Healthy Snack Policy
At CPL, parents and teachers work in partnership to promote healthy eating habits and healthy attitudes about food. We encourage parents to help their children select healthy options to serve as snack on their “special day.” Serving healthy snacks at preschool sets a great example for children and can be simple to prepare. Use this list of snack ideas to create healthy snacks for your class. Try to include at least two food groups for variety and balanced nutrition. Snacks should be low in fat and low in sugar. Drinks may include milk, water, or 100% fruit juice.
CPL is a nut-free school, so check labels accordingly and do not bring snacks containing any type of nuts. And keep in mind allergies and food restrictions for individuals in your child’s classroom.
Sweet treats (cupcakes, cookies, cakes, etc.), if desired as a snack, should only be shared on birthdays and at holiday parties.
FRUITS AND VEGETABLES: Suggested Portion = ½ piece of fruit, ½ cup raw fruit or vegetable, ¼ cup dried fruit
- Apples, Apricots, Pears – sliced into wedges
- Bananas – cut into quarters or halves with peel on for convenience
- Berries – serve as is!
- Cherries – pitted
- Grapes – cut in quarters or halves
- Kiwis – cut in half and eaten with a spoon
- Mangoes – sliced
- Melons and Cantaloupe – cubed or use a melon baler for fun shapes
- Oranges – try easy-to-peel clementine or mandarin
- Pineapple – cubed
- Plums, Peaches, and Nectarines – pitted and cut in half
- Watermelon – serve as wedges with skin on
- Dried fruit – with little or no added sugar
- Frozen fruit – smoothies or popsicles
- Fruit cups and canned fruit – in natural juice or light syrup
- Unsweetened Applesauce
- Broccoli and Cauliflower – cut into small florets
- Carrots and Celery – cut into matchstick size
- Cherry tomatoes – cut in half
- Cucumbers – sliced
- Dips – serve veggies with fat free ranch, bean dip, guacamole, hummus, or salsa
- Edamame or dry roasted soybeans – fun to eat and easy to serve!
- Sugar Snap Peas – serve as is!
- Sweet Red, Yellow, Green Peppers – sliced
- Vegetable Soup
BREAD AND GRAINS: Suggested Portion = ½ slice bread, ½ ounce crackers, ½ bagel
* Try to serve mostly whole grains, which provide more fiber, vitamins, and minerals than refined grains *
- Breads or Bagels – choose whole grain or whole wheat
- Cereal – Look for cereals with no more than 8 grams of sugar/serving. Cheerios, Grape Nuts, Raisin Bran, Frosted Mini Wheats, and Wheaties make good snacks.
- Crackers or Pretzels – choose whole grain or whole wheat
- Fruit or Vegetable Muffin – choose low in fat and sugar; if baking, replace oil or eggs with applesauce
- Granola and Cereal Bars – choose lower sugar, whole grain versions
- Popcorn – try low-fat and add parmesan cheese or non-salt spices
- Rice Cakes – try brown (whole grain) rice
- Whole Wheat Pita Bread or Pita chips
PROTEIN FOODS (Meat and Meat Alternative): Suggested Portion = ½ ounce cheese, 2 ounces yogurt, ½ egg
- Hard Boiled Eggs
- Beans – make bean dips like refried bean dip or hummus
- Yogurt – Look for low-fat and moderate in sugar (no more than 30 g sugar/6 ounces) and consider using plain, low-fat yogurt and serving with fruit or a touch of honey
- Cheese – string cheese and slices or cubes of cheddar or American cheese
- Cottage Cheese
- Pudding – choose low in sugar and fat
MILK: Suggested Portion = ½ cup
- Plain Milk – choose skim, 1% or 2%
Reference: USDA, FNS, Child and Adult Care Food Program
Here are some additional resources for anyone interested in developing ideas for healthy school snacks.
Be creative – make food fun for children!