Especially on snow days when your house might be full of kids watching movies or playing outside in the snow, winter snacks are bound to appear in their hands. But most winter snacks, think leftover Christmas cookies, hot chocolate, or a bag of potato chips, aren’t always the healthiest choices, especially for athletes!
The winter season might be the time when your athletes need the most reminding of eating healthy or getting back in shape for spring sports and pre-season. With temptation of junk food all around, having a few healthy winter snacks in the house is a great idea for parents, or even athletes that like to spend time cooking in the kitchen.
We’re sharing five of our favorite winter snacks that will not only warm you up from the inside out but are a healthier alternative to cookies and Cheetos.
- Baked Fruit
Trade in those artificial sweets for natural sugars found in sliced apples, pineapples, pears, and cranberries! Spread out some fruit on a cookie sheet and bake in the oven at 300 F for one hour. Watch the fruits caramelize and transform into a warm delicious snack. Add a few almonds and a dash of cinnamon for extra flavor.
- Hot Cocoa for the Win
We’re taking a winter time classic and making it a little less heavy by substituting whole milk and chocolate syrup with unsweetened coconut milk and unsweetened dark cocoa powder. Throw in a dash of cinnamon and/or a drop of vanilla extract to help sweeten the deal for your kiddos.
- Steamed Edamame
An out-of-the-box, quick and easy plant-based snack that is sure to warm the soul. Steamed edamame is high in protein and fiber, and is a good source of folate, vitamin K and iron. Sprinkle a little sea salt after cooking for additional flavor that will entice your athletes and have them snacking on edamame all day.
- Rice Cake Pizza
If your athletes are craving some pizza bites, break out the rice cakes! Spread some salsa and scatter a bit of cheese on top for some zing and nacho inspired pizza bites. Or opt for fresh mozzarella and sliced tomato for a light caprese snack.
- Broccoli Tater Tots
As a side or as a snack, switch out the favorite tater tots with breaded broccoli bites; made from chopped broccoli, eggs, a sprinkle of cheese, minced onion, dried parsley, bread crumbs, butter, almond milk, and a dash of salt and pepper. Mix all the ingredients into a large bowl and let it set for about 10 minutes. Roll out the bites into small individual balls and bake them on a cookie sheet for 15-20 minutes at 350 F. Watch your athletes devour their broccoli and request this fun snack over and over again.