If you’re anything like me than you know that cravings are a major deal breaker when it comes to what you eat. So what to eat when you’re feeling hungry but it’s not yet time for a full meal? And what are some easy on-the-go snacks that you can grab and take with you wherever you are? Whether you’re going to school or make long days at work, the major pitfall is to then grab sugary snacks that are heavily processed and not that good for you. I’ll be showing you 10 snacks that I like to keep on hand whenever, wherever to beat those cravings and yet not go overboard.
Raw vegetables make some great snacks. Of course it takes some getting used to to whip out some tomatoes and cucumber slices when you’re going somewhere but they make for quick and easy snacks. Tomatoes and carrots only need a wash before you can chuck however many you’d fancy into a container. Cucumbers, bell peppers and celery sticks require more work as they need cutting but that is usually not too time consuming. Besides, I usually prepare my snack box the night before so I don’t have to rush in the mornings. They do require a cool place so having a fridge near you is a must.
2.) Fresh fruit
Any fruit that is easy to pack up and take along is a great alternative that allows you to get some sugars into your system without necessarily eating something that is heavily processed. I bring a banana (in a banana container so it won’t get squashed) without fail and apples make for great post work out snacks (especially combined with something else on this list, but I’ll back to that in a bit). Another fruit I love for on the go are grapes, but also bears, some berries or tangerines are easy fruits to chuck in your bag and be out the door.
I am trying to get myself back on the nut bandwagon. Nuts contain a lot of calories, but you only need a few of them to achieve a level of fullness equal to a candy bar. A handful of nuts contains fibre, protein and fats that will make you feel full and allows you to keep going just a little bit longer. Just make sure the nuts are unsalted and not roasted. The selection you see here contains almonds, pecans, walnuts and macadamia nuts. I also love hazelnuts, pistachios, Brazil nuts and cashews. I usually buy nuts at the farmer’s market as they are cheaper than in regular stores and you can make your own custom blends if need be. This is in fact a cranberry nut mix to which I have added some macadamia nuts myself.
4.) Dried fruit
If fresh isn’t available or you need something sweeter, dried fruit can be an option. Just like with nuts you shouldn’t eat too much of it. The process of drying fruit makes the fruits a lot sweeter than fresh fruit and thus contains a lot of carbs. Raisins, cranberries, figs and dates are all options that I love to have on hand. I usually put raisins in my morning yoghurt. Dates make a great ‘bar’ if soaked overnight and blended together with some nuts. Figs I eat straight up. I just take 3 – 4 with me and I have my sweet kick for on the train home on hand.
5.) Dark chocolate
I started with the best options, but a small chunk of dark chocolate can also be an option if you have cravings for, yes, chocolate. The darker the chocolate the better it is for you. This is 85% you see here and I only have a few pieces left. I usually break a bar by smacking against my kitchen work top while still in the packaging and then put the pieces in a container. That way I always have some chocolate on stand by. And dark chocolate is that type of food that will not allow you to eat piece after piece too.
6.) Peanut butter
Peanut butter good for you? Yes. Peanut butter IS good for you as long as you make sure it has few additives. I have tried organic peanut butter, but I don’t like it very much, so I’m sticking by good old plain Dutch peanut butter. This does NOT contain sugar and only has 3 ingredients, being peanuts, palm oil and salt. Now the palm oil I’m not too keen on, but I think that as along as you don’t over do it, it is okay. I have some almost every single day and eat it straight from the jar with a teaspoon (guilty pleasure!). But I also put this into smoothies, cookies, pancakes, as a dip for apple slices or on a rice cake (see below) and topping it off with banana.
Talking about dip: hummus is a great veggie dip (if you consider peanut butter a fruit dip). If you make it yourself (which is hardly any work), you’ll have an extra veggie ready to go with every dip. I usually make mine with yoghurt but you can also use the liquid from the can of chick peas. For extra flavor you can add in some chili powder to spice things up, but you can also add other herbs and flavorings for different textures and taste sensations.
A few slices or cubes of cheese make for a great snack. Just please make sure you buy full fat cheese as the 20% versions are just not as good straight up. And fats aren’t a bad thing people. In fact, fats make you feel for longer and if you thus eat some fatty cheese (or nuts) straight up, it will be far more effective then when you eat 20% cheese combined with carbs which flushes through your system a lot more quickly. And there are so many cheeses to try and have. If you don’t like cow’s cheese, try goat as it is equally tasty. I do usually check to see whether there are any additives in my cheese and try to forego the varieties with E-numbers or artificial colorings.
9.) Rice cakes
I always have some plain rice cakes on hand. They make for a great snack on their own (and are easy to carry around too), but with a slice of cheese, a spread of peanut butter or a boiled egg they can easily be turned into something more nutritious. Since rice cakes are heavily processed they aren’t the best thing to eat. So it’s something I try not to have every single day, but it’s definitely a food that I cannot live without.
10.) Wheat free, refined sugar free banana bread
Banana bread is a great food to snack on. Especially when you make this (click here for recipe) wheat free and refined sugar free coconut flour banana bread. It requires some more work than most of the snacks listed above, but it’s definitely worth it. You can add in fresh fruits, nuts, seeds, and anything else you that tickles your fancy. You simply wrap a slice or two in some foil and you’re good to go.
What are some of your healthy snack suggestions?