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Kids are balls of energy in constant motion. But after a day of play, in that gap between afternoon and dinnertime, a bite to eat is the key to avoiding hangry meltdown mode.

Now, there are a ton of great homemade snacks you can whip up for your kids. But if you’re short on time (or kitchen-averse — no judgment!) there are a lot of store-bought snacks on the market these days that aren’t loaded with sugar, artificial ingredients, or weird preservatives.

So if you’re looking for options when it comes to taming the hunger beast until it’s time for dinner, check out these 12 store-bought snacks your kids will love — and you’ll love, too.

With so many snack products out there these days, it can be difficult to know which ones are truly healthy for your kids.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends limiting processed foods and added sugars, which are often found in packaged snack foods (1).

Instead, the AAP encourages parents to consider using snack time as an opportunity to offer more servings of fruits and vegetables (1).

To make the snack more filling, try pairing them with a dairy, such as yogurt; lean protein, like cheese or peanut butter; or whole grain, like whole grain bread (1).

When it comes to packaged snacks, pairing a fruit or veggie with yogurt may not be realistic. Instead, looking for convenient options that offer similar nutrients can be helpful.

For example, look for snacks that offer a source of protein and fiber, which are not only important nutrients but can also help fullness and might help hold your kids over until their next meal (2, 3).

From a kid’s perspective, a snack needs to be yummy and fun to eat. From a parent’s perspective, it has to be quick and easy while still having solid nutritional value. We took both into account when considering recommendations from real parents, including our editors.

Wherever possible, we picked products that are made from whole grains, non-GMO, and organic ingredients.

We’ve included nut-free and grain-free options as well. If your kiddos have special dietary restrictions, be sure to read the entire ingredients list or check with your pediatrician.

Note that many of the snacks listed here come in multipacks. While the multipacks are listed as some of the most expensive options on this list, consider the individual price of each bag. For example, for multipacks that cost around $50, each bag breaks down to less than $5.

Pricing guide

  • $ = under $5 per bag
  • $$ = $5–$10
  • $$$ = over $10

Moon Cheese

  • Price: $$$ (for a 12-pack)
  • Ingredients: Gouda cheese (pasteurized milk, cheese culture, salt, enzymes)
  • Age range: toddlers to adults

Your little one will channel their inner astronaut as they pop these tangy dehydrated cheese bites into their mouth. Aside from being downright delicious (cheese is the only ingredient — how can you go wrong?) and fun to eat, Moon Cheese is high in protein and calcium with 0 grams of sugar.

If Gouda isn’t your cheese of choice, this gluten-free, keto-approved snack also comes in cheddar, pepper jack, and Parmesan varieties. A word of warning, though, reviewers say they’re really yummy, so you might want to get your own bag.

Moon Cheese is currently available on Amazon in a 12-pack. While it’s priced a bit higher than the other snacks on this list, each bag costs less than $5. This 12-pack may be a good option if you prefer to buy in a bulk.

Popcorn with Everything Bagel Seasoning

  • Price: $–$$
  • Ingredients: popcorn and everything bagel seasoning (sesame seeds, salt flakes, dehydrated garlic, dehydrated onion, black sesame seeds, poppy seeds)
  • Age range: 4 years and older

Popcorn makes a great snack because it’s whole grain, low fat, and high in fiber. If you have the time, bust out the air popper or pop the popcorn in a lidded skillet. But if you’re looking for a fast snack, this 365 by Whole Foods Market microwave popcorn may do the trick.

There are a bunch of ways you can make popcorn more delicious, but our favorite is everything bagel seasoning. The combo of garlic, salt, poppy seeds, and sesame seeds takes this familiar snack to the next level.

Jackson’s Sea Salt Sweet Potato Chips with Coconut Oil

  • Price: $$$ (for a 12-pack)
  • Ingredients: sweet potatoes, organic coconut oil, sea salt
  • Age range: toddlers to adults

Potato chips are a popular, delicious snack, but some varieties may not offer much in terms of nutrients.

Jackson’s sweet potato chips are made with just 3 simple ingredients and include 3 grams (g) of fiber per serving. They’re also vegan, gluten-free, peanut-free, and non-GMO.

