Snacking kids? Let them create custom trail mixes

I don’t know about you, but my kids are always hungry and wanting a snack. It does not matter if they just finished lunch or dinner, they will turn around and immediately want something to munch on.

So, I thought of a fun little activity to do with them that will end with them getting a yummy treat.

I think everyone in their lifetime has had a bit of trail mix as a snack. I know I definitely have, but I have never been a huge fan of the traditional trail mix ingredients. I don’t love raisins and growing up I didn’t love seeds and nuts. So, basically I liked the pretzels, peanuts and chocolate candy.

Now, thinking about doing this as a snack for my kids, I know they will be the same way I was and only eat a few things out of the mix. So, I have them make their own!

Now, I know some of you are thinking, if we let our kids pick what to put in their trail mix, it will result in them choosing a bunch of sugary foods that won’t be good for them or their teeth. I thought about that, too. So, I pick the five or so different ingredients beforehand and have the kids help mix it together.

Have you ever seen an ice cream sundae bar where all the ingredients are laid out for people to pick from? Well, that’s the inspiration for my trail mix bar.

All you need to do is pick five (or as many as you want) ingredients that you are OK with your kids eating and put them in little bowls on the table. Then have bigger bowls for the kiddos to dump their concoctions into.

For my kids, I have Goldfish, mini marshmallows, pretzel sticks, peanuts and M&Ms. Feel free to add whatever your kids will enjoy, there are a ton of options to pick from.

Once you have all the ingredients laid out and ready, the kids can come get their bowls and start picking as much of the ingredients as they want to create their own personal mix.

This gives the kids a fun little activity to do in the kitchen — and they end up with a sweet treat they can munch on throughout the week. Enjoy!

ANN BURNS is a Morgantown native, raising two young children with her husband, Drake. She writes weekly columns for The Dominion Post. Contact her at [email protected].