Need Healthy Snack Ideas for Kids This Winter? Try Two Takes on Dip

By: Haley Duscha, RDN, CDN

No matter what you’ve got planned to entertain your kids this holiday break – and all winter long! – you’ll want to keep them fueled up with nutritious snacks. Bonus points for recipes that make it easy to get kids involved in the kitchen, and that help you sneak healthy veggies into your meal plan.

One easy answer? Dip!

Haley Duscha, RDN, CDN, a pediatric dietitian in Connecticut Children’s Division of Obesity & Weight Management, shares two go-to recipes.

Black Bean Dip


  • 1 (15-ounce) can reduced-sodium refried black beans
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 medium avocado, diced
  • ½ cup finely chopped tomato
  • ¼ cup finely chopped red onion
  • ¼ cup crumbled cotija cheese or queso fresco
  • 2 tablespoons diced pickled jalapenos
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro


  1. Combine beans, lime juice, garlic, chili powder, cumin and salt in a shallow bowl.
  2. Microwave on high until heated through, about 1 minute.
  3. Spread the mixture into an even layer and top with avocado, tomato, onion, cheese, pickled jalapeno and cilantro.

Tips: Make ahead and refrigerate for up to 3 hours. Serve with whole grain tortilla chips and/or veggies (cucumber slices, bell pepper, carrots, celery sticks).

Healthy Buffalo Chicken Dip


  • 5 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese (10 tablespoons), softened
  • ½ cup reduced-fat sour cream
  • ½ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 3 ½ tablespoons Buffalo-style hot sauce (such as FRANK’S RedHot®)
  • 2 cups shredded cooked chicken breast
  • ¾ cup thinly sliced scallions, divided
  • ¼ cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 3 cups celery sticks (about 6 stalks)
  • 2 ½ cups baby carrots


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine cream cheese, sour cream, cheddar and hot sauce in medium bowl and stir until smooth. Fold in chicken and ½ cup scallions.
  2. Spoon mixture into 2-quart or 8-inch square baking dish. Cover and bake until hot and bubbly, about 15 minutes.
  3. Remove from oven and sprinkle with blue cheese and remaining ¼ cup scallions.
  4. Serve with celery sticks and carrots.

Note: This dip is a great way to use up leftover chicken! Try our meal-prep advice to plan ahead for leftover opportunities like this.

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