With nuts banned from more and more schools and day cares, many moms say it's getting mighty hard to come up with healthy lunchbox snacks that kids will eat and enjoy. But ever resourceful, Circle of Moms members have shared some great nut-free snack ideas. Here, we've rounded up eight of the best.
1. Nut-Free “Ants on a Log”
For a great peanut-free alternative to the standard ants on a log snack, Emily H. suggests swapping in cream cheese for peanut butter: “My boys love celery stocks with flavored cream cheese stuffed inside, and a few diced black olives sprinkled on top. Both my kids have nut allergies, so this is our version of ants on a log! They love it and it's so good for them too!"
2. Cheese Snacks
From string cheese to slices and cubes, many kids can't get enough of cheese snacks! As Sharon G. shares: "Various cheese snacks are almost always popular. I [can't] keep enough string cheese or baby bell cheese around."
3. Homemade Muffins or Breads
Home-baked goods can be a tasty and nutritious nut-free snack for kids (just be sure to check that all the ingredients you use are nut free). Katy B. relays: "I make my own specialty breads — banana or zucchini — to hide some more nutrients in." And as Sharon B. notes, it's easy if you "make a batch on the weekend and freeze them for use during the week."
4. Fruit Kabobs
We love this nut-free snack idea from Emily H. — and so do her kids! As she reports, "Fruit kabobs with a cinnamon yogurt dip is among their favorites. The like to spear the fruit, and for the dip, I use plain yogurt with a a drizzle of honey and cinnamon."
Many Circle of Mom members recommend yogurt cups or GoGurts, which can be kept cool in your child's lunchbox using Angel B.'s smart tip: “Freeze your box of GoGurts and they will still be cold at lunch. They are also good frozen!"
6. Nut-free Trail Mix
Trailmix can still be crunchyand delicious without nuts. Try mixing raisins, cranberries, sunflower or pumpkin seeds, nut-free chocolate chips, and a nut-free cereal or granola.
7. Vegetables with Hummus
Healthy hummus makes a perfect dunking dip for sliced veggies like carrots, cucumbers, bell peppers and broccoli. If your kids don’t like the chickpea spread, experiment with varieties (think lemon, garlic, roasted red pepper) or whip up Sherry D.'s easy white bean hummus recipe for a different flavor altogether.
8. Dried or Dehydrated Fruit
From raisins and dried apricots to banana chips, dried fruit comes highly recommended by many moms as a great nut-free lunchbox snack.
What's your child's favorite nut-free snack?