Friday, 7 February 2014

10 Afternoon Snacks!

Hey guys! Sometimes I have a hard time coming up with new ideas for snacks. Mostly for snacks after lunch. I try to stay away from too much sugar after I eat lunch. That way, when the food on the top of your stomach finally gets digested, you don't have all this excess sugar going into in your system, which ends up spiking your insulin levels, leading to weight gain -> Thumbs down.

Making healthy snack sounds easy enough right? Well, it wasn't for me. When I started doing this, I pretty much only felt like I could eat veggies and hummus for a snack. Which, don't get me wrong, is tasty! But, I don't love it enough to have it 5 days in a row.

So that got me thinking, what are some super tasty AND healthy snacks I can eat not only after lunch, but whenever I want?! And so, I made a list of easy and tasty snacks! Hopefully it helps you too! I try to have some kind of veggie, along with a protein to keep me feeling full and energized. 

1. Veggies and Hummus

Okay, I know I was just complaining about this snack above. But it actually can be super tasty. You can use any veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, cucumber, celery, radishes, cherry tomatoes, or peppers - I love roasting mine!) Once you've selected your favorite veggies, add some hummus! Costco has these perfect little portion sized packs or regular hummus right now. They're delicious. You can buy some hummus, or make your own! It's super easy. 

2. Pickles wrapped in Chicken Breast

This snack idea comes from years ago, when my mom, my siblings, and I would go to the Dutch store to get groceries. I don't know who came up with the idea, but I'd like to thank them. I seriously looove pickles! I could eat them for days. And a great way to get extra protein is by wrapping some lunch meat around it. Whe I was younger, we used salami, but you can use almost any kind - beef, turkey, ham, chicken - and wrap it on up to have a super tasty treat! 

3. Beef Jerky and Snapea Crisps 

Another Costco favorite is their Snappea Crisps. They basically look like dehydrated peas, but taste like slightly salted chips. Honestly, I like them better than potato chips. And they come in convenient 100 calorie packs! Need some protein? Add in some Beef Jerkey! Although make sure it's not heavily loaded with salt! Hard pass on that one. My family gets some from this little shop that specializes in making it, so it's fresh and has low sodium in it. Win-win! 

4. Mixed Nuts and Veggies 

You can get mixed nuts from pretty much anywhere. They're super tasty and rich in nutrients. Just make sure you get the unsalted kind! Otherwise they can load on the salt to an unnecessary point. If you like yours salted, try roasting them in the oven and adding some Himilayan pink salt, or sea salt to them. You can still have them tasty, but you're avoiding the high levels of sodium, which do not do nice things to your body! Have a handful of those with your favorite veggies and you're set! 

5. Bean salad w/ chickpeas 

Again, I love Costco. They make the best stuff! I love this bean salad they have. It's marinated in some kind of vinegar and tastes soo good! It's even a little sweet. It has chickpeas, red kidney beans, green and white beans, onion, and maybe even something else....either way! It's delish!!

6. Rice/Quinoa Cakes

I've loved rice cakes since I can remember. Especially the cheddar flavor one. Talk about heaven in your mouth! Mmm Mmm Mmm. So, you can imagine, I was very happy to find out that they're a healthy snack! Plus you can add whatever you want on top of it! Think of it like a mini open-faced sandwich. If you can find them, quinoa cakes are dang tasty! I found some at (guess where!) Costco. Either one of the two works, and they're relatively low in calories which means, you can eat more!!  

7. Amy's Organic Cheddar Bunny Grams 

The snack that smiles back! Remember the Goldfish commercials? ...until you bite their heads off....(I always thought that part was a little strange). Anyway, I loved them as a kid, and who says you can't enjoy the tasty treat now?! You can! Plus you can have it healthy. This brand has packs of 3 flavors (chocolate, honey, and cheddar), and they all taste good! Enjoy them with some veggies or some form of protein. Now go buy some. You can thank me later. 

8. Kale Chips

Now, don't knock this until you try it guys! Personally, I think kale chips are sent from above. And they are super easy to make! All you need is some olive oil, salt, pepper, and whatever other spices you feel like! Set that oven and bake away. Just make sure you don't leave them in for too long because they burn easily. Cut up, or break off, large chunks of this leafy green since they do shrink a little when cooked. Also, if you want to buy some that are even tastier than homemade ones, I whole heatedly recommend Kale Krunch. I think it's the cashews and nutritional yeast they use that gives it such a crunchy texture. I'm gonna try it one of these days! 

9. Kind, Lära, Luna, Vega, or Clif bars

If you're in a rush, a bar is your best friend! There are many that are good for you, but also many that are bad and and laden with chemicals and fake ingredients that will spike your blood sugar levels and lead to a drop in energy later on. These bars have sugar, but it's all natural, which means your body recognizes then and can utilize them more effectively. Still it's better to have less sugar in the afternoon. All these bars (and more!) are good for your body and give it nutrients it can use, without compromising taste. Sound good? It is. :) 

10. Nut Butter and Celery

Remember ants on a log from your childhood? Well, I'm bringing it back. You can use raisins, or opt them out. Make sure you're choosing a natural butter to put on the celery so you avoid nasty chemicals being put into your body. I love almond or peanut butter, but I've heard walnut is delicious also!

-And if these ideas aren't enough, feel free to check out my instagram for more ideas! :)

Have a lovely Friday my friends!




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