Kid-Pleasing Sleepover Party Recipes

Keri’s kitchen: Easy—and healthy—snacks to whip up when your kids’ friends come over.

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The end of summer always calls for one thing at my house: a sleepover soirée! My kids know late summer nights are coming to an end, so they love having friends spend the night (on a weeknight!) before school starts again. Besides the Twister (yes, we still play this), card games, and a movie, I try to make part of the fun for the kids center around dinner and snacks.

Everyone can be involved in the food prep because these recipes are basic, kid-friendly, and, of course, healthy. To start off the night, the kids help me make whole-wheat pita chips to have with sliced veggies and hummus. Next on the menu: quesadilla pizzas made on whole-wheat tortillas. The kids each make their own, unique pizzas, I cook them on the stovetop, and they are done ASAP—because we know hungry kids are NOT patient. As a sweet, salty, and even healthy snack to eat during the movie, we make air-popped popcorn and throw in dark chocolate chips along with unsweetened (and unsulfured) cranberries. Always a hit. Who knew dinner and a movie with the kids could be so easy?

The following recipes feed four kids, so increase the recipe size to accommodate a bigger party (good luck!).

Hummus With Whole-Wheat Pita Chips

Time: 15 minutes

Serves: 4

• Cooking spray

• 2 whole-wheat pitas

• Salt and pepper

• 1 avocado, diced

• ½ cup of store-bought, (or homemade) natural hummus

• 1 tomato, diced

1. Preheat oven to 400°F.

2. Spray a sheet pan with cooking spray.

3. Slice pitas into 1/8 pieces.

4. Place on sheet pan, and add salt and pepper to taste.

5. Bake pitas for 5 to 7 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy.*

6. While pitas are baking, combine avocado and hummus together. Top with tomato.

7. Serve pita chips with hummus and veggies.

* Make sure to watch while cooking because they can burn easily.

Veggie Medley

Time: 5 minutes

Serves: 4

• 1 cucumber

• 2 carrots

• 2 stalks of celery

• 1 zucchini

• 1 cup of broccoli florets

• 1 cup cauliflower

1. Wash, slice, chop all vegetables.

2. Serve with hummus and pita chips.

Quesadilla Pizzas

Time: 15 minutes

Serves: 4

• Cooking spray

• Salt and pepper, to taste

• Sautéed veggies (peppers, onions, spinach, broccoli, or any other veggie you like)

• 8 whole-wheat tortillas (6-inch diameter)

• 4 ounces grilled chicken breast, chopped

• 4 ounces grilled turkey breast, chopped

• 3 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese

• 3 ounces shredded cheddar cheese

• ½ cup tomato sauce

1. Spray pan with cooking spray and turn on flame to medium. Sautée veggies in a pan over medium heat (separately, so the kids can pick which ones they want in their quesadillas).

2. Season with salt and pepper when done and put veggies in bowls.

3. Have the kids assemble their quesadilla pizzas on one tortilla. Once they are done, put another tortilla on top, and cook on a pan sprayed with cooking spray over medium heat for 3 minutes, then flip. It will be done when cheese is melted and the tortilla is crispy and golden brown.

5. Serve hot, and with extra heated sauce if needed.

* Make sure to watch while cooking because they can burn easily.

Sweet and Salty Popcorn

Time: 5 minutes

Serves: 4

• ¼ cup kernels

• ½ teaspoon salt

• 2 tablespoons dark chocolate chips

• 2 tablespoons dried, unsweetened cranberries

1. Add kernels into pot.

2. Add salt and cover pot.

3. Cook until fully popped.

4. Pour popcorn into a large bowl and toss with chocolate chips and cranberries.

Hungry for more? Write to eatandrun@usnews.com with your questions, concerns, and feedback.

Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN, is the founder and president of Keri Glassman, Nutritious Life, a nutrition practice based in New York City, and Nutritious Life Meals, a gourmet, healthy, daily diet delivery program available across the U.S. She is a member of Women's Health Magazine's advisory board and has authored three books: Slim Calm Sexy Diet, The O2 Diet, and The Snack Factor Diet. Her expertise is regularly featured on the Today show, Good Morning America, and Access Hollywood Live, among others, and she hosts "A Little Bit Better" on Youtube's Livestrong Woman channel. Read more of Keri's tips every day on Facebook!