Nutrition & Dieting/Making homemade snacks


Hi Laurie!
Can you give me your opinion on how making homemade snacks for your children can be healthier than buying pre-made snacks, specifically granola bars? Thank you so much!

Hi Kelly,

There are several ways that making homemade snacks, including granola bars--and including any meals!--can be healthier. The main difference is that YOU get to decide what goes into the snack.

Additives and preservatives aside, you can put in less sugar, the type of sugar you like (eg, honey instead of high fructose corn syrup), fewer 'empty calorie' ingredients such as M&Ms or chocolate chips, and more fruits such as raisins or dried cranberries.

You can put in nuts that are good sources of Omega-3 fatty acids, like walnuts, which are rarely found in store-made granola bars.

And you control the size of the snack so everyone gets the amount of calories you want them to have, and maybe a smaller portion for when they're eating right before meal time.

You know how fresh they are because you just made them.
You probably save money, too.  There are some companies now that let you make your own 'recipe' based on selecting available ingredients, but they are quite pricey.

I think store-bought granola bars have their place and I wouldn't eliminate them from the house. But there are several advantages, as you can see, from making your own when you select the ingredients that make them healthier for your family.

That being said, someone who makes a sugary granola bar with lots of chocolate candies and peanuts and candied fruit is fooling themselves if they think their snack is automatically 'healthier' just because it's homemade.

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Laurie Beebe, MS, RD, LD


As a registered dietitian (RD)I am fully qualified to accurately answer questions regarding weight loss, including those from people with health conditions requiring dietary restrictions (diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc) who want to lose weight, or who have been advised to do so by their physician.


I have been a registered dietitian for over 30 years and have a certificate in Adult Weight Management through the commission on dietetic registration at Level 1 and Level 2. I am also trained in coaching through Coach U and currently work as a diet coach to help people lose weight the healthy way, through gradual habit changes.

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND), Weight Management Dietetic Practice Group, Nutrition Entreprenuers, St.Louis International Coach Federation, Toastmasters

Publications,,,, Today's Dietitian

Bachelor of Health Science from the University of Florida, 1983; Master of Science in Clinical Nutrition from Case Western Reserve University 1985; Certificate in Adult Weight Management 2006; CoachU core essentials grad 2007; Level 2 certificate in Adult Weight Management 2010.

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