5 Creative Poolside Snacks

A little fun-in-the-sun is exactly what kids and parents need when the temperature starts to climb above 90. Whether your pool party prefers perfecting their cannon balls or just relaxing in the shallow end, having a few creative snacks on hand can keep the fun going all day long.

Use these five creative poolside snack ideas for your next backyard bash or lazy day under the umbrella.

1. Peanut Butter and Banana Graham Cracker Sandwiches

Almost every kid loves peanut butter and bananas are a surefire hit for most, too. Put them together with graham crackers and you've got a real crowd-pleaser on your hands that's easy to eat by the pool.

To make these, break your graham crackers in half so you have two even sides. Spread peanut butter on both, then place a layer of sliced bananas on one side. Put the graham crackers together, giving them a gentle press with your fingers so the two sides stick together and you're all done.

The great thing about these is that kids love them and once you get the hang of it, you can make about a dozen in under two minutes flat.

2. Homemade Seasoned Popcorn

Popcorn might be the ultimate movie theater treat, but who says you can't eat it outside? Easy to make and excellent served right off the stove or eaten an hour later, popcorn should be a must-have poolside snack.

Start with quality popcorn you make on the stove in a pot or go for a classic air popper. Once popped, season it with your favorite herbs and spices to craft a special concoction that's all your own. Powdered rosemary, dill, pink salt and dozens of other options can be used, so feel free to experiment and see what the kids like. Just make sure you keep a little for yourself. All of the popcorn will be gone in a hurry if you don't.

3. Miniature Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Full-size grilled cheese sandwiches are a kid-friendly favorite for lunch, but by the pool, they're a little more food than most kids are going to want to sit down and eat. Cue the miniature grilled cheese sandwich!

You make these the same way as regular grilled cheese, something almost every parent already knows how to do. The only difference is that you start with cocktail-sized pieces of bread and cut your pieces of cheese smaller to fit. Shredded cheese can make the process even faster since you won't have to do so much slicing.

Get a flat-top grilled pan out on the stove and you can easily cook up a dozen of these at a time. Serve them with sliced carrots and celery for a healthy touch, or add chopped cherry tomatoes inside the sandwiches before you cook them if you know your pool posse will love the extra flavor.

4. Classic Ice Cream Cones

The ice cream cone is a familiar form that everybody knows. When you eat ice cream at home though, you probably always eat it out of a bowl. The good news is that you can buy your own cones and make special poolside treats that the whole family will enjoy.

Putting ice cream in a cone is easy, so no recipe needed. Just pick your favorite flavor - or two! - and use a scoop to get the ice cream firmly into the cone. Go for mini-cones for a flavorful treat that's still a healthy addition to the other snacks you're serving.

Want to make your cones special? Top each one with a handful of colorful sprinkles or chocolate crumbles right before you pass them out.

5. Pool Party Parfaits

Love the idea of ice cream, but prefer a healthier alternative for you and your family? Pool party parfaits are just the ticket since they use yogurt instead of ice cream and pile on the fruit in favor of sprinkles or a chocolate topping.

You can make yogurt parfaits in a number of vessels, but small coffee cups or even baking ramekins tend to work especially well. Small plastic cups can also work if you're not serving these at a table and don't want to worry about glass.

To make the parfaits, start by putting 1/4-cup to 1/2-cup of yogurt in the bottom of each serving dish. Add a few tablespoons of seasonal fruit like blueberries, strawberries or raspberries, then top with a teaspoon or so of chopped nuts right before serving.

You can even garnish your pool party parfaits with a dollop of whipped cream for an indulgent touch.

Spending time by the pool is a wonderful way to enjoy sunny summer afternoons with your family. When everybody gets hungry, there's no need to come inside with this arsenal of snack-tacular treats up your sleeve.

Pick one, two, or make them all for those long days basking in the sun.

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