Yummy Peanut Butter Snack Your Kids Will Love

Here's a fun, tasty, easy-to-make treat that children and families can put together on a Saturday afternoon - or any time. The recipe, provided by the Family Nutrition Program at Kansas State University Research and Extension, makes 18 peanut butter balls.
Kathy Walsten

Kids' easy-to-make snacks can be healthful
Snacks are an important part of a child's daily menu. They can help fill nutrient gaps that meals may miss, according to Kathy Walsten of the Family Nutrition Program with Kansas State University Research and Extension.

Depending on their age, children also can make many snacks with little adult supervision, said Walsten, who coordinates the FNP's Kids a Cookin' program. Some of her after-school favorites include:

  • Quesadillas: Fill soft flour tortillas with cheese and salsa; microwave or grill.
  • Snack kabobs: Cut raw veggies or fruit into chunks and "spear" with a pretzel stick.
  • Ice cream sandwiches: Put ice cream or frozen yogurt between graham crackers and freeze.
  • Pudding shakes: Shake together 1/2 cup milk and 2 tablespoons pudding mix.

    The important thing, Walsten said, is to have healthy ingredients in the kitchen so kids can fix a quick snack when the "munchies" hit..

    More information about nutrition, cooking tips and recipes for children, and a link to a Spanish version are on the Kids a Cookin' Web site: www.kidsacookin.ksu.edu.

  • 1/4 cup peanut butter (creamy or chunky)
    1/4 cup honey
    1/2 cup nonfat dry milk
    1/4 cup quick or old fashioned oats
    3/4 cup crisp rice cereal (save 1/2 cup to crush)

    1. In a large mixing bowl, combine peanut butter, honey, dry milk, oats and 1/4 cup of the rice cereal.

    2. Shape into 1-inch balls.

    3. Put the remaining 1/2 cup rice cereal in a large resealable plastic bag and crush with hands.

    4. Place peanut butter balls in bag and shake until balls are covered with cereal.

    5. Store in covered container in the refrigerator.

    Per serving (1 ball): 15g carbohydrates; <1g fiber; 4g protein; 3.5g of fat (0.5 grams saturated); 0mg cholesterol; 80mg sodium; 100 calories.

    Safety tip:
    Peanuts represent one of the most common food allergies in children. To avoid an allergic reaction, it's always a good idea to tell kids who are visiting that this snack contains peanut butter. Even a touch or tiny bite of a food allergen can be harmful.

    Teaching point:
    Not only will kids love the taste of this snack - it's really good for them! Peanut butter provides protein that helps build and repair body tissue. Honey, oats and cereal are carbohydrates, which provide energy. Nonfat dry milk is packed with calcium to help build strong bones. All this nutrition is rolled up into a easy, no-cook snack.PregnancyAndBaby.com


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