“Where it’s OK to play with your food”
This is our motto at ZisBoomBah.com, and today, we are taking it quite literally! But before you begin grimacing in remembrance of a chaotic lunch room food fight, listen to our side of the story.
Playing with food can be fun and entertaining for your kids and it gets them involved in the early stages of preparing and cooking food. Letting kids touch, smell and playfully assemble their food is an opportunity to cultivate their creative side in a way that can be educational as well. At the same time, this approach will awaken their curiosity and motivation to eat the culinary masterpieces they have created.
We know it can be a struggle to keep your kids busy in the summer, and with temperatures above 100F across much of the country, they can’t play outside for hours on end. So we have come up with some “snacktivities” — activities that let kids make their own creative afternoon snacks. (Just don’t forget to have them wash their hands!) Send us pictures with your favorite creations and they might end up on ZisBoomBah.com!
For those of you thinking of your picky eaters, don’t worry! This doesn’t actually include anything fishy.
The ingredients are simple: a banana, peanut butter, and whole wheat bread.
Directions: First, you cut the crust off two slices of bread, and overlap them slightly. Then use the rolling pin (This is a perfect job for kids!) and flatten the bread together. Spread peanut butter over the bread (Another great job for your kids), and then remove a whole banana from the peel and lay it on one side of the bread. Roll it all up, and then slice into “sushi” pieces- about 1 inch thick. To make it even more “authentic” serve the pieces to your kids with chop sticks and a side of honey for dipping.
Nutrition: Bananas are high in potassium, which is essential for your child’s blood, bone and heart health. They are also a good source of energy, especially in combination with peanut butter, which is high in protein.
Food Block Creations
These are a fun alternative to kid’s building blocks because they double as an afternoon snack. For this activity, you need toothpicks and any edible building materials you want to include for your kids to use: mini marshmallows, grapes, small cubes of cheese, blueberries, cherry tomatoes, etc.
Directions: Find a base for your child to use as the foundation for their creation. A large plate would work fine, or a piece of cardboard wrapped in foil. Place little bowls out with toothpicks and all of the possible building materials. They should be able to connect the pieces of food with the toothpicks. Let them play until the snacking begins!
Nutrition: If you are using marshmallows, make sure to include an option with less sugar and more fiber, such as cheese or cherry tomatoes. Fruit, such as grapes or blueberries, is always a good option as well.
Weekend mornings are all about family time and taking a break from the carpool lane. So why not sit back, relax and let your kids run the show. Making pancakes is so simple, your kids can essentially do it all. Let them measure out the ingredients, and mix it all together. If your kids are younger, you should be the one to cook them on the hot surface, however. Once they are done, let your kids decorate them with funny “faces.” Don’t forget to send us a picture!
Directions: There are so many yummy pancake recipes, we couldn’t pick just one! Here is a basic pancake recipe that is totally worth making over the boxed variety. Then for those more adventurous kids, we have nutritious Power Pancakes with bananas and wheat germ, and Pumpkin chocolate chip pancakes. For the “faces” we recommend placing several options out for your kids. Blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, chocolate chips, strawberry or banana slices all would work for the eyes and nose. For the pancake mouth, use an apple or orange slice, or get creative with kiwi, grapes, or chicken sausage pieces. Your child can even draw features on with yogurt!
Nutrition: The pancakes vary in specific nutritional value, but they’ve all been ZisBoomBah-approved! Serve with milk for an extra calcium boost to jump start the day!