Light Meal and Snack Ideas for Busy Mamas


As a mom with three kids four years old and younger, my eating habits have drastically changed since pre-kids. Most noticeably, I seem to generally be eating breakfast and lunch standing up, grabbing multiple snacks to have as a meal while on the go, or eating the kids’ leftovers. I love when they don’t finish their chocolate chip pancakes, those are my favorite, haha!

Knowing that my eating habits are less than par, I have been experimenting with finding nutritious snack and light meal options that can be made quickly and easily. From one mom to another, these are some of my favorites!

Nutritious snack/light meal options

I love bananas, but they don’t see to fill me up for very long so I decided to find various ways to add more satiation to a banana.

  • Try topping a banana with:
    • Peanut butter, shredded coconut, and craisins
    • Almond butter and raisins
    • Peanut butter and trail mix
    • Peanut butter and granola
    • Strawberry Greek yogurt and a few chocolate chips

I have also replaced a banana with Quaker chocolate rice cakes for all of the above concoctions—delicious!

  • A sliced apple with peanut butter and crunched up pretzel sticks—it’s the perfect combo! Or if you don’t have time to wash and slice an apple, Barre Apple Chips dipped in peanut butter is a great treat. Add raisins for a dash of sweetness. They even sell peanut butter in single serving containers, making it that much easier for an on-the-go option.

As you can see, I could live off peanut butter, but a little bit doesn’t go a long way as far as calories go. To slash a few calories, I use PBFit.  It’s a powdered peanut butter. All you have to do is add water and you’ve got delicious peanut butter.

  • Dark cocoa almonds (my favorite brand is sold at Costco). For a little sweet and salty, I’ll add regular almonds and sometimes Craisins. This mixture is very satisfying.
  • I do a lot of protein shakes. My shakes used to be nothing more than protein powder, PBFit and banana until I found this gem…Dole frozen smoothie blends. These frozen blends add a lot of flavor and additional nutrients.
  • We’ve all heard of avocado toast, but you haven’t had avocado toast until you’ve had it with a drizzle of olive oil and the Everything bagel seasoning from Trader Joe’s…sooo delicious and satisfying! A tasty breakfast option is to use an Eggland’s Best egg white patty (sold at Publix and Harris Teeter) and dress it as described above. Don’t have time to wash and cut up an avocado–no fear–Holy Guacamole 100 calorie singles are super; Costco has delicious guacamole single servings too!
  • Baby carrots with Everything bagel seasoning from Trader Joe’s.
  • Combine trail mix and Angie’s Boom Chicka Pop Sweet and Salty Kettle Corn—a sweet and salty party in your mouth!
  • Easy, lower calorie chicken salad served with Ritz crackers or pita chips. Shred a rotisserie chicken, add plain Greek yogurt (not too much or the recipe will be dry and too bitter), sliced grapes, slivered almonds, salt and pepper to taste.
  • Garden Lite Muffins—Blueberry Oat and Carrot Berry are my favorites!
  • Strawberry Greek yogurt with chocolate and red berries Love Crunch granola.
  • For a super quick snack, grab a Luna Blueberry Bliss Bar—they’re so good and do not have an ounce of a “meal bar” taste to them.

I hope some of these ideas are not only tasty but helpful in satisfying the desire to snack healthfully. Snack on Mamas!

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Melissa recently resigned from her career in higher education and was promoted to her new title as Dr. Mom to two-under-two. Her quest to have a family involved a long road of infertility struggles. She has a son named Rowan who is 21 months old and a girl named Ildi who is 6 months old. There is never a dull moment in the Butcher house with two-under-two. Their days are fast, dirty, silly and tiring, yet also imaginative, magical and memorable. Melissa is passionate about conquering every great moment as well as the challenging moments, with love. She truly embraces the Beatle’s philosophy of “All You Need is Love” especially in moments when she finds herself gritting her teeth and taking deep breaths during the blissful chaos occurring in her home. She enjoys reading, baking, decorating cakes, walking, biking, spending time with her family and friends, and cheering on the Clemson Tigers. She also enjoys writing for infertility and adoption focused organizations, striving to serve and support families pursuing assisted reproductive technologies and adoption to achieve their dreams in becoming parents. In writing for Charleston Moms Blog, Melissa hopes to bring Moms together in enjoying and laughing about the special and comical moments of being a mom as well as providing the comfort and support that all Moms need on this journey we adoringly call Motherhood.