Snacks for famished teenagers

Is your teenager constantly looking in the fridge? Do you ever get stuck when you try to find tasty, nutritious and sustaining snacks?

Here are tips to make filling snacks for your teenagers that behave like ogres!

To make a snack, you must know the two main reasons why a snack should be eaten.

Reason number 1: to reach the recommended number of daily servings

A snack is chosen in accordance with the daily portions of each group suggested by Canada’s Food Guide. Therefore, snacks are part of a healthy daily menu.

Here are the portions recommended for every group of Canada’s Food Guide. Don’t forget that this is a GUIDE. Your teenager could need more or less portions for each group.


14 to 18 years old

Vegetables and fruit

Grain Products

Milk and Alternatives

Meat and Alternatives


7 portions

6 portions

3 to 4 portions

2 portions


8 portions

7 portions

3 to 4 portions

3 portions

Examples of a portion

  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) vegetables and fruit is a portion of “Vegetables and fruit”
  • 30 g cold breakfast cereals is a portion of “Grain products”
  • 250 ml milk or enriched soy beverage is a portion of “Milk and Alternatives”
  • 75 g (2 ½ oz.) of cooked lean meat is a portion of the “Meat and Alternatives” group.

Consult Canada’s Food Guide for more details.

Reason number 2: to sustain hunger

Also, the schedule of meals and snacks will have an influence on your choice of snacks. Each food group brings different vitamins and minerals that are necessary to the good functioning of the body and each group provides carbohydrates, lipids or proteins. These help to wait until the next meal. That is why the delay between the snack and the meal influences the nature of the snack. If the delay is short, the snack will be mainly composed of carbohydrates that will soothe hunger for a shorter period. If the wait is longer, the snack will be substantial and will consist mainly of proteins to sustain hunger and provide energy a little bit longer.



Sustain hunger for
short periods of time


Sustain hunger for longer periods


Sustain hunger for longer periods





Grain products




Milk and alternatives




Meat and alternatives





Some ideas for healthy and sustaining snacks

Snacks for a little hunger, right before the meal

Snacks for a big hunger after school to wait until supper

  • Cranberry bread and milk;
  • Carrot and cinnamon bread and enriched soy beverage;
  • Whole grain pita bread with tofu or legumes spread (variations: chick peas, white beans, etc.)
  • Tortillas and chicken or tuna;
  • Bagel and cream cheese;
  • Beaten egg cooked in a microwave oven with salsa and grilled tortillas;
  • Tortillas rolls with cream cheese and shredded carrots.

Snack between classes to wait until lunch

  • Whole wheat soda crackers and cheddar cheese;
  • Crackers and cream cheese with fruit puree;
  • Plain rice cakes with cream cheese and fruit puree;
  • English muffins with apple and pear purée with an enriched soy beverage;
  • Fruit puree toast and milk;
  • Homemade oatmeal cookies and milk;
  • Whole wheat carrot cookies and enriched soy beverage;
  • Berries crisp* (see recipe) and milk (possible variations: rhubarb and blueberries or strawberries and pears, etc.).
  • Muffins and enriched soy beverage (variations: pears and apples or blueberries and mashed or grated carrots or peaches and dried cranberries, raspberries and blueberries, etc.).
  • Dry cereal with a bit of chocolate milk or enriched soy beverage;
  • Chewy cocoa and hazelnut* (see recipe) and milk;
  • Date Squares and enriched soy beverage;
  • Graham crackers and yogurt topped with dried fruits (figs, apricots, dates) and a little bit of maple syrup;
  • Mixture of soft tofu and plain yogurt with frozen fruits.

Source consulted in August 2013

Health Canada. Canada's Food Guide

Nathalie Regimbal

Nathalie Regimbal is a dietician-nutritionist and mother of 3 kids. She oversees Manger Futé, a team of people passionate about diet that empowers those who want to feed children healthily. To demystify nutrition and diet, Nathalie gives advice on the show La Cantine on Channel V. In addition to her collaboration with Mamanpourlavie.com, you can read her articles in several print and online magazines. Among others, she is a collaborator in nutrition for Yoopa and Célébrons magazines. To make meal time easier for families and initiate kids to cooking, Nathalie has worked hard to write inspiring books: the best-seller Du plaisir à bien manger… 80 recettes gagnantes pour les familles, and the Mandoline series of illustrated cook books for children, the latest one having just won the prestigious prize of the best French Healthy cooking book from the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards 2010. To help with meal preparation in daycare centres, the team of dieticians at Manger Futé offers classes and coaching. Manger Futé has also published the practical guides Élaborez rapidement un menu équilibré dans votre service de garde and Élaborez rapidement une politique alimentaire. Discover Nathalie Regimbal's books: Du plaisir à bien manger – 80 recettes gagnantes pour les familles Mandoline – J’ai ça dans le sang! Mandoline – Développe tes défenses naturelles!

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