Tag Archives: Grain-free snacks

Watermelon Pops

Have you ever  been invited to a summer potluck and all you have to take is a watermelon you picked up a few days ago but were too lazy to deal with?  So you decide to cut it up and take it, wondering just how lame you look?  Did anyone notice you didn’t cook?  Did they?

Fear no more the dreaded fallback called watermelon!  Just in time for the Fourth of July!

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Go bravely to summer potlucks.  You are a good cook.

P.S.  What if it rains on potluck day, the picnic is canceled, and you have tons of watermelon pops?  I was just told these can be stashed in the freezer.  When the kids want a treat, pull them out and eat immediately while frozen.  How cool is that?  Cool.

Related post:

What We Do With Leftover Smoothie

Alphabet Snacks

We worked through the alphabet for snacks!  Thanks for stopping by!  These are meant to be mostly grain-free/dairy-free/whole food-type snacks.  I really, really wish you LOTS of success in your dietary endeavors.  FOOD MATTERS.

A is for apples with nutbutter piped on top

A is for apples with nutbutter piped on top

C is also for carrots and celery on fancy bamboo toothpicks and served on a pretty plate.

C is also for carrots and celery on fancy bamboo toothpicks and served on a pretty plate.

D is for dates and dried fruit put in a little plastic cup with a lid, found at cash and carry stores/catering supplies.

D is for dates and dried fruit put in a little plastic cup with a lid, found at cash and carry stores/catering supplies.

E is for eggs!

E is for eggs!

F is for fruit salad!  Again, placed in individual little containers for each child.  Plastic spoons sent in, too.

F is for fruit salad! Again, placed in individual little containers for each child. Plastic spoons sent in, too.

G is for green beans on a stick--stuck on a grapefruit!  I love, love, love to try to get vegetables into the preschool snack.  EAT MORE VEGETABLES!  But, although green beans may provide nutrients, they are poor in providing an energy source (aka, calories)--so I also sent in "granola bars."

G is for goofy green beans on a stick–stuck on a grapefruit! I love, love, love to try to get vegetables into the preschool snack. EAT MORE VEGETABLES! But, although green beans may provide nutrients, they are poor in providing an energy source (aka, calories)–so I also sent in “granola bars.”

G is also for "grainless granola bars".  You ought to be able to click this link for "Against All Grain" recipe.

G is also for “grainless granola bars”. You ought to be able to click for the link from “Against All Grain.”

H is for honeydew melon pops!  They are popped on a stick with spinach leaves to work in a vegetable.

H is for honeydew melon pops! They are popped on a stick with spinach leaves to work in a vegetable.

I is for icy pops!  We froze juice in small Dixie cups and sent in in a cooler to school.  You could even decorate the sticks with the letter I or stickers with objects beginning with I.  We straightened the sticks up about an hour after they'd been freezing once the juice got slushy.

I is for icy pops! We froze juice in small Dixie cups and sent in in a cooler to school. You could even decorate the sticks with the letter I or stickers with objects beginning with I. We straightened the sticks up about an hour after they’d been freezing once the juice got slushy.

I also used pineapple to shape an I for the afternoon class.  I was worried the teacher wouldn't have access to a freezer and the cooler wouldn't freeze the icy pops long enough.

I also used pineapple to shape an I for the afternoon class. I was worried the teacher wouldn’t have access to a freezer and the cooler wouldn’t freeze the icy pops long enough.

J is for "Jello"!  I made finger jello out of juice and unflavored gelatin.  I sprinkled 10 teaspoonsful of gelatin over 1 cup of cold juice.  Then I brought 3 cups of juice to a boil.  Mixed the boiling juice into the cold mixture and stirred until dissolved.  Poured into a very lightly greased 9X13 pan.  Refrigerated until set.

J is for “Jello”! I made finger jello out of juice and unflavored gelatin. I sprinkled 10 teaspoonsful of gelatin over 1 cup of cold juice. Then I brought 3 cups of juice to a boil. Mixed the boiling juice into the cold mixture and stirred until dissolved. Poured into a very lightly greased 9X13 pan. Refrigerated until set.

K is for kabobs of fruit!  Make them any way you'd like!  Cut into chunks and skewer.  Stand upright and stick in a styrofoam craft base...whatever!

K is for kabobs of fruit! Make them any way you’d like! Cut into chunks and skewer. Stand upright and stick in a styrofoam craft base…whatever!

M is for mushroom sticks.  Macaroons would also be a yummy, sweet alternative.

M is for mushroom sticks. Macaroons would also be a yummy, sweet alternative.

