Non-dairy but protein heavy snacks

lyfiaJanuary 6, 2014

My daughter just started in a prek4 class at a school where we need to send her with her lunch bag and morning and afternoon snack.

For the afternoon snack I'd like it to be more protein heavy so she lasts until dinner vs. more carb loaded (which would be her choice).

She is allergic to dairy so any cheese or yoghurt is out.

For her morning one I sent a cutie and ritz crackers with peanut butter - gone

For the afternoon I sent an apple and made some trail mix of things she likes (dried papaya, already cracked sunflower seeds, gold fish crackers, and pecans). - She ate the apple, the gold fish crackers and papaya and left the others. Maybe I shouldn't have mixed it up and just sent the pecans or sunflower seeds as there were only about 3 each of the other items.

However, I'm out of ideas for other options that are protein heavy - she doesn't want jerky or dried sausage.

I could try to make a granola bar if the ingredients are fine and then drizzle some chocolate over it (She eats anything with chocolate on it - she's used to dark since it is dairy free). Any suggestions to keep it more protein like and keep them together?

And of course it needs to be easy to eat with fingers and easy to pack in a lunch bag (preferably without worrying about heating/cooling.

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grainlady_ks

1. Healthy mini-muffins
2. Scones
3. Homemade granola
4. Spiral/pinwheel "sandwiches" made with tortillas
5. Protein drink in a thermos
6. Hummus/veggies/crackers
7. Deviled eggs

Check out the link below for Kids A Cookin'. Lots of recipes, and a great resource for foods you can make with your daughter.

-Grainlady

Here is a link that might be useful: Kids A Cookin'

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 7:08PM
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Olychick

Hummus and veggies? Toasted almonds (they allow nuts at her school)? If you can keep it cool, a smoothie made with tofu and or nut milk. there are lots of soybean/tofu based snack foods. Also there are lots of alternative snack chips made with lentils and other beans (they are yummy). Steamed and salted edemame (good cold, too). There are nut thin crackers with 2 g of protein per serving. Or lunchmeat rollups with nondairy cheese inside.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 7:16PM
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Olychick

Hummus and veggies? Toasted almonds (they allow nuts at her school)? If you can keep it cool, a smoothie made with tofu and or nut milk. there are lots of soybean/tofu based snack foods. Also there are lots of alternative snack chips made with lentils and other beans (they are yummy). Steamed and salted edemame (good cold, too). There are nut thin crackers with 2 g of protein per serving. Or lunchmeat rollups with nondairy cheese inside.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 7:42PM
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annie1992

Roasted chickpeas? My grandkids love them.

Is there refrigeration? My girls used to love ham or turkey spread with a little cream cheese and wrapped around an asparagus spear, but they liked it even better if I flattened a slice of bread, spread the cream cheese, added ham, rolled it up and cut it into slices. They called it "sushi", even if it had peanut butter and jelly, LOL. I also cut ham or turkey into shapes (stars, hearts, etc) and sent that with crackers. Hummus would be good if she likes it and my grandkids like "ants on a log", just peanut butter on a celery stalk with raisins. They also like an apple, cored and wedged, then stuck back together with peanut butter so it doesn't oxidize.

Bean dip with tortilla chips might be good, and mini muffins are something kids usually like.

Boiled eggs are a good choice too, if your child likes them. Mine went through a period where they ate egg salad constantly. Then they wanted "breakfast burritos", which was just scrambled egg wrapped in a tortilla, with salsa or not, as they preferred.

I don't suppose she'd eat sardines or tuna?

Annie

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 7:54PM
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cookie8

- a few raisins, a teaspoon of chia seeds and two tablespoons of pumpkin seeds for a trail mix
- boiled egg, sliced
- I make some paleo cookies called n'oatmeal for my kids - I omitted the almond flour to keep it nut free and added a little more pumpkin seeds

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 7:59PM
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sleevendog

Do you have a favorite granola or homemade one?
Mine has lots of nuts, pecans and pepitas, coconut, dried fruit....but not sweet at all.
Last summer i babysat a 5yr old for a few hours and had no idea what to do with 'it', lol.
He likes cooking, well stirring, so we made granola balls. I melted dark chocolate, (only ever have dark), stirred in some granola and rice crispies, then dropped into cinnamon sugar smashed rice krispies to give it some sweetness. (-some rice krispies with the sugar in a gallon zip-lock and let him smash it with a rolling pin).
Honey would probably work as well as but i was winging it and afraid of stickiness. Cocoa powder may have helped.
An apple sauce type bar granola cookie maybe?
Pretzel stix dipped in dark chocolate, then rolled in finely diced dried fruit and nuts?

