This post was written in partnership with my friends at Made with Local. As always, all opinions are my own!
As a Mom to three kids, my youngest being 3.5 now, my breastfeeding experiences are still fresh in my memory. Although I had three completely different experiences with breastfeeding, there’s one thing — across the board — that was essential to my breastfeeding success—proper nutrition!
Now, you may think this would be a no-brainer for me, being a dietitian and all, but when you’re sleep deprived and emotionally and physically drained, your brain isn’t performing so well. So for all of you sleep-deprived breastfeeding mommas out there, I’ve got your back!
First of all, it’s important to keep in mind a few key ideas when choosing easy and nutritious breastfeeding snacks.
- You’ll likely be hungrier than normal when you’re breastfeeding, so it’s important to listen to your body and eat accordingly. I found it helpful to make sure that I had snacks in between meals and that they were filling and nutritious, which means that they contain some protein, dietary fat, and fibre as well as vitamins and minerals.
- Snacks need to be easy to make and or grab. As a busy breastfeeding mamma your time is valuable! Quick, nutritious and easy to prepare snack foods are essential.
- They need to be portable and eaten with one hand only! When breastfeeding you are often supporting a sometimes wiggly baby with one arm. While you are nourishing your baby, your other arm should be nourishing you! Easy one handed snacks are oh-so convenient. And as as a mom, multitasking is important!
With all of that in mind, here are my Top 5 Favourite Breastfeeding Snacks:
1. Flourless blender muffins!
OMG you guys, the nutrition you can pack into a muffin is insane. And most importantly, they’re easy to make and you can eat them with one hand. Where these muffins are flourless you can also prepare them using one dish!! Simply blend in a blender or food processor and you’re good to go! Easy and nutrition PLUS minimal cleanup? Check out my favourite flourless chocolate lentil protein muffins for easy inspiration.
2. Homemade trail mix
I usually have several little resealable bags of homemade trail mix on hand in the cupboard that I can grab on the fly – and it was one of my go-to one-handed breastfeeding snacks too! Throw in some almonds, pumpkin seeds, unsweetened dried fruit, whole grain cereal and of course… a few chocolate chips! Delicious and easy!
3. Nutritious bars!
Bars are the best, because they’re so easy and convenient and perfect as a quick snack when you’ve got a hungry baby in hand. It’s hard to find a good, nutritious bar though – they’re few and far between. That’s why I fell in love with these Real Food Bars by Made with Local – they’ve got the simplest, shortest ingredient list including nuts, seeds, and unsweetened dried fruit. And very little added sugar and no artificial ingredients! And lucky for us Canadians—these bars are now available across the country at Safeway, Sobey’s, Bulk Barn and Well.ca! Nutritious bars that you can online shop for? YES!
4. Hardboiled eggs
I love eggs. I seriously do! They’re a daily staple in our house and offer loads of protein, iron, vitamins and minerals. My weekly food prep always includes hardboiling eggs for the week to have as snacks and throw into lunches. And you guessed it – best breastfeeding snack ever. Pair one with a piece of fruit for added fibre and nutrition!
5. Fruit and yogurt smoothies
Smoothies are an everyday occurrence in my house because they’re SO EASY and you can throw just about anything into them. Some of my fave ingredients are frozen berries, leafy greens, Greek yogurt, hemp hearts and lentils! When it comes to breastfeeding moms, smoothies not only provide SO MUCH NUTRITION, but hydration too, which is so important for milk production. Easy, nutritious and hydrating?? Triple win! My one mom-tip would be to remember to make your smoothie while your baby is awake! We don’t want to ruin precious quiet time by turning on a noisy blender to enjoy a delicious smoothie!
There you have it – my top breastfeeding snacks that are not only nutrient-packed, but also yummy and easy to eat with one hand. For breastfeeding mamma’s check out the blog for topics such as how to safely store pumped breastmilk and how to make a smooth transition back to work while breastfeeding!
And you’d like to win a case of Real Food Bars from Made with Local (whether you’re breastfeeding or not), leave a comment or question below and you’ll be entered to win!