Low Carb Cinnamon Pecan Cookies

Low Carb Cinnamon Pecan Cookies

Delicious low carb cinnamon pecan cookies, perfect for a gluten-free, sugar-free, keto tea time snack!

You know that smell. You’re walking around the Renaissance Festival, past the turkey legs, past the corn on a cob, past the blacksmith, and it hits you. That amazing smell of cinnamon, toasted nut goodness. All the better it’s a little cool, or it’s just rained and there’s a woman playing Celtic harp just down the lane. Your nose turns toward the scent, and you walk as though in a trance. Magically, there’s a girl in a fairy costume passing out free samples. Nine times out of ten I get the free sample and then a bag for the road. I want to keep the glorious smell and picture with me as long as I can.

These low carb cinnamon pecan cookies transport me back to that moment in time. The cinnamon nuttiness, the crunch of the nut in the soft cookie, is the perfect fall snack to pair alongside your coffee or tea.

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

Low carb cinnamon pecan cookies make the perfect gluten-free, sugar free, keto snack! #ketosnacks #lowcarbsnacks #lowcarbdesserts #explorermomma

Orange wakes you up, but cinnamon makes you remember.

Judith Fertig

Author, The Cake Therapist

In a hurry?

Scroll down to the bottom for the printable recipe or PIN it here for later!

 

Kitchen items you’ll need:

Delicious low carb cinnamon pecan cookies are the perfect gluten-free snack! #glutenfreecookies #glutenfreerecipes #ketorecipes #lowcarbcookies #explorermomma

Her freckles looked as if someone had blown cinnamon across her nose and high cheekbones.

Jo Ann Brown

Author, An Amish Match

How to make low carb cinnamon pecan cookies

I love these cookies! To begin with, they are so super simple to make. Quick and easy goes a long way in this house and these cookies certainly fit into that category.

First, get out all your ingredients and melt the four tablespoons of butter. Get out a large mixing bowl and place the butter in it. To the butter add all the other ingredients except for the pecans and almond flour. Then, stir in the almond flour until everything’s well-combined. Now, form one tablespoon sized balls out of the dough and place them on a baking pan covered with a silicone baking mat (or ungreased pan).

Next, it’s time for decoration! Flatten the cookies by placing a pecan half on each or kris-crossing with a fork if not using pecans. If the edges crack slightly, you can shape those back into a circle. Last but not least, bake at 275 degrees Fahrenheit for 15-20 minutes or until done.

Snack time low carb cinnamon pecan cookies are the perfect autumn gluten-free treat. #cinnamoncookies #ketorecipes #lowcarbrecipes #pecancookies #explorermomma

The cinnamon stick was light, curled around itself like a brittle roll of papyrus. Not a stick at all, Lillian remembered as she looked closer, but bark, the meeting place between inside and out. It crackled as she broke it, releasing a spiciness, part heat, part sweet, that pricked her eyes and nose, and made her tongue tingle without even tasting it.

Erica Bauermeister

Author, The School of Essential Ingredients

What are your favorite low carb snacks?

I definitely have my go-tos for a quick afternoon keto snack. Do you rely on the same thing most days to stay consistent or do you like to mix things up? I admit, it definitely depends on how much time I have to prepare for the week and what I have on hand. Planning and preparation are key for me in sticking to the keto lifestyle and feeling my best. Truly, I think organization skills go a long way with anything in life, and I’m constantly trying to get better in that area! Also, the seasons help with motivation in my recipe planning, and cinnamon and spice are great comforts to me in fall.

These low carb cinnamon pecan cookies are so quick and easy you could be enjoying one in half an hour. Yum!

Share this recipe!

Tag me in your recipe pics on Instagram @explorermomma and PIN it for later here:

Low carb cinnamon pecan cookies make the perfect gluten-free, sugar free, keto snack! #ketosnacks #lowcarbsnacks #lowcarbdesserts #explorermomma     Quick and easy low carb cinnamon pecan cookies are the perfect keto snack! Grab tea and a gluten-free cookie, yum! #glutenfreecookies #ketosnacks #lowcarbcookies #cinnamonpecan #explorermomma

If you LOVE this recipe please consider giving it a five-star rating in the review area below!

Thanks all!

