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Secretly Healthy Snacks to Pack for School

No matter how old you are, nothing turns a frown upside-down and makes the day better like a fun snack. From lunch bag goodies packed with love to after school snacks to refuel for the rest of the day, these sweet delights are the highlight of your little gumdrop’s day.

As a parent, you want your little one to eat healthier – and sneaking a few extra nutrients and pulling out a few calories from snacks is actually a lot easier than you might think.

Let them eat cake:

We all love a moist, gooey cupcake – and there are several ways you can easily convert them from the unhealthy delicacies into a more wholesome version without losing their appeal. Add a dash of nature’s goodness by swapping out the oil in favor of sugar-free, chunky applesauce. Trim the calories even more by forgoing the heavy frosting and adding a sprinkle of organic powdered sugar mixed with cocoa powder.

Kaleidoscope bars:

No matter your age, colors grab our attention – and for your kids, fun equals yummy. Add a splash of color to an otherwise boring snack to instantly bring it to life. A handful of fruity pebbles to a healthy granola bar recipe will add a trace amount of sugar per bar, but the exchange will have them reaching for seconds. Try adding some home-made dried fruit to everyday recipes for a dash of extra vitamins and mouthwatering eye appeal.

Sprinkles, please:

In a kid's eyes, sprinkles could make even the lowly spinach dish as tasty as an ice cream sundae. Fat-free sprinkles can be added to just about any treat to make it a favorite that’s sure to please every time. Kick air-popped corn into overdrive with a handful of brightly colored confetti sprinkles mixed in. Don’t underestimate the draw of the delightfully tiny colored balls. Pretty much any health-food snack from kale chips to rugged fiber-rich granola can be instantly transformed by colorful sprinkles.

Cookie monsters:

Scrumptious, kid-sized handfuls of yumminess is the way to any cherub’s heart. Forego the typical oatmeal raisin cookies for simple banana-oatmeal bars, which use the sweetness of the ripe banana in place of added sugar or oil. For extra pizazz toss in a handful of bright red cranberries and purple raisins for a multicolored delight. If it’s chocolate chip cookies they’re craving, use organic, sugar-free cacao chips in place of processed chocolate, and exchange the fats for coconut oil for a soft cookie that will move up the healthy scale as well as the most requested list.

Fostering healthy habits from a young age can lead to a lifetime of good choices – but it’s never too late to start making small changes for the better. From swapping an ingredient or two, to changing the consistency of a dry crunchy health bar, to an enjoyable moist and chewy slice of heaven – pretty soon the health snacks will be on the most wanted list – and the health benefits will be your little secret.