Potato chips can run pretty high in sodium too, but Jackson’s chips have just 150 milligrams (mg) per serving.

The chips come in several different flavors too, including seat salt, unsalted, spicy tomatillo, and Carolina BBQ.

Pirate’s Booty Veggie Sticks

  • Price: $$$ (for a 12-pack)
  • Ingredients: cornmeal, bean meal, dehydrated potatoes, sunflower oil, lentil grit, sea salt, kale powder, spinach, and beet powder
  • Age range: toddlers to adults

Not only are Pirate’s Booty Veggie Sticks a hit for their fun name, they’re also a delicious snack for all ages. Made without artificial ingredients, you actually get a half cup of veggies in each serving, which is sneaky because they really just look like french fries.

These baked sticks are made using less than 10 ingredients, including beet powder, kale powder, and spinach powder. They’re almost like eating air, so you can go through a bag pretty quickly.

LesserEvil Paleo Puffs

  • Price: $
  • Ingredients: organic cassava flour, organic coconut oil, organic tapioca starch, organic coconut flour, organic sweet potato flour, and Himalayan salt
  • Age range: toddlers to adults

Parenthood’s editorial director Jamie Webber loves sharing these Paleo Puffs from LesserEvil with her son. “They’re shaped like Cheetos but with quality ingredients,” she says.

These grain-free puffs are made with a combination of cassava flour, coconut flour, and sweet potato flour, topped with Himalayan salt. They honestly don’t sound delicious, but Jamie says, “I could eat a whole bag in one sitting.” That’s an endorsement if we’ve ever heard one.

Seapoint Farms Dry Roasted Edamame

  • Price: $$$ (for a 12-pack)
  • Ingredients: soybeans, sea salt
  • Age range: toddlers to adults

These dry roasted soybeans pack a punch of protein, fiber, and carbs and make a quick, healthy snack. They’re lightly salted and crunchy, making them a yummy snack on their own or a savory addition to homemade trail mix.

This option is shelled and dry roasted, but you can also defrost raw, frozen edamame pods in the microwave. Kids love biting the pod to squeeze the beans out so much that they may forget they’re eating a vegetable!

Stretch Island Fruit Leathers

  • Price: $$$ (for a 48-pack)
  • Ingredients: various fruit puree concentrates and fruit juice concentrates with other natural flavors
  • Age range: toddlers to adults

Fruit leathers have truly come a long way. Like a lot of brands on the market today, these from Stretch Island are made with 100% fruit and 0 g of added sugar.

These pocket-sized leathers are great for a quick playground pick-me-up or a lunchbox treat. Plus, this variety pack of 48 includes six different flavors — including apricot, grape, and cherry — so you can mix it up.

Skout Organic Kids Bar

  • Price: $$$ (for 36 bars)
  • Ingredients: organic dates, organic apples, organic sunflower butter, organic sunflower seed protein powder, organic cinnamon (apple pie flavor)
  • Age range: toddlers to adults

Skout Organic Kids Bars are a super convenient grab-and-go snack option. They’re also vegan, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) organic, and contain just seven ingredients or fewer (depending on the flavor).

While they’re free from added sugars, they still have a sweetness thanks to their date and other fruit content, which also packs a couple of grams of fiber per serving too.

Kids can choose from several different flavors, including Apple Pie, Chocolate Peanut Butter, French Toast Frenzy, and Cookie Dough.

Cerebelly Smart Bars

  • Price: $$$ (for a five-pack)
  • Ingredients: organic dates, organic whole grain oats, organic sunflower seed butter, organic sweet potatoes, organic nutrient blend (organic tapioca fiber, nutrients derived from chlorella, kelp, pumpkin seeds, spinach, sunflower seeds, maitake mushrooms), organic pumpkin seed protein, organic sunflower oil, organic strawberries, organic amaranth, organic natural flavors, organic beets, organic lemon juice concentrate, organic strawberry extract, organic lemon extract, sea salt
  • Age range: toddlers to adults

Cerebelly Smart Bars focus on organic ingredients from fruits and vegetables that contain important nutrients like folate, selenium, iodine, vitamin D, and protein. So while offering fresh fruits and veggies on the go may not be realistic, these bars can offer an alternative.

