Healthy eating isn’t all about calorie counting. Nutritious foods are key, but sometimes it’s nice to know you can grab a quick snack that doesn’t deliver an entire meal’s worth of calories. The next time hunger creeps up when it’s least convenient (like 30 minutes before a dinner reservation), turn to this list for a small and satisfying bite that won’t ruin a healthy day.
1. Pumpkin Yogurt
Combine 1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek Yogurt with 1/4 cup pumpkin purée. Sweeten with stevia, 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract, and pumpkin pie spice blend (or cinnamon). Pumpkin is a low fat way to increase this snack’s fiber and flavor profile.
2. Cottage Cheese and Cantaloupe
Top 1/2 cup of low-fat cottage cheese with 1/2 cup of diced cantaloupe. That 1/2 cup of cantaloupe delivers 50 percent of the daily recommended values of vitamins A and C—two vitamins that may help promote clear skin.
3. Egg Whites and Toast
Toast one slice whole-wheat bread and top with two scrambled egg whites. Sprinkle with a dash of pepper and paprika.
4. Jicama and Honey Mustard Dip
Hicka-what? Jicama (pronounced, hic-kuh-muh) is a root veggie that touts six grams of fiber per cup. Peel and slice 1 1/2 cups, and dip into a mixture of 1 tablespoon Greek yogurt, 1 tablespoon mustard, and 1 teaspoon honey.
5. Carrots and Hummus
Chow down on 10 baby carrots with 2 tablespoons hummus. Jazz it up with fresh herbs like dill or parsley.
6. Broccoli and Tzatziki Sauce
Whip up a quick tzatziki-like sauce by combining 2 tablespoons plain nonfat Greek yogurt, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, and 1 tablespoon minced cucumber. Dip six florets into the sauce. The healthy bonus here is that eating broccoli raw may help maintain the green veggie’s cancer-fighting nutrients.
7. Open Faced Turkey Sandwich
Toast one slice whole-wheat bread and spread with 1 teaspoon honey mustard. Top with two slices of deli turkey.
8. Apples and Cheese
Pair a Laughing Cow Mini Babybel Light cheese wheel with half a baseball-sized apple, sliced. The cheese has six grams of protein and 20 percent of the daily recommended value of calcium.
9. 14 Almonds
Almonds don’t need any extras to be a satisfying snack. Added bonus: They’re the most nutritionally dense nut (which means they have the highest concentration of nutrients per calorie). Try eight of our cocoa dusted almonds for a sweeter version.
10. 22 Pistachios
These little guys are the biggest bang for your calorie buck. Pistachios rank higher in protein and lower in saturated fat compared to most other nuts. Pick the in-shell variety if you can. One study found people consume up to 41 percent more calories from pistachios when they don’t have to crack the shell to work for it .
11. Cheesy Popcorn
Toss 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese and a dash of cayenne pepper with 2 cups of freshly popped popcorn. Choose a low-fat, low-sodium pre-packaged variety or pop kernels in a small paper bag in the microwave. Grated parm can have a lot of salt, but one tablespoon has only three percent of the daily recommended value, and only 22 calories for a whole lot of added flavor.
12. Kettle Corn
Speaking of popcorn… Toss 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1 teaspoon stevia with 2 cups freshly popped popcorn. Try shaking it all up in a paper bag or a container with a lid on it for even topping distribution. Not a fan of stevia? Swap it for 1 teaspoon honey plus 1 teaspoon water microwaved for 20 seconds to thin it out.
13. Hard Boiled Egg Whites and Mustard
Boil four eggs for 12 to 15 minutes. Let them cool, de-shell, slice in half, and remove the yolks with a spoon. Sprinkle with pepper and dip in 1 tablespoon mustard. The really yellow mustards get their color from turmeric, an anti-inflammatory spice. Pro tip: If you add 1 teaspoon baking soda to the water, the eggs will be a cinch to peel!
14. Watermelon Salad
Top 1 cup raw spinach with 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar and 3/4 cup diced watermelon. Spinach has a ton of vitamin K, Iron, and vitamin A.
15. Mexican Potato
There’s always the option to bake a potato, but for a quick snack version turn to the microwave. Pierce a medium potato (about the size of a computer mouse) a few times with a fork, and microwave on high for about five minutes, or until soft (you should be able to remove a knife without any resistance). Top half of the potato with 1 tablespoon salsa and 1 tablespoon plain Greek yogurt (a great stand in for sour cream). Save the other half in the fridge for the next time you’re in need of a quick snack!
- Chili-Lime Shrimp
Toss 10 large boiled shrimp in 1 tablespoon lime juice. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon chili powder. Here’s the kicker: This little snack has over 10 grams of protein! Shrimp also have a high concentration of the antioxidant astaxanthin, known to reduce inflammation.
17. Frozen Grapes
Grapes make a great snack fresh or frozen, but if you opt for the chilly state, they last way longer. Nosh on 1 cup (about 28 grapes). Feeling fancy? Use them as fruity ice cubes in a tall glass of water to stay hydrated while snacking.
18. Strawberries and Goat Cheese
Pair 10 large strawberries with 1 tablespoon soft goat cheese. This serving of strawberries has over 100 percent of the daily recommended value of vitamin C.
19. Kiwi and Coconut
20. Dark Chocolate
Let’s be honest, this snack doesn’t need any friends. Enjoy three squares or five dark chocolate kisses. A bit of the dark stuff can help regulate levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Just be sure you check to make sure that your favorite brand isn’t hiding anything unhealthy.
Enjoy these simple snacking ideas & as always,
Stay Healthy! 😉