I love them. I want them. Sometimes I actually need them to keep me from raiding all of the cupboards in my kitchen when I get home feeling famished!
Whether you’re trying to lose weight or lean out or gain weight, I'm sharing these go-to snacks. They are yummy, filling AND satisfying (you'd just adjust the portion sizes based on your goals!).
I know what you're thinking because I am, too: Donuts and cookies are yummy, too! I don’t know that they’re truly filling or satisfying, though. And while those 14 almonds you just laid out on your desk might fall into the category of a "yummy" or "filling" or "satisfying" snack, I highly doubt you can honestly tell me they’re anywhere near a combo or all three. Frankly those almonds make me really grumpy.
Here’s the thing with snacks: We have an abundance of food here in the US. No matter where you go you’re surrounded with snack foods that make it seem like snacking is a totally normal thing you can do all of time. Now, if you’re vacationing in Belgium for the first time, you may find yourself nibbling on chocolate or waffles or a stroopwafel or fries throughout the day. I mean, I’d go to bat saying you SHOULD be your first time.
But if you’re living your regular day-to-day, your snacks should serve a purpose: To fuel you when you've been hungry for a little while until you get to your next meal.
Snacks aren't supposed to exist to ease stress or to make you feel happier when you’re sad and that is an entire other subject (presented by the amazing Josh Hillis; click here). The snacks below should absolutely be enjoyed because they will give your nutrients, vitamins and minerals, will taste good and will help you not grab all of the food in sight at home because you were SO HUNGRY.
Alright, so why do I like these to-go snacks? I like them because they all have a combination of protein, fiber and a little fat which means they have the goods to be satiating and filling. And, given that a lot of my clients run around a lot, these snacks had to be able to be grabbed out of the fridge (and some can even be eaten in the car).
Without further ado, I present you with my seven favorite on-the-go snacks!
Turkey roll with hummus and sliced peppers
Of course turkey gives you a good dose of lean protein but the hummus also gives you a little bit of vitamin A, K as well as minerals like potassium and magnesium thanks to the chickpeas. Sliced pepper will add a nice crunch and some vitamin C. Just lay out a few slices of deli turkey, spread on some hummus and add in pepper slices. Season with a little cayenne if you like heat. You can totally make this in advance for the week!
Chia pudding with berries
Two tablespoons of chia seeds give you almost 5g of protein, 5g of omega 3s, and a whopping 10g of fiber! Berries add a good kick of fiber, too, as well as vitamins C, A, K, potassium, folate and calcium. You may want to prep these in advance, too, and keep them in the fridge for the week (or just make it the night before). Fill a small jar with 2 Tbsp of chia seeds, a pinch of cinnamon and a dash of honey (to taste). Next, add 3/4 cup of the milk of your choice (I recommend flax or oat milk because they have a thicker consistency). Close the lid and shake it like a cocktail shaker. Add in your berries (I normally use frozen ones) and stick in the fridge!
I posted my recipe for these so long ago but now they're all over Pinterest. They're definitely grab-and-go and if you make a BUNCH, go ahead and stick some in the freezer for the future! Note: I was on an elimination diet when I posted the recipe for these so you can be a little looser about your protein powder blend and sweetener of choice but the proportions for the recipe are the same. You just get a good dose of protein if that's a tough macro for you to get enough of (like, if you're vegan or vegetarian). The combo of protein and fat (from the coconut flakes) help even out the carbs from the banana and oats so you don't get a carb crash. Again, for the recipe, click here!
We order edamame at Japanese restaurants every time we go but can't seem to remember that Trader Joe's sells them in the freezer section! In just one cup of edamame in the shell, you get 4g of fiber and 10g of protein! Plus, they're incredibly easy to season to your taste: from salt flakes to old bay, truffle salt to tajiín, soy sauce to that amazing Japanese chili pepper blend shichimi togarachi... The possible flavor profiles are endless ;) Simply put that cup and your chosen seasoning in a container and take it with you!
These next few snacks fall into the category of yummy and best when you're out of town or truly have no time to prep at all. Quest Bars tout having around 20g of (whey) protein, 17g of fiber and very low in carbs (they use sugar alcohols to sweeten instead of sugar so although it brings down the carb count significantly, not everyone can stomach sugar alcohols; just be aware of that). I personally think the only flavors worth checking out are cookies and cream and chocolate chip cookie dough. Keep your intake of these to one per day; that fiber count in a sitting can be no joke if you're not used to getting that much in one go.
There are a lot of cool yogurts out there and Siggi's is one of my favorites. They do a great job making a yummy yogurt with relatively less sugar compared to most other brands. That said, their Icelandic-style yogurts have around 15g of protein in them! I'd recommend 2% milkfat for it to be more satiating (although the 0% ones are good, too!).
P3: Portable Protein Packs
I discovered P3 snacks on a road trip at a KwikTrip (shout out to my FAVORITE gas station shopping experience in Wisconsin!). Let's face it: When road tripping, it can feel like a treat to get snacks like chocolate or Doritos (I'm not alone here, right?). But when road trips are not a once-in-a-great-while occasion, finding a quality snack when you still have hours to go before your next meal can be challenging. I found these P3 snacks one day and they've been my go-tos. Now, I'm not saying these are healthier than those turkey hummus rollups above (they're not). But when faced with making the best choice for you in the moment, P3 might be it! They each have a meat (ham or turkey or chicken, etc) as well as a small handful of nuts like cashews or almonds and a little cheese. There are now other combinations but they're relatively well-balanced and at least have the fat and protein content to help keep you full.
I hope these snacks give you some fuel to keep in your back pocket or get your creativity going with other options! Which leads me to this question: What healthy, well-rounded snacks are YOUR favorites! Comment below!