Whether you have a picky young eater or are dealing with fickle taste buds, every parent or babysitter should have a couple “save the day” recipes they can turn to to satisfy kids’ appetites. I’ve been a nanny and babysitter for many families over the years and these are my favorite recipes to make when a young one wants something different that what was planned for dinner or lunch.
Buttery parmesan pasta
This is a great make-ahead snack to keep in the fridge because it can easily be warmed up in the microwave. Boil half a package of bow-tie or spiral pasta. If your kids like the flavor and color, I recommend picking one of the veggie-packed pastas by Barilla. Once drained, place pasta in a serving dish or mixing bowl and add two tablespoons of butter and ¼-½ cup of parmesan flakes or grated parmesan cheese. Mix to combine so the cheese sticks to the pasta.
Peanut butter and raisin roll up
Spread smooth peanut butter on a small tortilla and sprinkle raisins on top of the peanut butter. Tightly roll the tortilla and then slice into pinwheels to make fun shapes for kids. Or, if you’re on the go, leave as a wrap to grab and eat.
Turkey-wrapped apple wedges
Take a slice of roasted deli turkey breast and fold it in half. Peel a mild-flavored apple like gala or red delicious. Add a slice of cheddar cheese and roll the cheese and apple in the turkey breast. Serve with ranch dip or sweet honey mustard.
Preheat oven to 350. Spread pizza sauce or marinara sauce on one side of a whole pita. Top with shredded mozzarella cheese and any toppings the kids like. If they have leftover cooked veggies, you could puree them and then mix them into the pizza sauce for added nutrition. Bake for 7-9 minutes until cheese is melted. The kids love these personal pan pizzas.
Other snack ideas I’ve had luck with:
Carrot sticks and cinnamon honey
Rice cakes with chocolately, hazelnut spread
Veggie-potato snack sticks with hummus
Honey wheat pretzel sticks with peanut butter or almond butter