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 11:01AM
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lyfia

some great ideas here - thank you!!

I will have to go and look at the recipes as time permits to see if they work or not for our particular allergy situation too.

I do have some quick questions.

Protein shakes - do they have any that doesn't have whey in them?

Hummus sounds like an idea she might like. Any recipes or do you just buy it.

Granola bars/cookies is something I considered, She doesn't like to eat just regular granola, but thinking a bar/cookie look alike would be good if I put chocolate on or in it. Any other recipes?

Eggs - she loves a hard boiled egg if already peeled and won't eat more than a bite of the yolk - but don't I need to keep it cold?

We don't have easy access to cheese substitutes where we live so I have stayed away from them and she doesn't really want them the few times I've tried.

I'm a bit weary of tofu and high soy products - but might be worth looking at as an occasional snack.

Roasted Chickpeas - that sounds interesting to me. How do you make 'em - all I have available to me is canned Chickpeas. Are they good cold? Are they soft still or hard?

Need to avoid cooling/heating requirements as there is no access.

Edit as I Forgot:

Oh great idea on the bean and nut crackers/chips - need to check the protein content on those. Would be good for sending with some salsa or other dipping sauce.

Any way to keep apple slices from browning. She loves hazelnut butter (it is a staple in our house and often used for breakfast) and it would be good to use as dip with slices.

School isn't nut free and she is allowed peanut butter - but I honestly don't want to send peanut stuff (even though I currently am - hence asking for ideas). I'm good with other nuts though. She isn't a fan of cashews or almonds though I love almonds - I can sneak them in if it isn't the dominating flavor.

This post was edited by lyfia on Tue, Jan 7, 14 at 14:24

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 2:15PM
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booberry85

How about homemade smoothies made with soy or almond milk and favorite fruits, kept in a thermos to keep cool? You might be able to use banana as the flavor and to add "creaminess."

-peanut butter or (tuna fish) on celery sticks?
-soup in a thermos
-baby carrots & grape tomatoes (any little veggies)

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 3:21PM
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dcarch7

"----I'm a bit weary of tofu and high soy products - but might be worth looking at as an occasional snack.---"

Why?

The longest life span/expectancy populations are populations who consume the most soy products.

dcarch

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 5:55PM
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annie1992

lyfia, here is the recipe for roasted chickpeas, it starts with canned chickpeas. They're good warm, but good cold too. They stay crunchier if they are roasted dry, without oil, and healthier. You could add any seasonings she likes. I also found that it's crunchier if you start with no oil, then drizzle with oil and stir halfway through.

Roasted Chickpeas

(12 ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt (optional)
garlic salt (optional)
cayenne pepper (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Blot chickpeas with a paper towel to dry them. In a bowl, toss chickpeas with olive oil, and season to taste with salt, garlic salt, and cayenne pepper, if using. Spread on a baking sheet, and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until browned and crunchy. Watch carefully the last few minutes to avoid burning.

I make my own hummus in the food processor. A can of drained garbanzos, a spoonful of tahini, a clove of garlic, a squeeze of lemon, enough olive oil to make a nice consistency. I try to limit the oil and use a bit of the liquid from the beans to thin the hummus and I often toss in a piece of roasted red pepper. Mother is allergic to lemon, so I often leave that out. Salt and pepper to taste.

Food safety guidelines say hard boiled eggs should be kept at room temperature no more than 2 hours, so if you can't add a cold pack or a frozen juice box to keep the temperature down, that won't work.

I know what you mean about soy. I like tofu, and edamame, but I get tired of them quickly. I cannot even bring myself to swallow soy milk, for some reason, not even in a latte!

Annie

*Edited to add tahini to hummus recipe, thanks, Sue!

This post was edited by annie1992 on Wed, Jan 8, 14 at 1:06

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 8:37PM
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mtnester

Annie, why would you add a spoonful of hummus when making hummus? I'm wondering if it's a typo, and you meant to say tahini paste or something else.

(Sorry, I'm a retired editor--can't quit!)

Sue

    Bookmark   January 7, 2014 at 9:12PM
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Olychick

For things requiring refrigeration that don't go in a thermos, I would just get a little insulated lunch box and then freeze small plastic drink bottles filled with water for an ice source. They take up much less room than those blue ice packs...and she could drink the water when it thaws.

The roasted garbanzos reminded me of roasted soybeans that are very tasty and pretty easy to come by if you don't want to roast them yourself.

I'm not suggesting this brand, as I'm not familiar with any particular one (I buy in bulk at our food co-op), but this is what I mean.

Here is a link that might be useful: roasted soybeans

    Bookmark   January 8, 2014 at 12:57AM
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grainlady_ks

You asked about non-whey protein drinks, and there are many other types of protein powders available including rice, egg whites, and vegetable sources like peas and soy.

