If you've ever snacked your way through a jar of peanut butter in a day, you're probably pretty damn convinced that snacking is your worst enemy when it comes to weight loss.
But yeah, no. Snacks (you know, the healthy, well-portioned kind) can help ensure you don't get so damn hungry you just say "screw it!" and give up on your whole diet.
Still, whipping up your own perfectly portioned snack is way easier said than done. (Honestly, who knew a serving of peanut butter was only two measly tablespoons?!)
Make things a whole lot easier on yourself and whip up one of these healthy snacks for weight-loss instead. Some are low-cal/high fiber and some are high fat/high protein (looking at you, keto dieters). Basically, there’s something for everyone—and they’re all nutritionist-approved or direct from your favorite healthy food bloggers.
1. Sweet trail mix
“My ideal healthy snack combines a little of each of the macronutrients—protein, carbohydrates, and fats,” says Kath Younger, RD. "I love to rely on the combination of nuts and fruits, either fresh fruit or dried fruit for a longer shelf life. A small handful of trail mix is one of my favorite snacks that won't spoil my appetite for my next meal.”
Make it: Combine equal parts unsweetened dried fruit and unsalted roasted nuts (sorry, no M&Ms this time). Reach for a quarter cup of the mixture when you need a boost.
Per serving: 163 calories, 9 g fat (1 g saturated), 19 g carbs, 13 g sugar, 3 mg sodium, 2 g fiber, 5 g protein.
2. Double chocolate banana bread bars
These bars look decadent, but it’s only an illusion—bananas, almond flour, and coconut flour round out the ingredients in this sweet Paleo-approved treat. As an added bonus, the recipe offers substitutes for making it vegan.
Per serving (1 bar): 159 calories, 9.1 g fat, 15.5 g carbs, 4 g fiber, 3 g protein
3. Yogurt with nuts and berries
Younger adds a sprinkle of nuts to protein-rich fat-free yogurt for some satiating healthy fats. A small handful of berries or another chopped fruit will add texture and sweetness, plus filling fiber. It might sound basic, but it's a classic snack for a reason.
Make it: Combine 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, 2 tablespoons chopped nuts, and 1/2 cup berries in a bowl.
Per serving: 205 calories, 11 g fat (0 g saturated), 13 g carbs, 7 g sugar, 43 mg sodium, 1 g fiber, 16 g protein.
4. Healthy carrot cake oatmeal cookies
Don’t avoid these because they have the words “cake” and “cookies” in the name...this healthy spin on carrot cake cookies is packed with shredded carrots, fiber-rich walnuts and raisins, and heart-healthy oats for a guilt-free version of one of your favorite desserts.
Per serving (1 cookie): 136 calories, 6.6 g fat, 9 g carbs, 2 g fiber, 2.4 g protein
5. Sliced tomato with a sprinkle of feta and olive oil
This savory dish will make your taste buds happy. Tomatoes pack umami flavor, while feta adds tang and a little bit of salt.
Make it: Slice 1 medium tomato (or slice up 1/2 cup of cherry tomatoes), and top with 1 ounce feta and 1 teaspoon olive oil.
Per serving: 133 calories, 11 g fat (5 g saturated), 5 g carbs, 4 g sugar, 265 mg sodium, 1 g fiber, 5 g protein.
6. No-bake superfood energy bars
These energy bars won’t give you superpowers, though they do boast an impressive roster of superfoods—think pistachios, chia seeds, Medjool dates, and goji berries. You won’t be able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, but you’ll be able to tackle that late afternoon conference call with ease.
Per serving (1 bar): 234 calories, 14.2 g fat, 26.9 g carbs, 6 g fiber, 4.5 g protein
7. Shrimp and cocktail sauce
Shrimp are a great source of lean protein, and it’s easy to find them pre-cooked in any supermarket. (Plus, it makes snack time feel way fancier!)
Make it: Combine eight cooked, peeled, deveined shrimp with 1/4 cup cocktail sauce for dipping.
Per serving: 126 calories, 1 g fat (5 g saturated), 16 g carbs, 4 g sugar, 432 mg sodium, 1 g fiber, 14 g protein.
8. Chunky healthy granola
Skip the store-bought stuff and take the plunge into homemade granola: you’ll cut way back on sugar and other unnecessary ingredients, leaving plenty of room for a variety of seeds and nuts (all high in fiber and omega-3s).
