At Nairn’s, we want to help kids grow up happy and in good health… and what better way to do it than to encourage them to be healthy from the inside out: with wholesome, nutritious snacking habits? By feeding your children naturally energising and nourishing foods, you can really make a difference during their pre-school years, a highly important period of constant development physically, mentally and emotionally.
To make sure you’re fuelling this activity the best you can, we’ve put together some healthy snack recipes for kids with one of our ambassadors, nutritionist Christine Bailey. Keeping it simple and quick (both of which are so important when you’re busy with your child’s boundless energy!) these healthy snack ideas are designed with children’s varying appetites and tastes in mind.
Before we jump directly into these oat recipes for children, let’s take a look at just why it’s so important to include oats and oaty foods are part of your little one’s diet:
1. Energy Boost: packed with soluble fibre and slow releasing carbohydrates, oats are guaranteed to fuel your toddler without a drop in blood sugar levels which can lead to energy slumps.
2. Nutritional Powerhouse: did you know that oats are a good source of vitamins and minerals, including various B vitamins, vitamin E, zinc, iron and magnesium? These are all an important part of any diet, so it’s handy to have them in one (tasty) place.
3. Mood Boost: Oats are a good source of vitamin B6 and tryptophan, an amino acid which promotes the production of the brain chemical serotonin. High levels of serotonin are associated with feelings of well-being so can help to boost your child’s mood.
4. Healthy Digestion: The combination of soluble and insoluble fibre in oats helps support digestion by improving bowel movements, relieving constipation and supporting levels of beneficial bacteria in the gut.
5. Naturally Healthy: oatcakes are definitely on the healthy snack side. Whether topped or plain, ours can make a delicious snack for children on the go. Nairn’s oatcakes have no added sugar and contain no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives.
We’ve put together some recipes ideal for all times of the day, no matter what your toddlers’ favourite meal is! Take a look at some of our favourite ideas for each meal below.
Scrambled Eggs: it doesn’t get easier than this! Simply scramble one free range egg and serve on top of two oatcakes. Eggs are also a fantastic source of protein and essential nutrients – including memory-aiding B vitamins – so this quick healthy recipe is the perfect way to start a busy day of learning. If you’re feeling peckish, why not join them and add some smoked salmon for a more grown-up version?
Salsa with Ham Slices: This lunch doesn’t take long to prepare, and can be made as simply or freshly as you have time for. Either make your own salsa or buy a ready-made mild salsa, looking for one with no added sugar that contains natural ingredients. Chop up slices of their favourite meat – ham or roast beef work best with salsa – and serve on top oatcakes. Definitely a great way to boost flagging midday energy levels!
Oatcakes with Cheese and Grapes: can’t beat the classics! This easy-to-pack energising snack balances blood sugar levels with protein, while providing some essential vitamin C. Go with seedless grapes for ease of eating, and whichever type of cheese your child prefers. If they don’t have a favourite, mild cheddar cheese is popular with kids.