Naturopathic Kitchen: Healthy Vegan Snacks That are Kid-Friendly

A bowl of crispy seasoned chickpeas.

Introducing kids to a vegan diet can offer several benefits, including promoting a diverse range of plant-based foods rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber. It can encourage children to develop a taste for fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes, potentially reducing the risk of chronic diseases later in life. 1 2 Additionally, vegan diets prioritize environmental sustainability and animal welfare, instilling these values in children from an early age.

However, it is essential to approach veganism for kids with awareness of the potential challenges it poses. Ensuring adequate intake of essential nutrients like calcium, iron, vitamin B12, and protein requires careful planning and possibly supplementation. 3  Children’s nutritional needs are unique, and a vegan diet may not suit everyone, especially if not properly balanced. 

Ultimately, there is no one-size-fits-all eating plan. Different diets suit different individuals and families. Whether you prefer veganism, vegetarianism, omnivory, or other dietary choices, the key is to prioritize health and well-being while respecting individual preferences and beliefs. It is crucial for parents to consult with a healthcare professional like a naturopathic doctor (ND) to help them make a dietary plan that meets their children’s nutritional needs. Making informed decisions based on individual circumstances ensures that families find the right balance for their unique dietary journey.

 

Kid-Approved Vegan Snacks

Next time you are looking for a healthy, plant-based snack your kids will actually be excited to eat, refer back to this list. These snacks are easy to prepare, healthy, vegan, and likely to appeal to even the pickiest eaters.

Apples & Nut Butter

Apple slices dipped in the nut butter of your choice is a great vegan snack for kids who want something sweet. Apples contain dietary fiber that helps increase good bacteria in the gut. 4 Nuts are a good source of antioxidants, which help protect the body from harmful free radicals. 5 6 

Note that since nut allergies are common, you should not pack this snack in your child’s lunch when you send them to school or daycare. Keep this for an at-home treat.

Guacamole

Avocado is a good source of fiber and healthy fats. 7 Make a simple guacamole by mashing avocado with a dash of lime juice and a sprinkle of sea salt. Feel free to dress it up with the addition of minced red onion, fresh cilantro, and/or chopped tomatoes. Serve with whole grain crackers, corn chips, or spread it on toast.

Crispy Chickpeas

Chickpeas are a nutrient-packed legume and a great plant-based source of protein. 8 You can whip up a crispy, savory snack by roasting chickpeas in the oven. Simply drain and rinse a can of chickpeas, toss them with olive oil and your favorite seasonings, then spread them on a baking sheet and pop them in the oven at 450 degrees for about 35-45 minutes, or until they reach the desired crispiness. You can customize your crispy chickpeas to taste, but here are a few tried-and-true seasoning combinations:

  • Turmeric, curry powder, & ginger
  • Cumin, smoked paprika, & lime juice
  • Cinnamon & maple syrup
  • Sea salt, garlic powder, & black pepper

Whether your family is on a strictly plant-based diet or not, these snacks are a great way to add a little more nutrients to your kids’ daily routine.

 

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