Making Easy, Healthy Snacks with Fresh Seasonal Produce
Spring has finally sprung and farmer's markets are popping up in nearly every city. As you wander through your local farmer's market, you may find yourself entranced by all the brightly-colored seasonal produce options on display--but which fruits and vegetables do you really want to take home with you?
Take a look through the stalls and consider what great healthy snack options you can put together for your family--or, if you don't have the option of browsing a farmer's market, check out Whole Foods or Sprouts for fresh fruits and vegetables sourced from local markets. And of course, don't forget to throw Bobo's Bars in your bag in case you get hungry while you shop!
Now that you’ve gathered bags of fresh goodies and you’ve had a delicious Bobo’s bar as a snack, check out these great ideas on what to pick up at your local farmer’s market as well as how to prepare your fresh seasonal produce for any occasion.
Veggie Tray and Dip
Take a look at the vegetables offered in your local farmer's market. Do you have carrots? Zucchini? Squash? What about cherry tomatoes? As you walk through the stands, consider what vegetables you love eating uncooked. You might include celery, broccoli, or cauliflower--or you might not if those vegetables aren't as enjoyable to you and your kids.
Cut up lots of fresh, crunchy vegetables, then add your favorite dip. You might even be able to pick up a new dip from the farmer's market, or you might want to mix up a creation of your own. This Avocado Ranch Dip is a family favorite that will help you add in another vegetable packed with healthy fats!
If you frequently get the munchies and want to chow down on salty chips, don't despair! You can take your favorite unhealthy snack and replace it with a healthy alternative using local vegetables to make vegetable chips, instead. Many of these chips are the perfect carrier for your favorite dip--or you can enjoy them on their own for a satisfying crunch. Don't be afraid of the long cook time included in many veggie chip recipes: most of the time, the prep is a snap, and you just have to wait for them to come out of the oven. Try these recipes for:
Making smoothies is a great way to make the most of local fruit, no matter what the season. Choose your favorite fruits and veggies, then combine them with milk, water, or juice. Add in healthy extras like oatmeal, flax, or chia seeds for a nutritional boost. Even better, smoothies are fast to throw together and easy to eat on the go, which makes them the perfect healthy snack option for spring and summer (when you can't wait to get outside)!
Watermelon is a great, healthy summer snack. You can eat it in big pieces all by itself, but sometimes, you just want a little more. Cut your watermelon into small slices like fries, then add a creamy dip like the one in this recipe. It's the perfect snack for munching away as you sit outside and enjoy the bright summer sun--and using fry-sized pieces makes your watermelon fries the perfect portion for little ones.
Add Fruit to Yogurt
Toss fruit over your favorite yogurt or stir it up to ensure that you get that fresh, fruity flavor in every bite. Even better, crumble up a Bobo's Oat Bar for a healthy nutrition boost that will add a fantastically, filling texture to your snack. Fruit and oatmeal bars are also a fun and healthy addition to your summer ice cream fix.
Make a Crumble
Crumble is an amazing dessert that you can make with a variety of fruits--especially apples, pears, peaches, or summer berries. Choose one fruit or mix together some of your favorites. While crumble may look complicated, it takes just a few minutes to mix up and throw in the oven, making it the perfect treat during the busy spring and summer months. Try this fantastic crumble recipe or experiment until you create your own perfect combination. Then, wow the kids with a dessert that tastes fantastic and can be made with less sugar - allowing you to truly enjoy those fantastic fruity flavors.
Mix Up Some Gluten-Free Muffins
When you have kids, you may struggle to get them to try new foods. Mixing vegetables into muffins is a great way to get some new foods into your kid’s diet while letting them feel like they're having a treat! Wondering how to accomplish this? Try these gluten-free chocolate zucchini muffins to convince your kids that eating a green vegetable is actually good for them, or toss together a batch of these fantastic gluten-free, grain free apple muffins. Lastly, try these orange carrot oat muffins. They are sure to be a hit with your kids, whether you're handing them out for breakfast or tossing them in a lunch box.
Toss It On the Grill
Are you grilling up a feast for a party or an evening outdoors? Try mixing in some fruits and vegetables! Grilled fruit skewers will help you bring out the natural flavors in your fruit and make them even sweeter, while tossing your vegetables on the grill will add a fantastic pop of fire-roasted flavor that everyone will love.
Finding healthy spring and summer snacks made with fresh produce is one of the best parts of the season. Take your kids along with you as you head to the farmer's market and let them pick out the fruits and vegetables they'd like to try so you can experiment with new recipes together. Consider taking a look at recipes online before you head off to the farmer's market, or check out the stands to see what recipes local farmers are offering.
Kids will often take an active interest in the cooking process, and they'll be much more likely to try something new if they've had a chance to help. This means that not only will you have engaged in a fun activity together; you'll have set the stage for healthier eating habits in the future. Bon appétit!