The Biological Value is highest in whey, eggs, milk, meats, then legumes and other foods. B.V. is the measure of a protein's ability to be used by the body. The higher the B.V. number the more protein your body will be able to use. It takes nearly twice as much protein from beans (49) to equal the same amount in beef (80), while whey is 100-159, eggs-100, milk-91, chicken-79....

Gelatin is an excellent source of protein and you can make healthy "Knox Blocks" and other gummy-type gelatin enriched snack recipes using 100% juice (apple, grape, orange, pineapple, etc.), coconut milk, almond milk..... Lots of recipes if you look on-line.

There are two types of gelatin, the "common" one that gels, such as Knox, and the "better" brands like Dr. Benard Jensen's, NOW brand, and Great Lakes Gelatin in the red container. Great Lakes Gelatin in the green container mixes in cold liquids but doesn't gel - great as a smoothie add-in or added to nearly any beverage (6 grams protein per tablespoon). If I find my energy lagging in the afternoon (I suspect it has something to do with getting up at 3 a.m. everyday), I'll mix gelatin in a beverage (hot or cold) and drink that instead of finding a snack. While traveling I add 1/2 of a packet of Hansen's Natural Fruit Stix (sweetened with Truvia) to a bottle of water and also add 1 T. of Great Lakes Gelatin (green container). Lots of health benefits from gelatin and that includes the gelatin from making meaty bone broth. Broth in a thermos would be another good high-protein snack.

No offense to anyone who enjoys soy in their diet, I personally wouldn't recommend any type of soy for consumption, and especially for a child. For more information: "The Whole Soy Story" by Kaayla T. Daniel, PhD, CCN.

Other choices would be to make your baked goods with almond flour (or other nut flours) or coconut flour (which usually require a LOT of eggs in the recipes - the muffins I made yesterday have 1/2 an egg per muffin and is why one muffin for an adult is very satisfying and filling - plus coconut flour is very high in fiber).

There are also some really good recipes that use cooked beans (or canned) in recipes including muffins, cookies, brownies, etc. I make several snack foods using sprouted beans/seeds/grains to increase the protein level. [I'm more concerned with sticking to low-glycemic foods and choose foods on the lower-half of the glycemic index of foods. Trying to avoid diabetes, which runs rampant in hubby's family.] Beans not only add protein and fiber, it also replaces most of the fat in these recipes. You can also replace a portion of wheat flour (up to 20%) with bean flour to increase the protein level. FYI: Use small white beans for bean flour (I mill my own) because it has the least amount of beany flavor when added to baked goods.

Even better if you sprout, dry (in a dehydrator), and grind the beans into flour. Sprouting will increase the nutrition of the beans and reduce the hard-to-digest phytates and enzyme inhibitors.

But foremost, keep in mind the daily recommended amount of protein for your small child. Generally, 0.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight for 4-to-6-year-olds. An extra-large egg (you could choose medium-size eggs when serving them to a small child to reduce the serving size), two tablespoons of peanut butter or one-half cup of beans provide six to eight grams of protein each, which is about the same amount in each ounce of lean meat, fish and poultry. There are also two to four grams of protein in each serving of breads and cereals and one to three grams in a serving of most vegetables.

-Grainlady

    Bookmark   January 8, 2014 at 8:23AM
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Teresa_MN

Here is an idea that might be a stand by when you are short on time. One day at the store they were sampling protein bars and I got a couple for a co-worker because they are dairy and gluten free. The one I purchased is a peanut butter chocolate bar and has 20 grams of protein!! That's impressive for a protein bar. It's a 2.1 oz bar so 1/2 a bar might be a good afternoon snack to pack. There were two other flavors that were also good. Not too high fat - only 9 gm for the whole bar and 22 gms carb.

The company is thinkThin. I think it would be a good stand by to have on hand if you didn't have time to prepare some of the above mentioned suggestions.

Teresa

    Bookmark   January 8, 2014 at 12:20PM
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sprout26

try these - also a good way to clean out bits & pieces from the pantry.

Here is a link that might be useful: bird seed bars

    Bookmark   January 8, 2014 at 7:00PM
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dcarch7

"------No offense to anyone who enjoys soy in their diet, I personally wouldn't recommend any type of soy for consumption, and especially for a child. For more information: "The Whole Soy Story" by Kaayla T. Daniel, PhD, CCN.---"

Let me first state that I am far from being an expert on this topic.

Isn't it true that There are plenty of authorities dispute the theories and facts suggested by that book?

dcarch

    Bookmark   January 8, 2014 at 7:33PM
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