Craving more fall spice?

Try this amazing keto pumpkin spice breakfast shake!

Keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie, feature

Low Carb Cinnamon Pecan Cookies: Printable Recipe

Low Carb Cinnamon Pecan Cookies
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Total Time
25 mins
 

Delicious gluten-free cinnamon pecan cookies, perfect for a low carb, keto tea!

Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: low carb cookies
Servings: 18
Calories: 83 kcal
Author: Lauren Gonikishvili
Ingredients
  • 4 tbsp butter melted
  • 1/3 cup sweetener Swerve confectioner's or other
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups almond flour finely ground
  • 1/3 cup almond milk unsweetened
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • pecan halves (optional)
Instructions
  1. First, place the melted butter in a large mixing bowl.

  2. Add all the other ingredients except for the pecans, stirring the almond flour in last.

  3. Next, form one tablespoon sized balls out of the dough and place them on a baking pan covered with a baking sheet (or ungreased pan).

  4. Flatten them by placing a pecan half on each or kris-crossing with a fork if not using pecans.

  5. Bake at 275 degrees Fahrenheit for 15-20 minutes or until done.

Recipe Notes

Nutrition Facts:

Nutrition Facts
Servings 18.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 84
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 9 g 13 %
Saturated Fat 2 g 10 %
Monounsaturated Fat 3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 7 mg 2 %
Sodium 37 mg 2 %
Potassium 30 mg 1 %
Total Carbohydrate 2 g 1 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 4 %
Sugars 0 g  
Protein 1 g 3 %
Vitamin A 22 %
Vitamin C 0 %
Calcium 4 %
Iron 2 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

*Nutrition facts calculated by Myfitnesspal.com.

 

Nutrition Disclaimer

Please be aware I am not a medical specialist or nutritional professional. On this blog, I share recipes and what works for me. Please do not take anything on this blog as medical advice and always consult with your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program. I use MyFitnessPal.com to calculate nutrition facts as a courtesy to my readers, and I remove erythritol from the final carb count and net carb count because does not affect my own blood glucose levels. This is as accurate as possible, but it’s best to independently calculate nutritional information on your own with the specific ingredients you use. I expressly disclaim any and all liability of any kind with respect to any act or omission wholly or in part in reliance on anything contained in this website.

Epic Things to do at Niagara Falls with Kids

Epic Things to do at Niagara Falls with Kids

Did you know if you go to Niagara Falls with kids you’ll experience 3,160 tons of water flowing over Niagara Falls every second? Amazingly enough, the power of Niagara Falls is capable of producing over 4 million kilowatts of electricity. Situated between the two countries, that electricity is shared by both the United States and Canada.

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

What do I love about these natural giants of power? Absolutely everything! Niagara Falls is one of those super epic impressive sites that if it isn’t on your bucket list, then WHY NOT?? To a child, the immensity of the falls is huge and one of those experiences that will stay with them forever. These are the moments I love to capture with my kiddos. As we begin this year of Operation National Parks, let’s start off with one mouth-dropping state park. This is why we travel to national parks, state parks, and the world!

The perfect family vacation is Niagara Falls with kids. State Parks and family travel are the best! #operationusparks #everykidinapark #familytravel #iloveny #explorermomma

Just the basics

Niagara Falls State Park is located on the border between the United States and Canada. It’s easy to get to from Buffalo, New York or Toronto, Ontario from the Canadian side. Because it is a U.S. State Park, it is located on the U.S. side, but you can get amazing views by crossing over into Canada as well.

TIP: I had no trouble parking and was there mid-September on a weekday. However, I was told the lots fill up quickly in summer, especially on weekends, so if you’re traveling with kids or a large group I would do my best to come on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday to avoid lines and crowds.

TIP 2: If you plan to see all the attractions, save some money and purchase a Discovery Pass before you go. It gets you access to Maid of the Mists, Cave of the Winds, and pretty much everything, with about a 35% discount. Check out the Niagara Falls State Park website for the most up to date prices here.

Rainbow over the crash of the falls. Niagara Falls with kids is the perfect family vacation. #operationusparks #explorermomma

Top 10 things to do at Niagara Falls with kids

1. Cave of the Winds

From the parking lot, I meandered over to the Cave of the Winds ticket booth and building. I walked under a grand archway and enjoyed the plants and flowers smartly planned throughout. There was no line, and the friendly woman working the booth gave me a flier of attractions and suggested some options.

