As someone who always packs snacks everywhere, having healthy snacks prepped in advance is crucial. Here are some of my favorites that are quick and easy!
Hello, wonderful readers! One thing you guys may or may not know about me is that I am always eating. Right now, as I type this post, I have LunchSkins bags full of dried fruit, nuts, and chips for snacks to eat while I’m at work. I am always prepared for major snackage, mainly because I have a super-fast metabolism and if I don’t eat enough or soon enough, I hit the deck. It’s not fun. So, Julie packs her bags full of healthy snacks to get through the day. Let me tell you, it’s not that easy either! Since I try to eat pretty healthy and avoid overly processed and packaged foods, it’s not as simple as grabbing a cheap granola bar and heading out the door. Plus, that’s so not enough food for me. If you’re like me, or just want some extra yummy and healthy snack ideas to prep in advance, this is the post for you. So sit back, relax, and scroll through some of my favorite go-to healthy snacks that I can make quickly and have ready to grab and go.
Via Daily Burn
Overnight Oats: We’ve talked about this one many times, but it’s still one of my favorite go-to snack ideas. It’s pretty healthy, you can make it super cheap, and you can make a ton at a time. They stay good in the fridge for weeks, and you can customize them and change them up all the time, so hooray for variety!
I’ve made these one of two ways: either in lots of little jars for grab and go ease, or in a bigger container to spoon into a jar in the morning. It depends on my mood, really. When making the little jars, I follow the recipe I talk about in my post here, and customize from there, adding spices, fruits, nuts, whatever. In the morning, I grab the whole jar and a spoon (that part is crucial, guys) and go. Sometimes I spoon yogurt into it before I leave.
If I don’t have room in the fridge for a multitude of jars, I make a big container of overnight oats, just plain ones. Milk, oats, vanilla, chia. Let it sit in the container, and in the morning I’ll spoon some into a jar and customize from there. It all depends on my fridge space at the time. There are hundreds of recipes online to make overnight oats that taste like everything from coffee to cinnamon rolls, blueberry pie to tropical drinks, so you’re bound to find ones you like!
Trail mix is so easy to make, and something most people like. It’s easy to grab and go, and can also be customized. I don’t like store bought ones very often because they’re usually too salty (or not salty enough) and they can have a lot of ingredients I’m allergic to. So, homemade it is! You can buy everything you need to make trail mix in the bulk section at most supermarkets, where everything is also cheaper. Trail mix combines salty, sweet, chewy, and crunchy all together to make an awesome treat.
Items you can add would be any kind of nut or seed (or many kinds of nuts or seeds, the more the better!), dried fruits (raisins, craisins, and dried blueberries are really good here), and the occasional chocolate piece or coconut flake for fun. I typically like to combine cashews, almonds, sunflower seeds, dried blueberries and cranberries, and dark chocolate chips. I am fortunate enough to be able to buy raw cashews very cheap ($5 a pound) at a local farmer’s market, and I roast them with salt to make them perfect.
And, the fun thing about trail mix is there’s not really a recipe to follow. Just toss things together until you like it! I would start with about a cup of each of the groups (nuts and seeds, fruit, extras), and mix together slowly. I have noticed that I like about an even amount of nuts to dried fruit, and maybe ⅔ of that amount of chocolate. Experiment until you like what you have! Then, package in baggies or containers, and they’re ready for the week!
Homemade Granola: If you’ve never made homemade granola, you’re in for a treat. This one will take longer to prep, but the cool thing is you throw everything into a casserole dish and bake, turning occasionally, until everything is crunchy. So, this is something I’ll start first, and then do the rest of my prepping and house cleaning until this is done.
I have a base recipe I use, then I just kind of throw things in from there. I am the queen of not really having measurements in my easy snack recipes. I start with 4c rolled oats, 1c nuts and seeds, ½c dried fruit, 1tbs oil (like canola, hemp, coconut), ¼c honey or maple syrup, and about 1tbs of spices like cinnamon or anything else (not always included). I start by mixing everything that’s dry, and go until I like the way it looks. Sometimes I add more seed, more fruits, or add more variety. Then, add the liquid. Mix until coated, place in oven at about 300 degrees. It might take half an hour, it might take longer. It depends on how much you have. I usually average about 45 minutes. When it’s crunchy, but not burnt, take out and let cool. It’s ready to package or ready for eating!
Chips and Veggies with Hummus: If you didn’t figure out from my hummus post, I love hummus. I make it several times a month. I basically keep a huge stock of canned chickpeas in my pantry. On the weekend, I’ll try to make a big container of hummus. It takes just a few minutes in the morning to spoon some into a container and grab my bag of pita chips (anyone else carry an entire bag of chips in their purse? Just me?). But, if I know I’ll be in a rush, I’ll take a few small containers and go ahead and portion some out ahead of time. Depending on the hummus I have made, I’ll also take carrots, celery, cucumbers, and if you’re into bell peppers or tomatoes you can add those too. Wash and cut them in advance for ease, and make premade veggie bags to toss into your lunch bag or purse. Veggie bags also make good quick snacks on their own!
Frozen Fruit Yogurt Parfaits: If you remember from my smoothie post (or my fruits post), I have a lot of frozen fruit pretty much all of the time. What’s a fantastic and easy snack to make with frozen fruit? Yogurt parfaits! I sometimes prepare these partially in advance (meaning I take my fruit and place it in the mason jar in the freezer to finish in the morning), but usually I just make them when I get up. I take a half pint mason jar, fill it about halfway with frozen fruits (banana is my favorite, but I have also done mixed berries), then top it with yogurt. Easy peasy. Sometimes I add chia and flax seeds immediately; sometimes I add them right before I eat it. I’ll also take some of my trail mix or granola and mix it in as well. Adding the granola is awesome, because it gives you an added crunch and pop of flavor.
And there are my go-to snacks! What do you think? Are there any you might make on your own? What would you add or change? Let me know in the comments below, and don’t forget to share this post with all your fellow foodies. And, as always, stay creative, my friends!
**Featured image via Dal Student Life