Hey all you sideline moms and dads! Spring is here and that means little league baseball, soccer and lacrosse tryouts are right around the corner. All the fun is going to start but for parents there is a little bit of prep work besides just opening up your portable umbrella and cheering on your favorite team!
If you’re wondering what other tasks go along with this very important job, let me help by giving you a familiar visual reminder. It’s half-time and the whole team is looking a little beat and in need of some energy. Hmm, let’s flash forward to the end of the game and your tired team comes rushing over looking for a drink and snack. I’m talking about the all-important snack duty!
It’s critical for moms and dads to be prepared with an arsenal of, not just any snacks, but healthy snacks that will keep your kids running on the right fuel all the way through the game, and afterwards when they’re trying to recover from fatigue of running around all day. So to get in the right frame of mind I’ve put together a trusty list of go-to snacks that will be easy to prepare and healthy for your growing athlete.
This may seem like common sense, but some parents overlook just how much better fruit can be for a little body compared to those tasty bags of chips and cookies. If you really want to do your team a favor, steer clear of those processed sugars and dyes, in favor of fruit with natural sugars that won’t have your little kids crashing after a quick sugar rush. Cut up apples and oranges are always an easy and portable snack treat. Watermelon and strawberries are also a great option because they are among the top hydrating fruits, which is always a plus for kids who are doing a lot of running. If you are looking for a fun way to prepare and present your snack try skewering your fruit and then placing them in a small cup. Kid will get a kick out of eating fruit skewers and taking a break under their team portable umbrella!
String cheese is a simple and healthy snack for on-the-go athletes and parents. Besides being ridiculously easy to pack, and conveniently packaged, string cheese is also really healthy! They are high in protein and low in fat which makes for a great non-sugary snack to help keep your kids energy going all day. My favorite thing to do is pull the cheese for the top down and create little strings! It’s a lot more fun to eat!
Nuts are jam packed with fat… the good fat! The healthy fat that nuts contain actually fights hunger and keeps young athletes blood sugar levels from crashing. Translation, kids won’t get crabby that usually comes with hunger. Nuts also help to keep cholesterol levels low and provide kids with protein they need to rebuild muscles and recover their energy. If you’re looking to be creative, I’ve also included a quick and easy recipe for homemade fruit and nut energy bars. Combine two of the power snacks on this list for a delicious and healthy treat!
2 cups mixed dried fruit
1 cup sliced or slivered almonds
1 cup walnuts
2 teaspoons almond extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Preheat your oven to 250 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Put all your ingredients in a food processor, or blender, and pulse on and off until the ingredients are chopped and stick together. Press the mixture into 3/4th inch rectangles then cut into smaller squares and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes and let cool before packing in a ToGo container.
With this list of snacks in mind you’ll be the favorite sideline parent when it comes to snack time! Kids will flock under your sports umbrella to get a sample of these healthy options that will keep kid’s bodies going strong during and after game time.