I don’t know about you, but when my stomach starts rumbling from hunger between meals I find myself looking for a snack. But not all snacks are created equal. Some are more healthy, others not so healthy. Instead of grabbing the nearest candy bar or a bowl of ice cream why not try a healthier snack – one that satisfies and is good for you too. Here are five easy and healthy snack ideas.
1. Air-popped popcorn – Popcorn is a snack almost everyone loves. Try it air-popped for a healthier change. It’s easy and fun to make, especially if you have kids. They like to pour in the kernels and watch them pop into white, fluffy goodness. Popcorn is a whole grain snack, high in fiber, low in calories, and a good source of antioxidants as well. If you don’t like it plain try spraying on a little spray margarine and parmesan cheese while it’s hot.
2. Sliced apple with peanut butter – This snack provides a good source of fiber, protein, and antioxidants. To prepare, wash your apple and remove only the core. Fill the hole with peanut butter or almond butter. Wrap with plastic wrap and chill until nut butter is firm. Slice and enjoy! I provided photos for this one so you can see how it looks. My family enjoyed this one!
3. Carrot sticks with hummus – I like raw carrots. But I like them better with a little something in which to dip them. So why not try hummus instead of the typical ranch type dressing. Carrots are a great source of beta-carotene and fiber, and low in calories too. Hummus is high in fiber and a good source of other nutrients. Just watch the amount of hummus you use since the calories can add up too. But a tablespoon or so should provide an adequate amount in which to dip your carrots.
4. Whole grain crackers with tuna salad – Whole grain crackers are a good afternoon choice and can be a source of whole grains (obviously), fiber, and B vitamins. Tuna salad adds some protein to keep you satisfied along with some omega-3 fatty acids.
5. Fruit and cheese kebab – Try combining some green or red grapes with small cubes of low-fat cheese on a wooden skewer or toothpicks for a fun and healthy snack. Low-fat cheese is a good source of protein and calcium. Grapes are low in calories and provide lots of other wonderful vitamins and minerals. They are a good source of polyphenols – a type of antioxidant.