Valentine’s Day Lunch Snack Ideas for Kids

Valentine's Day Lunch Snack Ideas For Kids at RoamingRosie.com

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I’ve already started adding fun Valentines-themed snacks to my kid’s lunches.

The top picture is of heart-shaped strawberries.

Okay, okay… they’re not obviously hearts upon first glance, so I did mention to my girls ahead of time that they were getting strawberry hearts in their lunch bags.  Just in case my artfulness didn’t shine through right away.

Anyway, to make quick strawberry treats that vaguely resemble hearts, follow these steps:

  • Wash strawberry.
  • Cut top off of strawberry.
  • Cut berry in half.
  • Cut a triangle out of the top center of the berry.
  • Cut off the edges of the top at an angle.
  • Ensure children they’re getting lovingly carved hearts and not mangled fruit pieces.

You can also toss those extra strawberry pieces into a bowl of cereal or oatmeal, by the way.

And onto the next photo…. I used a tiny {about 1-inch} cookie cutter to cut hearts out of American cheese slices and flour tortillas.

I cut out about twice as many tortilla hearts as cheese ones because my oldest likes to assemble her own cheese sandwiches out of the pieces.

The last photo doesn’t have anything heart-shaped, but instead includes something red.

I tossed a few red M&Ms {leftover from Christmas} into a container of nuts.  Cashews, specifically, since I think they taste better than peanuts, and there are kids in my daughters’ classes with peanut allergies.

My girls will eat the nuts without any extra incentive, but I felt the dash of red color just added a little fun.

And if you’re wondering about the containers I had the cashews in, these are the ones I use:

Kotobuki Children's Bub a Buu Snack Container, Triangular Onigiri Animals, Set of 3

My girls love getting snacks in these little triangle containers.  They’re technically condiment containers, but they’re easy to open {even for my 2yo} and they hold plenty of food.

Not a LOT of food, mind you, but a handful of nuts or raisins or goldfish or about 5 or 6 grapes.  Enough for a snack.

Oh, and I also cut apple slices and used the same heart shaped cookie cutter to remove the seeds, thus putting a heart in the middle of the circle slice.  But I forgot to photograph those.  I’ll try to remember next time.  :)

Please share any fun Valentine’s snacks you’ve made for your own kiddos!

**********EDIT:  Aug 2015**********

Aaaaaand….. now that I’ve been making heart strawberries in a way that’s SO much easier for a while now, I should probably update this post!  ;)

Anyway, after I wrote this, I discovered that it was way easier to just cut the strawberry in half and use a small heart-shaped cookie cutter to cut out the heart.  Takes two seconds and looks amazing!  Plus – the cuteness factor means my kids eat more fruit!  (Even at school!!!)

Check it out:

Heart Shaped Strawberries and Sandwiches for Kids Lunches

And you can see that I used one of the larger heart-shaped cutters for the sandwiches.  Since peanut butter and (strawberry) jelly can get a little messy, I sometimes cut out the bread first and then fill them instead of making the sandwich ahead of time and then cutting out the heart.

Happy Eating!  (Or happy school-lunch making!)

Roaming Rosie Signature

Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

These are amazing.

Even though I probably said that about the Easter Bunny Spiced Sandwich Cookies, too.  But that’s only because it’s true.

I developed this recipe when I made the Bunny cookies because I wanted to incorporate cream cheese into both the cookie itself and the icing.  And the results were sooooooooooo good.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

Above are most of the ingredients.  Just add a little confectionery sugar and vanilla extract for the icing, and that’s all you need.

Simple, right?

Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

When you cream together the butter, cream cheese, and egg for the cookie dough, it should look nice and creamy like this.

Then mix in the cake mix and extra flour.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

It’s a soft dough, so you’ll need to refrigerate it before rolling it out.

And if it’s still a little too soft to handle, just knead in a bit of flour.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

Sprinkle some flour over your counter generously before rolling out the dough.

And be sure to keep the dough a little thick.  The cookies need to be thick and just-ever-so-slightly undercooked so that you can bite through them and the icing without the icing squirting out all over the place.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

Once the cookies are cool, you can add the icing.

I usually make the icing while the cookies are cooling.

Then I like to add a little decoration to the top with some melted chocolate.  I used Wilton’s Bright White Candy Melts here to mimic the shape of the cookies.

Ain’t they just adorable??

Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

Cookie Ingredients:

1 box (16.5 oz.) strawberry cake mix
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 large egg

In a large bowl, use a mixer to cream together the butter and cream cheese. Add egg and vanilla and blend until fluffy.

Slowly sprinkle in the cake mix and flour and blend until combined.

Shape cookie dough into a flattened disc, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least a half hour.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Roll out dough to a 1/4 inch thick on a lightly floured surface. (If you want to make a sandwich cookie with a cutter that is not symmetrical, then make sure you cut out an equal number of matching cookies, using both sides of the cookie cutter.)

Bake on parchment lined cookie sheets for 5 to 8 minutes, depending on the size and thickness of your cookies. They should not yet be noticeably browning on the edges. Do not overcook them or your sandwiches will be difficult to eat.

Allow cookies to rest on the hot pan for a few minutes, then remove to cooling racks. Cool cookies completely before adding icing.

Icing:

4 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 Tbsp. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups confectioners sugar
White chocolate chips or candy melts (optional)

With a mixer, cream together the butter and cream cheese. Mix in the vanilla. Add in the sugar a half cup at a time, blending well.

Put icing in a decorating bag or a baggy with the corner cut off, and squeeze it onto the bottoms of half of the cooled cookies. Place another cookie on top of the icing and press down gently.

If desired, melt some white chocolate chips to draw a pattern on top of the cookie.

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To PRINT the free PDF, click here:  Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

Enjoy!

Roaming Rosie Signature