In the hustle and bustle of back-to-school shopping and school supply lists... all while trying to enjoy the last days of summer... mom/dads are tasked with the responsibility to supply snacks, sometimes for the whole class. Plus, the pressure of ensuring the snacks are allergy-safe and healthy can be stressful.
Snackster Sam started as a simple list of snacks that help point children, parents, and educators in the right direction to find the best snacks. Snackster Sam's list of snacks are peanut-free, healthy, and are safe for most schools.
For easy reference, download the list of healthy snacks and hang it on your refrigerator or pantry.
Snacks for Back-to-School
Hard Boiled Eggs
Peppers (all varieties)
Organic Berries (all types)
Melon (all varieties)
Raisins and other dried fruits (unsweetened)
Popcorn (air popped and lightly salted, preferred)
Nuts and seeds (if your school allows)
Healthier Processed Food Choices
Sweet Potato chips
Gluten Free Chex Granola
Healthy Dip Choices
Greek yogurt with a touch a maple syrup
Learn more about Snackster Sam in the lovable, rhyming children's book.
To gear up for the Snackster Sam birthday party, we created a fun and interactive invitation. You can make one too for your party! Grab your kids and download our free templates to create this adorable invitation.
What you need:
For each invitation, cut the purple craft paper to 6.5" wide (trim off two inches) using a paper cutter or scissors.
Fold the purple paper into thirds, but ensure the top fold is approximately 1.5" from the bottom fold, as the image shows.
Next, using the downloadable templates, cut out the shapes using the correct colored paper.
Next, assemble the cut shapes onto the purple paper to make a Snackster Sam face. Glue the elements to the paper. Make sure to line up the teeth under each eyeball and the eyebrows over the eyeballs.
For the eyeballs, off center the final white circle.
For the black section under the tongue (not included in the template), simply trim the paper to 4" wide by 1.5" tall. Center the tongue over the black trimmed paper and glue it to the center of the inside fold of the purple paper, as shown.
Next, assemble the antennas. Using the pipe cleaner, line up the ends of the pipe cleaner under each eyebrow. Puncture a hole through the purple paper using the pipe cleaner and pull it through.
Throw a Sugar-Free Kids' Birthday Party
Looking to put a spin on your next birthday party? Throw a Snackster Sam birthday party!
Snackster Sam is changing the tune on birthdays...
Happy birthday to you! Happy birthday to you...
No, not that tune. I'm talking about sugar overload.
Cupcakes, cake, lollipops, and juice are birthday staples, but these treats have also become every day foods for many. Taking the sugar overload out of a birthday party doesn't take the fun out. In fact, it makes for an experience that all kids can enjoy, even if they suffer from juvenile diabetes, allergies, gluten sensitivities, and more.
So let's throw a birthday party!
Throwing a Sugar-Free Kids' Birthday Party
My daughter recently turned six, and she requested a Snackster Sam themed birthday party. Hosting birthday parties is one of my favorite parts of parenting. Growing up, we didn't have a lot... I knew I wasn't going to get the coolest, latest toy, but my mom always made sure we had an awesome birthday party. I mean she went all out. In 10th grade a classmate I barely spoke to came up to me and said, "remember that birthday party you had in 4th grade? That was the best birthday ever."
So ever since my daughter's first birthday, I've tried to live up to my Mom's birthday level. But this year was more fun than usual, because my daughter jumped into the planning process. She couldn't wait to see the book and Snackster Sam's Big Adventure come to life!
Birthday Party Activities
First, as the guests arrived to the party, they received an antenna headband to look like Snackster Sam. This was a great way to greet the guests, and you can even add their name to the back (so the headband becomes a name tag). The headbands were a huge hit!
After everyone arrived, we journeyed to the Orange Planet (just like Snackster Sam in Snackster Sam's Big Adventure). There, guests played a jumping game with lollipop sticks. If your guests haven't read the book, consider starting the party with a book reading of Snackster Sam's Big Adventure.
Then we flew to the Green Planet and played pin the candle on the cake! The guests were blindfolded and spun six times (since it's a sixth birthday celebration) and had to try their best to get their candle on the cake.
Next the guests experimented with colors and water on the Red Planet. There were a lot of unexpected surprises when the guests mixed different colors of water!
Finally, they landed on the Planet of Blue where they painted and decorated ceramic pots. After the pots were decorated, the guests planted a seed. This doubled as a party favor, as they each got to take their plant home!
After the activities, we dug into Snackster Sam approved snacks! There was a three-tiered watermelon cake, apple lollipops, watermelon star juice, and more to dig into! All the guests ate a variety of their favorite snacks, tried new foods, and left with full bellies.
Throw a Snackster Sam birthday party! Get the details of each activity here.
Of course, no party would be complete without opening presents, singing that birthday tune, and a dance party!
Things to Expect When You Remove Sugar at a Birthday
This birthday is going to be a little different, and that's ok. There is no rulebook on birthdays that says you need cupcakes, pizza, and soda. Having a different menu is perfectly acceptable!
However, expect at least one birthday guest to ask if there is going to be a certain food item. In all the parties I've hosted, no matter the theme, no matter the menu, there is always a guest who wanted something that wasn't provided. Don't worry about pleasing every developing child in the room. At the end of the day, the guests aren't missing out on anything, and they are gaining from eating nutritious foods and being with friends!
Now it's your turn!
Looking to put a spin on your next birthday party? Go for it! Share your variations and activities in the comments below!
Not sure what the activities on each planet mean? The book makes it clear! Order Snackster Sam's Big Adventure.
Stay tuned for the details on each planet's activity, instructions on making Snackster Sam monster birthday invitations, and everything else you need to know!
Danielle is the mother of two and creator of Snackster Sam. She has been concerned about healthy habits and nutrition for over a decade, and conducted an award-winning scientific study on portion control. She created Snackster Sam to make eating healthy more fun for parents and children. Learn more about the mission here.
Creating a program and a book that encourages children to choose (healthy) snacks puts me in a vulnerable position. I often feel my food choices are quickly criticized by those who misunderstand what Snackster Sam is all about. Family and acquaintances have questioned if food I eat are really Snackster Sam approved, but their comments tell me they haven’t read the book....
What Snackster Sam is not:
Here’s the thing... I’m prepared for and resilient to these comments. But for some children and teens, negative comments about food choices can lead to eating disorders and depression. In fact, I have witnessed this and was guilty of being the person making negative comments.