9 Simple, Kid-Friendly Snacks Perfect for Playdates

English Muffin Pizzas

English Muffin Pizzas

Photo by: Tara Donne ©Tara Donne

Tara Donne, Tara Donne

English Muffin Pizzas

With summer in full swing, and four kids under the age of 7, we’ve got friends of all ages coming and going all the time. To keep things simple but still plenty of fun, I have a roster of easy and (almost) universally liked snacks for kids. Here’s what we’re serving.

English Muffin Pizzas (pictured above)

For more of a meal, these English muffin pizzas can be topped with your choice of fixings, like olives and broccoli.

Photo by: Picasa


Fresh Fruit (and Veggie) Popsicles

From fresh peaches to melon, strawberries, frozen yogurt and more, you really can’t go wrong with homemade ice pops (even when you throw a little spinach in there like I did).

10-Minute No-Bake Fruit, Chocolate & Nut Balls

Another one you can either let the kids help with, or have ready when they arrive. These no-bake balls make a hearty little snack (they’re delicious served with a glass of any kind of milk) that keeps everyone’s energy up — but, you know, not too up — for the whole playdate.


Photo by: Marshall Troy ©2012,Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Marshall Troy, 2012,Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Yogurt and Granola Trifle

Studded with fresh fruit, these layered snacks have just enough crunchy, salty and sweet flavors to keep everyone happy. Bonus: Let the kids make their own and save yourself a little work (but not cleanup — definitely not cleanup).

Apple and Grape Turtles

While these fall into the category of “cute food,” they’re still easy and can be made ahead of time with one simple modification: Sprinkle the undersides of your apples with cinnamon — not cinnamon sugar, just cinnamon — and instead of a discolored apple, you’ll have an apple with a little extra flavor.

Photo by: Picasa


Frozen Fruit Smoothies

Our can’t-miss smoothie combination is so simple that you’ll likely have everything in your kitchen already: Throw a banana in a blender, along with a cup of milk (any kind) and two cups of frozen fruit. Add a dash of honey if you like and — voila! — smoothies. In a hurry.

Strawberry Jam Bars

These bars make a fun and easy cooking project with the kids. Prep the bottom layer, then let the kids spread a layer of jam on top, and finish by sprinkling on the remaining dough. Bake off and let the group enjoy when the bars are cool.

Melissa d’Arabian’s Crispy Kale “Chips”.

Melissa d’Arabian’s Crispy Kale “Chips”.

Photo by: Matt Armendariz

Matt Armendariz

Melissa d’Arabian’s Crispy Kale “Chips”.

Crispy Kale “Chips”

Really. They’re actually amazing. All of our kids think so, and just imagine how impressed the other parents will be when you mention that you served their kid greens. With a smile!

Cheesy Chex Mix

With only a few store-bought ingredients, you can easily whip up a warm pan of Food Network Magazine’s salty snacks, sure to satisfy a crowd.

Charity Curley Mathews is a mom of four small kids who can’t resist food on a stick. She’s also the founder of Foodlets.com, a site full of simple recipes using fresh ingredients, plus ideas for teaching kids to love eating all that fresh food together. Most of the time.

Next Up

The 9 Best Healthy Snacks, According to Kids

We went straight to the source to find out which snacks are worth stocking up on.

5 Cute, Kid-Friendly Pumpkin Decorating Ideas

These no-carve pumpkin ideas are great for all ages.

Kid-Friendly Meals from Ree Drummond's Ranch

We're taking our cue from The Pioneer Woman and serving up kid-approved meals from her kitchen.

9 of the Spiciest Snacks in the World, Ranked

You'll want to have an ice cold glass of milk on standby!

5 Simple Tips That Will Give You Picture-Perfect Madeleines Every Time

These pretty French cakes are actually a cinch to make.

The Best Allergen-Free Snacks to Pack In Your Kid's Lunches

They'll never miss out on a fun and delicous snack again!

12 Kitchen Gadgets and Tools Perfect for Kids Who Love to Cook

Because even the littlest sous chef needs the right equipment!