Sunday, February 23, 2014

Snack Ideas for Growing Boys

*Norman Rockwell*

I have 8 boys, and feeding them has been such a learning experience for me.  I'm going to also do a post on meals, but since boys (especially teenage boys) tend to be hungry ALL.THE.Time, I wanted to focus on snacks first.
Despite the fact that my boys are always hungry, I do not allow grazing at our house.  I think set snack times are a better idea than constantly grazing, at least for our family.  I could go into this, but I think for now I'll just focus on the snacks.  I do my best to make sure most of the snacks are good for sustaining boys for several hours.  Sugar, just causes the kids to get cranky and then to be starving within the hour.  I learned that the snacks I've shared below really do help them feel full, balance that blood sugar, and provides them the fuel they need until meal time.

*I buy DOZENS of eggs.
Boiled eggs are a staple around here.  Loaded with protein, they really fill up a hungry boys stomach and they are not expensive.  *A tip for getting the peel off eggs easily.  I always boil with 2 tsp of baking soda plus a dash of salt in the water.  When I store the boiled eggs in the refrigerator, we always run the egg under tap water to sort of 'shock' the shell into loosening for easy peeling.  If we take them on picnics, I do this before I pack them.  They almost always peel easily.

*I buy bulk carrots, I keep 3 or more peelers at the ready.
Sometimes I let them peel their own, some boys just wash the carrot and eat it without peeling.  Sometimes I not only peel them, but I also cut them into sticks.  

*Celery in bulk, peanut butter too.  

*Apples, lots and lots of apples.


*Popcorn, I purchase a 50 lb. bag of popcorn once a year.  When you break it down, the cost per pound is less than a dollar.  We air pop it and also pop it on the stove.  They love this as a snack.

*Hummus, with veggies, or with pita chips


*Pumpkin Bread

*Banana Bread


~all the quick breads & blondies - I will add flax flour and use half whole wheat when I want to bulk it up.  

*Granola - sometimes I make this with more honey and make granola bars, other times I let them pour almond milk or dairy milk over this.  (this is one of the more 'sweet' of the snacks)


*Large bags or buckets of peanuts or sunflower seeds.  They especially love this in the months where they can be outside and just toss the shells into the yard.

*I generally have large bags of grapefruit or oranges, clementines etc... Citrus does NOT fill them up, even with all that fiber.  When we have oranges, it is usually accompanied with something substantial, like cheese.

*String cheese is fun, but buy large blocks of cheese.  It is cheaper, and the slices can be thick to give them a substantial portion. (I do also buy string cheese every once in a while as a treat)

*We also have peanut butter sandwiches or turkey sandwiches for after school snacks when I know dinner is going to be late.

A note on bread - buy the WHOLE WHEAT or WHOLE GRAIN, this sustains growing boys much, much longer!  Ezekiel bread is even better, but who can afford to spend over $5.00 a loaf regularly.

I just typed this out quickly, without putting too much thought into it.  I know as I remember other snacks I'll edit the post.  Please feel free to add ideas in the comments too.




15 comments:

  1. Some great ideas! How do you store your 50 lb bag of popcorn?

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    1. I usually just keep it in the bag and roll the top down. If it looks like that isn't working, I add it to a Totes type tub to keep it sealed.

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  2. These are great,a few new ideas for me. I also try really hard to keep the snacks high protein, high fiber, low sugar. I haven't done boiled eggs yet, but have been thinking about it. I just can't believe how fast we go through everything; every time I think I have adjusted and anticipated properly for my grocery planning, it's still never enough! I don't allow grazing either, but the four year old hasn't quite learned how to follow the rules, yet. All in good time!

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  3. All great ideas. We do keep a lot of the same things, but the peanuts...wow, my kids would flip. I think I should pick some up once nice weather hits.
    Another newer fill up ( more for lunch but could work as a snack too, is bean burritos) I keep whole grain wraps handy, and the kids open up some refried beans, heat up and just add salsa and cheese. Those hold them for a while too.
    Thanks for sharing these great ideas!

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  4. This is awesome! We are a a bit of a strict diet again, trying to watch Sweet Pea's dairy and grain intake to see if that is causing her issues, so I have had to really be good about making menu plans that include snack! That way I know exactly what to give them.
    Since we started being really strict again we went through 10 dozen eggs in a week!! I almost freaked, but I guess that is a dozen per person, so it that bad? lol
    All I know is that the eggs really do fill them up and I am getting creative with gluten free breads, lol.
    Oh and I am going to have to find a bag of popcorn that big! That would be a super easy snack! And gluten free!

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  5. Wonderful list! I have four boys--two teens, two littles--and three little "hens" in between. All of them {seemingly} eat non-stop; all the better if I can avoid the usual requests. (Reeses Puffs...Cheetos...you get the picture)

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  6. You know, this helps moms who have very athletic girls, too. You'd be AMAZED at how much a girl on a swim team can put inside her stomach! :) I wish mine would eat more eggs. I'm still going to give the eggs a bigger boost hoping they will eat those, more. It won't hurt trying.

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    1. I'm on my hub's laptop. That was me, not David ;)

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  7. This is great and so practical! Looking at the snacks Pinterest keeps telling me I should create for my boys just makes me tired. I'm glad to know I don't have to create an octopus attacking a submarine out of ten different fruits/vegetables/cheeses/other healthy things I don't even recognize for every snack time and my children will still turn out okay.....and probably less hungry :)

    Thank you for all of your wonderful advice, keep it coming!

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  8. Taking notes for sure, and I'm so glad to see you posting again!

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  9. Love all your ideas, and the peanuts, never thought of that, a certain 8 yo will be ecstatic ;-) Our air popper blew up, so need to replace, but I worry about all that corn in their tummy 'cause they will eat it til they burst, literally!! LOL. Do you bake alot of bread for the sandwiches, 'cause a loaf for even three boys will only last about a day and a half if they have more than one per day....sigh. We certainly have hollow let syndrome around here. Love all your ideas, thanks so much!

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  10. I always love reading your ideas and things you do to make your family work. You are the greatest and I think you should write a book!!

    I saved this post all day yesterday hoping to find a chance to come read and never got the chance...finally!
    Love you!

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  11. Oh, yeah, my husband has popcorn (we use a whirly pop--similar to making it on the stove) almost every night...he only likes white popcorn...gonna have to look for the 50 lb bag..I think Sam's club sells yellow though...

    Great idea!

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  12. Awesome list! We share the same favorites. Have you tried baking your "boiled" eggs before? It takes a while but they are even yummier!

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