Each bar contains 0 g of added sugars, 3 g of protein, and 2 g of fiber, depending on the flavor. Flavor options include Carrot Raisin, Blueberry Banana Sweet Potato, Apple Kale, and Strawberry Beet.

Amara Yogurt Smoothie Melts

  • Price: $$$ (for six pouches)
  • Ingredients: organic apple, organic yogurt, organic beets, organic raspberries, organic blueberries (Beets n’ Berries flavor)
  • Age range: babies to adults

Yogurt melts are a great alternative to a typical yogurt, which might get a little messy when you’re out and about.

Amara Yogurt Smoothie Melts are made with five ingredients, including organic yogurt, fruits and vegetables, and come in flavors like Beets n’ Berries, Mango Carrot, and Carrot Raspberry.

These melts are also certified gluten-free and free of added sugars, additives, and preservatives.

Chia Squeezes from Mamma Chia

  • Price: $$ (for a four-pack)
  • Ingredients: hydrated organic chia seeds (water, organic chia seeds), organic apple puree, organic grape juice concentrate, organic blackberry puree, organic blackberry juice concentrate, organic natural flavors, organic purple carrot juice concentrate, and citric acid
  • Age range: toddlers to adults

These squeeze pouches from Mamma Chia are a blend of chia seeds — which are packed with fiber, omega-3s, and protein — and puréed fruits and vegetables. They make a great on-the-go snack to keep in a bag (no refrigeration required) or to store in the pantry.

One reviewer shares her favorite hack: “I’ll freeze one overnight and throw it in as the ice pack with lunch — by lunchtime it thaws to a delicious slushy treat!”

GoGo Squeez Applesauce

  • Price: $$ (for a 12-pack)
  • Ingredients: apple, apple puree concentrate, and lemon juice concentrate
  • Age range: babies to adults

Applesauce is a timeless snack. But add in the ease and functionality of a squeezable, resealable pouch and easy-open top for little hands, and you have one of the greatest kid snacks ever invented.

These GoGo Squeez Applesauce packs are made of 100% fruit with zero added sugars or mysterious ingredients. They’re great for on-the-go snacking and come in strawberry, apple, and banana varieties.

Young children need to eat a variety of foods from all five food groups (vegetables, fruits, grains, dairy, and proteins).

Each food group offers important nutrients, so all of them need to be present in a healthy diet. Children also need plenty of water to stay hydrated and healthy.

In addition to offering foods from a variety of food groups, it’s important to limit or restrict ultra-processed foods such as fast foods and processed snack foods, as well as foods and beverages high in added sugar.

It’s important to note that the USDA recommends that kids under the age of 2 avoid foods and beverages with added sugar (4).

Appetite and portion size needs may vary depending on the size of the child and their activity level. Day-to-day food intake can vary. Over the week, aim to feed your child plenty of foods from each food group.

Children require more calories as they age. Toddlers, for example, generally need somewhere between 1,000 and 1,400 calories per day, depending on how active they are (5).

However, between the ages of 6 and 12, needs increase to 1,600 and 2,200 calories per day, with those needs increasing further as children enter puberty (6).

In general, regardless of your child’s age, the more active they are, the more calories they will need (6).

What if my child is a picky eater?

Try offering your child a variety of healthy foods. You may need to offer foods several times before they will try them.

When your child is old enough, having them help prepare their food can make eating it more exciting. In some cases, vegetables can even be added (or disguised) in foods that your child enjoys.

How can I feed veggie snacks to my child?

Washing and preparing vegetables in advance can make it easier to always have something ready to offer your child. Many stores sell already prepared vegetables if you’re short on time. Dips like hummus and guacamole can also make eating vegetables more exciting.

How often should I let my child snack?

Every individual is different, but many children (and adults!) need to eat every 3 or so hours. This typically works out to 3 meals and 2 or 3 snacks a day. This can look like a morning snack, an afternoon snack, and an evening snack if necessary (7).