August 17

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8 Healthy Back-to-School Snacks!

back-to-school

By: registered dietitian and healthy living expert, Corinne Dobbas, MS, RD

 

With kids heading back to school, we’ve got some healthy snack ideas for their lunch box!

The beautiful thing is that they’re quick n’ easy to fix and pack up!

Even better, they’ve got tomatoes.

Tomatoes are natural nutrient powerhouses.

They’re good sources of vitamins C, A and K, potassium, and fiber – all packaged up!

Interestingly enough, tomato products, like salsas, marinara sauce, pastes, and fire roasted tomatoes, are an even better bet.

Because not only do they have all the nutrition of a tomato, but their lycopene content is more available to your body (um… yes please!).

Lycopene is a powerful antioxidant that protects your body against disease. And when tomatoes are cooked (as in tomato products) their lycopene and hence, disease-fighting abilities skyrocket.

The best thing is that kids adore tomatoes and tomato products. And when you combine foods that kids will eat with nutrients, that’s when real healthy living happens.

 

8 Healthy Back-to-School Snacks

1.  The Classic: skewer baby tomatoes and 2-3 mozzarella balls, and you’ve got a sure-fire fun way to get your little one to eat more veggies!

2. Dip it: Mix salsa, black beans, and low-fat cheese together for a nutritious dip that your little one can scoop up with whole-grain pita chips and/or veggie sticks.

3. Easy-to-Love Pizza: top a whole-grain English muffin with tomato paste, low-fat mozzarella cheese, and veggies your little one will like, such as spinach, mushrooms, and peppers. Microwave for 45-60 seconds, eat immediately, or pack to go!

4. Eggo Tomato: Get a large tomato, cut off the top, scoop out the insides, and place on a baking sheet or pyrex pan. Crack an egg into the hollow tomato, season with salt and pepper, and bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about 20 minutes!  Make multiple egg-stuffed tomatoes and refrigerate for easy eats.

5. Red Kale: Wash and remove tough stems from Kale. Shred kale into bite-size pieces. Place on baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste and sprinkle with sun-dried tomatoes. Bake for about 20 minutes at 275 degrees Fahrenheit.

6. Gluten-Free BLT Cups:  Slice a large tomato and place desired amount of slices inside a lettuce leaf. Add two slices of bacon to the tomato lettuce wrap and enjoy!

7. Shrimp Cocktail: Dip shrimp in cocktail sauce for a satisfying protein bite!

8. Creamy Tomato Soup: Add tofu chunks to a cup of tomato soup (or blend) for a creamier soup with a punch of protein.

What’s your favorite snack with tomatoes?

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