Snacks are foods eaten between meals. Nutritious snacks are an easy way to give a young child extra food. Snacks should be easy to prepare.

Good snacks provide both energy and nutrients. Examples are:

  • banana, paw-paw, avocado, mango and other fruits
  • yoghurt, milk, puddings made with milk
  • bread or chapatti with butter, margarine, groundnut paste (peanut butter) or honey
  • biscuits, crackers, cooked potatoes.

However, not all snacks are good for children (or adults). Many have a lot of sugar (which causes teeth to decay), or salt and are low in nutrients. Examples are:

  • fizzy drinks (sodas)
  • ice lollies/lollipops
  • sweets.

Discussion

  • What kind of food do children in our area eat between meals when they are hungry? Are these good snacks?
  • What other kinds of local foods are there that could be used as healthy snacks? Would these be expensive?
  • Are there any foods readily available in our local area, that could be used to set up a small business to make snacks? Possible ideas could include dried fruit, roasted maize or deep fried potato crisps.
  • Some snacks, particularly sodas, are made by companies that spend large amounts of money in advertising. People feel they must buy these, even though they are expensive and have no nutritional benefit. Some may even be harmful to health as they contain so much sugar. How could we encourage people to buy less of these? What could people drink instead?

Biscuit recipe 

Here is a very easy recipe to cook biscuits in an oven or on top of a fire or stove.

  • 1 /2 cup sugar 
  • 1 /2 cup fat
  • pinch of salt
  • two cups wheat flour (or a mix of one cup wheat and one cup other flours such as soya or millet)
  • two small spoons of a sweet spice such as nutmeg, ginger or mixed spice if available
  • 1 /2 cup finely chopped nuts (pound to a paste if for small babies). 

Mix all these ingredients together to make a very thick dough with either milk, an egg or water. Either roll out thinly and cut into small squares, or take small spoon-sized pieces of dough and work into a small round shape. 

If using an oven, cook on a tray for 15 minutes at medium heat. If cooking over a stove or fire, use a thick metal frying pan or sheet of metal. Cook very slowly over a cool heat, again for about 15 minutes, turning over once.