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Healthy Food for Kid’s Parties

Okay, I’m just going to come out and say it.

I really can’t stand crap food at kid’s parties.

There isn’t much that bothers me, I’m pretty easy going most of the time, but the food that is served at children’s birthday celebrations is one thing I am opinionated and outspoken about.

I honestly believe, that if you decide to have a party and invite other people’s children to celebrate with you, there is a responsibility to serve the kind of food that will in some way nourish and sustain these kids and will not induce vomiting on the way home in the car.

I know the old argument – it’s a one off! A little bit won’t hurt but these days it seems kids are attending parties every other weekend – sometimes more!  Let’s teach our kids how to enjoy good food – it can still be a celebration!

Does that mean it has to be all carrot sticks and hummus? No Way!  There are heaps of easy to prepare, fun, delicious and healthy things you can serve at parties, even if you are short on time.


Francesca just celebrated her 8th birthday and had a party at home which I catered for myself (since this is my job).  I know what you’re thinking…well it’s okay for you Mamacino – but believe me, I am busy too!  We had interstate guests to stay for the weekend and it was Father’s Day and I had plenty of orders for Granola to tend to.

I’m not saying you have to make every single thing from scratch using organic and natural ingredients (but it’s great if you do!). I’m just saying bypass the discount aisle at The Reject Shop because no one needs confectionary wrapped in several layers of plastic that will still be within its use by date when your child finishes School!

Ideas for simple, wholesome party food…


Kid’s come to parties to play! Keep the food simple and real – especially if your party is right on lunch time.

If you want to make it even more simple and serve less food, have your party at morning tea or afternoon tea time.  Sometimes a fruit platter and a birthday cake is enough!

For more ideas, recipes, tips and tricks, take a look at my Kid’s Party Time eBook HERE. 


So what do you think? Do you agree that party food doesn’t have to mean total rubbish, or maybe you feel that it all adds to the fun? How do you do your kids parties?

Happy Celebrating!

Mamacino x






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31 thoughts on “Healthy Food for Kid’s Parties

  1. OMG I have to take my son to a Mcdonalds party this weekend and I am DREADING it….. I really don’t want to take him but then I don’t want him to feel like I am stopping him hanging with his mates….. luckily he is kind of fussy so I doubt he will want to eat anything but I still don’t like exposing him to crap!! Arrrrrrrgh!

    1. We are yet to face this predicament!

  2. Oh and your spread looks magnificent – well done!!

    1. Trust me – it was simple xx

  3. Love this Kristen, great job. My little guy is only 2 1/2 but I will never forget the day I picked him up from day care and his mouth and tongue was BLUE. From a damn birthday cupcake someone had brought in. Needless to say, it was bright blue the other end too. I was horrified!! Yet to get to the age of parties, but I will be following your lead!

    1. Yes, blue cup cakes could prove a little hard to cope with for a baby! Gosh!

  4. We have been invited to 2 McDonald’s birthday parties. Did not like the idea but happy that my daughter picked as well as possible with no parental influence & has not asked to go back.

    1. Well, that’s good! I don’t want to come across all high and mighty – I just want to suggest we consider the options and think about simple, healthy ways to celebrate…you must have been a proud mum to see your daughter make the best choice she could with what she was given – a great life lesson, right?

      1. Still I struggle to see how parents think inviting other people’s children to McDonald’s is appropriate. We went along and it wasn’t the end of the world but I still think it’s an odd thing to do.

  5. Love it! And how beautiful and colourful does a fruit platter and that amazing veggie platter look! Give me that any day…

    1. I’m glad I’m not the only one Robyn 🙂

  6. Oh Kristin, I feel exactly the same about food served at childrens parties. The choices and the often the quantity!
    Good on you for being brave enough to speak your mind on it too. Hopefully it gives some families the courage to change the “norm” when planning their next party!
    Brig X

  7. I have taken my son off additives, perservatives and colours to help his behaviour and I am dreading him going to parties and being given crap food. Any tips?

