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by Jules Kendall

Jules Kendall shares the sweet and savory at her blog, Pancakes and French Fries. She almost never writes about food. Instead, she focuses on her improving her health, decluttering and simplifying her home, and life with two loud boys and one quiet husband. She is the creator of The William Morris Project, a weekly series that encourages people to have nothing in their home they do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.

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  • Hi! I'm Jules, and I write about life, sweet and savory, at Pancakes and French Fries. Like life, Pancakes and French Fries has a little bit of everything. I write about marriage and motherhood. I write about my home, and how I'm trying to purge anything I don't know to be useful or believe to be beautiful. I write about books and host a monthly book club full of readers as obsessed with reading as I am. Finally, I write about my struggle with food, and tangentially related to that, share recipes. Speaking of food and recipes, that's what I'm doing here today. We're going to talk snacks.

    After school snacks, if we are going to get specific.

    You should know upfront that I don't cut sandwiches into pirate ships and give them cheddar cheese sails. I don't give food eyeballs and not once have I turned a floret of broccoli into a tree. I might do that on special occasions, but not on a Tuesday 20 minutes before we have to leave for soccer practice. I give my boys snacks that are healthy, no-cook, and easy to make. I give them something I would want to eat, because parents and care-providers need snacks, too.

    Here are our favorites.
  • Long time readers know my food frequently ends up looking like a Dutch still life. That's the risk you take playing with natural food, I suppose. Not pictured here are some quickly sliced veggies and dips, but you get the idea. Put a tray out on the counter with a protein, a fat, a vegetable, a fruit, and a grain. It can't get any easier! (Yes, it can. Leave everything in the packaging and cleanup is nonexistent.)
  • Yogurt cups are another snack you can make ahead of time, depending on the ingredients. Simply layer yogurt in a small bowl or jar with something sweet and something crunchy. I like fruits and nuts, but I've used Cheerios and honey in the past. This is a sugar-free Clementine and Date Cup, but if your children don't like plain Greek yogurt, try it with sweetened vanilla yogurt instead.
  • Serving peanut butter with apples and celery will give you a grand total of zero creativity points, but there's a reason it's a classic snack. Kids -- and adults -- love the salty-sweet combo. For bonus points, try serving it with some of the new peanut butters that are out now. I'm obsessed with Sunland's Banana Peanut Butter Spread.
  • I know the calendar says school starts in the fall, but where I live the heat is only just beginning. When the kids come home too hot to eat, I give them all-fruit popsicles and a handful of nuts. You can buy the popsicles or try making one of the 3,000 recipes available online.
  • Who doesn't want chips and dip as a snack? No one, that's who. Texas caviar is a longtime family favorite. We have it for snack with chips or eat it straight out of an avocado half for lunch. If it's really hot, we'll eat it for dinner as a cool and light entree with some vegetables on the side.

    Looking for more snacks? I have a whole Pinterest board devoted to them -- even those cute ones that take up time I don't always have. What can I say? I'm a sucker, and the kids love a little something different every now and then.

    - Jules
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