TIP: Conveniently, there are also restrooms right next door to the Cave of the Winds ticket area for that 5-year-old’s emergency!

The actual tour is awesome. I’m an admitted history nut and love to spend hours soaking up little bits of random facts and staring at black and white photographs. The beginning of the Cave of the Winds tour is for the general public, and presents a visual experience through displays and then a short film. It is very well done and designed to make the history of the falls come alive to not just the interested history buff, but for the energetic 12-year-old boy, or anyone.

Hurricane Deck at the falls. Cave of the Wind is a must-see experience with kids. #operationusparks #explorermomma

From there you walk over to get on the elevator to take you down to the walkway at the bottom of the falls. You’re given souvenir sandals to wear and keep (the 12-year-old boy I mentioned was super-excited about this), a bag to protect your own shoes, and a yellow poncho to protect you from the water spray. Wander around. I highly recommend it. It’s amazing!

2. Trolley

Take the Niagara Falls trolley with the family. #operationusparks #explorermomma

The trolley is a fabulous option for families to take to the major attractions and sites all over the park. You can leave your car, save your feet, and the kids love the novelty of taking the trolley to each place. All aboard!

3. Maid of the Mist

Niagara Falls Maid of the Mist boat tour. #operationusparks #explorermomma

Maid of the Mist is another must-do at Niagara Falls with kids. This time you get a blue poncho and a tourist-filled boat takes you lazily down the river past flora and fauna past Bridal Falls, Cave of the Winds, and then into the spray of the mighty Horseshoe Falls. From the bank, it looks as if the boat’s enveloped by the water at the bottom of the falls. It’s an amazing experience for sure and a great memory for kids.

4. Niagara Fall Observation Tower

While you’re at the Maid of the Mists, be sure to ride the elevator up to the Niagara Falls Observation Tower. There are some stairs to the top, but you’re rewarded with fabulous views. In addition, should you have a young up and coming bird watcher with you, this is the perfect location to see some of the local peregrine falcons, bald eagles, and other birds. We search for these birds everywhere we go thanks to our friends the Wild Kratts so this is a huge hit with our family.

The Niagara Gorge has officially been designated an Audubon Important Bird Area (IBA).

Niagara Falls with the Maid of Mist boat below. #operationuspark #explorermomma

5. Aquarium of Niagara

The Aquarium of Niagara is always a hit with kids who love marine animals. Check out the Penguin Coast exhibit and see some sharks! With over 40 exhibits you’re sure to find the California sea lion or seahorse.

6. Hiking Trails and the Discovery Center

Does your family love to hike? Briefly check out the Discovery Center then pick one of the many hikes to explore. There are convenient signs posted around with the distance of each hike, difficulty, and age appropriateness. It’s super-easy to find the best one for you as an individual or a group with different levels.

7. Walking Tour App

Do you have a teenager attached to their phone with you? Did you know the Niagara Fall State Park has its own Walking Tour app? It’s a great thing to put that pre-teen or teen in charge of downloading the app and giving the family the information it sends to you as you complete the walking tour. Just search for Official Niagara Falls Tour in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. There’s information on 17 sites as you make your way around the park and an interactive map. Depending on where you go it can even send coupons for discounts on ice cream, souvenirs, and more. Click here to learn more about the app.

Flowers with Niagara Falls mist in the background. #operationusparks #explorermomma

8. Niagara Adventure Theater

Okay, you’ve walked, hiked, and are planning to bike. Do you need a rest? The Niagara Adventure Theater provides a little break in your active schedule. When it’s time for a rest, stop at the Niagara Falls State Park Visitor Center. There you can view the half-hour presentation of “Niagara: Legends of Adventure” full of daredevils, stories, and history. It’s air-conditioned and a good place to relax for a while.

9. Biking the State Park

While I did not bike, a family with older kids can have a wonderful time biking around the state park. As you finish with the Adventure Theater look for the rentals tents just outside the Visitor Center. There are different kinds of bikes on offer, even kids bikes for ages 7-13. Ask about the best bike routes or explore on your own.

