Fast Fuel and Fun on the Run
Texas families are always on the go! No matter what your plans are, you are going to need plenty of pep in your step. Keep your snacks and meals loaded with vitamins and minerals for energy. Be sure to eat plenty of different fruits and vegetables.
Try these ideas for great tasting, nutritious snacks and quick meal tips from Square Meals (Texas Department of Agriculture) to fuel your fun:
Rules of the Road
- · Prepare in Advance - Use plastic sandwich bags to pack snacks in small portions ahead of time. Take the bags with you when you head out the door and pull them out later for a quick energy fix. Mix and match your favorite cereal with dried fruit and sunflower seeds, peanuts, walnuts or sesame seeds for a fun trail mix. Try freezing grapes or blueberries ahead of time. The fruit still tastes great even if it thaws. Baby carrots, celery sticks, and whole grain cereals are great snacks on the go.
- · Think Portable - consider fruits that come in Mother Nature's wrappers. Apples, pears, oranges and bananas as well as many other fruits are good on the go. Keep a basket of fruit on the table so grabbing fruit is quick and easy. (We usually have a stash of bananas handy.)
- · Plan for the Long Haul - Think about keeping a small stockpile of energy boosters packed in the car - a jar of peanut butter, a package of whole-wheat crackers, assorted nuts, canned fruit packed in its own juice, some 100% juice boxes and bottled water won't wilt in the high heat and can stave off hunger pangs. Nuts, pretzels, animal and graham crackers, and low fat granola are other great choices.
- · Fast fuel up tip - ask for a small side salad or fresh fruit instead of fries, and ask for water instead of soda when eating out at restaurants.
At Home on the Range
- · Spice it Up with Produce - Fire up the grill for some delicious vegetables. Simply marinate fresh vegetables like, squash, bell peppers, tomatoes, onions and mushrooms in fat-free Italian dressing and place on skewers and cook over medium heat. Try your favorite lean fajita meat with vegetables and salsa in a lettuce wrap instead of a tortilla.
- · Keep it Fresh - Use in-season fruits and vegetables for best quality and price. Carrots and cucumbers tossed with dark leafy greens make a super salad. Oranges and grapefruit add extra flavor to any leafy green salad. Create colorful kabobs by placing fresh fruit (grapes, strawberries, cantaloupe, honeydew) on a skewer.
- · Imagine the Possibilities - Once you start to think about it, fruits and vegetables add the color and interest to any meal. Chopped apples or grapes taste great in tuna or chicken salad. Green or red pepper strips and broccoli bites add crunch to your pasta. To start the day right, slice berries and peaches on top of cereal. Use fruit as a topping in place of butter and syrup on pancakes and waffles.
We can all make healthier choices if we make an effort.
Most people walk in and out of your life, but friends leave footprints in your heart.
Johanna Hicks, B.S., M.Ed.
Extension Family & Consumer Sciences Agent
1200-B W. Houston
P.O. Box 518
Sulphur Springs, TX 75483
903-885-3443 - phone
903-439-4909 - fax