Back-to-school snack ideas

Back-to-school snack ideas

by Jessica Zen
Stripes Japan

Whether you are homeschooling or sending your kids back to the brick and mortar building, they’ll need snacks, and lots of them! Kids are like mini garbage disposals, always hungry for more. Check out these snack ideas to curb your kids’ cravings.

Applesauce Cupcakes

Start to finish: 2 hours and 5 minutes

Servings: 24

Ingredients cupcakes:

  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup apple juice

Ingredients buttercream frosting: 

  • 6 cups powdered sugar
  • 2/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon red paste food color

Ingredients decorations:

  • 12 thin pretzel sticks, broken into pieces
  • 16 spearmint leaf gumdrops
  • 12 gummy worm candies, cut in half, if desired


Heat oven to 350°F. Place paper baking cup in each of 24 regular-size muffin cups. Grease and flour muffin cups, or spray with baking spray with flour. In medium bowl, mix flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon; set aside. In large bowl, beat butter with electric mixer on medium speed 30 seconds. Gradually add sugar, about 1/4 cup at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping bowl occasionally. Beat 2 minutes longer. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in applesauce and vanilla. On low speed, alternately add flour mixture, about 1/3 of mixture at a time, and apple juice, about 1/2 at a time, beating just until blended. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups, filling each about 2/3 full. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 5 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pans; place on cooling racks to cool.

Make Vanilla Buttercream Frosting. In large bowl, mix powdered sugar and butter with spoon or electric mixer on low speed. Stir in vanilla and 3 tablespoons of the milk. Gradually beat in just enough remaining milk to make frosting smooth and spreadable. If frosting is too thick, beat in more milk, a few drops at a time. If frosting becomes too thin, beat in a small amount of powdered sugar. Stir in food color paste. Frost cupcakes.

To decorate cupcakes, poke 1 pretzel piece into each cupcake for stem. Cut each gumdrop leaf into 3 slices. Poke 2 gumdrop leaves into top of each cupcake on either side of pretzel stem. Poke half of gummy worm into each cupcake. (

Cucumber Bites

Start to finish: 15 minutes

Servings: 30


  • 8 ounces sour cream
  • 1/2 packet ranch Dressing Mix
  • 6 cucumbers
  • 30 carrot sticks
  • 30 celery sticks


Mix together sour cream and ranch dip and set aside. Wash cucumbers and, using a peeler, make stripes on cucumbers. Cut cucumbers into 1 ½ inch slices. Use a melon baller to scoop out center of each to make a cup. Fill with dip and insert a carrot and a celery stick. (

Ham & Cheese Mini Cracker Sandwiches

Start to finish: 10 minutes

Servings: 16 “sandwiches”


  • 1/2 pound sliced deli ham
  • 4 slices cheddar cheese
  • Apple butter
  • 32 woven wheat crackers - 2 per sandwich
  • Baby spinach leaves (optional)


Preheat your broiler. Line a baking sheet with foil. Cut the ham slices into pieces about the same size as the crackers. Cut each cheese slice into quarters. Spread about a 1/2 teaspoon of apple butter on half of the crackers. Layer the ham & cheese on top of the apple butter crackers. Add a spinach leaf to the layers if desired - I did spinach on half of mine, half without. Top with the remaining crackers to form 'sandwiches'. Place the sandwiches on the baking sheet & heat under the broiler for just a couple of minutes; until the crackers start to golden & the cheese begins to melt. (

Kid-Friendly Energy Bites

Start to finish: 50 minutes

Servings: 24


  • 1 cup Quaker Oats, either Quick or Old Fashioned are fine
  • ½ cup peanut butter
  • ½ cup flax seed
  • ½ cup mini baking M&M’s (optional – you could also use mini chocolate chips)
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup coconut


Add all ingredients to a medium size bowl and mix well. Place the bowl in the fridge for about 15-20 minutes so the ingredients set. Remove from the fridge and use a small round cookie scoop to scoop the mixture out. Use your hands to roll evenly into balls and place on a baking sheet. Once all the dough is rolled into balls, place the baking sheet in the fridge for another 15-20 minutes. Store the energy bites in the fridge in an airtight container.  (

Frozen Yogurt Covered Blueberries

Start to finish: 1 hour 10 minutes

Servings: 2


  • 6 ounces fresh blueberries
  • 6 ounces nonfat blueberry Greek yogurt


Start by washing your blueberries and lining a small baking sheet with parchment or wax paper.

Using a toothpick, dip each blueberry into the Greek yogurt and swirl until the blueberry is nicely coated with yogurt. Place on baking sheet. Continue this until all blueberries are coated. Place baking sheet into freezer, and let freeze for at least an hour. After about an hour, your Frozen Yogurt Covered Blueberries can be placed in a Ziploc baggie and stored in the freezer. Take out what you need for snack time and enjoy!


Make some of these delicious snacks ahead of time so that your kids can get something to eat as soon as they are hungry. If you’re feeling adventurous, have the kids help make the snacks! This way you’re prepared for when they all start saying, “I’m hungry!” Which, inevitably, they will!

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