Here you can also rent wheelchairs, strollers, and kid wagons. I love that this gives everyone access and opportunity to explore the park in their own way!

10. Fireworks and Illumination days

Fireworks and illumination. Family travel at Niagara Falls. #operationusparks #explorermomma
Bryan Goff

If you’re going to get the family out at night, the fireworks and Niagara Falls’ illumination days are spectacular and very popular. Kids love the fireworks and the different displays of color on the water.

Travel Stories

I love people watching when you travel. It’s fun to see the families, individuals, and couples and imagine, what brought them to this place at this time? For example, I ran into a couple at the Cave of the Winds last week. Evidently, I’m fairly approachable being a mom, generally with at least a hint of a smile, and the ability to handle an iPhone, because I get asked all the time to take pictures for people.

This particular couple wanted their picture under the falls at Hurricane Deck, so I took the traditional smiling pose. “Great”, she says, “thanks so much!”

They gave each other a quick kiss before coming back to get the phone from me, and I managed to capture that moment with the kiss under the falls. The woman looked at the photo with the kiss, and a gigantic smile lit up her face. “This is absolutely perfect!” she says. “We’re on our honeymoon, and I’m blowing this one up to frame!”

You never know how you can make someone’s day! It definitely was a great addition to mine!

Join us for Operation U.S. Parks!

Get your free U.S. National Parks pass and join us on the U.S. Parks journey.

Congratulations! Free US National Parks pass. #operationusparks #explorermomma

Books and shows with Niagara Falls

It’s always fun to tie something kids know to their travels. If my son sees something on TV or we read a book about it beforehand, that prior knowledge makes it all that much more interesting when you actually visit. For example, “Mommy! This is where Trek fed the baby Spinosaurus!”

Films and shows


Niagara Falls With Kids Books


Are you going to Niagara Falls with kids?

Niagara Falls is one of these magical places on earth that creates an inner joy and excitement to those who experience it. Last week when I visited, I could feel the enthusiasm in people all around me! Travel establishes a bond or camaraderie with those near you like few things can. Also, it’s another teaching point for me to show my kids how to interact with others and be kind to everyone when you’re traveling or just visiting a local event.

Have you been to Niagara Falls? Tag me in your pics on Instagram @explorermomma. I’d love to see them!

Hover over the Pin and click Save for later! Then don’t forget to follow me on Pinterest here!

Niagara Falls with kids. Family travel awesomeness and things to do. #operationusparks #iloveny #explorermomma  The perfect family vacation is Niagara Falls with kids. State Parks and family travel are the best! #operationusparks #everykidinapark #familytravel #explorermomma

Thanks all!

Keto Pumpkin Spice Breakfast Smoothie

Keto Pumpkin Spice Breakfast Smoothie

This creamy, low carb, keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie is the perfect seasonal break your fast meal.

Wondrous woodlands, changing colors, chilly crisp mornings, come to me! Fall is my favorite season for so many reasons. I love the cooler weather, the golden aspens, red maples, school starting, and of course all things pumpkin spice!

In the US we usually call this brilliant season fall unless we’re in a particularly poetic mood, then we speak of autumn. Did you know that even before that it was simply called harvest? The fall harvest moon lights up the sky when the full moon is closest to the autumn equinox. In addition, in times before electricity, that light was key in allowing farmers the time to bring in the crops and prepare for the coming winter.

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

Need a quick and easy fall low carb breakfast? This is the BEST keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie recipe. #glutenfree #lowcarb #ketobreakfast #explorermomma

Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.

George Eliot

I delight in this time of year when I bring out haunting Celtic music, take the kids on misty walks in the woods, and huddle in scarves and sweaters reading new books. Of course, the change in season also brings out the traditional fall flavors of pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger, clove, nutmeg, and mmmm so much more! I love to start my day with a chill in the air and my keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie. You know, I really could call it a shake it’s that creamy and good. I hope you try it.

In a hurry?

Scroll down to the bottom for the printable recipe or PIN it here for later!

Kitchen items you’ll need for your keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie:

This is super simple folks! Awesome possum!

