By Kari Keith
Summer is almost here! Or, if you live in Texas like I do, it IS here. With the kids out of school, so many of us are looking not just for ways to entertain them, but things to feed them as well. So I decided to put together some ideas that do both. Here are some fun summertime snack ideas that your kids can help make AND eat.
Trail Mix- One thing I like to do with my son before going on a walk, to the pool, the movies or anywhere else he might want to have a snack, is let him create his own trail mix. Set out a variety of ingredients such as goldfish, nuts, coconut, chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, pretzels, craisins, and dried fruit. Also, make it more fun with some non-traditional trail mix ingredients such as Teddy Grahams, Ritz Bits, Nutter Butter Bites etc. Give your child(ren) a Ziploc baggie and let them create their own snack to take along!
Fruit Kabobs- Set out a variety of fruit in bowls- grapes, strawberries, sliced apples, pears, pineapples, and bananas. With supervision, allow your child to make his/her own kabob using the pieces of fruit to cover a wooden skewer. You may also add cheese cubes using your favorite cheese! For extra fun, use miniature cookie cutters to cut the fruit and cheese into shapes before placing on the skewer.
1 – 8oz package of strawberry cream cheese, softened
1 – 7oz jar marshmallow crème
2 tbsp orange juice
1 cup Cool Whip
Blend all ingredients until mixed well.
For a patriotic twist to this treat, check out these adorable 4th of July kabobs with blue and white star-shaped marshmallows and red and blue fruit that I came across on www.thefrugalgirls.com.
Smore’s- A classic outdoor summertime treat in my opinion, but how about mixing it up! Sure, graham crackers, marshmallows and Hershey’s chocolate are tough to beat when put together and melted into an ooey gooey treat, but if you feel like trying something different, here are some ideas.
• Use chocolate or cinnamon flavored graham crackers.
• Look for flavored marshmallows. Ever heard of artisan marshmallows? Fancy, I know! Check out plushpuffs.com for flavors such as Cherry Chocolate Chip, Vanilla Bean, and Lemon Meringue.
If you’re not planning a campfire anytime soon, there are other ways to enjoy this treat. Next time you have the grill going, set out a “S’more Station” with some of the ingredients listed above. Allow your kids to create their own s’more using two graham cracker squares and their choice of fillings, wrap loosely in foil and warm on the grill away from direct heat approximately five minutes.
Dolci Frutta- I found these great, microwaveable cups filled with chocolate wafers at my local supermarket. This is such a quick and easy treat! Simply microwave the wafers according to the directions on the package and start dipping! Your imagination is your only limit with these. My son and I like to dip bananas, strawberries, blueberries, marshmallows, pound cake, even gummy bears! The chocolate forms a delicious hard shell on anything you dip in minutes. When you’re done, simply throw out the container and you’re finished. An easy, no mess treat! Comes in milk and white chocolate varieties. Great for parties, playdates, sleepovers, and other get-togethers.
Kari Keith lives in Fort Worth with her husband and two children. You can follow her on twitter @Kari_Keith