Can you believe it's almost the beginning of the new academic year? It seems like just yesterday the final bell dismissed your young ones to enjoy their long, hot summer. However, it's almost time to get back into the swing of things and send them back to school. That also means it's time for your lunch-packing duties to resurface. Beyond the usual wholesome main course, why not switch things up and pack a few healthy and delicious snacks this year?
And we're not talking about the usual piece of fruit or bag of veggies. Try a few of our healthful and exciting snack recipes instead!
1. Banana-Carob-Oatmeal Snack
For a sweet and simple treat, try this recipe.
1/4 to 1/2 cup raw organic oatmeal
1 teaspoon carob powder
Place all ingredients in a food processor, blending until fully combined. If the mixture seems too dry, add distilled water, little by little, until you reach the perfect consistency.
2. Raw Fruit Pudding
Pudding is a childhood classic! Try this delicious vegan recipe.
1 cup strawberries
1 cup peaches
1 cup rice milk
2-4 tablespoons ground organic flax meal
First, grind the flaxseed into meal. Set aside.
Place the strawberries, peaches and bananas in a food processor and blend well - the consistency should be smooth and creamy.
Add rice milk and flax meal to the fruit combination and blend until you reach the perfect pudding consistency.
3. Pumpkin Cookies
Kids love when you sneak a treat into their lunches - they'll have no idea how healthy this recipe is!
2 cups organic whole wheat flour
1 cup organic rolled oats
1/4 cup organic ground flaxseed
1 teaspoon non-aluminum baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon unrefined sea salt
1 cup melted organic butter
1 cup amber agave nectar
2 tablespoons ground flaxseed mixed with 1/4 cup of water
1 cup pumpkin puree
Optional: 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
First, heat your oven to 350 degrees and prepare a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Place all of your dry ingredients in a bowl and mix together until combined.
Place wet ingredients in a food processor and blend well. Slowly combine the dry and wet ingredients until mixture forms into a cookie-dough-like consistency.
Using a tablespoon, drop dough balls onto the prepared sheet, leaving about 1-inch space between each cookie.
Move pan to the oven and bake for 7-9 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for about two minutes on the pan, then move to a wire cookie rack to cool completely.
4. Flatbread Crackers
Crackers make a great afternoon snack, and your kids will love this garlic-and-herb-inspired recipe.
2 cups organic wholemeal spelt flour
3/4 cup water
A sprinkling of salt to taste
Garlic and additional herbs of your choice
Extra flour and water to improve consistency
First, mix the wholemeal spelt flour with 3/4 cups of water and a sprinkling of salt. Knead until the dough is workable, then roll it out to a thin sheet. Use extra flour and water to improve consistency for rolling if necessary.
Place cracker dough under a broiler and cook for about 5 minutes, or until the top starts to turn golden brown. Remove from oven, let cool and then cut to desired cracker shapes. Seal in a plastic bag or container.
5. Apple Cinnamon Kale Chips
A sweet and salty treat? Your children will love this chip alternative.
1 cup dried apples - soaked and drained
1 cup cashews - soaked and drained
1 cup distilled water
3/4 cup maple syrup
1 tablespoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoon vanilla
Sea salt to taste
1 bunch kale - washed, trimmed and stemmed
Combine all ingredients, besides kale, in a blender, mixing until smooth. Add sea salt periodically to taste.
Coat kale in apple mixture, then place in a dehydrator for 8 to 10 hours. Enjoy!