I grew up in a dairy loving family. Paranthas were slathered in butter, saag was served with a healthy dose of makhan, and no meal was complete without the accompaniment of dahi (Indian style yogurt). We love our dairy and there was no hiding that. I’ve adopted the same approach in my kitchen and use high-quality dairy products when cooking for my family. When we eat paranthas they are cooked with pure ghee and served with a side of dahi, and when someone gets hurt, they are drinking a glass of haldi dhood, no questions asked.
Thankfully, my kids are also dairy lovers, and one thing you will always find in our fridge is dahi. My kids put that stuff on everything. When life was a bit less hectic I used to make dahi two times a week, but these days, we’ve taken to buying it pre-made. When I’m buying dahi I look for a full fat version (because it tastes closest to home made), that is free from sugar and preservatives. In case you are wondering, yes, some market brands add sugar to plain yogurt too. It’s a weird world we live in friends.
Since dahi is such a staple in our home, I was super excited to collaborate with Hans Dairy on this post. They are a family owned business out of Ontario that specializes in creating South Asian dairy products, and the day to day operations were recently taken over by two sisters (daughter of the founders). Way to tug at my heart strings with and immigrant success story, that turns into a total #girlboss moment, and is topped off with 100% natural homestyle dahi. Could I love all these things any more?
Beyond the fact that we love the taste of dahi, I’m also pretty sold on the health benefits of yogurt in general. In my recent adventures into the world of Ayurveda I’ve learned about the probiotic gut cleansing benefits, the cooling properties, and dosha healing qualities of yogurt. Ancient Veds even suggest that dahi should be made and consumed daily – that is a prescription we can get behind!
When I started making a conscious move towards feeding my kids dahi everyday, I had to find ways to include it in their after-school snacks, and in their lunchboxes. I’ve got 3 never fail yogurt based lunch-box additions to share with you today, but before we dig into that, a quick reminder on food safety. If you are sending dahi/yogurt in the lunchbox, make sure you are packing it with a cold gel ice pack, or a frozen water bottle. Safety first peeps.
3 EASY LUNCH-BOX SNACKS FOR DAHI LOVING KIDS:
MINI PARANTHA ROLLS WITH DAHI DIP
This hack is all about semantics mamas. It’s basically a parantha with dahi, but packaged up in a fun way. Let’s face it, all kids love ‘mini’ or finger foods, and dahi dip just sounds cooler than Indian yogurt when telling your friends what you got for lunch. This is a snack I also pack when we are going on road trips.
DAHI SMOOTHIE WITH NUTS (OR DRIED FRUIT)
A regular afternoon snack at our place is a dahi based smoothie made with fresh mango or strawberries, served with a hand-full of nuts. Of course, you can’t send nuts to most schools but you can pack the kids craisins, raisins, or a few pieces of dried peaches.
If you are in a rush in the morning and don’t have time to make smoothies, my kids loved the smoothies from Hans Dairy. Armaan is a hardcore mango snob and rarely likes mango anything that is store bought, but he gulped the mango smoothie down.
So dahi chawal has been a staple in our house for years, but I only started sending it to school this year. I realized one day that my kids who usually don’t like cold lunches actually enjoy cold dahi chawal. There’s no rocket science here, just pre-cooked rice, dahi, a bit of salt and garam masala if your kids like it, that’s it.
If you aren’t already using dahi/Indian style yogurt in your kitchen, I highly recommend giving it a try. We loved the one from Hans Dairy because it wasn’t too sweet, or too sour, and it was the perfect thickness.
Do you have a favourite kid-friendly snack with dahi? I’d love for you to share in the comments!
This post has been sponsored by Hans Dairy via Ehm & Co, however, all opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Pink Chai.