Fruit and yogurt parfaits make an easy breakfast, a quick snack, and even compliment lunch. No wonder why Starbucks' yogurt parfaits are so popular! It definitely helps that they are so pretty, so easy, and very well balanced!
You can make it fun for your kids by setting out various toppings and letting them create their own parfait. My youngest enjoyed doing that just this morning!
I still cannot get over how many options you will find in the yogurt aisle of a grocery store! I mean, no wonder why parents are confused what to feed their kids!
Some yogurt is as plain as you can get, while others come with a packet of m&m's. Some have five grams of protein per serving, while others have close to 20. Oh my!
I try my best not to have any food be 'forbidden' in our family. If my kids really want to try a particular yogurt, I might buy one.
Whether or not I buy a yogurt that they are asking for, I talk to them about the things I take into consideration when buying yogurt. I don't make a big deal about it, but I do do my best to educate them.
For parfaits, most kids prefer vanilla or banana flavored yogurt (often sold as "Banilla"). If you can, get both flavors and have your kids do a taste test! If they take ownership of what yogurt you use when making this, they will like it even more!
Because of added sugar in flavored yogurt, I often mix plain yogurt in with either the vanilla or banana flavored yogurts. Try it and let me know what you think! Oh, and I'd suggest not mentioning this strategy to your kids until after they have enjoyed the fruit and yogurt parfait!
- Easy to make. In fact, it's so easy that kids can assemble yogurt parfaits themselves.
- Well balanced. Fruit and yogurt parfaits contain carbohydrate, protein, fat, and many other nutrients that are not listed on a nutrition facts label (like phytonutrients).
- Can be made the night before and stored in the refrigerator for an easy breakfast on the go.
- Contains protein and fiber, so kids feel full longer.
- 'Aesthetic' food or Instagram worthy food is a hit with tweens and teens right now. This recipe would be an easy one to do a competition with. Let your kids assemble their own and you assemble your own and see who's is more visually appealing... then, eat up!
- Yogurt Good source of protein and calcium. Starbucks uses a nonfat vanilla yogurt that is sweetened with agave. An easy substitute for this would be to mix a small amount of agave or honey in with plain yogurt. Chobani makes a Madagascar Vanilla and Cinnamon flavored less sugar Greek yogurt that would work well, too.
- Fruit Berries are the most common fruit to use in parfaits. Not only are full of nutrients, but they are pretty and easy to serve. My kids have made these with all different variations of fruit, including peaches and nectarines. If using pineapple or banana as an ingredient, assembled parfaits should be eaten within twenty-four hours for optimal flavor.
- Granola Adds a wonderful texture to yogurt parfaits. I like to make my own granola, but store-bought granola will work just as well. Granola is made with rolled oats. Oats are a whole grain and are an excellent source of soluble fiber, insoluble fiber, phosphorus, thiamine, magnesium, and zinc.
It's hard to call this a recipe because it's so easy! Please keep in mind that there is really no 'wrong' way to assemble yogurt parfaits. Let your kids get creative! And, for specific instructions, scroll down for the recipe.
Option 1 For same day eating, I layer the ingredients in the following order: yogurt, granola, fruit.
Option 2 If you are making these ahead of time, try layering them the same as a Starbucks yogurt parfait: fruit first, then yogurt, and then top with granola. Store refrigerated in a sealed air-tight container for up to three days (up to one day if using pineapple or banana)
Expert Tips and FAQs
- With fruit as the topping, the options are endless!
- Keep in mind fruit that you know your kids will like when making yogurt parfaits.
- If there is a fruit that you aren't sure your kids will like, you can mix it in with a fruit that you know they like. This strategy may improve their acceptance!
- All fruits offer their own unique nutrition profile. One might be higher in potassium, while another might be higher in vitamin C.
- The only fruits that I really try to avoid are melons, but it's only because of their water content. If your kids insist on topping their parfaits with melon, I'd say give it a try!
- If using frozen fruit, let it defrost before adding it to the parfait.
- Slice or dice fruit into smaller pieces for this recipe. Kitchen scissors work well for small fruits like berries.
Here is the ingredient list that can be found on their website: Nonfat Vanilla Yogurt [Cultured Pasteurized Grade A Nonfat Milk, Agave Syrup, Vanilla Extract, Carob Bean Gum, Vanilla Beans, Pectin, Water], Mixed Berry Compote [Mixed Berries (Strawberries, Raspberries, Blueberries), Evaporated Cane Sugar, Water, Plum Puree, Cornstarch, Ground Coriander, Citric Acid], Granola [Whole Rolled Oats, Milled Cane Sugar, Rice Flour, Oat Flour, Expeller Pressed Canola Oil, Molasses, Honey, Natural Flavor, Salt, Barley Malt Syrup]
Include at least one fruit that you know your kids like when making these. My kids love ripe raspberries, strawberries, blackberries, grapes, pineapple, banana, and nectarines. Any combination of these will work well, as would many other fruits (like mango!).
They definitely can be! As with most other foods, it really depends on the ingredients used. Choose a yogurt and granola with minimal amount of added sugar and fresh fruit, and you've got an excellent snack for kids that provides protein and fiber that will help them feel full longer.
Easy Fruit and Yogurt Parfait
- 5 oz yogurt Plain or vanilla. Your child's favorite yogurt is a good starting place, preferably with a low amount of added sugar.
- 2 tbsp granola
- ¼ cup fresh fruit cut up or sliced
- Spoon yogurt into the bottom of a small bowl or mug.
- Top yogurt with granola.
- Top granola with fruit.