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Favorite Snacks for Kids

Top-Rated Snacks the Kids Will Love

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Snack time has always been a favorite time for experimenting with new flavors in our house. I always found that when the kids were hungriest -- typically at 3 in the afternoon -- they were also the most willing to try something new. They didn't always like what I had to offer, but I learned through trial and error (and lots of friends coming over for playdates) what appeals to kids.

The recipes featured here are the snacks kids consistently rated the best. Many are far healthier than the typical chips and cookies you get from the grocery store. And they are far cheaper to prepare, too. Enjoy!

Nutella Waffle Sandwiches

Waffle Sandwiches
Stephanie Gallagher
I'm a big fan of using high-quality frozen waffles as a canvas for all sorts of kitchen creativity. I normally serve these waffle sandwiches for breakfast, but they make a terrific snack, too. Using whole grain waffles adds a bit of extra fiber and protein to this snack. If fresh raspberries aren't in season, top with sliced strawberries instead.

See also: Toaster Waffle Recipes

Blueberry Fruit Smoothies

Blueberry Fruit Smoothies
Taesam Do/Getty Images
These refreshing smoothies bring together sweet and tart flavors in a way that is naturally appealing to kids. The lemon yogurt is the perfect partner for blueberries, but if you can't find it, feel free to substitute vanilla yogurt instead.

Healthy Peanut Butter Rice Crispy Treats

Peanut Butter Rice Crispy Treats
Stephanie Gallagher
Brown crispy rice cereal, peanut butter (instead of marshmallows) and brown rice syrup make these rice crispy treats a bit healthier than the original recipe, but every bit as crunchy and sweet.

Frozen Grapes Recipe

Frozen Grapes
Stephanie Gallagher
When grapes are frozen, they take on a completely different texture, like eating sweet, icy bits of juicy perfection. The kids absolutely adore these, and they're the perfect snack on a hot summer day, too.

Caramel Corn Recipe

Caramel Corn Recipe
Stephanie Gallagher
Who can resist the sweet, crunchy taste of caramel corn? This recipe can be made in advance, too. Just store in an airtight container at room temperature.

See also: Popcorn recipes

Carrot Sticks with Peanut Butter

Carrot Sticks with Peanut Butter
Jamie Grill/Getty Images
You've no doubt heard of ants on a log or cream cheese smeared on celery then topped with raisins. But carrots with peanut butter are an even better combination, in my opinion. My kids just love this snack (and so do I!). Feel free to add raisins if you like.

Spinach Balls Recipe

Spinach Balls
Stephanie Gallagher
You will not believe how fast these spinach balls disappear when I make them during the day, and my kids bring friends over after school. I am not kidding. Even kids who turn their noses up at anything green soon discover how tasty spinach can be. The addition of sausage to this recipe adds a bit of spiciness and heartiness to these balls, making them a perfect snack for teens.

You can make this recipe in advance, and freeze. Just reheat in the oven until toasty.

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins Recipe

Pumpkin Bran Muffins
Stephanie Gallagher
Another make-ahead recipe, these muffins taste like carrot cake or pumpkin cake with a sweetened cream cheese filling. You'll think they're horrible for you, but they're actually full of vitamins and fiber.

Goldfish in the Pond Rice Cakes

Goldfish Crackers Rice Cakes
Stephanie Gallagher
Turn snack time into activity time with these fun-to-make treats. Preschoolers and young kids love these!

Sweet and Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

Sweet and Spicy Roasted Chickpeas
Stephanie Gallagher
When you roast chickpeas, they become crunchy, like nuts. Tossing them with butter and brown sugar gives them that sweet-spicy flavor combination that is popular with everyone. When I serve these chickpeas to the kids in the afternoon, I don't worry so much about what they're eating at dinner, because they're getting a nice serving of fiber, protein and vitamins in the afternoon.
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