Everyone wins when snack time and playtime collide. These fun ideas get your toddler involved in preparing the food, and eager to eat the colorful creations!
1. Tropical Palm Tree
Cut a peeled banana into slices and arrange on a plate in a slightly arched shape to resemble the trunk of a palm tree. Arrange peeled kiwi slices around the top of the "trunk" to make the leaves. Round pieces of whole grain cereal look like coconuts!
2. Caterpillar Roll-ups
Spread a whole wheat tortilla with a little mayonnaise and have your toddler top it with lettuce, sliced tomato, turkey, and cheese. Roll it up and cut into slices. Help your little one arrange the slices in a caterpillar shape on a plate.
3. Fruit Stars and Hearts Salad
Cut melon, such as cantaloupe, watermelon, or honeydew, into half-inch-thick slices. Let your toddler use plastic star- and heart-shaped cookie cutters to cut out shapes. Transfer to a plate to serve.
4. Cereal Necklace
Show your toddler how to thread circular cereal onto a piece of thin, undyed ribbon or string. Tie the ends of the ribbon together to make a necklace. Allow your little one to wear the necklace under your supervision and snack as desired.
5. Strawberries in "Dirt"
Stir a small amount of unsweetened cocoa powder into vanilla low-fat yogurt. Spoon the yogurt mixture into small snack cups. Have your little one top the yogurt with crumbled chocolate graham crackers, and a few strawberries with the tops left on.
"How to Get Your Child to Eat More Fruits & Veggies." HealthyChildren.org. November 10, 2016.
"Serving Sizes for Toddlers." HealthyChildren.org. March 7, 2016.
"Selecting Snacks for Toddlers." HealthyChildren.org. December 14, 2016.
"5 Great Reasons to Cook with Your Kids." HealthyChildren.org. December 14, 2016.
"Toddler - Food and Feeding." American Academy of Pediatrics. 2017.
"Infant Food and Feeding." American Academy of Pediatrics. 2017.
Reference document created by Publix registered dietitians based on the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Publix Baby Club Health & Wellness Recommendations: Baby Club Recipes and Attributes. Supplied on 5/19/16.
"Nutrition for kids: Guidelines for a healthy diet." Mayo Clinic. January 16, 2016.
Looking for more do-it-themselves ideas? Try these snacks little hands can make.
Note: Big chunks of any food are hazardous and should not be given to children younger than 4 years. Cut foods into small, manageable pieces before serving.
This content is provided for general information purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice or a guarantee of prevention, improvement, or treatment of specific conditions. Always consult with your healthcare provider about your specific medical questions or concerns.