5 Tasty + sugar free healthy snacks
These 5 healthy snacks are a fantastic way to combat the dreaded afternoon slump. A far cry from bland, boring rabbit food, these deliciously moreish snacks are bound to revamp your approach to snacking for-eva. All the recipes are vegan, dairy free, gluten free, sugar free and kid friendly. To top it all off, all the ingredients are super affordable making these recipes perfect for tight food budgets and great for your weekly meal prep!
Snacks are a problem area for sooooo many of us. Whether you’re home or work in an office, when it hits 3pm and the afternoon slump boogie man comes knocking at your door, it doesn’t matter whether you have the will of iron or not, if you’re presented with a ‘guilty pleasure’ chances are that you’re gonna inhale it before you even know what’s happened (clearly speaking from experience here).
I personally believe that if you eat whole nutritious meals , you won’t really feel the need to snack often, which is what I discovered when I started eating more wholefoods. Due to the high fibre content, your blood sugar levels are regulated and you’re full for longer which pretty much eradicates the need for snacking altogether.
But of course there are times in life where you just aren’t able to eat a proper meal or circumstances where you do become hungrier than usual and this is where these snacks come in. All of these snacks are kid friendly and have served me well by keeping my moody ravenous children from having a complete meltdown between the school pick up and dinner time.
Here are my top 5 healthy snacks:
1. Apples and Sunbutter
Chiiill, sunbutter is just an abbreviation of sunflower seed butter. Sunflower seeds are a cheaper option than nuts and are packed with Vitamin E and minerals like Magnesium, Thiamine and Manganese as well as dietary fibre which is excellent for digestion.
They tend to have a taste that is similar to tahini, but less strong and more fruity if that makes any sense. I personally love it with apples, it’s a killer combo! You should totally try it. You can replace it with your usual nut butter so it goes perfectly well on toast, porridge, etc…Besides it’s worth noting that if you have any nut allergies, sunbutter is now your new bestie.
If you’re a big fan of nut butters, have a look at this drool worthy chocolate almond butter recipe.
1 apple, cored and sliced
260g (2 cups) hulled sunflower seeds
⅛ tsp sea salt
Over medium heat, toast the sunflower seeds for 1-2 minutes or until golden brown and they give off a rich, toasted aroma. Set aside on a cold plate to cool for 3-5 minutes.
Place the sunflower seeds in a food processor and blend for 2 minutes.
Scrape the sides and blend again for 8 minutes, stopping to scrape the sides when needed until the sunflower seeds turn into a runny butter. They should turn from a grainy flour to a paste and finally a runny butter.
Add the sea salt and blend again for a few seconds.
Serve with apples and store the rest of the sun butter in an airtight container at room temperature.
2. Nuts and Raisins
You’re probably thinking nuts and raisins are nothing new. Yes you’re right, but here’s my issue with the store bought options; the amount of salt that is in those nuts is enough to shrivel you into a prune! So you’re better off either having them raw (which for many people is too much of a leap into rabbit food territory) or roasting them yourself. SO. GOOD. YOU. GUYS.
Plus it only takes 10 mins to roast.
(Note: Brazil nuts taste awful when roasted in my humble opinion), so you’re better off eating those raw.)
If you’re into roasted nuts then you will definitely wanna check out this super easy tahini cashew granola recipe.
⅓ cup almonds
⅓ cup cashews
⅓ cup brazil nuts
⅓ cup walnuts
½ cup raisins
1 tsp hot water
¼ tsp sea salt
Preheat oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4.
Place all the nuts (except Brazil nuts) in a mixing bowl and in a separate small bowl, dissolve the sea salt in the water and then add the salty water to the nut mixture and mix thoroughly.
Spread out the salted nuts onto a baking tray evenly and bake for 8-10 mins, giving them a stir half way through. Keep an eye on them as they may need more or less time in different ovens and can burn easily.
Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Mix in Brazil nuts and raisins and enjoy.
3. Pesto and Veggie Sticks
I like to think of pesto as ‘The Underdog Dip’. When most people think of dips, first thing that comes to mind is probably hummus or tzatziki, but I really wanna push for pesto to join that lineup coz it has a lot more to offer than jazzing up pasta. It’s also packed with fresh greens and a fair dose of fat (from the olive oil) meaning you can’t binge on it! The recipe I use also uses sunflower seeds making this spinach pesto nut free and budget friendly, I’ve posted the recipe before on the blog here (you’ll find it under spinach pesto + sliced tomatoes).
Click here for the pesto recipe.
½ cucumber, sliced lengthways
1 small carrot, sliced lengthways
1 celery stick, slced lengthways
Serve veg sticks with pesto.
5. Banana and Peanut Butter boats
A simple classic combination that is never worth overlooking. All you need is a banana and a couple of tablespoons of peanut butter and you’re good to go! Your kids, if you have any, will go crazy over this one, it’s soooo moreish. If you ever hear me moaning with pleasure, lurking in a kitchen corner, then you know what I’m eating.
If you’re another fan of the peanut butter and banana combo, you HAVE to try this peanut butter and banana overnight oats recipe.
2 tbsps peanut butter
¼ tsp chia seeds (optional)
¼ tsp desiccated coconut (optional)
Peel and slice the banana lengthways.
Generously lather peanut butter along each slice.
Sprinkle with chia seeds and/or desiccated coconut and enjoy!
5. Guacamole, Tortilla chips and Peppers
Guacamole in all honesty is a side dish, BUT ITS AMAZING AND YOU SHOULD EAT IT WHENEVER YOU WANT.
A one ingredient dip *technically speaking*, a great source of plant based fat and vitamins AND can be whipped up in less than 5 minutes. I’m telling you, you can make this in your office kitchenette in no time, and will totally satisfy your sweet tooth cravings. So why don’t you try this quick recipe instead of reaching for cookies? Oh and the tortillas + peppers with guac go together like a DREAM.
¼ red onion, finely chopped (optional)
½ small lime
A few sprigs of coriander (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
to serve with guacamole
1 red or yellow pepper, cored and sliced lengthways
Handful of tortillas
Scoop the avocado flesh from its skin and in a bowl mash it with a fork until creamy (if it’s lumpy that’s totally fine).
Add the onions, lime juice, salt and pepper to the avocado mash and mix thoroughly.
Top the guacamole with coriander and serve immediately with peppers and tortilla chips.
Have you ever tried any of the healthy snacks recipe ideas above before? Will you be making any of these?
Don’t forget to tag me @earthandspoon on Instagram and use #earthnspoon so I can find your creations!