Now that I have a toddler and no longer a baby, the amount of food and solid meals per day that he eats is increasing. Especially since we are in the process of weaning him from the bottle and he only gets about 3-4 oz of formula before bedtime.
So I found myself thinking about healthy toddler snack ideas and coming up with toddler snack recipes.
Minimizing Toddler Snack Preparation Time
Meaning I need to get more creative when thinking about and preparing his food. Especially since he is picky one day and will eat anything I serve him the next.
And with the whole quarantine, social distancing, and work from home thing going on, you can only imagine the mess I sometimes find myself in.
So it was time my husband and I put together a weekly plan that would help us get through it by getting all our work done but still having enough time to play and enjoy our toddler's company.
Planning Is Key When Coming up with Toddler Snack Ideas
We eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner as a family so one of us can always prepare it while the other is playing with our son or getting some work done while he's sleeping. But snacks are a whole different story.
We've actually found that the best thing we can do is come up with a bunch of toddler snack recipes and prepare a batch of different snacks on the weekends that we have for the whole upcoming week.
So here's a list of our 5 favorite ones along with the reasons why. We obviously don't make all of them each weekend, but at least 2 or 3 that we can mix'n'match throughout the week alongside lunch and dinner leftovers for snacks.
Toddler Snack Idea 1 – Broccoli Cheese Cakes
I think this is really my favorite idea for a toddler snack. The fact that I can provide veggies and dairy in a bread-like form that my toddler will happily take any time of the day gives me such a feeling of accomplishment.
This snack recipe was actually the one I started preparing more often when my son was in a carb'n'bread-only phase and this was a great way to get in those essential nutrients along with some fiber and complex carbs through wholegrain flour.
And it worked each time.
Toddler Snack Idea 2 – Quinoa Vegetable Muffins
These muffins are another one of my favorite toddler snack ideas, especially because I can serve it as a lunch or dinner as well if needed!
They're pretty compact so we usually take them with us outside if snack time falls right at the time we're enjoying a sunny day.
I also love the fact (as always!) that I get to incorporate nutritious veggies as well as the protein-filled quinoa which adds a lot to the daily nutrient and energy intake required for my son. And he loves them so that's an additional bonus!
One of the main nutrients for kids, especially when they've weaned from the bottle is calcium, and these muffins contain quite a lot of it in the form of mozzarella and yogurt.
To make it more authentic or give it a bit of a personal kick you can use add or remove any spices of choice – after all you're the one that knows which ones your child prefers.
Toddler Snack Idea 3 – Sheet Pan Pancakes
These I LOVE. A favorite toddler snack idea. And yes, the word "love" is in capital letters because I really make this toddler snack because I want to steal some for myself. So does my husband. And that's probably why we always need to do a double batch.
But it's so easy to make by throwing all ingredients together in a blender/ food processor at once that it's really no trouble at all.
And you can use pretty much any fruit, nuts, seeds, sweeteners or other toppings (like chocolate!) of your choice.
We use oats and wholegrain flour here to add to the fiber and complex carbs content but if you're out of it you can just use plain wheat flour instead. It's all about balance in the end, right?
And these sheet pan pancakes don't deserve to be passed on just because you don't have the healthier ingredients handy.
Toddler Snack Idea 4 – Spinach Mozzarella Omelet
This is the one toddler snack recipe from this list that I do not recommend you make on the weekend and store for the week. Omelets should really be eaten as soon as they are prepared to enjoy that fluffy texture and warm and cosy taste.
But it's so simple and easy to make with minimum dishes that you can basically whip it up 15 minutes before you need to serve. And it's just as good for breakfast lunch or dinner.
We get our protein from the eggs in this omelet. Some additional protein comes from the mozzarella but more importantly mozzarella provides the calcium and fat also.
Spinach is full of great nutrients like potassium, folate and magnesium. It does contain iron but it will not really have a great absorption here because of the mozzarella.
So if you're worried about iron intake, just omit the mozzarella. And you can add another veggie of choice. Or veggies.
Toddler Snack Idea 5 – Zucchini Cake
There's a funny story to the Zucchini cake actually. I think that's what makes it so special for us.
It was initially supposed to be Zucchini fritters. And although they were delicious, we simply couldn't get the consistency right for them to look pretty and be compact.
They were literally breaking because they were too moist and it was like eating a pudding-like consistency. A delicious one, but still.
I guess it was because we simply couldn't drain enough of the water from the zucchini and didn't want to use more salt because it was supposed to be for a weaning baby.
So that's how the fritters turned into a cake. And although it does take some time for the zucchinis to release the water and you to drain them making the recipe a little more complicated than the rest, it's really worth it.
It's filled with complex carbs and fiber from the whole grain flour, fat from the butter and vitamins and minerals from the zucchini and spring onions. Add some cheese and you have a great and balanced baby snack.
So in the hopes that our little weekly plan and list of favorite toddler snacks helps you and makes your life a little bit easier we'd love to hear from you too.