By Katy Killilea
Crunching on popcorn, crunching on a carrot, crunching on an after-school snack can be good: for your body, for your jaw muscles, for your mood. Crunching can also be not so good: if what you’re crunching is an entire bag of pork rinds, for example. Some very tasty new options that keep a person’s health in mind have hit the shelves, and our school-age testers are clamoring for more.
Food Should Taste Good Chips
It should, shouldn’t it? We have been eating these multigrain chips with gusto since I was first seduced by a sample at the grocery store a few years ago. Never mind that they contain flax seeds and such—these are more addictive than any Cool Ranch Dorito ever was. The company has recently expanded its line of chips to include flavors like chocolate, olive, and jalapeno. I’m sure that eating sweet potato chips is not as good for a growing child as eating a sweet potato, but as far as a salty, crunchy snack goes, these are winners. Favorite flavor: sweet potato.
Funky Monkey Snacks
“Fruit that crunches!” didn’t sound enticing to us at first. I mean, we like regular dried fruit, and we’ve all had those quasi-crispy diced fruit nibletty things, so how would freeze-drying be an improvement? Well, here’s how: Funky Monkey Snacks are made from whole hunks of fruit—still recognizable—turned into crisp little miracles with intensified flavors. A chunk of pineapple in this case has the flavor of pineapple to the fifth power. Not a speck of anything but fruit is used, and an entire pouch has 110 calories. A handy, fun, and not at all sinful alternative to handing your kid a banana. Which would get all brown and squashy in your bag by the time you need it. Hence, freeze dried fruit! Favorite flavor: jivealime (pineapple with lime).
Popchips Potato Chips
“Think popped! Never fried. Never baked.” There’s no dearth of lowfat snack chip options in our grocery store, but nonetheless Popchips potato chips will make their mark alongside the Booty family. First of all, they are crisp and delicious and come in flavors like salt and vinegar and barbecue. Next, they are cute: circles about the size of a silver dollar packaged in attractively designed bags. The list of ingredients is short and devoid of chemical mumbo-jumbo. They appeal to kids and adults—I shudder slightly when doling out Veggie Booty. Popchips are good all around—no cringe factor. Favorite flavor: barbecue.