Per serving (¼ cup): 210 calories, 12.3 g fat, 22.9 g carbs, 3.4 g fiber, 4.1 g protein
9. Baby carrots with "everything" hummus
Carrots and hummus are a great snack as-is, but adding a sprinkle of everything bagel seasoning (like this version from Trader Joe's!) will make your taste buds extra happy.
Make it: Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of everything bagel seasoning on top of 1/4 cup of regular hummus. Eat with 1 cup of baby carrots.
Per serving: 236 calories, 12 g fat (5 g saturated), 27 g carbs, 12 g sugar, 416 mg sodium, 10 g fiber, 6 g protein.
10. Vegetarian Black Bean Taco Cups
If you need a slightly bigger snack that packs a protein punch, try these mini black bean taco cups. They’re technically an appetizer, but all that means is you’ll have plenty of servings to freeze and grab whenever you need a filling bite.
Per serving (1 cup): 134 calories, 5.4 g fat, 17.6 g carbs, 2.6 g fiber, 4.4 g protein
11. 'Banana split'
Robin Plotkin, RD, suggests a healthy version of the classic dessert by halving a banana, then topping it with yogurt and nuts. It’s a delicious combo of carbs, protein, and healthy fat—more importantly, it’s super-fun to eat.
Make it: Slice a small banana in half vertically. Top the open banana face with 1/4 cup non-fat Greek yogurt and 2 tablespoons of chopped walnuts.
Per serving: 242 calories, 10 g fat (1 g saturated), 33 g carbs, 18 g sugar, 23 mg sodium, 4 g fiber, 10 g protein.
12. Green goddess hummus
If you’re just kind of “meh” about regular ol’ hummus, try this Green Goddess kind: fresh herbs give it a gorgeous color and a serious flavor boost. Enjoy with raw veggies to increase your fiber without adding fat or calories.
Per serving (¼ cup): 142 calories, 9.6 g fat, 11.6 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 4.5 g protein
13. Egg on toast
This healthy snack is great for breakfast lovers—it's as satisfying as a meal, but the slightly smaller portion size won't weigh you down. Plotkin recommends using hard-boiled eggs for convenience, which you can make ahead or buy. If you have access to a stove, you can also opt for a scrambled or fried egg.
Make it: Toast a slice of whole-grain toast. Top with one egg, cooked to your preference.
Per serving: 182 calories, 6 g fat (2 g saturated), 20 g carbs, 4 g sugar, 221 mg sodium, 3 g fiber, 11 g protein.
14. Crispy sweet potato fries
Fast food fries are a classic snack-attack weakness. That’s why you should bake up some sweet potato fries instead, for a snack that’s crispy and tender without all the grease.
Per serving: 263 calories, 7.1 g fat, 47.4 g carbs, 6.8 g fiber, 3.6 g protein
15. Chocolate milk
This might seem like just something for kids, but it's actually a pretty great snack—especially for replenishing post-workout thanks to the simple carbs from the chocolate and the milk's lactose.
Make it: Stir 1 tablespoon chocolate syrup into 1 cup 2 percent milk.
Per serving: 174 calories, 5 g fat (3 g saturated), 25 g carbs, 21 g sugar, 134 mg sodium, 1 g fiber, 8 g protein.
16. Peach and honey popsicles
Sure, topping Greek yogurt with fruit is a staple healthy snack. But if you need to switch things up, these popsicles take all the health benefits of yogurt parfait and cram them into flavorful frozen treats perfect for enjoying poolside.
Per serving (1 popsicle): 170 calories, 4.4 g fat, 31.3 g carbs, 1.3 g fiber, 3.9 g protein
17. White beans and olive tapenade
“Lately, I've been obsessed with kalamata olive tapenade,” says Kendra Tolbert, RD. “It’s a great combo of fiber, fat, protein, and resistant starch that'll keep you full and satisfied.” Tolbert eats it by the spoonful, but you can also scoop it up with a few whole-grain pita chips or cucumber slices.
Make it: Mix 1 teaspoon canned tapenade (such as Divinia) with 1/2 cup canned white beans (drained and rinsed).
Per serving: 126 calories, 4 g fat (0 g saturated), 20 g carbs, 1 g sugar, 121 mg sodium, 6 g fiber, 6 g protein.
18. Protein cookie dough
Maybe the thought of faux-cookie dough (made with chickpeas, vanilla protein powder, and almond butter) doesn’t appeal to you...but maybe you’ve never actually tried it. I mean, when it comes to healthy cookie dough or no cookie dough, we’ll take the healthy kind, thanksverymuch.