Tips for the perfect keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie

To make the best-tasting and healthiest keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie you want to get quality ingredients. When I make anything this time of year with pumpkin, if humanly possible I use pumpkin purée made out of a home-grown organic pumpkin. Mmmmmm, yum! The flavor’s so much better than what you get in a can, and you get that fabulous sense of fall harvest accomplishment!

If, sadly, you don’t have any pumpkin from your garden, buy a good pumpkin from the store and prepare your purée. Ideally, you can keep the home-grown or home-made store pumpkin purée in the freezer for that inevitable last minute fall pumpkin purée emergency! However, if completely pressed for time and you are forced to buy a can, be sure to select the best quality you can. Sigh. Don’t worry, it will still be fabulous!

Keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie, straw close-up

How to make your own pumpkin purée

I grew up in a household that only ever used our own garden pumpkin for the holiday pumpkin pies, breads, and all traditional things pumpkin spice. If you grow your own pumpkin or get a good one from the grocery store it’s actually pretty easy to make your own pumpkin purée.

First, cut your pumpkin in half and remove the inside glop and seeds. Second, place the two halves upside down on a baking sheet. Third, bake the pumpkin at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about an hour. The pumpkin halves are placed on the baking sheet so that the air is trapped in between the flesh of the pumpkin and the baking sheet, and the skin on the outside seals it in. This means the moisture from the pumpkin is also trapped in while it bakes.

Then, be sure to check the pumpkin, depending on the size at around forty minutes. I press the outside skin down with my finger (or a spoon if you don’t want to burn yourself!), and if it feels soft like a well-baked potato, it’s about ready. For a regular pie sized baking pumpkin, an hour is my usual timing. Next, pull it out of the oven to cool slightly, and flip the halves over so you can see the lovely baked orange pumpkin inside. When it’s not too hot, spoon it into a blender. It should literally almost fall from the pumpkin skin. Blend it up, and it’s ready to use or put in 2 cup freezer bags for future pumpkin purée needs!

Keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie overhead close-up

Designers want me to dress like Spring, in billowing things. I don’t feel like Spring. I feel like a warm red Autumn.

Marilyn Monroe

How to make a keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie

How do you make it? This recipe is fabulously easy, perfect for that rushed morning on the way to work or school. Are you ready? Put all the ingredients together in a blender. Next, blend on high for 30-40 seconds or until everything’s combined and the ice is in tiny blended pieces.

I’ve been using Collagen Fuel in the coconut vanilla flavor from Primal Kitchen as a protein powder in my smoothies lately. It’s been great, and I’m loving it, but you can also get the unflavored collagen peptides from Primal Kitchen (I order through Amazon) or any other brand that works for you! Collagen is a great protein that is said to support healthy hair, skin, nails, and joints. They say it even promotes muscle repair, and who doesn’t want support in those areas?

Also, you can double this awesome keto pumpkin spice smoothie recipe easily for multiple family members, and I love to throw it in an insulated travel coffee mug for on the go!

Keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie

The spring, summer, is quite a hectic time for people in their lives, but then it comes to autumn, and to winter, and you can’t but help think back to the year that was, and then hopefully looking forward to the year that is approaching.

Enya

What are your favorite fall flavors?

What are your favorite fall keto pumpkin spice recipes? Or even non-keto pumpkin spice recipes? My daughter is a huge fan of pumpkin pies and breads so we enjoy coming up with amazing keto recipes for these classics.

I hope you have an inspirational rust-colored fall with pumpkin-spice flavors, laughter, and leaf-throwing family fun! Visit your local pumpkin farm or apple orchard and just breathe in those wondrous sights and smells of this perfect season.

Tag me in your recipe pics on Instagram @explorermomma.

If you enjoy this recipe, please consider giving it a five-star rating in the review area below!

Also, if you’re on Pinterest, I would love for you to PIN it here!

Autumn spice is here! You will want this keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie today! Low carb, sugar free, and gluten-free, it's a delicious burst of fall in your mouth. #autumnrecipes #pumpkinspice #ketopumpkinspice #lowcarbbreakfast #explorermomma     Creamy keto pumpkin spice goodness. The perfect seasonal fall recipe to break your fast. #lowcarbrecipes #ketopumpkinspice #ketobreakfast #ketopumpkin #explorermomma

Thanks all! Joyous fall!

