Healthy Gluten-Free Snacks for Kids (and their parents!)
If your kids are anything like mine they are currently constantly asking for snacks!
I'm not a massive fan of snacking. It's much better for our digestion to eat 2-3 proper meals a day but given that kids' bellies (especially younger ones) are much smaller than adult-sized bellies different rules apply. I allow for two set snack times a day (one at 10 AM and one at 4 PM) if they are hungry at other times they can help themselves to fruit. I believe that snacks need to be as nutritious as meals... which can be really hard to achieve especially if you're going down the packaged route.
Here are some healthier snack ideas that are simple to make and will be enthusiastically received.
All the recipes are gluten-free, low in sugar and either vegan or can be made with vegan replacements (e.g. swap eggs for chia 'eggs')
RASPBERRY COCONUT MUFFINS (from Autumn Elle Nutrition)
- 1 1/2 cups oat flour (mill oats in a blender)
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- 1 egg (or 1 flax egg)
- 1 banana, mashed
- 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
- 2 Tbsp. rice or maple syrup
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 cup raspberries (I use frozen)
- coconut oil to grease the pan
1. Preheat oven to 250
2. Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl.
3. In a separate bowl, combine remaining wet ingredients, except for the raspberries.
4. Add wet ingredients to dry and mix to combine. Gently fold in the berries.
5. Grease a mini muffin or regular muffin tin with coconut oil or use silicone molds. Add batter and bake for 18-20 minutes if using mini muffins, 25- 28 minutes if using full muffins.
6. Allow to cool for at least 30 minutes before eating.
7. Store in a glass container for up to 7 days.
BANANA BREAD (from Hemsley & Hemsley)
- 4 ripe bananas
- 60 g coconut flour/gluten free flour
- 1 tbsp of cinnamon
- 50g coconut oil/butter
- 4 eggs
- Pinch of salt
- 3 tbsp melted coconut oil/butter
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 tbs apple cider vinegar
- 1.5 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1. Skin the bananas
2. Preheat oven to fan 180ºC and line a loaf tin (12cmx23cm/900g) with baking parchment.
3. Throw everything into a food processor and blend until smooth.
4. Pour the batter into the lined loaf tin.
5. Bake at 180ºC for 50 mins – 60 min or until a knife comes out clean.
6. Cool on a rack completely before turning out of the tin.
*Tip – You could also top this with walnuts, goji berries, pumpkin seeds – or anything else that takes your fancy!
CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER CUPS
- 325g Dark chocolate (try to use 80-90%)
- 260g Peanut butter
- Paper or silicone mini cups
1. Make a bain-marie
2. Add half of the chocolate – melt
3. Half fill the cupcake cases
4. Place in the fridge to cool and set (roughly 20-30 minutes)
5. Remove and add a dollop of nut butter
6. Melt the remaining chocolate, cover, then place into the fridge to set
CREAMY CHOCOLATE MOUSSE
- 1 Avocado,
- 1.5 Ripe bananas,
- 15 g Raw cocoa
- 40g Smooth cashew nut butter / double cream if nuts are a problem
- A pinch of salt
- Optional – doTERRA wild orange, peppermint or ginger essential oil
- Optional top with vanilla coconut yogurt & and berries
1.Blend all ingredients apart from coconut yogurt
2.Dish out into ramekins, glasses or bowls and decorate with yogurt and berries.
CHIA SEED PUDDING (from the Good life)
- 300g cashew nuts
- 750ml water
- 2 TBSP rice syrup
- 10g coconut oil
- 1-2 TSP vanilla powder
- ½ TBSP cinnamon
- 20g ground flaxseeds
- 50g chia seeds
For the topping:
- 25g flaked almonds
- Coconut yogurt
1. Soak the cashews for a minimum of 30 minutes, drain
2. Pour cashews, water, rice syrup, coconut oil, vanilla, cinnamon and flaxseeds in a blender – blend
3. Pour into a big bowl and stir in chia and flaxseeds
4. Leave to stand for at least an hour, or ideally overnight
5. Optional for serving – toasted almond flakes, fresh berries, gojji berries, raw cooca nibs, almond nut butter, coconut yogurt
PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES (from Eat Smile Live)
- 1 egg
- 1 cup nut butter (almond or peanut)
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar
- 80-90% dark chocolate
- 1 tsp baking powder
1. Mix everything together and bake at 160 for 8 mins.
2. Remove and press down with the back of a fork then leave to cool.
CHOCOLATE OR BERRY ICE CREAM
- 1 cup frozen bananas
- 1-2 pitted dates
- a splash of plant based milk (you can use more milk to make it a 'milkshake' instead of ice-cream)
- 1 tbsp of raw cacao for chocolate flavour
- 1/2 cup of frozen raspberries for raspberry flavour - or any berry you like!
- vanilla extract (optional)
- 1 tbs almond nut butter or peanut butter
1.Put in a high speed blender and blend.
CHOCOLATE ORANGE SALTED POPCORN
- 1/6 of a cup of coconut oil
- 1/2 cup popping corn
- 1 bar of 80-90% dark chocolate
- 2 tsp coconut palm sugar
- Good grind of sea salt
- optional : 2-4 drops doTERRA Wild Orange Essential Oil
1. Heat up your coconut oil in a big pan over a medium heat.
2. Once melted and starting to get hot, put popcorn in and give it a really good stir to coat all of the kernels. Then cover with the lid. You'll start to hear the popcorn pop. Leave the lid on until the popping stops. Take off heat straight away, otherwise it will burn on the bottom of the pan.
3. Melt the chocolate using a bain marie, and when off the heat, add in the Wild Orange oil.
4. Take your chosen popcorn eating bowl, pour the popcorn in, followed by the chocolate and drizzle it all over, stirring around as you go to make sure you coat it all.
5. Add your salt (to desired saltiness) and the coconut palm sugar.
6. Stir around to coat everything well.
AVOCADO CREAM with oat cakes & veggie sticks (from Deliciously Ella)
- 2 avocados
- 3 tbsp of apple cider vinegar 2 tbsp of olive oil
- 2 tbsp of water
- salt and pepper to taste
1. Whip up in a blender/food processor
- Warm up 1 cup of rude health rice milk
- Add 1 teaspoon of coconut oil
- Add 1-2 teaspoon of raw cocoa
- Sprinkle with cinnamon
1. Serve in a mug or sippy cup
I'd love to know what recipes you try and which your kids (and you!) enjoy the most,