Per serving (¼ cup): 164 calories, 5 g fat, 19 g carbs, 4 g fiber, 10 g protein
19. Dates and pistachios
“It's the usual fruit and nuts combo, but a little more sophisticated,” says Tolbert. Dates have a honey-like sweetness, which combines with the strong flavor of pistachios into a snack that feels like dessert.
Make it: Combine 2 pitted dates with 2 tablespoons pistachios.
Per serving: 213 calories, 7 g fat (1 g saturated), 40 g carbs, 33 g sugar, 35 mg sodium, 5 g fiber, 4 g protein.
20. Almond Joy protein balls
It’s almost impossible to avoid the candy bowl at the office around 3 p.m. every day—unless you’ve got one or two of these Almond Joy-flavored bites sitting in the fridge calling your name. Indulge without spoiling your appetite for later.
Per serving (1 ball): 109 calories, 7 g fat, 9 g carbs, 2 g fiber, 5 g protein
21. Edamame with sea salt
Plotkin loves sprinkling edamame, in its shell or out, with a bit of sea salt. In addition to plant-based protein, you get fiber and a good dose of potassium.
Make it: Drizzle 1/2 cup shelled edamame with 1 teaspoon olive oil and a pinch of sea salt.
Per serving: 140 calories, 8 g fat (1 g saturated), 8 g carbs, 2 g sugar, 481 mg sodium, 1 g fiber, 8 g protein.
22. Baked kale chips
If you’ve got a savory tooth, it’s tough to pass up chips or crackers at snack time. Roasting kale chips is a great way to get that salty crunch without all the grease.
Per serving (1 bunch): 184 calories, 14 g fat, 7 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 3 g protein
23. PB-chocolate apple 'nachos'
This sounds crazy-indulgent, but it's actually a well-balanced snack, says Plotkin. You'll get protein and lots of fiber, which will help slow the digestion of the little bit of added sugar from dark chocolate (preventing a mid-afternoon crash).
Make it: Thinly slice a medium apple, then drizzle them with 1 tablespoon natural peanut butter and 1/2 ounce melted dark chocolate.
Per serving: 253 calories, 13 g fat (4 g saturated), 35 g carbs, 25 g sugar, 74 mg sodium, 7 g fiber, 4 g protein.
24. Chocolate-covered banana pops
Something about eating food on a stick just makes it more fun—especially when that food is covered in chocolate and tastes like it should have way more calories than it does.
Per serving (1 pop): 144 calories, 9 g fat, 21 g carbs, 6 g fiber, 2 g protein
25. Microwave egg taco
Get creative with your microwave and make a tasty snack with enough protein to carry you to your next meal.
Make it: “Crack one egg into a microwave-safe mug and cook for 90 seconds,” says Plotkin. Immediately stir in 1/2 ounce shredded cheddar, then serve inside a small whole-wheat tortilla.
Per serving: 182 calories, 10 g fat (5 g saturated), 11 g carbs, 1 g sugar, 360 mg sodium, 3 g fiber, 11 g protein.
26. Vitamin C tropical green smoothie
You don’t have to wait until sick season to whip up this vitamin C smoothie, but it would definitely help ward off the plague once it starts going around the office. Plus, it just looks pretty!
Per serving (⅕ of recipe): 283 calories, 7.1 g fat, 53 g carbs, 11.7 g fiber, 8.2 g protein
27. Roasted chickpeas
“If you're craving something salty and crunchy, roasted beans are a much better option than chips thanks to their combo of protein and fiber, says Jessica Levinson, RD.
Make it: Rinse and drain a can of chickpeas, then toss them with 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, salt, pepper, and whatever spice you want. Roast at 400° F for 30 minutes. Let cool slightly, then eat. One batch makes three servings.
Per serving: 160 calories, 8 g fat (1 g saturated), 17 g carbs, 2 g sugar, 292 mg sodium, 4 g fiber, 5 g protein.
28. Avocado chocolate mousse
Got ripe avocados? Tired of making guacamole? Put those avocados to unconventionally-good use by mixing them with chocolate for this healthy, creamy, totally-doesn’t-taste-like-avocados mousse.
Per serving: 146 calories, 13.1 g fat, 11.1 g carbs, 7.2 g fiber, 3.1 g protein
29. Almond butter crackers
“Peanut butter crackers serve as a quick option for people on the run, but the pre-packaged snack can have many hidden ingredients and calories,” says Shamera Robinson, RD. DIY it instead.
Make it: Spread 1 tablespoon almond butter (or any nut or seed butter) between 1 ounce whole grain crackers.
