September 4, 2013

Snacking and Munching

If you ask a child about the most important meal of the day, they might tell you it's snacktime. And could you really blame them? Snacks can be anything you enjoy. Juicy berries? Yes. Sweet cookies? Yes. Ice cream, crackers, spicy nachos? Yep. Salty, crunchy, sweet, or sticky, snacks are delicious.

Because I try to plan our meals for a month at a time, it's very important that I also plan snacks or I'll be heading back to the store come mid month. I try and plan a healthier snack for mid-afternoon, and something a little more fun or sweet for after supper/before bed.

I've been baking, so cookies have become part of the weekly plan, as well as other baked items like cakes. These types of homemade snacks seem to go further than something in a box. Somehow a piece of cake with ice cream is more satisfying than a bag of chips.

The last thing I plan (related to snacks) are our grab and go snacks. Sometimes no matter how much you feed your children, they simply will not fill up. Ready to eat fruit and vegetables in the fridge are great before meals and throughout the day. Sliced or cubed cheese and meat slices are great to nibble on too.

We also have a snack tub filled with assorted snacks. These are snack baggie sized portions I make up from larger packaging. They include trail mix, peanuts, pretzels, chips, crackers, beef jerky, popcorn and other salty/crunchy treats, cookies and anything else that can be made into a personalized snack (not all at the same time obviously). We can grab what we want, when we want but everyone knows they had better be able to eat their meals, I expect moderation and sharing from everyone, and once the snacks are gone, that's it for the week (I limit what is out and put more out each week to keep it reasonable).

Once the snacks are added into the menu plan, I'm ready to make my shopping list and head to the stores.

By now I might have confused you with information overload. Tomorrow I'll put it all together. There will be examples of my lists and categories so you can see it in action and Free printables for making up your own menus.

In the meantime, tell me, what is your very favorite snack?

See the whole series:
Menus and Meals
The Pantry
Locally Grown and Special Deals
Let's Plan Supper!
Breakfast and Lunch
Snackin and Munchin
Meal Plans: Putting It All Together (free printables)
Shopping and Prepping

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