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9 Snacks You Could Always Find in Grandma’s Kitchen

From creamy puddings and iced cookies to savory summer sausage, snack time as a kid certainly looked different from today's kale chips and avocado toasts. Let's jump back in time and reminisce over the classic snacks Grandma served!

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Closeup of a snack plate of cheese and crackersMSPhotographic/Shutterstock

Crackers

An American classic, Grandma always had saltines, butter, or oyster crackers at the ready We dare you to not feel nostalgic about a box of Clubs! Just top with peanut butter or cheese slices and your snack is served. Have extra crackers on hand? Use ’em up in one of these tasty recipes.

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Chocolate chip cookies with milk on burlap and rustic wooden tableGoskova Tatiana/Shutterstock

Cookies

Close your eyes and imagine a tall glass of milk and cookies. Grandmas everywhere are remembered for their full cookie jar. If she didn’t love to bake, there’s a good chance your grandma’s cupboard was full of animal crackers, gingersnaps, iced oatmeal cookies or vanilla wafers. Bake up these vintage cookies and remember the good ol’ days.

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Canned peaches in a bowl on wooden tableNitr/Shutterstock

Canned Fruit

Whether your grandma preserved her own fruit or she bought cans from the store, you could always find a stash of pears, peaches or fruit cocktail in her pantry. If you were lucky, she’d use the fruit to make fluffy Ambrosia salad.

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Homemade Vanilla Custard Pudding in a BowlBrent Hofacker/Shutterstock

Pudding

Creamy rice, tapioca or custard puddings were a favorite dessert back in the day. Your grandma may have used a boxed mix or whipped up homemade pudding on the stove. Either way, it was delicious.

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Sliced summer sausage with cheddar cheese and crackers on a holiday tableMSPhotographic/Shutterstock

Summer Sausage

In grandma’s day, pantries across America were filled with beef summer sausage logs. She served the classic slices with cheese and crackers for a hearty snack or a light dinner. Stock up on the classic here.

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Cottage cheeseSea Wave/Shutterstock

Cottage Cheese

Served up sweet or savory, cottage cheese is an old-school favorite! My grandmother always paired yellow peaches with a dollop of creamy cottage cheese and my grandfather preferred his savory with bacon bits and sunflower seeds. Here are 50 more meals to make with cottage cheese.

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Creamy swirls of peanut butter on freshly baked italian bread with knife and crumpled parchment paper over rustic wood cutting board.Marie C Fields/Shutterstock

Toast

No, not the fancy avocado toasts of today. Instead, Grandma would smother sliced bread with whipped butter, homemade jam, creamy peanut butter or for a special treat, cinnamon sugar.

When her homemade stock ran out, Grandma would reach for the best store-bought strawberry jam.

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Homemade Pickled Vegetables in Jars Ready to EatBrent Hofacker/Shutterstock

Pickled Foods

Before refrigeration, pickling was a way of life. Pickled cucumbers, okra and beets were pantry staples. My grandma always put out a tray of pickled veggies before dinner so we had something to snack on.

Learn more about the benefits of fermenting vegetables.

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healthy breakfastOlga Miltsova/Shutterstock

Cereal

Granola, muesli or bran flakes were often offered up as snacks—especially before bed. While you wouldn’t find sugar-coated cereals in grandma’s pantry, honey-infused granola and yogurt were sweet staples.

Bake up a batch of your own granola with these homemade recipes.

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Wendy Jo Peterson, MS, RDN
As a registered dietitian Wendy Jo touches on the science and facts behind food, but as a gardener and world traveler she savors the classical dishes our great-grandmothers once made. When she’s not in her kitchen, you can find her and her family exploring the US in their campervan, Olaf!