Ready for a DIY pumpkin decor craft?

Easy DIY Pumpkin decor feature

Printable keto pumpkin spice breakfast smoothie recipe:

Keto Pumpkin Spice Breakfast Smoothie
Prep Time
5 mins
 

Embrace the leaf-strewn autumnal mornings with your own healthy dose of pumpkin spice! This creamy, low carb, keto pumpkin spice smoothie is the perfect seasonal break your fast meal.

Course: Breakfast, Drinks, Main Course, Snack
Cuisine: American, Keto, Ketogenic, Low Carb
Keyword: keto pumpkin spice
Servings: 1
Calories: 322 kcal
Author: Lauren Gonikishvili
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup almond milk unsweetened
  • 2 tbsp pumpkin puree
  • 1 oz cream cheese
  • 1 tbsp MCT oil
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp powdered sweetener Swerve confectioners or other
  • 1 scoop Primal Kitchen Collagen Fuel, Vanilla Coconut (or one serving other collagen peptides)
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 3-4 ice cubes
Instructions
  1. Add all ingredients to a blender and blend on high speed for 30-40 seconds or until mixed well and ice is in tiny pieces.

  2. Pour into a glass or insulated drink container and enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Nutrition Facts

Nutrition Facts
Servings 1.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 322
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 29 g 44 %
Saturated Fat 22 g 111 %
Monounsaturated Fat 3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 32 mg 11 %
Sodium 311 mg 13 %
Potassium 248 mg 7 %
Total Carbohydrate 4 g 1 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 4 %
Sugars 2 g  
Protein 14 g 27 %
Vitamin A 24 %
Vitamin C 1 %
Calcium 40 %
Iron 11 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

*Nutrition facts calculated per myfitnesspal.com.

Nutrition Disclaimer

Please be aware I am not a medical specialist or nutritional professional. On this blog, I share recipes and what works for me. Please do not take anything on this blog as medical advice and always consult with your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program. I use MyFitnessPal.com to calculate nutrition facts as a courtesy to my readers, and I remove erythritol from the final carb count and net carb count because does not affect my own blood glucose levels. This is as accurate as possible, but it’s best to independently calculate nutritional information on your own with the specific ingredients you use. I expressly disclaim any and all liability of any kind with respect to any act or omission wholly or in part in reliance on anything contained in this website.

How to get a FREE US National Parks pass

How to get a FREE US National Parks pass

There’s something magical about being a kid in a national park. Everything is new and wondrous and makes an imprint in your mind that will last a lifetime. Did you know that every single fourth grader in the United States can get a FREE Every Kid in a Park Pass? Yes, a free US National Parks pass. It’s good for the entire family for the whole year and gets you into not just National Parks but all federal lands and waters. How cool is that?! My daughter’s in fourth grade this year and has so inspired our year we’ve titled “Operation US National Parks for Families”.

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

Impact of U.S. National Parks on kids

I grew up in Colorado and feel as though Rocky Mountain National Park is my own backyard and safe haven or escape. It is and will always be near and dear to my heart, but another national park also made a huge impact and imprint on my childhood. When I was a kid, my grandparents lived in Homer, Alaska. We were fortunate enough to be able to travel up there to visit them a couple of times and also experience the magic that is the Kenai Fjords National Park.

Kenai Fjords National Park, glacier calving

I remember being entranced by the glacier and the huge variety of wildlife I saw in one relatively small area. We took a tour on a little tour boat, and I think my hands were on the bars at the very front with the wind blowing in my face the entire time. I leaned over to see porpoises jump next to us as we sailed along, whales breach and wave their tales in hello, colorful puffins in the rocky cliffs, the bark of sea lions lounging on rocks, a moose on the hill, and SO much more. In a time way before the Wild Kratts entered our lives this was a miracle for me to see. AND it was live and in person, real and in the wild to my mind. It was not a zoo.

Kenai Fjords National Park, sea lions

What is Operation U.S. Parks for Families?

Operation U.S. Parks for Families is a series of blog posts to be featured throughout the  2018-2019 Every Kid in a Park Pass year. The goal of this series is to inspire families to visit national parks together and provide them with ideas for amazing activities in each park they can do as a family.

