With school holidays upon us, every child deserves to enjoy delicious treats without worries. That’s why we’ve curated a collection of allergen-friendly and child-friendly snacks to make this holiday time even more memorable. From allergen-friendly mini pizzas bursting with nutritious vegetables to allergen-friendly coconut pancakes that bring smiles to little faces, these allergen-friendly snacks are designed to be safe and enjoyable for all. Create joyful moments with fruit pop treats or banana oat cookies. Let’s ensure that every child can experience the magic of the school holidays with these allergen-friendly and child-friendly snacks.
Allergies in young children are quite common. They affect up to 8% of children under 5 years of age. As parents, it is not often something we think about until it affects our child or someone we know. But it can be incredibly challenging and stressful for parents who do have to consider allergies as the symptoms can present quickly and in quick succession.
What allergies are the most common in children?
Ironically called the “Big 8” there are nine allergies that are very common in children. They are: eggs, milk, tree nuts, peanuts, shellfish, fish, wheat, soy and sesame. These allergies tend to present very early in life, often the second or third time being consumed and can have some very serious implications if left untreated.
What symptoms should I look out for?
Every child is different but some of the common symptoms include
- Difficulty Breathing
For milk allergies, children may also present with colic and blood in their stools. If you are concerned about any of these symptoms we strongly recommend heading to the Emergency Department where they will be able to better assist you and your young child.
Our educators have curated some of our favourite allergen friendly recipes for you to use. They are guaranteed to be hits with your children and their friends. It’s important to check ingredients on all pre-packaged items to ensure they are free of allergens
- Mini Pizzas
- Fruit Pops
- Skewers and Dips
- Banana Oat Cookies
- Homemade chips
- Coconut Pancakes
Ingredients (check ingredients on pre-packaged items to ensure they are free of allergens)
- English Muffins or Mini Tortillas (use Gluten-free if wheat allergy is present)
- Pizza Sauce
- Toppings: tomatoes, pineapple, ham, mushrooms, capsicum
- Allergen supplement: Dairy free cheese.
This snack is a great activity for you and the kids to enjoy. Simply break the english muffins in half and decorate with toppings of your choice. Cook in the oven or microwave for 2-4 minutes.
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 4 teaspoons sugar
- 1 cup sliced fresh apricots (4-5 medium)
- 1/2 cup ice cubes
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh mint, optional
Fruit pops are such a great snack and a special treat. Pick up some silicone moulds from Kmart or your local homewares store and be prepared to have fun. To make them:
- Blend up the apricots with the fresh fruit juice and ice
- Place in silicone moulds and leave overnight
This is just one version of fruit pops that you could make. You can try it with pineapple, berries, mangos, or any fruit that is in season.
Skewers and Dips
There are a few different ways you can make skewers and dips. You can opt for some fun fruit and marshmallows with dark melted chocolate to dip into or you can opt for a grilled vegetable option with carrots, zucchini and mushrooms. For a dip, try homemade hummus!
- 1 can of Chickpeas
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 tbsp Lemon juice
- Pinch of salt
- 2 cloves of garlic (optional)
Blend all ingredients together in a blender or stick mixer until smooth.
*Preparation note: opt for blunt skewers to prevent any accidents.
Banana oat cookies
- 3 ripe bananas, mashed
- 1/3 cup (80 ml) of coconut oil
- 2 cups (160 grams) of rolled oats
- 1/2 cup (80–90 grams) of mini chocolate chips (dairy free) or dried fruit
- 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of vanilla
Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Place spoonfuls of the cookie mixture onto a greased cookie sheet and bake for 15–20 minutes at 350°F (175°C).
Cookies are always a hit with children and with the sweetness from the bananas, a hint of vanilla and some hidden chocolate chips we guarantee these will be too!
Chips are a great snack for children but we can have a little bit more fun with them by making them in our air fryers at home!
- Simply choose a starchy vegetable of your choice. This could be potatoes, sweet potatoes, beetroot, carrot or parsnip!
- Slice your vegetables thinly. You can use a mandolin or the slice side of your cheese grater (just make sure it is very clean before using).
- Place in the air fryer for 350℉ for 10 mins or oven at 200 ℃ for 7 minutes on each side.
- Cool before serving.
Pancakes are the perfect afternoon snack for young children and with this recipe, you can ensure they are healthy and allergen friendly too!
- 1 egg (use egg supplement if allergic to egg)
- 1 cup oat flour
- 2 tbsp coconut flour
- fresh blueberries or banana (*optional)
- 1 tbsp coconut oil (for frying)
- Mix together all ingredients except blueberries until smooth, then fold in blueberries (if using).
- Heat coconut oil in a frying pan.
- Drop batter in large spoonfuls onto the pan and cook until bubbles start to form and the edges are slightly browned. Flip and cook until browned on the other side.
Allergen-Friendly egg supplements
Eggs are an important ingredient in baking because they help to bind ingredients together, leaven baked goods, moisturise baked goods, and add flavour and colour.
Binding: Eggs contain proteins that help to bind other ingredients together, giving baked goods their structure.
Leavening: Eggs trap air bubbles as they are beaten, which helps to create a light and airy texture in baked goods.
Moisturisation: Eggs contain water, which helps to keep baked goods moist and tender.
Flavour and colour: Eggs add flavour and colour to baked goods. The yolks are rich in fat and cholesterol, which gives baked goods a richer flavour. The whites are slightly sweet and have a pale yellow colour, which can add a subtle flavour and colour to baked goods.
Without eggs, baked goods may be dry, crumbly, or lacking in flavour. However, there are a number of egg substitutes that can be used in baking. Some common egg substitutes include:
- Mashed banana
- Flaxseed meal
- Chia seeds
- Commercial egg replacers
When choosing an egg substitute, consider the flavour and texture of the baked good. Some substitutes may not work well in all recipes
Enjoy Child’s Play allergen-friendly recipes
Enjoy using these delicious and allergen-friendly recipes with your family, ensuring that everyone can be involved in the cooking process and savour the delightful outcome. Whether it’s the mini pizzas adorned with nutritious vegetables, the refreshing fruit pops that bring a burst of flavour, or the homemade chips made from your favourite starchy vegetables, these snacks are designed to make the holiday time even more special. Don’t forget to try the coconut pancakes, perfect for an afternoon treat, and explore the egg substitutes provided if egg allergies are present. Let’s create memorable moments and tasty delights that cater to everyone’s needs. Happy cooking and joyful snacking! 🍽️🎉