As a parent, it can be a challenge to find snack options that are convenient, tasty, and nutritious for your children. The easy-to-grab and crave-able snacks kids want, may not always be the healthiest. To make things easier, we’ve made a list of high-protein snacks for kids. This resource will help you find snacks that strike the right balance, ensuring your kids can enjoys a snack that’s delicious and nutritious.
Protein is great for feeding active kids. A nutrition expert who specializes in children’s health at Abbott explains that protein provides the essential ingredients growing bodies need to make cells, tissues, muscles, and bones. Getting enough protein each day also helps with digesting other nutrients, making red blood cells, and keeping the immune system strong. Not to mention that many high-protein snacks simply taste great.
Try adding one of these healthy high-protein snacks when filling out your lunch ideas plan for the week.
Beef jerky is a great place to start when it comes to a high-protein snack. You can get beef jerky sticks that are pre-wrapped, making them easy to carry for a quick grab snack and each stick has around 9 grams of protein.
Yogurt and Fruit
Yogurt and fruit go together perfectly. It’s a healthy, sweet snack, and yogurt is a great source of protein. Pick your favorite fruits and pair them with your favorite brand of yogurt.
Hard Boiled Eggs
Hard-boiled eggs are one of the best protein snacks for kids because you can prepare a whole bunch of them at once and have them ready to go. Have them plain, salt them, or throw a bit of soy sauce on top! A snack plate with a hard-boiled egg and a few carrots or sliced apples make a tasty and filling snack.
One hard boiled eggs contains about 6 grams of protein.
Natural Peanut Butter on Crackers
“Natural” peanut butter refers to the peanut butter which is made with 100% peanuts. No additives like sugar and salt. Spreading it on something like graham crackers adds a bit of sweetness.
Peanuts are high in protein and contain about 25 grams per 100 gram serving.
Almonds are a great snack just on their own! You can buy many flavored almonds, but we think that plain, unsalted almonds are just as delicious.
Almonds contain about 20 grams of protein per 100 gram serving.
Of course, a protein shake is a great source of protein! The great thing about these shakes is they can be made in so many different ways. Typically, the protein comes from the whey protein powder that is added to the shake. You can throw in a whole bunch of other healthy ingredients like fruit, vegetables, yogurt, peanut butter, and more!
Protein powder typically contains about 25 grams of protein per 100 gram serving, but it really depends on the variety that you buy.
Hummus and Veggies
Hummus is a high protein spread that tastes great. The versatile nature of hummus lends itself to many different snacks. Whether you have it with veggies, on crackers, or in a sandwich, getting your kid hooked on hummus can make snack time easy!
Hummus has approximately 8 grams of protein per 100 gram serving.
Protein Bites or Snacks
“Protein bites” can pack a delicious mixture of high-protein ingredients into little portable packages. You can find a few recipes that work for bites on our list of high-protein bar recipes. Typically, they use various granola, whole grain, dried fruit peanut butter, and honey to form a delicious protein “bite” which has a texture similar to cookie dough. This is a great school snack because it contains no added sugar and can be tweaked with ingredients like chia seeds, nut butter, or pumpkin seeds, to name a few.
The amount of protein in these snacks depends on the specific recipe you follow.
Turkey Slices and Crackers
Many parents try to avoid cold cuts altogether, but turkey slices can be a pretty solid high-protein snack. They are less fatty than many other processed meats but still high in protein. They taste great, too, whether eaten plain or even on some crackers.
Turkey slices have approximately 29 grams of protein per 100 gram serving, a great source of protein!
A drink for a snack? Why not? Kids love chocolate milk, and it’s a great source of protein as far as beverages go. And when it comes to snacks, you likely won’t have any troubles convincing your kids to have this one!
Chocolate milk has 3.2 grams of protein per 100 gram serving. Whole milk is also a great option if your kid enjoys it.
Quinoa salad is a solid source of protein, and is very easy to make. We recommend a basic balsamic vinaigrette dressing, as well as some cherry tomatoes, onions, chickpeas, and cucumber. A tasty, refreshing salad.
Quinoa contains about 8 grams of protein per cup.
Sushi is often more of a meal, but it makes a great snack idea as well. Depending on the variety of sushi you choose, any fish sushi recipe can be a great source of protein. Not to mention that sushi is absolutely delicious and quite healthy as well!
The level of protein in sushi will typically depend on the kind of sushi that you make or buy, but try to aim for a sushi with more fresh fish.
Chicken salad is great as a snack or even in a sandwich or wrap. Another bonus with chicken salad is you can chop up some of your favorite veggies and throw them into the mix. We recommend celery, cucumbers, green onions, and sunflower seeds for an extra crunch.
Chicken salad has about 8 grams of protein per 100 gram serving.
Almond Butter and Apples
If you can, try to get 100% almond butter. This means that it was made with only blended almonds. None of the unhealthy filler ingredients like sugar. Cut up some apple slices and dip away!
Almonds are very high in protein, at about 22 grams per 100 gram serving.
Cheese and Crackers
To round out the list, a kid-favorite snack, cheese and crackers! Cheese is a great source of protein; just avoid processed cheese if you can. Serve on some multigrain crackers, and it’s quite the healthy snack.
The amount of protein does depend on the cheese you buy. Cheddar cheese has about 25 grams of protein per 100 gram serving. If your kid follows a vegan diet, sprinkle nutritional yeast on crackers for a cheesy-tasting snack
About the Author
Alissa is a resilience coach, cartoonist, and advocate for ‘connection, not perfection’. She’s dedicated to helping others find a sense of safety and belonging inside themselves so they can heal, connect, and build authentic, joyful lives.