Per serving: 233 calories, 12 g fat (2 g saturated), 23 g carbs, 2 g sugar, 227 mg sodium, 5 g fiber, 8 g protein.
30. Fruit salad with citrus mint dressing
We know fruit salad can get B-O-R-I-N-G when you’re eating it day after day. This recipe jazzes up beautiful berries and banana slices with the bright flavors of citrus and mint to make your boring fruit salad a bold one.
Per serving (¼ of recipe): 117 calories, 0.8 g fat, 28.8 g carbs, 5 g fiber, 1.7 g protein
31. Homemade popcorn
“Popcorn is a great snack to fill up on,” says Robinson, thanks to all the fiber. And you don't have to stick with the plain stuff, either. “Try sprinkling garlic powder and dried rosemary (or Italian seasoning) for extra flavor,” suggests Robinson.
Make it: Pop 3 tablespoons of popcorn kernels in 1/2 Tbsp canola oil in a large saucepan on the stove. Top with your favorite herbs or spices.
Per serving: 161 calories, 6 g fat (1 g saturated), 28 g carbs, 0 g sugar, 15 mg sodium, 5 g fiber, 4 g protein.
32. Banana mocha smoothie
Now you don’t have to choose between your midday moccachino and something nutritious—this smoothie combines cold brew coffee with frozen bananas and cocoa powder for a healthy snack option with a jolt of caffeine.
Per serving: 288 calories, 7.2 g fat, 46.9 g carbs, 4.9 g fiber, 14.3 g protein
33. DIY ranch dip with veggies
“Greek yogurt it a great high-protein snack that is usually sweet. However, you can easily turn that into a savory snack by adding ranch-dip seasoning mix,” says Kamaria Mason, RD.
Make it: Stir 1 tablespoon ranch seasoning mix (such as Hidden Valley) into 1/2 cup low-fat Greek yogurt. Use 1 cup carrot or cucumber sticks for dipping.
Per serving: 142 calories, 3 g fat (1 g saturated), 18 g carbs, 9 g sugar, 395 mg sodium, 4 g fiber, 9 g protein.
34. Garlic dill sunflower dip
If you're not into chickpeas, but you're craving the texture of hummus, give sunflower dip a shot—it’s made basically the same way, but with seeds instead of chickpeas. And, just like hummus, it tastes great with raw veggies.
Per serving (¼ cup): 212 calories, 19.5 g fat, 7 g carbs, 2.5 g fiber, 5.7 g protein
35. Cottage cheese with almonds and honey
“This creamy-crunchy-sweet combo is second to none,” says Robinson. The cottage cheese is rich in protein, while almonds add crunch and healthy fats. And a hint of honey makes things sweet without going overboard on added sugar.
Make it: Top 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese with 2 tablespoons slivered almonds and 1 teaspoon honey.
Per serving: 196 calories, 10 g fat (2 g saturated), 12 g carbs, 10 g sugar, 363 mg sodium, 2 g fiber, 17 g protein.
36. Golden milk snack bites
If you have no clue what golden milk is, you’re missing out. This dairy-free drink, usually served hot, is loaded with anti-inflammatory turmeric and ginger--and now you can enjoy the flavors (and health benefits) of golden milk in portable little snack bites that are low-cal, low-carb, and low-fat.
Per serving (1 bite): 96 calories, 6.5 g fat, 7.5 g carbs, 1.6 g fiber, 2.9 g protein
37. Jicama sticks and guacamole
“Guacamole usually tops the list of favorite dips, but tortilla chips aren’t the only crunchy thing you can pair with it,” says Robinson. “Try dipping a fresh veggie!” Jicama is sweet and crunchy, and can be a nice alternative to the usual carrot or cucumber sticks.
Make it: Slice up jicama to get 1 cup of matchstick slices, and dip into 1/4 cup guacamole.
Per serving: 137 calories, 8 g fat (0 g saturated), 16 g carbs, 2 g sugar, 91 mg sodium, 10 g fiber, 2 g protein.
38. Creamy dragon fruit smoothie bowl
This smoothie bowl is a great way to experiment with dragon fruit if you’ve never tried it before, blending the tropical fruit with raspberries, bananas, and protein powder for a filling snack.
Per serving (1 bowl): 225 calories, 1.6 g fat, 48 g carbs, 10.4 g fiber, 8.1 g protein
39. Beef or turkey jerky with raisins
“The ideal snack is portable and packed with satisfying lean protein,” says Nicole Rodriguez, RD. Beef jerky fits the bill, and most brands pack at least 12 grams of protein for less than 100 calories. Look for jerky with less than 400 mg sodium per ounce. Pair with raisins for some energizing carbs and filling fiber.