N is for a "nutty mix."

N is for a “nutty mix.”

O is for oranges with faces made of the letter "O".  My kids drew on the faces.  Fun.

O is for oranges with faces made of the letter “O”. My kids drew on the faces. Fun.

P is for pancakes!  These are almond-flour pancakes.  They could be served as is or spread with almond butter and jam!  Consider cutting in half and creating a "PB and J" sandwich!

P is for pancakes! These are almond-flour pancakes. They could be served as is or spread with almond butter and jam! Consider cutting in half and creating a “PB and J” sandwich!

Q is for quiche but life interfered and we didn’t get this made.  I would have probably baked it in a rectangular dish and cut it into sQuares.

R is for Robot Raisins.  We put some raisins in a little to-go cup from a "cash and carry" store and used pipe cleaners, tape, construction paper, and a permanent marker to attach a head and draw on arms.  My 7 year old daughter actually did it as I was still struggling with the flu!  Kids are so much fun!

R is for Robot Raisins. We put some raisins in a little to-go cup from a “cash and carry” store and used pipe cleaners, tape, construction paper, and a permanent marker to attach a head and draw on arms. My 7 year old daughter actually did it as I was still struggling with the flu! Kids are so much fun!

S is for funky looking ladybug strawberries!  Using currants, slivers of dates, and palm shortening.

S is for funky looking ladybug strawberries! Using currants, slivers of dates, and palm shortening.

U is for umbrella!  I found a box of 20 of them in the alcohol section at our local supermarket.  It cost $2.50, which I thought was okay for such a cute U snack!  The kids adore those little umbrellas.

U is for umbrella! I found a box of 20 of them in the alcohol section at our local supermarket. It cost $2.50, which I thought was okay for such a cute U snack! The kids adore those little umbrellas.

V is for vegetables.  Nothng fancy today, but the colors in contrast to our snow white and sky gray colors outside speak for themselves!  The colors are amazing!

V is for vegetables. Nothng fancy today, but the colors in contrast to our snow white and sky gray colors outside speak for themselves! The colors are amazing!

W is for watermelon wands!  As above with the "honeydew", I used spinach on the bottom for "leaves" and to work in vegetable exposure.  Stickers are on the top (we are approaching Valentines' Day), but you need to use one on the back, too, or else the sticker doesn't want to cling to the skinny stick.  I cheated and used the store's precut melon.

W is for watermelon wands! As above with the “honeydew”, I used spinach on the bottom for “leaves” and to work in vegetable exposure. Stickers are on the top (we are approaching Valentines’ Day), but you need to use one on the back, too, or else the sticker doesn’t want to cling to the skinny stick. I cheated and used the store’s precut melon.

X is for X-ray!  I placed a long black piece of construction paper on a cookie sheet.  Covered it with plastic wrap (dotted the construction paper with honey/maple syrup to hold plastic wrap down).  Used a cucumber, raw turnip slices, and cauliflower to create "bones."  As I didn't expect the kids to like turnip much, I bordered the "x-ray" with celery filled with almond butter/honey spread.

X is for X-ray! I placed a long black piece of construction paper on a cookie sheet. Covered it with plastic wrap (dotted the construction paper with honey/maple syrup to hold plastic wrap down). Used a cucumber, raw turnip slices, and cauliflower to create “bones.” As I didn’t expect the kids to like turnip much, I bordered the “x-ray” with celery filled with almond butter/honey spread.

Yellow pepper for Y

Y is for yellow peppers!

Preschool Snacks: The Snack Coordinator

Convincing a preschool teacher to let me be the snack coordinator, with the goal to eliminate processed foods, artificial colors, and artificial preservatives was an easy sale.  Ms. Susan was well-versed in artificial colors and preservatives increasing hyperactivity/ADHD behaviours.  The grain-elimination, however, was a new, maybe extreme idea for her:

“Can’t you just give me the name of a cracker or bread we can use with a spread?”

“Well… just think about it…the kids get toast, cereal, or a donut for breakfast; a sandwich on bread for lunch with pretzels; and something like macaroni, spaghetti, rice, or corn for dinner.  For a snack, they get a granola bar or a cracker.  They get enough grains at home!  They don’t need more at school!  Let me take care of the snacks so you don’t have to think about it.  I’ll tailor it to our classroom needs.”

And it was done:  from MD to SN (snack cooridinator).

