Open thread: Bedtime snacks

I’ve been on a popcorn binge. I’ve always been a big fan of popcorn ever since I was a little girl and I would eat it whenever I watched tennis with my grandmother. We would sit on her fuzzy brown couch in the den and watch Navratilova or McEnroe.

This week while writing the posts and then relaxing afterwards, I’ve been eating popcorn that I popped on the stove. I did exactly what Laura did in this blog post: How to pop popcorn on the stove. I certainly knew how to pop popcorn on the stove, but I hadn’t done it in a long time. When I read her blog post, I had to make popcorn right away. I’m using avocado oil like she did too. Amazing delicious snack.

My little boy usually doesn’t want to eat anything before bed. He might request a little drink of (goat) milk, but usually he wants a swig or two of water.

What are your favorite bedtime snacks? Do your kids eat anything before bed?

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31 Responses to Open thread: Bedtime snacks

  1. - M December 18, 2010 at 5:11 pm #

    I actually still send my kids to bed with spill-proof cups of ice water. I don't feel like my kids ever really drink enough. But they aren't usually up long enough after dinner to need a snack.

    Congratulations on your year, Mrs. Q! So glad you'll be able to control your own lunches from here on out.

  2. oreneta December 18, 2010 at 5:37 pm #

    Honestly, popcorn is the go to in this house, that and a warm cup of ovaltine. Warm milk will do, but warm ovaltine is better. Hmmm, now I have to go and make some.

  3. Quiltin' Jenny December 18, 2010 at 6:33 pm #

    I'm not much for the bedtime snacks, but my daughter discovered "sleepy milk" while at a friend's house for a sleepover.

    It's just a mug of warm milk with a dash of vanilla, and I admit it is delicious. When my DH was having trouble sleeping I made him have some. Don't know if it's psychological or what, but he started sleeping better and snoring less.

  4. Jess December 18, 2010 at 6:42 pm #

    I try not to eat less than 2 hours before bed – I actually don't know how accurate that little factoid is, but I figure it doesn't hurt. But I am big on mid-evening desserts – around 8pm – usually chocolate of some kind. Can't resist!

  5. Anonymous December 18, 2010 at 6:58 pm #

    Oh I love bedtime snacks… there's just something about going to bed warm and full and sleepy…

    I love tea and toast, cereal (like plain cheerios), oatmeal, cream of wheat, or hot chocolate and plain saltine crackers… in short, there's definitely a "grains before bed" trend going on there. Haha.

  6. Melissa Graham December 18, 2010 at 8:22 pm #

    Popcorn is such a great snack. I was gifted an air popper so I've been making it on the stove for a while, but I have such good memories of that when I was a kid. I love the Spice House for their mixes and seasoned salts to sprinkle on top for flavor: smoked sea salt being one of my favorites. Though I have to admit that last weekend, the little locavore and I indulged in some tossed with real butter, the pastured variety from Organic Valley – it was sooo good.

  7. Viki December 18, 2010 at 8:34 pm #

    not much on bed time snacks now. Try not to eat so near bed time. I like that you are popping your popcorn on the stove! So much better for you than microwaved in a bag.

    Wondering about GM popcorn. Hadn't thought about it before. Guess we don't eat too much popcorn now that the kids are older. Has the big M company gotten hold of that corn too?

  8. Tracey's Life December 18, 2010 at 9:58 pm #

    My kids love Popcorn for dessert too, but with braces now it is such a no-no unfortunately.

  9. Camille December 18, 2010 at 10:38 pm #

    I try not to eat anything before bed, except water. If I have sugar after 9pm, I'm usually up all night. If I do crave something, I try to make it string cheese, or some type of veggie.

  10. Mrs. S December 18, 2010 at 10:42 pm #

    I like to have popcorn before bed too. Or I will have an apple and some peanut butter. That snack is sweet but healthy.

    I just stumbled upon your blog two days ago and I was shocked to see the little cardboard boxes that my students had to eat from the last two school years. They ate the stale pretzels that who knows how long they laid around in the kitchen. I have several kids that just would not eat lunch because of how often it was burnt or frozen. This year we have a catering company that does our lunches and the food is much better quality, but the kids get less quantity. Thank you for everything you have done to bring an awareness to school lunches!

  11. Cucipata December 19, 2010 at 12:29 am #

    Never one to like bedtime snacks, I sleep better on an empty stomach…

  12. Cucipata December 19, 2010 at 12:31 am #

    I just had the honor of becoming your 5000 follower, that is amazing…

  13. April December 19, 2010 at 2:43 am #

    I enjoy a bowl of rice chex with soy milk each night. I am just hungry at about 8:00 since we eat around 5:00 and need a treat. I can't eat gluten or dairy well so rice chex and soy milk (I prefer Silk vanilla).
    I used to eat popcorn all the time, but at the same time I realized that I couldn't eat gluten, I found that popcorn was making my very fatigued. Oh, but I really miss the tastiness of popcorn at night!

    Anyway, well done on your challenge, you did a great job!

  14. Eclair December 19, 2010 at 7:13 am #

    I seldom have any snacks before bedtime. Probably two glasses of water would do for me. However, if I am feeling hungrier than usual, I go for a packet of crackers. :3

  15. JaniceNJ December 19, 2010 at 1:01 pm #

    Ever since I was a kid my favorite bedtime snack has been a bowl of cereal with milk, although I admit that my taste buds no longer appreciate Apple Jacks or Alphabits. I'm happier now with plain Cheerios or granola. We eat our dinner around 5:30, so I'm always starving by 9 pm.

