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Homemade Crackers: Alternative to Goldfish Crackers!

My 3 year old used to love Goldfish crackers.  Every time she asked for a snack, she would ask for Goldfish.  Personally I don't really care for them, and have often wondered why toddlers love them so much.  And I finally realized why.  It is because we have encouraged our children to love them by having them available in every situation of their little lives!  At home, on the road, at church, at friend's houses, at preschool....and on and on.  For some reason it is the go-to snack cracker for little kids.  They are packed full of preservatives and they really aren't even good!


These homemade healthy snack crackers may replace our old friend Goldy....... These are packed with nutrients and are delicious! (for toddlers and adults alike)  The great thing about homemade crackers is that you can change up the recipe and make them different every time.  Here are a couple of ideas to try:

  • Try adding different cheeses to change the flavor
  • Garnish with different types of nuts or seeds (sesame seeds, poppy seeds, crushed almonds, etc)
  • Try different herbs - fresh or dried - or don't use herbs at all!
This is the recipe I used on this batch:

In a food processor or blender add the first 5 ingredients:

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup oatmeal, blended until fine in a blender or food processor
  • 3 tablespoons wheat germ
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tablespoons finely chopped fresh herbs- OPTIONAL (I used dried basil and they were delish)
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/4 cup olive or other oil
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese


Then add the water, olive oil and cheese.  Blend - the dough should come together into a ball. You can add more water or oil if the dough seems to dry.


Roll the dough out as thin as possible on a floured surface.  Cut out shapes using a knife or cookie cutter.  Place on an ungreased cookie sheet (or silpat or parchment paper)  Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes - until they start to turn golden.


Serve to your snacky little toddler.


Devour and feel happy about knowing exactly what they are eating!