My official duties:

  • Make up a monthly snack calendar to send out to parents so they can see what their kids will be eating and can trace reactions if need be.
  • Make up an assignment list of items for parents to bring in and get it out to parents.
  • Gather ingredients as they come in and store them at my home.
  • Prepare snack nightly to send in to preschool the next day (I actually prepare the morning and afternoon sessions’ snacks).
  • Get snack into school.
  • Gather lists of any food intolerances, religious/ethical restrictions, special food concerns  (We have a Hindi family, a Jewish family, a radish allergy, a shellfish allergy, high fructose corn syrup intolerance, mild corn and egg intolerances, and GAPS/SCD restrictions–luckily NO nut issues!!!)
  • Gather birthdays and work schedule around these.
  • Give demonstrations/talks to the children and/or to the parents once monthly.

And for all of this, I get free tuition for my oldest two on Friday afternoons.  And peace of mind knowing what my kids are eating.  I must be a control freak.  For sure.

The teacher has yet to see a cracker, but she is excited about the snack program now.  And parents tell me their kids no longer share their vegetables.  They eat them all up.  If you’re finding snacks on here that are working for you, you may be interested in “Alphabet Snacks.”

1.  Pumpkin coconut flour muffins with cream cheese spread.

(The cream cheese is yogurt with the whey dripped out and some vanilla and honey or maple syrup added.)

2.  Fruit Leathers

3.  Cut bananas

(I dip the ends in diluted lemon juice and they don’t turn brown, even overnight.)

3.  Dixie cup fresh fruit and vegetables

4.  Dried pears and bananas

(I have the parents bring in the fruit, and I dry it in my dehydrator.  My kids get in on the action and cut the bananas for me.)

5.  Carrots arranged in shapes

(Could do a flower or a sun or a planet with some minor additions)

6.  Zucchini bread (have made both almond flour and coconut flour)

(I sliced it into small slices.  Parents brought me zucchini until it was the only vegetable in my fridge.)

7.  Vegetable platter

(Yes, those are beets.  They did eat them.  They were also from somebody’s local garden at the school)

8.  Applesauce

(I love this day.  Just send in some canned applesauce.  The apples came from the teacher’s tree.)

9.  Nut bars

(I know.  The chocolate chips aren’t really SCD legal.  Or a whole food.  But they are a treat.  Would have been easier with a larger food processor.  I’m still hanging on to the smaller, reliable one we got as a wedding gift 15 years ago.  I’ve found really old appliances work best and don’t part with them ’til all their parts have been replaced!)

10.  Fruit kabobs

(This one is Halloween, but I have done several others.  Sometimes I just lay them on a platter.  Easier)

11.  Trail mix

(Just made with whatever nuts, dried fruits, seeds the parents bring in and a sprinkle of coconut)

12.  Apples smeared with nutbutter

(I do these the night before.  I dip them in ascorbic acid found with canning supplies.  Lemon juice makes them a bit sour.)

13.  Frozen fruit

(Another easy day!)

14.  Almond flour chocolate chip cookies

(Another infraction with the chocolate chips for SCDers.  I used a version of The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook by Elana Amsterdam.  I substituted coconut oil for grapeseed oil and honey for agave.)

You may see our modified version here, but Elana’s book is a must-have, and I can’t recommend it highly enough.

15.  Celery with nutbutter

16.  Apples with honey for a dip

17.  Pitted dates with “nutbutter” of choice (shown topped with a pistachio)

(I start with a plain, unsweetened, unsalted “nutbutter” and add a little salt and honey to taste)

18.  Celery and baby carrots on bamboo sticks

(I watched video footage of the class the day this was served.  They ate them like they were candy.  Not kidding.)

19.  “Wheat is a treat” day

(Native American Indian teepees/tipis)

20.  Pumpkin pie

(cut into slices, place on a coffee filter, and serve on a platter or make into bars)

21.  There’s  a party!  Almond flour cupcakes

We cannot have meat as a snack due to some of our children’s religious backgrounds.  And we have a mild egg intolerance and dairy intolerance.  But if we didn’t, boiled eggs would be fun.  Or beef jerky.  Or cheese cut out into shapes.  And so on and so on.

A few tools of the trade:

Skewers of different lenghts, various decorative toothpicks, non-breakable trays, a piping bag for nutbutters, a styrofoam ring for fruit arrangements, small cookie cutters

What you feed yourself and your children DOES make a difference in your health and some very “nuisance” health issues (such as constipation, sinus issues, chronic cough,  hyperactivity, dry eyes, eczema, etc).  And nuisance health issues can lead to larger health issues in the long-run.  Food is a drug.  Take only what you need and what benefits you.  Let me know of any questions you have about our snack program.  Or suggestions!