Candy Corn Rice Crispy Treats

candy corn rice crispy treats halloween

Every year for Halloween I host a party for my playgroup. Something fun, easy, and entertaining for the kids. We enjoy painting pumpkins, creating snack bags, and having a great time while all in costume.

But one of our favorite parts about this get together is the fact that we all come together and bring delicious goodies for everyone to sample. This year I decided to try out some festive rice crispy treats after my husband made a batch and left about 1/2 the pan in the fridge.

So I got out my candy melts and started playing around to create these adorable sweet treats otherwise known as candy corn rice crispy treats. I’m sure the kids will love them! [Read more…]

Recycled Portable Snack Container {How-To}

With a love of coffee and creamer comes a surplus of creamer bottles left over once I’ve had a few morning cups. So taking a spin on recycling a bit further, I removed the wrapper over one of my creamer bottles and cleaned it out very well after it was empty.

What resulted was simple recycled portable snack container. And it’s perfect for little hands!

Here’s how to make a Recycled Portable Snack Container: 

1. Grab an empty creamer container.

2. Rinse and wash thouroughly.

3. Remove outer plastic from bottle.

4. Fill up with your child’s favorite small snack.

5. Enjoy a snack on the go!

Not only does it fit perfectly in my daughter’s stroller, it also pours out just a few snacks at a time reducing waste and messes. Each time we go out for a run my daughter reaches for her portable snack container so she can enjoy her snack on the go!

What does your child love to snack on? 

Healthy Ranch Yogurt Dip {Snack Recipe}

Yogurt Ranch Dip

My family is absolutely obsessed with ranch dressing. If the kids have veggies, they want to dip them in ranch. So I’ve tried to change up the way we make ranch and have ditched the sour cream!

Now sour cream isn’t bad. I love the stuff. But by swapping out sour cream with greek yogurt I not only am cutting calories but I’m increasing protein! All in all I’m very excited about the swap and the kids can’t seem to tell the difference.

And Greek yogurt can be subbed for more than just sour cream. I also swap it out for mayo in some recipes.

Yogurt Ranch Dip ingredients

Ranch Yogurt Dip
  • 1 cup greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons ranch mix (see below for ranch mix)

Mix ingredients together until well combined. Let sit in the fridge overnight. Serve with your favorite veggies or chips.

Ranch Dip Mix
  • 2 tablespoons dried parsley
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried thyme

Combine ingredients and store in an air-tight container for up to 3 months. Feel free to double or triple and use as needed.

Keeping Kids Healthy with Great Snack Options {Back to School Special}

Keeping Kids Healthy with Great Snack Options

Now that the kids are going back to school and the craziness of summer is coming to an end, it’s time to start talking healthy snack options!

One of my main concerns with my kids is the fact that they want to snack So I’ve tried my best to offer a variety of foods to not only keep them open minded about what they eat, but also keep them aware of the colors they eat and trying to make sure they get to every color of the rainbow!

If they’re going to snack, they’re going to snack the right way.  [Read more…]

Food, Nutrition, and Health Tips for Kids

Food Nutrition and Health Tips for Kids - great snack and meal ideas

One of the biggest problems I have when it comes to my toddler and eating is that he doesn’t eat meals like I do. He would much rather snack all day then have large meals.

So in order to get him to eat during the day I let him have small snacks every two to three hours versus a set breakfast, lunch and dinner. And because it’s so easy to grab a pre-packaged snack from the cupboard I needed to find some simple, quick, healthy snack ideas to keep him fueled throughout the day. [Read more…]

Great Snack Ideas for Kids {Tips and Tricks}

You know the saying, “Variety is the spice of life”? This really holds true when it comes to toddlers and food. I sometimes get in a rut when I go grocery shopping. I buy the same fruits, veggies and snacks over and over again. And I notice that after a few weeks of the same handful of choices my son starts to lose interest in those foods. He even started to turn down berries for breakfast or dessert so I knew things had to change.

This summer I have been buying strawberries, grapes and apples weekly. On a quick trip to Trader Joe’s with my son he saw the oranges from across the store and literally ran to them with glee. He practically begged me to buy some for him. So I obliged and threw in a bag of oranges. I asked him if any of the vegetables looked tasty and he grabbed a crown of broccoli. We got home and immediately he asked for an orange. I peeled it and he devoured it in minutes. Then at dinner time he asked to help make the broccoli so I let him break some up to put in the steamer. He ate that as well (along with a few bites of chicken).

It seemed as though having him choose a few items that he was willing to try lead to him eating more than normal. So I started looking for great suggestions to keep him excited about the food we served him so he would be more willing to eat. Now I don’t expect him to eat like a champ every day. Toddlers eat like cavemen. They scavenge for a few days and just snack a tiny bit and  then they have what I call eating days where they seem to not get enough. Eating days maybe come every 4-5 days… Below are a few tidbits I’ve found from various sources that now help me keep things exciting for him when he does decide to eat.

1. Get the Kids Involved in Meal Planning
Starting the week off with a list of meals to make each day not only saves time but ultimately helps save money as well. Adding the kids into the mix will also save tears and aggravation at dinner time when your child doesn’t like what’s been put in front of them. Let your child help you meal plan so they can choose what they want to eat. Perhaps start by letting one choose one meal a week. Or if you have younger children like me, let them choose the side dish (carbs, starches or veggies). If my son has chosen his veggie than he more than likely eats at least 3 bites of it when served to him at dinner.

2. Take the Kids Grocery Shopping
I know, I know. It’s a pain to take the kids in the grocery store. I used to dread shopping with both of mine and would wait till the weekend to do all of my grocery shopping alone and kid-less (plus I got to indulge in a coffee that wasn’t cold while I shopped). But then, like I mentioned before, my son got excited about eating the food he chose. And I’ve been taking him alone without the baby so he feels like he has my complete attention when I shop. It’s a great bonding time that I actually look forward to now! Plus as your children help choose the meals and then see what ingredients go into the meals they may just start to get interested in making the meals.

3. Let the Kids Help in the Kitchen
Grab that stool from the garage or closet and push it up to the counter. Find odd jobs while prepping for dinner that are safe for your child to do. I purchased a child-safe knife from Pampered Chef that my son uses along side me to chop up herbs while I chop up veggies. He also helps rip up lettuce for salad, add pre-measured cups of ingredients to the bowl and crack eggs. When he starts cooking with me he gets excited about the food he is working with. He’s even taken to eating lettuce and salads without prompting because he prepares the salads for mealtime.

All of these three things will lead to your child not only being proficient in making meals for your family but will also help your child stay on the healthy track. By giving your child the opportunity to make smart choices about food, and then showing them how to prepare the meals to eat, they will know what to do when they get older and have to think about food on their own. My greatest challenge to myself right now is to try and lead a healthier life for my children so that I am the role-model they look to when they choose how they’re going to eat and live.

A great tidbit I heard in a panel discussion at BlogHer’11 from one of the speakers was that the old saying “Do as I say, not as I do” holds no value. What you do says a lot and kids are going to follow your lead. So keep a variety of healthy choices available for your children and get them involved!

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