by Anne Finch, Accredited Practising Dietitian for LiveLighter

Healthy Party Ideas

We all want children’s birthday parties to be fun and memorable. Here's some tips on how to include some nutritious foods and active party games that'll be fun for the whole family! 

Party tips

  • Choosing a theme can give inspiration for food, decorations and activities
  • Get the kids involved in the party planning and preparations
  • Borrow and upcycle things you already have and limit single-use items
  • Remind families to bring hats and sunscreen or rain jackets as required 
  • Individual 'party snack packs', foods on sticks and having plenty of serving spoons can limit sticky fingers on shared foods

Fun foods

cookie cutter food kid holding kiwi slices rocket sandwich

Loot bag ideas

animal loot bags

Get creative with the contents. Include a few sweets if you like, but you can also include some healthier and non-food items
  • Dried fruit and nuts
  • Homemade biscuits and popcorn
  • Seed sticks or seedlings
  • Chalk, stickers, stamps or other stationery items
  • Hair clips, bouncy balls or other small toys

Active party games

  • Bobbing for apples
  • Musical chairs
  • Limbo
  • Duck duck goose
  • Tug-of-war
  • Balloon/sack races

Plan your party outdoors
At the park or playground, use the equipment, or encourage guests to bring their scooters or bikes. Play a game like cricket or grip ball. Plan a beach or pool party. Get the kids (or their friends) together and decorate the backyard

musical chairs

If your party is outside, remember to be sun smart! Remind people to bring a broad brimmed or bucket hat on the invitation, look for a shady spot and provide sunscreen.

Delightful drinks 

Tap water is best and cheapest! Mix it up and add some fun with the following ideas:

  • Little people need little cups
  • Add some frozen berries or sliced fruit into water to add colour to tap or sparkling water
  • Freeze water with fruit or mint leaves in ice cubes trays for colourful and pretty ice cubes
  • Provide straws with fun shapes or colours.

  • If you’re providing juice, choose 100% fruit juice and water it down with tap water or sparkling water for a special ‘Jungle Juice’.

water with colourful fruit

Money saving tips

  • Choose fruit that's in season - that's when it's best and cheapest! 
  • Buy foods like raisin bread/ pikelets when they are on special and freeze until needed
  • Borrow cookie cutters from friends, family or community groups
  • Buy cheaper popcorn kernels for the stove instead of microwave popcorn packets

Party themes ideas

Wild Wild West

  • “Sheriff badges” star shaped sandwiches
  • Vegetable teepees – create teepee with celery or carrot sticks, join with dip.
  • Loot bags with toy water pistol, Western colouring-in, skipping rope (lasso)
  • Bobbing for apples party game

Garden Goodness

  • Vegie gardens - vegie sticks and hummus in paper cups
  • Crunchy critters and lovely ladybirds
  • Loot bags with flower stickers and seed sticks
  • Lawn games like croquet and Finska 



  • Check out our Halloween post for loads of ideas
  • Monster burgers
  • Loot bags with a magic wand, vampire teeth or bone-shaped pen
  • Creepy scavenger hunt and monster mash on the dance floor 

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