For many families across the country, this week marks the start of a new school year. Having personally welcomed this poignant passage of time 18 years in a row with our own daughters, I know there's lots of excitement (and, perhaps, even a little trepidation) involved... no matter the age or grade.
Beyond the peripheral minutia that needs to be assembled and readied anew each September, there are also lunches and after-school snacks to again consider. Though maintaining a healthy way of eating should be a year-round commitment, the added demands that come with the onset of a new school year can often leave families searching for easy solutions. Thinking it might require far too much effort to plan healthy, fresh options for breakfast, lunch or snacks, many folks turn to pre-packaged goods... instead of, say, the fruit bowl.
With no more effort than is required to cut up some fresh fruit... breakfast fare can go from bland to brilliant... lunches can pack a little punch... and after-school snacks can deliver flavor and fun. There are just so many healthy, fresh, easy solutions for families on the go... all with fruit.
This is why I was excited when Stemilt Growers approached me this summer to work on creating a few kid-friendly preparations for breakfast, lunch and snack time using their Lil Snappers fruits... beautiful, naturally delicious petite-size apples and pears that tuck into a child's hand with ease and are pretty perfect for a fruit snacker like me, as well. These miniature fruits are nature's perfect treat for kids... and busy moms, dads and caregivers, too. They're small enough to consume whole, or dice up to add to a host of different preparations.
These simple little PB&G Apple Wafers are a perfect example of an easy, tasty (and healthy) after-school treat...
With just a bit of peanut butter tucked between slices of fresh apple, then rolled in some cinnamon granola (or, perhaps, some toffee bits... or some nuts), these little wafers make having a treat a healthy option. You simply cut three slices from each side of one of Stemilt's Lil Snappers apples; match up each slice from side one of the apple with its partner from side two (this keeps wafer size uniform); top one slice from each pairing with a little dab of peanut butter; sandwich the peanut-buttered slice with its apple slice mate; press the slices firmly together to allow the peanut butter to ooze out the sides; then roll side of each wafer in a little granola (toffee bits or nuts)... and voilá!
For a look at these preparations and others using Stemilt's Lil Snappers fruits, simply visit Stemilt's website for more information.
Disclosure: I was compensated by Stemilt Growers for recipe development and photography work associated with Stemilt's Lil Snappers campaign. However, the views and opinions expressed in this post are my own. All images, and recipe content, are the property of Stemilt Growers and may not be copied or reproduced.