If your school is now a Nut-Free Zone, don’t panic because I have 50+ nut-free snacks for school that will make the school’s safe snack list.
DISCLAIMER: When choosing healthy nut-free snacks for your child’s school snack or after-school activity, it is always important to check the label before purchasing as brands continuously change their manufacturing process. Because US labeling regulations are weak and often flawed brands are not required to share “potential or unintentional presence of major food allergens in foods resulting from ‘cross-contact’ situations during manufacturing,” according to FALPAC’s labeling requirements. It is important to contact the brand when in question. The brands mentioned in this healthy school snacks list are up-to-date as of July 2018.
Tree Nut-Free Snacks and Peanut-Free Snacks for School
This morning wasn’t the first time that I’ve received the “WHAT DO I FEED MY KIDS!?!?!?” text or email from a friend desperately looking for peanut-free snacks and nut-free snacks for school, extracurricular activities, or lunchboxes Now that many children are heading back to school, parents are starting to receive classroom guidelines stating that their school is now a “NUT-FREE ZONE.”
While many parents don’t want to give up certain snacks and instead want to find a nut-free alternative to their favorites, others are happy for new ideas that would in no way involve nuts or the plants/companies that manufacture them. Hopefully, this list will provide you with both and I invite you to share your favorites in the comments.
When schools become a “nut-free zone” this means that snacks must not be made with nuts OR manufactured in a plant with nuts. Read the label because it SHOULD tell you how it was manufactured (although it is not required). (See disclaimer above.) Some products with nuts are obvious to identify like peanut butter flavored candy or snack bars, trail mix, or almonds. However, other snacks may not have nuts identified in the title or may have been cross contaminated on shared equipment. While this may not seem like much to some, even a cross with peanut dust can be enough to put a child in distress so please be mindful and choose options that are totally nut-free and on your school’s safe snack list.
Does It Make the Healthy School Snacks List?
The best way to determine if foods are allergy-free snacks is to read the label since most brands have a warning statement or allergen list. Be aware of phrases like this:
“May Contain Peanut or Tree Nuts”
“Processed on shared equipment with Peanuts or Tree Nuts”
“Manufactured in a plant with Peanut or Tree Nuts”
“Contains Peanut or Tree Nut Ingredients”
You may even notice that some brands get very specific and list the type of tree nut. For example:“May Contain Almonds“.
50+ Nut-Free Snacks for School
Peanut Butter-Free and Nut Butter-Free Spreads and Dips
Enjoy in a sandwich, on crackers, on apples or celery, with waffles, or even by the spoonful!
*Sub any of these peanut and nut-free spreads in place of peanut butter in a recipe.
- Roasted Chickpeas
- Skinny Pop Popcorn
- Crackers (Wheat Thins, plain Triscuits, Goldfish)
- Pretzels (Newman’s Own, Rold Gold, Pepperidge Farm Pretzel Goldfish)
- Rice cakes
- Goldfish/Cheddar bunnies
- Wise Snacks Potato Chips, Popcorn, Cheez Doodles
- Potato chips (popchips, Baked Lay’s, Cape Cod, Pringles, Ruffles, Kettle Brand)
- Late July Organic Tortilla Chips
- Pirate’s Booty
- Yogurt tube
- Pudding cup
- Yogurt pouch
- Cheese (stick, cube, round, slice)
- Yogurt cup (*read the label and be aware of yogurts that also contain watch out for granola or cookies)
- Fresh fruits (apples, oranges, banana, grapes, watermelon, cantaloupe, pear, kiwi, blueberries, etc.)
- Fresh vegetables (carrots, celery, broccoli florets, bell pepper strips, cherry tomatoes)
- Applesauce cup or pouch
- Canned fruits and vegetables (look for “in it’s own juice” or “in water”)
- Mandarin orange fruit cup
- Dried Fruit
Simple Recipes/Combination Foods
- Guacamole (avocado, lime juice, cilantro)
- Fruit Kebabs
- Fruit and Cheese Kebabs
- Caprese Skewers (tomato, basil, mozzarella ball)
For even more ideas and a great allergy free foods list, I love the Safe Snack Guide by SnackSafely.com.
Reminder: Never give a child with food allergies any foods until the parent or guardian has had the opportunity to inspect and approve the food. This may include reading the label and consulting with the manufacturer.