Put Some Love in Your Kid’s Lunchbox with These Healthy Snacks

The brown-bag lunch of yore, complete with turkey on whole wheat and an obligatory apple, has thankfully gotten a more sophisticated facelift. Today’s kids are no longer rewarded for eating soggy sandwiches (those are fast becoming obsolete in a world of lunchboxes stuffed with free-range chicken salads and tabbouleh) with a sugar-high-inducing chocolate chip cookie. Instead, they can be fueled by wholesome, good-for-you snacks. Here are five tasty alternatives.

Bolthouse Farms' famed baby carrots get a boost of flavor not in the conventional form of fattening ranch dip, but from vibrant spice in Carrot Meets Chili Lime Bolthouse Farms Kids Veggie Snackers. For a dose of interactive fun, little ones shake the zippy seasoning directly over their veggies.

Pamela’s (addictive) Figgies & Jammies give the classic Fig Newton a contemporary update. Purists will relish the Mission Fig version, but the gluten-free lineup — the soft, chewy cookie is made with rice flour — also includes strawberry, raspberry and blueberry mash-ups.

Shun those regular, greasy potato chips for Kashi’s Sea Salt & Olive Oil Hummus Crisps. Also available in savory flavors of Caramelized Onion and Sundried Tomato Basil & Feta, the ethereal, air-popped chickpea crisps star ingredients like real sea salt and extra virgin olive oil.

Crunchy popcorn is a sure hit with young eaters, but it need not be drenched in butter to appeal. Lesser Evil’s Himalayan Pink Buddha Bowl mingles organic kernels with coconut oil and pink Himalayan salt, while the Classic Cheddah iteration flaunts organic cheese. Sate dessert cravings with Himalayan Sweetness, which weaves in unrefined sugar cane.

All-organic Fruit Bliss, sold in resealable pouches — as well as miniature versions ideal for midday meltdowns — is a European-inspired celebration of ripe, quality, rehydrated fruit. Prized apricots and figs from Turkey, Deglet Noor dates from Tunisia and Agen plums from France are all dried in the sun and then infused with water and steamed until juicy.

Alia Akkam is a New York-based writer who covers the intersection of food, drink, travel and design. She launched her career by opening boxes of Jamie Oliver books as a Food Network intern.

Top Photo: iStock.com.

Next Up

Healthy, Kid-Friendly Snacks

Snacks these days have come to mean cookies, candy, chips or even donuts -- basically, nothing nutritious! If he could, my son would live on junk foods alone, but as the adult (and a nutritionist mom of three), it’s my job to make sure the right choices are available for my children. Check out these tips for kid-friendly snacks.

Robin's Healthy Take: Play Date Snacks Kids Will Love

Give kids a healthy snack after school to help fuel their play without ruining dinner.

7 Healthy Kid-Approved Snacks

Even picky eaters will love these tasty, kid-friendly snacks.

10 Upcycled Snacks Kids Will Love

Looking to save the planet and feed your kiddos something healthy? These sustainable snacks are the perfect combo.

6 "Healthy" Kids Snacks That Aren’t

Feeding your kids can get confusing. Between pushy food marketing and bewildering food labels, it’s no wonder that most folks are misled as to which kids snacks are really healthy. To all my mom friends who’re always asking me about healthy snacks, here’s the real deal on what you’ve been buying (yes, I usually just smile politely).

Healthy Snacks

Tips for making healthy choices whenever a craving strikes

Easy, Healthy After-School Snacks for Kids

Get creative when preparing after-school snacks and you will calm hunger pangs while dishing up the essential nutrients needed for growing bodies and brains.

Essential Healthy Lunchbox Meal Plan

Here are five days of kid-friendly, well-balanced meals to keep your little ones going strong all day.

Healthy Hiking Snacks

Get ideas for healthy snacks to pack when hiking.