protein to their go-to summer snack, I keep lots of meat and cheese around. When I hear the rustle of a cracker wrapper, I hand out chopped up salami or nitrate-free sliced turkey and packages of string cheese. The kids love making cracker sandwiches and I hope this little extra protein holds them .75 seconds longer.
3. Roasted Nuts
My kids are crazy about pistachios, and I love that they don’t have to be refrigerated. Natural almonds or boiled peanuts are also a favorite summer snack. I always keep a bag of nuts in my purse, in my car, and in the swim bag to hold off the “I’m star-ving” chants.
My kids won’t eat a yogurt and fruit smoothie, but when I pour it into a silicon mold and stick it in the freezer, they’ll gobble up the creamy popsicles in a flash!
These are my summer snack hacks. And for some snack-like dinner options, check out this post! What are your go-tos to feed hungry kids all summer long? Please leave them in the comments!