Sometimes, your stomach just can’t make that stretch between breakfast and lunch or lunch and dinner. When that’s the case, it’s good to be prepared with snacks. But not just any snacks! We’ve rounded up 12 of our favorite healthy snack ideas to stave off hunger until your next meal. Some you can buy, others you can make; either way, we guarantee, you won’t be hangry.
1. Veggies and Dip
There’s really no downside to a snack that consists mainly of vegetables — all varieties of vegetables, starchy or not, provide your body with essential vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other nutrients. One classic veggie-packed snack is raw vegetables and hummus. Simply chop up some vegetables and dip in your favorite hummus.
Looking to make your own hummus? Try this recipe from Choosing Chia.
2. Dried Fruit & Nuts
Dried fruit and nuts, i.e. trail mix, are healthy snack ideas 101. Together, dried fruit and nuts are chock-full of fiber, healthy fats and protein, and vitamins and minerals to get you through that next stretch of work.
Buy it: Back to Nature Harvest Blend Trail Mix, $16
3. Fruit Salad
When your belly starts growling at you mid-morning, treat it to a refreshing bowl of fruit to hold you over until noon. You can cube or slice any variety of fruit to make your fruit bowl to taste, or you can purchase pre-made fruit bowls at most grocery stores.
Need some inspiration? Try this Honey Lime Rainbow Fruit Salad from Cooking Classy.
If fruit alone won’t cut it, add cottage cheese for an additional texture and flavor element, or sprinkle chia seeds on top for a crunch. For a protein boost, add some Greek yogurt and make it a parfait.
4. Roasted Chickpeas
When you want the savory mouthfeel of potato chips, but don’t want the questionable ingredients most potato chips are made with, try roasted chickpeas instead. This fiber-rich snack offers the same salty crunch, but with fewer calories and more health benefits: Because of their high fiber content, chickpeas can help with digestion, and their relatively high protein content (for a plant) can keep you full all afternoon.
Once you DIY these, you’ll never go back to store bought.
5. Sugar-Free Meat Sticks
Even when you work from home, you can still often feel like you’re on-the-go. Your “commute” is just shorter… You know, from the office to the kitchen and back again. Next time you’re passing through the kitchen, get back to work quickly by grabbing a sugar-free meat stick, which can offer long-lasting satiety from protein.
Buy it: Paleovalley 100% Grass Fed Beef Sticks, $23 for 10 sticks
When you’re really feeling peckish — as in, you could peck at some snacks for an hour or more — keep it healthy and relatively low-calorie with popcorn. Popcorn is extremely volumetric, meaning it has a low calorie density, as long as you don’t slather it with butter. Plus, it’s rich in fiber, so go ahead and peck!
Buy it: Angie’s BoomChickaPop Sea Salt Microwave Popcorn, $24 for 24 packs
7. Hard Boiled Eggs
Did you know that to facilitate muscle growth, you should eat at least 0.8 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight each day? For a 150-pound woman, that comes out to at least 120 grams of protein. Amp up your protein intake with one of the simplest, most natural snacks you could possibly eat: hard-boiled eggs.
8. Avocado Toast
Avocado toast is the perfect mini-meal: Fiber from whole-grain toast and healthy fats from avocado quiet your hunger and give long-lasting energy to make it through the last stretch of the work day. Between the grains and the avocado, this snack contains ample B vitamins, vitamin C, magnesium, and other essential nutrients.
Fresh avocados and whole-grain toast are the minimum you need for this universally loved snack. To spice things up a bit, try adding some toppings, such as minced garlic, sliced radishes, a fried egg, pickled onions, crushed red pepper… The options are endless! For more ideas, check out these recipes from Cookie and Kate.
9. Plantain Chips
What do you do when you want fruit, but also salt, but you’re not about to sprinkle salt on your fruit? Turn to fruit chips, of course. Plantain chips offer a salty, subtly sweet crunch — perfect for an afternoon pick-me-up.
Buy it: Artisan Tropic Plantain Strips With Sea Salt, $15 for 2 bags
10. Turkey Jerky
To be frank, it’s hard to find sugar-free jerky (turkey or otherwise) out there that isn’t in the form of sticks. However, there are some low-sugar turkey jerky products available, and they can stand as a lower-sodium, still craveable way to get some more protein into your day.
Buy it: Country Archer Hickory Smoke Turkey Jerky, $6 for 2.5 ounces
11. Seaweed Snacks
Wait, seaweed chips? Yes, it sounds strange, but hear us out: Seaweed is extremely rich in antioxidants, which are known to keep your immune system humming along smoothly. Seaweed also contains ample tyrosine and iodine, both of which support thyroid function. On top of that, seaweed is a sustainable food source and it’s low-calorie.
Buy it: Gimme Extra Virgin Olive Oil Seaweed Snacks, $15 for 20 packs
News flash: Snacks don’t always have to look so snack-y. When you’re craving something more hearty — but don’t feel hungry enough for a full meal — simply heat up a small portion of leftovers. Not only can this satisfy your tastebuds, but it’s a good way to add more veggies to your day (let’s be honest: many of us only eat veggies at meals).
Pro tip: For a super quick fix, give your plate a spin in the microwave, but know that leftovers reheat just as well (and often better) on the stovetop, in an oven or toaster oven, or in an air fryer.