You know how you’ve always heard that “breakfast is the most important meal of the day”? We agree but a very close second is a healthy snack ready to go when that craving strikes. It’s the bridge between meals that keeps up your energy level, helps you stay focused, and provides great nutrition. If planned correctly, it also stops you from reaching for a sugary, calorie-empty (aka breakroom donut) snack.
But you don’t always have time or tools to whip up a healthy mini-omelet or protein shake! Try these quick, no-cook options and pack in your family lunchboxes or stash in the office fridge so you’re ready when the hangries hit.
Ten No Cook Snacks (that are actually good)
- Hummus. This is one powerhouse “dip” that delivers a great helping of protein, fiber, and flavor. Ready-made at any grocery (and even corner convenience stores!), hummus goes great with crackers, cut up veggies, or spread on a bagel. Keep an eye on the sodium level, though, as some brands add a lot of salt.
- Avocado. Another nutritional superstar – eat whole, right out of the shell or mash up with a little salsa for a yummy fresh chip or veggie dip. Pair with thick cucumber slices or healthy quinoa and whole grain chips.
- Nut butters or flavored, whipped cream cheese. Both options have a good helping of protein and go great piped into a celery stalk, spread on a thick slice of bread or hearty cracker, or smeared on banana slices. Choose natural peanut butter as it has less sugar than traditional peanut butter.
- Fruit Roll Ups. Pack individual ingredients or make ahead: small tortilla shells or pita breads, nut butter or flavored cream cheese, small berries. Spread nut butter or cream cheese on tortilla, sprinkle with berries and roll up.
- Chia seed pudding. Easy to make on the go – just add 1TB of chia seeds to your favorite creamy beverage (dairy milk, almond milk, cashew milk, coconut milk) and let sit for at least 30 minutes. The longer it sits, the thicker it will get. Add fruit or honey for sweetener. Super nutritious -- chia seeds are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, vitamins and minerals, and protein.
- Banana Dippers. Fresh banana goes well with so many toppings and you don’t even have to slice them. Just fill a small bowl with mini-chocolate chips, raisins, crushed up granola or pretzel pieces, or graham cracker crumbs and dip in a fresh banana. The goodies stick to the banana and add a little crunch. Kids love this one!
- Pickles, olives, and pickled veggies. This is definitely an “in moderation” choice because pickled anything is always high in sodium. But the salty crunch of a dill pickle can be just what you need to get going. And you still gain the advantage of eating a vegetable. Combine with low sodium cheese for a protein boost or pop in a glass of tomato juice for a work-friendly Bloody Mary.
- Power parfait. Combine Greek yogurt with a scoop of granola and fresh berries. Pack each separately before you leave the house and then just dump together when you’re ready to eat. Boost your granola with some ground flax seed, hemp seed, or chia seeds.
- DIY Trail Mix – there is more to life than raisins! Experiment with combining your favorite dried fruits: blueberries, cranberries, apricots, mangoes, bananas, or figs; add a couple scoops of almonds or coconut chunks; and a handful of semi-sweet chocolate chips and you have a delicious afternoon snack that hits all the cravings: the sweet, salty, and crunchy. And gives a good helping of protein plus vitamins and minerals.
- Fruit kabobs. Kids will love this one and it makes a great snack while waiting for dinner to be done. On a long wooden skewer, thread chunks of cheese (try Colby, swiss, or hot pepper jack), green and red seedless grapes, and whole strawberries. Serve as is, sprinkle with cinnamon or nutmeg, or dip in yogurt.
Whatever you choose to nosh on, think nutrition first! Many store-bought options are empty calories with very little nutritional value. When planning your snacks, look for these nutritional options:
- Good serving of protein and fiber. Both will keep your hunger steady and help you avoid that afternoon slump.
- Low sugar, low sodium. Usually the easiest to grab snacks (chips, cookies, crackers) are packed with both. Read the label – luckily there are lots of options out there now that don’t rely on these calorie-fillers.
- Whole grains or non-processed grains. Look for unique grains with complex carbohydrates such as quinoa, oatmeal, buckwheat, and whole wheat. Much more nutritious and less likely to cause a sugar spike right after eating.
Snack Choices Made Super Easy.
For the best collection of on-the-go or in the office snacks, check out our keto, paleo, gluten-free, vegan, and all-natural snack kit choices. We’ve curated these delicious packages to deliver nutrition, yumminess, and love in every bite. Right to your door and all your favorite brands (plus a few more you’ll soon love!). Browse our collection here.