Who will be featured in Operation U.S. Parks

To begin, Operation US National Parks for Families will feature some of our own fabulous past experiences at national parks. In addition, throughout the year I’ll be highlighting our CURRENT travels to different parks and federal lands. Then as an even bigger BONUS I’ll be highlighting the experiences of other families all over the country! I’m so excited about this aspect of the series so we can provide a broader picture of family experiences with different opinions, likes, dislikes, and interests!

Operation US National Parks for Families. Join our family and more as we travel the United States together. Learn how to get your free US National Parks pass! #travelwithkids #usnationalparks #everykidinapark #explorermomma

Get your FREE US National Parks Pass and join us! 

Would you like to join us for Operation US National Parks for Families Journey? We’d love to have you! Sign up for our newsletter to receive weekly updates on where we’re exploring! Will it be the caves in Carlsbad, New Mexico? Maybe, you’ll get to see and read about an adventure to the giant redwoods and sequoias of Sequoia National Park! Perhaps, if you’re really lucky, we’ll journey to Watkins Glen National Park in New York for scenery and kid-friendly hikes that could be straight out of a Tolkien book. So get your cloaks, backpacks, tents, elf-ears, or whatever you’d like to prepare and join our EPIC National Parks journey today!

How to sign up for your Every Kid in a Park Pass

How do you get your free US National Parks Pass? It is so super simple. All you do is go to the official US Government website here. Explore the website or just click on “Get Your Pass”. As I’m writing this they’ve recently updated the site for the 2018 to 2019 school year. Your fourth grader answers a few questions to make a diary entry to begin to figure out how they’d like to use their new pass. It’s super-easy and a fun activity.

free US National Parks pass, Hand on mouse

Once you sign up and complete the diary on the website, there will be a ticket to print out. Now, you can use it as your yearly pass, or you can take it to your first park or water area, show a ranger, and obtain a wallet-sized card for the year. Did I mention it’s FREE? What an awesome deal to bring families together in nature!

Congratulations! Free US National Parks pass

The next step is to take the family on hundreds of adventures until the card expires August 31, 2019 (or the current school year). Do you know what? If you miss something or don’t have time, little brother can get his own pass in the next year or two. Then you get to plan for that national park year as well!

How to use your free US National Parks Pass

If you’re going to use it you’ve got to plan your first trip! Are you going to camp in the woods? Do you want to see protected animals and wildlife? Maybe you’d just like to find your nearest park to start! Before you go read the official rules here. Then, just present your ticket as you enter the park! The park ranger will trade your printed paper copy of the ticket for an official Every Kid in a Park card, and your fourth grader will sign it. Easy peasy lemon squeezy.

Every Kid in a park pass, free US National Parks pass

There are sooo many opportunities for exploration and fun with this pass! Literally, you’ve got hundreds of places to visit near or far, it’s up to you.

Plan your trip with Operation U.S. Parks for Families

Now, I challenge you! Get out and explore! Follow along with our blog series and gain inspiration. Yes, I formally invite you to travel along with us virtually on our Operation U.S. Parks for Families journey. You can create your own adventures, the sky’s the limit! It’s such fun to plan destinations as a family and give every member a say. Can you tell I’m excited!?

Lily Ridge Trail with free US National Parks pass

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Let’s travel with our free US National Parks pass!

I am so thrilled to explore our US National and State parks all over the country! My family and I will be planning and writing about our own trips using the Every Kid in a Park Pass. Also, we’ll all have the opportunity to travel virtually all over the country with other National Park loving families. Truly, I cannot wait to see the beauty of our parks and hear about the super-awesome and life-changing family experiences only nature can inspire and bring together.

My friends, I hope you follow along with us on this magnificent journey to explore our US National Parks!

I’d love to see your own adventures! Tag me in your National and State Park travel pics on Instagram @explorermomma.

Explore a National Park today!

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Operation US National Parks for Families. Join our family and more as we travel the United States together. Learn how to get your free US National Parks pass! #travelwithkids #usnationalparks #everykidinapark #explorermomma     Did you know you can get a FREE US National Parks pass? Find out how and join our family travel adventure around the United States. #operationnationalparks #everykidinapark #familytravel #ustravel #explorermomma

Thanks to all and HAPPY TRAVELS!

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