Make it: Combine 1 ounce of jerky with 2 tablespoons raisins.
Per serving: 147 calories, 1 g fat (1 g saturated), 19 g carbs, 3 g sugar, 390 mg sodium, 1 g fiber, 15 g protein.
40. Sugar-free coconut carob bars
Put down the Hershey’s bar and pick up one of these sugar-free bars instead. Made with nutrient-rich carob powder (which is similar to cocoa powder but sweeter), it’s a powerhouse of tasty but good-for-you ingredients. You could even couple it with some fresh fruit or a small serving of nonfat Greek yogurt.
Per serving (1 bar): 120 calories, 11.2 g fat, 5 g carbs, 2.6 g fiber, 1.2 g protein
41. Pear and string cheese
If you love fancy cheese plates for their combination of sweet, salty, and creamy flavors, you’ll love this less-fussy snack. Pears have natural sugar and lots of fiber, while string cheese is an easy way to get some satiating fat and protein in on the go.
Make it: Slice one medium pear. Eat with one low-fat string cheese (such as Sargento).
Per serving: 182 calories, 6 g fat (4 g saturated), 27 g carbs, 17 g sugar, 172 mg sodium, 6 g fiber, 8 g protein.
42. Watermelon sashimi
If you love sushi, but you're looking for morning snack material, this watermelon sashimi hits the spot. At just 16 calories per bite, you can fill up without filling out.
Per serving (1 piece): 16 calories, 0.8 g fat, 2.2 g carbs, 1 g fiber, 0.3 g protein
43. Blueberry and peach green tea popsicles
Too hot outside for your usual afternoon cup of green tea? Freeze your favorite bev into popsicle molds with fresh summer blueberries and peaches, and enjoy a refreshing treat chock full of antioxidants.
Per serving (1 popsicle): 33 calories, 0.2 g fat, 8.2 g carbs, 1 g fiber, 0.4 g protein
44. Cajun-spiced savory trail mix
Trade your standard trail mix for this cajun-spiced one, which throws some unique mix-ins (edamame, pumpkin seeds, and crushed tortilla chips) together with paprika, cayenne, and crushed chili flakes for a snack that will fire you up during your afternoon slump.
Per serving (1 popsicle): 203 calories, 14.4 g fat, 13.5 g carbs, 2.8 g fiber, 8 g protein
45. Homemade chocolate chip granola bars
Yeah, this one’s a classic—but for good reason. Homemade granola bars cut back on sugar and fat without sacrificing flavor, and offer fiber (rolled oats), omega 3s (almonds and flaxseed meal), and a much-needed pick-me-up (chocolate chips).
Per serving (1 bar): 240 calories, 14 g fat, 28 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 4 g protein
46. Five-minute healthy strawberry frozen yogurt
That froyo shop down the street is tempting, but when you can make your own froyo at home in five minutes (at just 100 calories per cup), why would you pay money for a snack loaded with sugar and artificial ingredients?
Per serving (1 cup): 100 calories, 0 g fat, 27 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 2 g protein
47. Banana ice cream
Okay, this one is a bit of a cheat: it’s not actually “ice cream,” per se, but it is frozen banana blended into an ice cream consistency and finished off with your favorite toppings for a healthy and low-cal alternative.
Per serving (1 banana): 105 calories, 0 g fat, 27 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 1 g protein
48. Pumpkin pie dip
All the yummy, fall flavors of pumpkin pie in a lightened-up package, perfect for dipping tart green apples into or spreading on a fat-free graham cracker.
Per serving (½ cup): 105 calories, 4 g fat, 21 g carbs, 1 g fiber, 4 g protein
49. Coconut lime raspberry chia pudding
Don’t have the cash to take a beach vacation this year? No worries, eating this chia pudding—with summery coconut, lime, and raspberry—will have you convinced you’re on an island somewhere, and those plumped-up little chia seeds will satisfy your appetite for hours.
Per serving (1 cup): 157 calories, 10 g fat, 15 g carbs, 10 g fiber, 4 g protein
50. Cranberry pistachio dark chocolate bark
Heads-up, chocolate lovers: this cranberry pistachio bark is loaded with antioxidants, vitamin C, fiber, and potassium. Pair it with a handful of fat-free berries to round out this sweet afternoon indulgence.
Per serving (1 oz): 126 calories, 8.1 g fat, 15.3 g carbs, 2.1 g fiber, 2.6 g protein
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