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02/24/2012 8:27am
These sound great, and similar to another homemade cracker I've tried. My daughter loves them and I bet she'll love these too. The problem - they go soft/ soggy when stored in a Ziploc storage bag. Any solutions for that problem?
06/05/2013 9:32pm
Try storing in a cookie tin.
02/24/2012 9:56am
The crackers that I made 4 days ago are still crunchy! I stored them in a ziploc. I'm not sure if it is the wheat germ in these crackers or the fact that I rolled my dough out super thin, but they really are still crunchy. If yours do go soft, you can pop them in your oven at 325 for a few minutes and it should crisp them right up. Good luck!
02/24/2012 10:49am
Thank you for posting this!! My daughter will soon be eating solids and I was wondering what I would do instead of goldfish!
02/24/2012 12:28pm
Thanks for this. My daughter is always asking for crackers, but I find it almost impossible to find whole wheat crackers (ww is the 1st ingredient listed) in the store. Will have to try this.
02/24/2012 12:30pm
Thank you for posting. My son loves crackers, he will choose them over anything else, even cookies. I usually by organic 100% whole wheat just so he is getting a better alternative to the goldfish one, but this is even better, because I know exactly what he is eating.
02/24/2012 1:08pm
[...] Snack Crackers for Toddlers Homemade Alternative to Goldfish Crackers [...]
02/24/2012 1:22pm
awesome! can't wait to try these!!
02/24/2012 2:30pm
These are so adorable. Mother of 4 and preschool teacher I am remembering these! Found a great cookbook. Thought I would share
02/25/2012 11:45am
I can't wait to try these with my toddler (and her super picky Daddy!)
02/27/2012 2:38pm
brilliant thank you! i love your blog and all your food ideas for kids. Becca
02/28/2012 7:29pm
We need a Pinterest share button!
02/28/2012 10:08pm
Wow this is really an awesome idea for children. Homemade healthy snack crackers is really good for kids because it attracts them and it also nutritious, right?You made a great job Natalie! I will also try this one.
02/28/2012 11:01pm
[...] Homemade Crackers [...]
02/29/2012 8:55am
My daughter and I had so much fun making these. Thank you so much for sharing this! I am excited to try some of your other great recipes. Most of my children have grown and gone but I believe in healthy eating and will use your wonderful ideas. Thank you for them!
02/29/2012 11:49pm
Thanks, Natalie! I can't wait to try these. My girls would love picking their own shapes.
03/12/2012 6:34pm
[...] also been bookmarking a number of homemade cheese cracker recipes, and then a friend sent me another link this week that I decided to try.  I used half whole wheat, half rice flours, and needed a little [...]
03/19/2012 12:19pm
Love them!!! I didn't have cheddar cheese (I use Swiss) but they were delicious! It take some time for older kids to get used to the taste after those store bought loaded with salt. Will make them again soon :)
03/19/2012 12:47pm
Tina - So glad you liked them! My sister made them with Swiss and said they tasted just like Cheez-it crackers. I will have to try that!
03/28/2012 10:07am
Thanks for the recipe! My kids had fun helping me make them. My 4 year old thinks they are sooo good.. My almost 2 year old gives them to the dog. lol. I used medium cheddar and I think next time I will use sharp so there is more flavor.
03/28/2012 11:12am
Heather - glad your kids like them. They are also really good with Parmesan or Swiss cheese.
04/16/2012 7:28am
i like this because i good
04/27/2012 3:34pm
These look great and I will definitely try them for my bunny cracker (Annie's brand) obsessed two year old. However, I must note that your photo has large carrot and celery sticks. They make the photo pop, but are a choking hazard for toddlers. Perhaps diced fruit or applesauce would be a better serving suggestion. Some people are clueless and might feed their toddler the sticks unknowingly.
08/07/2013 6:48pm
While they can be a choking hazard tehy can also be a great sourse of nutrition and raw veggies shouldn't be removed from a child's diet jusst because of this factor. As as long as a child is supervised and sitting while eating most toddlers should be fine with some raw veggies. My son was eating raw carrots before he was 2 and celery around 2 1/2. He is 4 and asks for 'veggies' prettymuch every day with his lunch.
05/09/2012 4:40pm
I would definitely store these in a tin, not plastic. They would stay crunchy... but I don't think they'll be lasting very long, so I won't worry too much! :D
06/06/2012 7:01am
[...] Cheese Crackers [...]
11/01/2012 6:53am
Can these be made without cheese and would that change the recipe in any way?
11/03/2012 1:56pm
I am sure it would change the flavor, and possibly the texture. I have never tried it, but would love to know how it turns out!
11/17/2012 1:49pm
Can I substitute coconut flour?
11/17/2012 3:27pm
I have never tried it, but would love to find out. If you try it let me know how it turns out!
12/22/2012 8:33pm
I love them! My 3-year-old daughter and I made them and we give 4 thumbs up. :) I featured the recipe on my blog, too. Thanks for another great recipe!
01/08/2013 12:29pm
Awesome - so glad you liked them!!
01/07/2013 9:08pm
Has anyone made a similar cracker with peanut butter? My husband is lactose intolerant but looking for a healthy homemade cracker with protein. We like this recipe a lot and wonder how we can modify with peanut butter. Would love some suggestions! We aren't very savvy in the kitchen....!
01/08/2013 12:29pm
I'm going to try it this week and will let you know!
01/10/2013 9:25am
These look yummy! Would it mess up the recipe if I left the wheat germ?
01/10/2013 1:57pm
I don't think it would mess it up - just give it a little bit different texture. The wheat germ gives it a bit more of a crunch and extra nutrients. I have seen a lot of cracker recipes without wheat germ though. Good luck!
02/26/2013 2:42pm
Hi! Thanks for sharing this recipe. My one year loves these crackers! Have you tried to make a sweet varient? Would love to hear of any modifications you have made to this recipe. Thanks again! :)
02/26/2013 4:27pm
So glad you liked it! I made a peanut butter cracker that is slightly sweet. This is the recipe:
05/19/2013 7:20am
is there anything I can substitute the cheese with? My youngest has a dairy allergy.
05/20/2013 11:15am
I'm not sure there is a great substitute for the cheese since it is kind of a cheese cracker - you could try leaving it out and see what happens!
12/25/2013 11:17am
I don't have wheat germ. Can I use flax seed meal? Same amount you think?
12/26/2013 1:06pm
I'm sure that would work. It may change the flavor just a bit, but I don't think it would be noticeable enough to not try!
02/22/2014 8:47am
Great idea! I have always wanted a healthy substitute for those goldfish crackers! I tried to pin in to pinterest, but the picture wasn't coming up and when I tried to post it said "invalid image."
02/25/2014 6:34am
Karlie- Not sure why that's not pinning for you! I just pinned it (didn't know where we put the original pin , so did it again). Anyway- you can REPIN it from here:

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