Feeding yourself well when you’re taking care of a baby—whether you’re breastfeeding or formula feeding—can be seriously difficult. We only have so many hands! These snacks for breastfeeding moms and all new moms are easy to eat with one hand, are nutritious, and will help fuel you even if you aren’t getting much sleep.
Being able to fuel yourself quickly and efficiently when you’re feeding a baby (and changing diapers and getting the baby to nap!) can be a challenge, so these snacks are all easy to eat and nutritious. They are great ones to keep on hand and in mind during the first months of taking care of a new baby.
This is especially true if you have a baby and a toddler in the house—then you’ll definitely need good snacks to feed yourself!
Healthy Snacks for Moms
Convenience can tag team with healthy fuel if you stock your pantry and fridge with healthy snacks for yourself. I love to keep a mix of shelf stable store-bought snacks and homemade snacks on hand so I have options throughout the week.
I recommend keeping at least one snack in your diaper bag for yourself at all times—a snack bar or nuts is a great option—and a few things in the fridge.
You may not always be able to cook yourself a meal during the day, but you can grab a healthy snack to eat with one hand!
Nutrients New Moms Need
New moms need fat, protein, complex carbohydrates, produce, and fiber—all of the same nutrients we need otherwise, but you may find that you feel better if you’re eating more protein and fat than usual.
Conventional wisdom says to eat about 400 extra calories but that can be such a moving target that I would highly recommend ignoring that and eating enough for your own body.
So eat when you are hungry, which may look like shifting how you eat to 4-5 mini meals rather than 3. And know that this may change and fluctuate as baby grows and has growth spurts.
It’s a little unpredictable, which is why listening to your own body rather than aiming for an arbitrary amount of calories, can be a great outlook.
TIP: The delicious Lactation Bites from Majka are an easy way to fuel yourself with a nutrient-dense, SO good snack you can eat with one hand (which is key for life with a baby!). Take 10% off your order with the code YUMMY. (sponsored link)
Tips for Managing Hunger
It can be really hard to stay on top of your own hunger when your tiny person has such pressing needs. And your blood sugar may be wonky due to less than ideal sleep, hormones, and hunger. So the best advice is to eat small meals frequently that include a mix of protein, carbs, and fat.
This can be hard to do, but it will help you feel your best.
I had a harder time with this with my third child (and still am experiencing this!) and so I pretty much just made myself eat every 3 hours regardless of whether or not I was hungry to make sure I didn’t have a blood sugar crash.
It sounds odd to eat by the clock, rather than my hunger, but that’s what I needed to do in order to feel okay most days.
Hydration When Breastfeeding
If you’re breastfeeding, you’ll need to drink a lot more than you might realize to replace the liquid that the baby is getting. There’s no one size fits all amount for everyone to drink, but keep a bottle of water nearby at all time to help you be able to easily drink anytime you feel thirsty.
And if you find yourself getting chronic headaches, drink a lot more! (And also stretch out your neck and upper back!)
Best Lactation Cookies Recipes
Lactation Cookies, which usually include a mix of oats, fat, fiber, and protein, are a great one handed snack to keep on hand. I love my Lactation Cookie recipe since they are a great way to use up over ripe bananas and they are easy to vary—with chocolate chips or dried fruit depending on what I have on hand.
They also freeze well, so these are a great snack to make before the baby comes when you’re trying to prep!
You can also buy them of course.
Best Store-Bought Snacks for Moms
These are my favorite snacks to buy or order to keep on hand to nourish myself between meals. They’re all great sources of quick energy for moms.
Best Homemade Snacks for Breastfeeding Moms and Bottle Feeding Moms
These easy recipes are great ones to make for breastfeeding moms as they contain a balanced mix of carbs, fat, protein, and fiber.
I like to use canned full-fat coconut milk for the best flavor and creamy texture, though you can use “light” coconut milk if that’s what you can find at your store.
Blend up a nutritious and satisfying Lactation Smoothie and customize it with add-ins and flavors you prefer. This is an easy meal for any tired mama!
These egg, dairy, and gluten-free cookies are perfect for breakfast, treats, or afternoon snacks for any mama. (And they are great to share with the kids too!)
Use Sunbutter to make these nut-free. You can cut these into smaller bars if desired. If you want them a little softer, serve them at room temperature rather than chilled.
For the best flavor and sweeteness, use bananas with a lot of brown spots.
This overnight oats recipe makes two toddler-size breakfast portions (or 1 mama-size serving). Double it to make additional servings.
Egg muffins will stick to a muffin tin unless you grease it well with nonstick spray. So try not to skimp on that step!
These no-bake bites taste like a cross between oatmeal raisin and peanut butter cookie dough. I use natural creamy peanut butter (like the kind from Smuckers) and it works really well. (Recipe updated slightly in June 2021 to ensure the best texture.)
These store well, so you can make them ahead of time and pull them out of the fridge to serve. (Post updated October 2019)
Be sure to blend this super smooth for the best texture. Use any or none of the optional ingredients. See the Notes for how to make this with regular milk.
TIP: Hard-cooked eggs and avocado toast are great options too.
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I’d love to hear your favorite snack ideas, so please comment below to share.
This post was first published May 2019.