    1. Totally take your own! Just make a delicious additive free snack box and explain to your host, that it is just really important for your sons health and your sanity that he avoids allergen laden food. It’s not fair to him or you to have to endure the hours after eating the wrong foods and while it doesn’t always make you popular (don’t worry – my family call me the fun police!) you will be doing what is best for you and your son xxx

  8. I am a bit mean, I have to admit, when it comes to kids birthday parties! I mostly take my own food with me, because apart from the fact that all of my children have different food intolerances, I hate having to constantly be the only parent who seems to care what food is going into our little ones’ mouths! Sometimes, I’ve even been known to not even go to a party if I know what sort of food is going to be there. How terrible is that! My husband (Mr Skeptic himself) was even reading an article about how addictive sugar is for you! Why can’t people start taking a bit more care and responsibility! I totally believe if children were given better food, we would have less disruptive children in schools, and happier teachers too!! Rant

    1. Well, is it mean, really? I’d say it’s kind! Kind to your children and to yourself. Obviously we have to find a balance – we don’t want our kids to miss out on fun and be the odd one who’s mum won’t let them go anywhere or eat anything, however, we also have to act with their best interests at heart. Food intolerances also make it really difficult BUT give us a good excuse to bring along our own food for our kids. Maybe we should all start offering to help out and bring a plate of fruit along to parties – try and set a gentle example?

      1. I think “bring-a-plate-party” is a fantastic idea! Love reading all your ideas and thoughts Kristen! I wish we lived closer to you! I’m in Brisbane, and I wish I could come and meet you and try your deliciously sounding granola as well as other goodies! Might have to plan a driving holiday down south!! 🙂

        1. I would love that Kristi!

    2. I totally agree that this is a frustrating thing to deal with. My kids are all grown. We had a rule that we did not eat sugar. So many people tried to break our rule. One lady gave our kids sugar-free cough drops because she felt sorry for them. Ugh! The hardest thing is that my kids felt different. It’s really hard for kids to feel different. My advice is to try to find friends that agree with your views.

  9. That spread is my idea of heaven on a table for kids to eat. Exciting, delicious and nourishing all at once! I’m with you all the way Kristin.

  10. I actually love having “crap” food at kids parties, it is after all a celebration! As long as you have a good mix of healthy and treats I see nothing wrong with a little bit of junk, they are kids after all!

    1. We all have to do what we think is right and finding a balance sounds like a great idea x

  11. Great ideas which I will use at my next birthday party. We have changed what we serve at our parties, but my 5 y/o son is off to a Party this weekend and I am terrified about what food he will be offered and consume. I don’t know the family so assume it will be a typical child’s party with colours and chemicals on every plate. The best I can do is suggest he makes good choices about what he eats, but if the only food that is served is rubbish what else can I do??

    1. How can you take your own food without appearing rude or embarrassing your child?

      1. I remember once, before I even had children, reading that Jools Oliver, Jamie Oliver’s wife used to take her own food to kids parties and I remember thinking – how over the top! Now, I do it too! It is difficult though, you are right! If your children have allergies, obviously that’s a great excuse, but if not, people might be offended, you’re right. It is tricky, I guess we just have to weigh up the consequences – maybe feed them up with lots of good stuff before you go?

        1. I think that is an awesome idea! Fill em up on good stuff!

      2. Good point!

    2. And not to get too stressed over it…as our kids grow up, I’m sure we will lose control over lots of things they do/eat/go…probably worse than party food! Give me strength!

  12. I was just thinking that I serve food very similar to you for a kiddy party – yet mine just doesn’t have that Mamacino styling!

    I actually feed my kids up before they go to bday parties where garbage is served as they are not tempted by the usual party pies and lollies – and I take the party bags and throw them out. I know its a bit chicken but the parents are my friends and I want to keep it that way.

    1. Yes, I understand it could be a bit tricky! And you know, I just can’t help myself! I even style my kid’s dinners!

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