Category Archives: snacks

large family food idea snacks granola bars

Around our household, Wednesday is Kitchen Day.  On kitchen day, we usually spend the day baking and preparing foods for the week.  I try and choose at least 2 snacks to make for the week for us to enjoy.  This was one that was on my list to try and so we did.  It is now part of our rotation in our Master snacks list.

This past year, I have been trying to build my large family food idea lists.  I want foods that are easy to make and that my family enjoys.  We have tried numerous granola bar recipes over the years and many have failed.  This is one given to me by a dear friend and it is delicious.

  • 2-20 oz pkg mini marshmallows
  • 1 1/2 c butter
  • 1/2 c oil
  • 1/2 c honey
  • 1/2 c peanut butter
  • 10 c oatmeal
  • 9 c Rice Krispies
  • 2 pkg graham crackers, crushed
  • 1 pkg chocolate chips


Melt the first 5 ingredients until just melted over med low heat006

In a large mixing bowl, mix the oatmeal, Rice Krispies, graham crackers , and chocolate chips.008Pour the melted mixture over top of the dry mixture009Stir until combined010Press into a greased, jelly style roll pan011

Let cool and then cut into bars.  Keep extra bars covered in a container.  You will get 2 large jelly style pans from this recipe.026Recipe for the “smaller” families

  • 20 oz mini marshmallows
  • 3/4 c butter
  • 1/4 c oil
  • 1/4 c honey
  • 1/4 c peanut butter
  • 5 c oatmeal
  • 4 1/2 c Rice Krispies
  • 1 pkg graham crackers crushed
  • 1 cup chocolate chips


large family food idea snacks homemade hummus and pita chips

This is a favorite large family food idea in our household. We make this at the minimum of once per week.

I used to buy hummus at the store and spend an arm and a leg on it. After having so many children I realized that this was not going to be a frugal purchase for me, so I had to do without. Until one day, I came across a recipe to make your own hummus………hello?? Why didn’t I think of that??

This is super easy to make and my children gobble it up. It is sooooooo good for them, another snack that I don’t mind feeding to them, along with those energy bites.

Homemade hummus

  • 2 cans garbanzo beans
  • 4  teaspoons of minced cloves of garlic, less if you don’t want it so garlicky
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 4 T peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon cumin

In a food processor or blender add 2 cans of garbanzo beans, drain one can and leave the other can full of liquid027


add your garlic028

add your peanut butter029

add your lemon juice and olive oil030

add your cumin031

puree your ingredients all together033

that is it!!! super easy and tastes delicious!  You can leave this out on the counter and let your flavors mix together a bit.  We love it, the children dip their vegetables, pretzels, or pita chips into it.  We also spread it on pita bread, add some shredded carrot, green onion, and shredded cheese for a healthy sandwich.

To make homemade pita chips, we wipe on some olive oil onto pita, add some spices, basil, oregano, garlic powder, and Parmesan cheese.  Bake in 400 oven until crisp.  To serve we cut apart with scissors.


large family food ideas snacks popcorn balls

This is a great, inexpensive large family food ideas for snacks…..a yearly tradition around our home.

 Popcorn balls



We usually plan a fall harvest party for our household every year.  We plan games and activities– just some good fun for the little ones.  My oldest daughters and I usually make some cute fall snacks.  Popcorn balls are always one of the things that we make.  They are super easy and taste great.

We usually double this recipe when having a large gathering.  This recipe makes about 16 balls.

  • 1/4 cup margarine
  • 1 pkg. (10-1/2 oz.) Marshmallows
  • 1 pkg. (3 oz.) gelatin, any flavor–we really enjoy strawberry
  • 3 qt. (12 cups) popped popcorn–make sure to not get any seeds into your bowl.

I usually scoop through the corn after having it popped, to ensure that we don’t have any unwanted seeds.  It is very bad to be biting down into a hard popcorn seed when you eat these.

So pop your popcorn, don’t worry about making over, we usually do and have a little less, sugar for our balls:)

In a heavy saucepan over medium heat, melt your butter


Place your marshmallows in the potImage00017

Let melt, continuously stir this so that it does not burnImage00018

When completely melted, add your package of gelatinImage00019

Stir until dissolved.  Then remove from heat and pour over your popped popcorn.Image00020

Gather up your ball makers….and let them get to work.  I haven’t met a child yet that doesn’t like making these, especially when they get to lick their fingers clean!Image00021

We found that having your hands slightly dampened, helps in preventing your hands from sticking to the popcornImage00022

You can wrap these up in plastic and twist them closed, or we just sat them on a plate and covered with plastic wrap.  They will last for a little while, if you need to make them before hand for a group something.Image00023



large family food ideas snacks energy bites

Here is another large family food ideas for snacks…energy bites

This is something that our family enjoys very much.  Very simple, healthy ingredients.  I can’t even feel guilty feeding it to my children because I know it is good for them. This also works great for those of us who are trying to lose some weight, because it takes away those “sweet” cravings that we have.  When I was losing my 70 lbs, there were times when I just craved junk food.  These energy bites were the key to helping me not gorge on something unhealthy.

