If you are the mother of a boy, you will be used to hearing the phrase ‘I’m hungry’. Seriously, I must hear it at least 100 times a day. I simply cannot get enough food into my six-year old son. My daughter eats like a fairy, but that boy is an eating machine.
Snacks can be particularly challenging because children tend to beg you for every type of food you don’t want them to have. I’m prepared to allow a little junk as long as it’s in combination with something healthy and, ideally, protein-rich. Whilst it’s the sugar and the carbs that they are craving, it’s so important that they also eat some protein at snack time.
In addition to being essential for growth and development, protein will help to balance their blood sugar levels and help with further sugar cravings later on.
Snacks in our house have got to be gluten-free, and if they’re going in a lunchbox, they have to be nut-free as well which can sometimes be a challenge.
I have therefore adapted a number of different granola bar recipes and come up with these protein-rich, gluten-free, nut-free granola bars! These are ideal as a snack and a perfect addition to a lunchbox.
They are packed with complex carbohydrates from oats, which release their sugar more slowly into the bloodstream, as well protein and healthy fats from lots of seeds. They have been sweetened with banana and dried fruit, so no nasty refined sugars here.
Once you’ve cut them into bars, they can be individually wrapped in greaseproof paper and popped into the freezer.