Kids, Nutrition, Snacks

7 Protein-Packed Foods for Your Kids

When it comes to snacks for kids, the choices go on and on—but many of the usual suspects rank considerably low on the protein scale. As part of an overall balanced diet, protein is an essential nutritional building block that should play a role in what your child eats.

Here are 7 kid-friendly ways to power up the protein.

Sunflower Seeds

Sunflower seeds.jpgThe gift of the bright yellow, seed-studded sunflower, this munch-worthy snack is also an excellent source of vitamin E, manganese, selenium, phosphorus, magnesium, vitamin B6, folate and niacin.

Protein power: 6.46 grams of protein in a 1-ounce serving

Garbanzo Beans

Chickpeas.jpgLoaded with folate, manganese, iron and vitamin B6, garbanzo beans are also rich in fiber (7.6 grams per serving). Add them to soups and stews for an extra nutritional kick.

Protein power: 6 grams of protein in a ½ cup serving

Peanut Butter

jar-peanut-butter-spoonA classic kid-favorite and nutritional powerhouse, peanut butter contains three milligrams of vitamin E, a potent antioxidant, in just one serving. It also boasts 49 milligrams of bone-strengthening magnesium and 0.17 milligrams of vitamin B6, a proven immunity booster. The fiber and protein in peanut butter join forces to provide a belly-filling energy boost. Peanut allergy in the family? Don’t miss our blog post featuring seven kid-approved alternatives to peanut butter.

Try Old Home Foods, “All Natural” Creamy Peanut Butter, which you can find in the refrigerated section of most grocery stores. Or, as a fun alternative, try making your own.

Protein power: 8 grams of protein a 2-tablespoon serving

Greek Yogurt

Greek YogurtCreamy and delicious, Greek yogurt has double the protein and half the sodium of regular yogurt, plus it’s packed with probiotics and vitamin B12. We recommend FAGE Total 0%.

Protein power: 15 grams of protein in a 5.3-ounce serving

Hard-Boiled Eggs

Hard boiled eggsEggs are one of the most nutritious foods you can feed your kids. Just one hard-boiled egg contains 15% of the recommended dietary allowance of vitamin B2 and 22% of the recommended dietary allowance of the brain-booster selenium. Go for omega 3-enriched eggs, which are even higher in vitamins A and E.

Protein power: 6.29 grams of protein in one hard-boiled egg

Trail Mix

trail mixHealthy, filling and portable, trail mix is perfect for kids on the go. We suggest making your own by combining your child’s favorite dried fruit, nuts or seeds, and whole-grain cereal.

Protein power: 4-6 grams of protein per serving in most kinds of trail mix

Cottage Cheese

Cottage CheeseBone-building calcium, muscle-building phosphorus and cell-strengthening vitamin A—cottage cheese has it all, and these nutrients are essential for your child’s growth and development. And though it tastes rich, cottage cheese is low in calories—perfect for a light snack. Did you know that Traders Point Cottage Cheese uses 100% organic grass-fed milk? Another great choice is all-natural Daisy Cottage Cheese.

Protein power: 12 grams of protein in a ½ cup serving of small-curd cottage cheese

healthy kids meals

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Katie Klepek

As the director of marketing at Nurture Life, Katie gets to combine her passions—family, food and healthy lifestyle choices—with crafting a personalized experience for Nurture Life’s brand. She has over 18 years experience in business, communications, marketing and event planning, having co-founded the successful event production company Reinventing Events. Katie’s diverse background allows her to effectively combine communication and organization skills to develop, plan and deliver results. Born and raised in the Midwest, Katie attended the University of Illinois at Chicago, specializing in English and Communication. When she’s not spreading her cheer (and eating cookies) at Nurture Life, Katie runs marathons and co-hosts a horror movie podcast with her husband. She has a 3-year-old daughter who has grown up on Nurture Life with another girl on the way!

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