School is out for summer, which means that our kids have endless amounts of time for fun and games, but also more time to eat and drink things that are full of sugar. It’s been proven that children consume five times as much sugar during the summer holidays than any other time, with the biggest culprits being icecream and sugary drinks.
It can be difficult to manage what your kids eat during the summer holidays, especially if you’re working and don’t have much time to prepare food, or they’re in childcare during the day where you have no control over what they are being fed. However, there are still many ways that you can make sure that the whole family is eating healthily, from quick and easy meal prep ideas to creative substitutes for sugary snacks and treats.
Here at 80/20 Health Bar & Kitchen, we have a large meal prep selection, which makes eating healthily easy with very little effort and time required. Along with delicious, filling mains, we also have a range of healthy snacks to fill the gap between meals. Our meal prep is fantastic for those who are short on time; the meals are available for collection or delivery twice a week, and are made to be stored in the fridge for up to three days, or in the freezer for up to two months. They all come in sealed packaging and are ready for you in just a few minutes, saving you time and the temptation to get a takeaway or go for a fatty, salt-filled ready meal. We have an extensive menu, with vegetarian and vegan options, which is great for the whole family.
If you do have a little more time on your hands and want to get creative with your food in the kitchen, we’ve put together a selection of resources and ideas for healthy meal and snacks to keep the family full and happy this summer.
Start your day the healthy way
It’s tempting when you’re short on time in the mornings to just shovel down a bowl of cereal or a couple of pieces of toast. However, did you know that there is 39g of sugar per 100g of cereal? This article by The Telegraph shows you just how much sugar can be found in each serving of the most popular cereal choices. Though cereal is quick and easy, and good for keeping the kids happy, it’s causing you to start your day off on the wrong foot, and will lead to an inevitable sugar-hangover later.
There are a number of quick, easy and most importantly, healthy, substitutes that the whole family can enjoy for breakfast. Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver is famously working to make mealtimes more healthy, and he has a fantastic family section on his website. His selection of healthy breakfasts includes a number of delicious and creative options to brighten up your morning. Here are our favourites:
Porridge is a family favourite, but microwavable sachets are full of sugar and don’t have nearly as much of the nutritional value as natural oats. Jamie has created a delicious chocolate porridge recipe that will be a sure hit with the kids, and it’s ready in just 20 minutes.
Start your day off with a healthy dose of protein with this delicious omelette recipe, which is designed to keep you fuller for longer, and should stop the kids craving snacks just a short time after breakfast.
Everyone loves pancakes, and this delicious recipe couldn’t be any simpler or less time-consuming to make. The one-cup method is so easy to follow, it’s a great opportunity to let the kids help out with the prep, and they’ll enjoy eating the finished product even more knowing they made them.
Lazy lunches for the whole family
Most people think of summer lunches and picture boring salads or sandwiches. However, there are loads of tasty and much more exciting options out there. Here are a few of our favourites.
If you’re working during the day and the kids are off to childcare, take control over what they eat by sending them with a healthy packed lunch. The BBC goodfood website has a large selection of creative lunchbox ideas, as well as some tasty snacks to keeps the kids satisfied until dinner time.
We love this quick and easy homemade pizza recipe from My Daddy Cooks that takes just 20 minutes. The kids will love getting stuck in and the finished product is much healthier than a store-bought frozen pizza.
This creative curry recipe from Netmums is quick to make and super tasty, a fantastic option for a family with kids who may not like spice.
Delightful Dinners to enjoy together
Dinnertime is probably the most challenging when it comes to keeping meals healthy. It’s tempting at the end of a long day, especially during the summer when the heat makes us even more tired than usual, to simply order a takeaway or pop in a ready meal or frozen pizza. However, resist temptation and check out these quick and delicious alternatives instead:
Jamie Oliver pulls it out of the bag again with his selection of ‘fakeaways’; a collection of dishes that looks like they’ve come straight from a restaurant. From Mexican chicken burritos to a Katsu Curry that could’ve come straight from your local Japanese restaurant, there’s loads of options that will satisfy the whole family.
Kids are notoriously picky eaters, so it’s important to sneak in those vegetables in any way you can. This fantastic mac ‘n’ cheese recipe is packed with three different vegetables that the kids won’t even notice.
Pasta is always a quick-win family favourite. This speedy, delicious recipe from Netmums is takes just 25-minutes and is budget-friendly, as well as a sure winner with the whole family.