This recipes makes about 175 golf ball sized bites.  We store these in our freezer and just grab one when we need a pick me up.

If you want the “smaller family” version scroll down to the end.


Energy bites

  • 15 c oatmeal
  • 6 c unsweetened coconut
  • 5 c flax seeds
  • 4 c mini chocolate chips
  • 5 c (40 oz) peanut butter
  • 5 c honey

Place the oatmeal in a large bowl


Next add the coconutImage00002 Then the flax seeds–you can use either type golden or the darker one…I have used bothImage00003And the mini chocolate chips, you can add regular ones, the smaller ones make the balls more uniform.Image00004

In a separate bowl mix the peanut butter and the honey


Pour the peanut butter/honey mixture over the rest of the mixed ingredients.  Stir until well combined.Image00006


Here are the ingredients that I used.  I used a whole 40 oz jar of peanut butter.  Our honey I get from a local source and they sell it in 1/2 gallon milk jugs.  I used 1/2 of the container.  For next time, it is easier to just pour directly into the bowl, instead of having to measure sticky honey.Image00008 I purchase my items at a Mennonite bulk food store.  This is from the flax seed.  It was 1.5 lbsImage00009 The unsweetened coconut was 1.3 lbsImage00010 The mini chocolate chips was 1.75 lbsImage00011 For the honey I used half of the containerImage00012 The oatmeal we buy in a 50 lb container and the peanut butter was purchased at Aldis.

Ok back to our energy bites……after you have thoroughly combined your ingredients, it is time to roll them into balls. Image00013

This works best if you just slightly dampen your hands.  Then grab some of the mixture and form it into golf ball size balls.Image00015


I put them on a cookie sheet and freeze them individually.  After completely solid, I place them in tupperware containers and store them in the freezer.

Energy bites for the “smaller family”

  • 1 cup oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup flax seed
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Mix as in above and store in freezer

large family food ideas desserts chocolate chip pumpkin muffins

large family food ideas for desserts chocolate chip pumpkin muffins….

When we do a baking day around our home, we do it big.  We usually have 2-3 things going and we bake a lot of that item and then freeze part of it.  Chocolate chip pumpkin muffins are one of our families favorite snacks.

Scroll to the bottom for normal serving sized versions:)

  • 9 -8 oz cans of pumpkin
  • 18 eggs
  • 4 1/2 c coconut oil
  • 5 c brown sugar
  • 5 c white sugar—-if i had raw sugar on hand I would just use 10 c total of raw sugar
  • 12-14 c white whole wheat flour
  • 12 tsp baking powder
  • 9 tsp baking soda
  • 6 tsp salt
  • 6 tsp each cinnamon and nutmeg
  • 3 c mini chocolate chip
  • Makes about 84 muffins depending upon how full you fill your cups


To make your muffins…….

In a very large mixing bowl……add your pumpkin


Crack all 18 eggs into the bowl…..hope you have some egg laying hens add your coconut oil as well
Image00002add your sugars to the bowlImage00005


With a beater, mix on low until thoroughly combined.  Takes about 5 minutes to ensure proper mixing of this big bowl.Image00006 We then add all of our dry ingredients, we start with all of the little ones, like baking powder, salt, etc Image00009 We then add our flour, start with 12 cups first and add more as needed.  You want to mix this very well with a mixer.  You can mix all of the dry ingredients together in a separate bowl, but I don’t usually have the extra time it takes to do that and would rather do it all in one big bowl.


After you have done a good job mixing it quite thoroughly, time to add your mini chocolate chips.  If I don’t have the mini ones on hand, I use regular chocolate chips, they all taste the same—delicious.Image00011

Keep on mixing…… make sure you have got all of those little chips combined.  Nothing worse than getting the muffin that got “jipped” some chocolate chips!Image00012

We use paper liners in our muffin tin for four reasons:

  1. I don’t like to have to clean out muffin tins—it is a job that I detest
  2. makes it easier to stack them on a platter to serve –because we can no longer have a single layer, it is usually a stacked pyramid!
  3. they pop out of the pan very easily
  4. it is easier to feed to my little ones, actually it is neater, with all of those gooey chocolate chips, we need a part of the muffin that is “clean”

Bake at 350 for 30-40 until muffins are done–insert a toothpick
Image00013I used to have all of my “baked goods” sprawled out over my dining room table and I just sat back and looked in amazement, before I put them into the freezer.  But nowadays I have to package them up and put them away before they disappear.  Too many little ones that think this is one of those restaurants with an all you can eat  buffet!


yummy delicious……Image00016


Now what if you don’t have a large family but you still want to make these fantastic muffins??  Well you could get out your calculator and start dividing and deducting…..and…..oh never mind, here is the recipe that started it all.  At one time in our marriage I used to make this amount and it was enough for all of us.  Those days are long gone……..

chocolate chip muffins for “small families”

  • 3 eggs, well beaten
  • 3/4 c oil
  • 2 1/4 c sugar
  • 2 1/4 c canned pumpkin
  • 2 1/2 c flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • add 1 pkg chocolate chips to mixture

Bake 350 for 30-40 minutes until done