There are days when I feel like I am running a cafe. My children take it in turns to come to me saying “I’m hungry” or “Can I have a snack” or “Marmite/Biscuit/Cereal Bar”. Occasionally I even get a please 😉
I do wonder how on earth they can eat so much and still want more, but then they will go through days when they hardly eat, so it all seems to balance out. I prefer them to self-regulate their appetite rather than having me guess when they should be full.
Having a 5 year old makes life a little easier as I can reason with her more and talk through choices. She asks for cake and we can decide if that is the best option just before lunch or could she have a breadstick and save her cake for later on. We can talk about having a range of foods in the diet and what foods are better choice to keep our bodies working properly. She also reacts to having too much sugar and recognises this!
The 2 year old is a different kettle of fish altogether. He has just been through a stage where he has discovered biscuits (mainly from playgroup time with Daddy – ahem) and he is in love. Now I can’t blame him. Who doesn’t love a biscuit. However, they aren’t things I plan for my small ones to eat everyday. THis boy definitely has a sweet tooth. So I’ve had to go on a biscuit cull in our house. When he asks for a biscuit I’ve been explaining we don’t have any, showing him the empty tin and redirecting him to a banana or a piece of toast. There have been some tears and some stroppy moments but after 2 weeks we have made it through the biscuit terror. He is now not asking for them at every available eating moment, at least not at home.
So here (in no particular order) are our current list of snacks:
- Fruit and yoghurt. Job done.
- Popcorn – I airpop a pile and keep it in an airtight box for a few days. Plus it is wholegrain!
- Maltloaf – my 5 year old calls this chocolate cake! She knows it isn’t but…. hey makes it more fun.
- Wholemeal toast with marmite or cream cheese – a common 2nd breakfast. Yes they are hobbits.
- Large rice cake with peanut butter and slices of banana (seriously good combo).
- Homemade healthy flapjacks, we almost always have these in stock, I make a batch weekly.
- Nut and seed balls. I make these for me but they always get shared around.
- Nuts (pecans for the 2 year old, almond for the 5 year old) and dried apricots. Always fills them up.
- Cheesy biscuits with grapes. An easy snack for on the go.
- Hummus with….almost anything. My kids love a dip – but go through phases of what they like to dip in, so we vary from breadsticks, veggies (carrots, peppers, cucumber, broccoli, green beans), small rice cakes, crackers, toast strips.
- Wholegrain cereal with raisins in a pot, no milk. Dry cereal can make a great snack on long car journeys as it takes a while to eat!
- Courgette cheesy biscuits. For when we have had a baking session.
- Homemade cereal bars. I like to pack fruit or veg in these.
I hope that gives your some ideas. Please share any ideas you have as I’m always on the look out for new things!