All kids love peanut butter cracker snacks. Heck, most adults love them too! And while we can try to convince ourselves that these prepackaged snacks are “healthier” options than other prepackaged snack on the market . . . in many cases, they are as unhealthy as any bag of chips.
Problem: Many of the premade peanut butter snack crackers on the market are overprocessed to help maintain shelf life, and add unnecessary sugars and hydrogenated oils. The packaging for these snacks is often misleading, with bold statements like made with real . There is a difference between real peanut butter and natural peanut butter. Natural peanut butter contains nothing more than the nut it’s made from, and possibly a bit of added salt for taste; while real peanut butter may contain peanuts, it can also include anything else the company deems necessary for taste and shelf life. Look for natural peanut butter for optimal health benefits.
Solution: Make your own peanut butter cracker snacks! You can even add a new spin. Choose a whole-grain crackers with a limited amount of ingredients. A long ingredient list is always a red flag, so try to stick to crackers with five or fewer ingredients! Wasa crackers or whole-wheat matzo crackers are great low-ingredient crackers. Cover your cracker evenly with natural peanut butter and, as an alternative to sugar-filled jelly, top it off with a light layer of unsweetened applesauce.
This quick snack is easy to make and serves as a great school snack (wrap in tinfoil for longevity) or an afterschool snack to hold your child over until dinner.
Buying Tip: Some grocery stores and gourmet food shops even have nut butter machines where you can grind your own. Try this if you are looking for healthy, hearty, and guaranteed natural nut butters!
- Beyond peanut butter. Expand beyond peanut butter. Try other natural nut butters, like almond or cashew butter.
- Accessorize with fruit. If you have a few more minutes on your hands, top your crackers with a slice of apple or banana instead of applesauce.
- On the go breakfast. This snack also can serve as an easy on-the-go breakfast for the child that has to eat on the run before school. Remember, breakfast is the most important meal and is essential for a healthy day.