  16. Tina December 19, 2010 at 1:07 pm #

    I have started doing backed apples if I want something a little sweet in the evenings. Just slice it up in thin little slices, toss with a little cinnamon and sugar, let it rest for about 5 minutes to get the apple juices flowing, and then toss on a cookie sheet and bake for about 10-15 min at 375. They get nice and gooey and soft and warm. I'm sure they would be great over stuff like icecream or pancakes, but I personally just toss the slices in a bowl and munch with a fork (or fingers!) and a cup of tea. Nom!

  17. Ms.T December 19, 2010 at 2:31 pm #

    Eating before bed is not healthy so I don't do it. My daughter, however, likes to have carrots. At least those are fairly good for you.

  18. Anonymous December 19, 2010 at 4:20 pm #

    There is nothing unhealthy about eating before bed; that's a myth. Your body is perfectly capable of digesting food while it sleeps (and doesn't do anything different with the calories than if you were awake).

    Sure, some people sleep better on an empty stomach – but others sleep better with a little something in there. That's just personal preference.

  19. Riv December 19, 2010 at 5:08 pm #

    I have a younger sister who is 9 and she hardly ever wants a bedtime snack. She usually has her dinner pretty close to bedtime and my parents don't give her dessert, but she can have "supper" which is maybe a muffin if she's still hungry before bed. She eats well though so most of the time she turns down supper and is happy with just her dinner. I like fruit before bed or maybe a cup of herbal or decaf black tea.

  20. Mama December 19, 2010 at 5:59 pm #

    We eat early dinner here, so a bedtime snack is part of the routine. The boys (ages 19 mos and 3) have toast or applesauce mixed with baby oatmeal. Hubby and I usually have dessert or a peanutbutter sandwich after bedtime duty is done. Congratulations on surviving all those lunches!

  21. Anonymous December 19, 2010 at 8:36 pm #

    Popcorn is, indeed, an amazing snack. I make it on the stovetop, too (actually, I gave up my microwave two years ago and have never eaten healthier. It's amazing how hard it is to eat poorly when you have to prepare everything stovetop. Great tip for everyone out there).

    Mrs Q, try this popcorn:
    Instead of butter, top it with a drizzle of olive oil, salt, pepper, and finely minced rosemary. Never will you have popcorn more delicious.

    I also like it topped with parmasean cheese, but lately I've been finding the rosemary popcorn much more delicious.

    A great nighttime combination is popcorn with a glass of milk (or lactose free milk in many of our cases). There's just something about that combination that tastes SOOOO GOOD. I once read that Native Americans used to eat popcorn and milk like cereal. I tried it once and it didn't work out so well for me (the popcorn kind of… melted?), but with milk on the side? Delicious.

  22. Anonymous December 19, 2010 at 10:12 pm #

    There was a study done that going to bed with an empty stomach actually makes your body burn less calories because it works harder to hold onto them.

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  24. Becca December 20, 2010 at 4:10 am #

    My 21 month old has recently started saying she is hungry at night before bed. At first I didn't know how true it was, or if she had just discovered she could stay up later by saying it, so I made it a rule- if she is hungry, she gets toast or bread (her choice), butter, and water. That way, if she really is hungry, the bread keeps her full for a while (we only eat 100% whole wheat bread here). If she isn't hungry, she isn't tempted by the idea of something special, and she can't stall longer by saying no to every single thing in the fridge or cabinet. She doesn't eat a snack every night. I think it depends on how much she is growing. But she does have one maybe once or twice a week.

  25. Mrs. Q December 20, 2010 at 5:13 am #

    Thanks everyone! You guys are such great parents!

  26. Chelle December 20, 2010 at 5:35 am #

    I get up later than most people, and stay up later than most, so end up getting really hungry before I go to bed. I can't sleep on an empty stomach, I'll wake up starving. Rather than have junk before bed, I have made it a rule, that if I'm hungry before bed, I have a packet of oatmeal. I love oatmeal, but it's not sweet and sugary like junk food is. Plus, oatmeal is filling and will keep me satisfied all night while sleeping. I think I actually sleep better the nights I have it before bed!

  27. Anonymous December 20, 2010 at 12:57 pm #

    Here's mine – a warm mug of unsweetened chocolate almond milk with a teaspoon of unsweetened cocoa stirred in. Lots of protein and so comforting!

  28. Kristi December 20, 2010 at 2:34 pm #

    My almost-6-year-old son is going through a growth spurt and it seems he just can't eat enough at dinner to last him until bedtime. So we've gotten into a routine of having fruit (that used to be part of dinner) during stories right before bed. His favorites are grapes or apples or clementines.

  29. Nicole December 20, 2010 at 4:01 pm #

    My daughter heads to bed within three hours of having dinner, so a bedtime snack isn't necessary. I do leave water by her bedside. But if she gets up in the middle of the night and asks for food (rare), she gets whole grain crackers or a rice cake. I'm not opposed to an after-dinner snack if she's truly hungry, but I don't relish getting a pre-schooler to brush her teeth twice in one night.

  30. Jen December 20, 2010 at 5:43 pm #

    Popcorn and milk reminds me of Little House on the Prairie, which in itself, is just really comforting. =)

    I'm going to have to agree with whoever suggested parmesan cheese on top of freshly popped corn. It's delicious and one of my favorite snacks.

  31. Amy in StL December 20, 2010 at 7:32 pm #

    The dental fanatic in me is worried that parents are letting their kids eat before bed and not brush their teeth afterwards. I always had an evening snack with my mom or dad, but I also had to brush my teeth after the snack. If anyone is letting their kids eat or drink anything other than water before bed please – I implore you – make sure they brush their teeth. I have a family member who has a lot of gumline cavities from this problem!

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