Our kids especially those in the preschool age get cranky when they're tummies are rumbling. (Who are we kidding? It's the same for grown-ups!) That's why parents know to always have snacks at the ready, whether in the cabinet at home or stashed in their bags when out of the house, to keep the children entertained and happy. But we always worry about salty and sugar-loaded snacks. After all, a diet high in added sugars is strongly associated with obesity plus heart problems in the future. So what are healthier ready-to-eat, local snacks? Read on!
1. Honest Junk gummy bears Php70 per pack
Honest Junk’s Super Gummies are sweetened with natural fruit juice, fat-free, preservative-free, and gluten-free. They’re even fortified with vitamin C for that extra boost. Flavors include guava-strawberry, mandarin, mango, and calamansi. Chef Tina Lagdameo, who developed the recipe, told Pepper.ph her own kids acted as taste testers. “If they didn’t like . . . the flavor, the texture or anything, I’d go back to the drawing board and start formulating again.”
2. First Harvest spreads Php169.75 for the Peanut Crunch; Php149 for the Salted Coco Caramel; Php159 for the Peanut Spread
First Harvest's spreads are sweetened with honey and have no extenders and artificial preservatives. They're also made locally by nanays at the Gawad Kalinga Enchanted Farm, so every purchase is a socially responsible one. Try them on warm pandesal or as an on-the-go dip for pre-sliced fresh fruit and vegetables in containers.
Holly's Milk produces premium milk that comes from local farms in Laguna. Rich in calcium and protein, the 200 mL chocolate milk bottle is just the right size to stash in your child's baunan for recess. It’s one of our favorites from Holly’s as well as their yogurt (great on its own or with fruits and oats) and their kesong puti.
4. JA Lees mushroom chicharon Php165 per 100g bag; Php300 per 300g bag
Just like a bag of chips or chicharon without the guilt, the whole family will be munching happily on locally-made JA Lees Farms's mushroom chicharon. They’re crunchy and still go great with a vinegar sawsawan. For on-the-go snacking, they also come in a bunch of flavors including beef tapa, garlic, barbecue, and more.
Available in select SM Stores (including SM North Edsa, SM Mall of Asia and SM Megamall) or call +63 998 538-8240
5. Just Fruit freeze-dried fruit snacks P170 per pack
Here's the ingredient list for Just Fruit's pack of freeze-dried mangoes: sliced mangoes and nothing else. It's all-natural, and there is no added sugar, additives, and preservatives. It's pure fruit and because its freeze-dried, the nutrients are retained as well. Nothing beats fresh, but this comes close! It goes great in cereals, oats, and smoothies too. Banana and pineapple variants are also available.
6. Merci Buco coconut water P34.25 per 300 mL container; P91.50 per 1 L container
Kids swatting away their water bottles? Children below 2 years old should not be given any sweet drinks that contain added sugar, said guidelines from the American Heart Association. So, instead of powdered juice or soda, try fresh buko juice especially if you can drink it from the husk! But since it's not travel-friendly, the second best option is this 100% pure coconut water from Locally called Merci Buco. The 330 mL resealable tetra pak is great for taking on-the-go.
Available at supermarkets, convenience stores, or online via Honest Bee