Healthy Habits Start with the Power of Choice


At the Food Bank, we believe you’re never too young to start building good eating habits, and those habits come from a strong knowledge base and a sense of empowerment.

Vivian Noriega, our newest bilingual nutritionist, shares her first Food Bank teaching experience working with a group of third and fourth graders at Berkeley United Methodist Church in our most popular CHOICES kid’s class, the Power of Choice.

This four-week series provides children of all ages the knowledge to make the best choices for their own health. Students learn about the different food groups, MyPlate guidelines for well-balanced meals, benefits of certain foods, the importance of reading food labels and physical activity.

Vivian joined the Food Bank in August 2013, and Berkeley was the very first class she taught with us. She admits she was nervous at first, but the kids quickly showed her she had no reason to be.

“I had butterflies in my stomach for my first class,” Vivian says. “But as soon as I introduced myself, the kids were warm and welcoming, and all my nervous energy went away.”

Vivian says her students were friendly and cheerful, returning each week eager to learn something new.

“We try to make these classes entertaining, interactive and fun so that the kids leave with a good impression of what healthy food is,” she says.

Each class also features a nutritious, easy-to-prepare snack recipe that the kids get to make themselves. The banana in a blanket is a perfect example because it includes fruit, protein and whole grains; it’s easy and safe for kids to make themselves; and it has a touch of sweetness without a lot of added calories.

Thank you to the kids and volunteers from Berkeley United Methodist Church for welcoming this new member of our family with open arms.


CHOICES is a nutrition education program that helps individuals and families make smart choices at mealtime. These free classes are taught by the Food Bank’s nutrition experts and cover a variety of topics, including basic nutrition, cooking, food safety and thrifty shopping. For more information or to schedule a class, contact Bilingual Nutritionist Vivian Noriega at 512-684-2538 or email

Banana in a Blanket

Prep Time 5 minutes



  • 1 whole wheat tortilla

  • 2 Tbs smooth peanut butter*

  • 1 medium size banana

  • 2 tsp maple syrup or honey

  • 2 Tbs crunchy granola cereal





  1. Lay tortilla on a plate, and spread peanut butter evenly on the tortilla.

  2. Sprinkle cereal over the peanut butter.

  3. Peel and place banana on the tortilla, and roll the tortilla.

  4. Drizzle maple syrup or honey on top. Optional: garnish with more cereal on top.

  5. Slice the banana in a blanket in half.


Nutrition Information

Serving Size 1/2 blanket

Servings 2

Calories 230

Total Fat 10 g

Carbohydrates 32 g

Protein 7 g

Fiber 4 g

Sodium 220 mg

Cholesterol 0 mg