Meet Alex Caspero
Alex Caspero is a Registered Dietitian, New York Times Bestselling Plant-Based Chef and mom of two. She aims to cut through the nutrition noise by providing real-life, nourishing tips for body and mind. Learn more about Alex.
More than 90% of US adults eat two to three snacks daily. That’s a good thing if your go-to snacks are nutrient-dense, but not-so-great if those choices are high in salt, sugar, and saturated fat– and little else.
Snacking can seem like a slippery slope when trying to eat better. While nutritious, balanced snacks can curb appetite and help you eat less, those choices are often harder to find. The snack aisle is typically filled with highly processed snacks– chips, cookies, candy, and cheese puffs, not exactly items most of us should be eating more of.
That doesn’t mean that snacks can’t be part of a healthy diet. As Whitney English, Registered Dietitian and co-founder of Plant-Based Juniors’ explains, “the best snack choices contain protein, fiber, and healthy fats, a hunger-crushing combo that will satisfy you between meals.”
These are the best store-bought snacks, according to nutrition experts.
Pumpkin seeds contain protein, iron, fat, and fiber while low in carbohydrates. It is a top choice for Melissa Hooper, MS, RD of Bite-Size Nutrition. She prefers these snacking seeds as they “taste amazing, come in 1-ounce packages, are organic, gluten-free, vegan, nut-free and dairy-free.”
They come in various flavors and make for a great on-the-go snack or addition to salads and other dishes.
Peanut butter lovers, these delicious bars are for you. With a balanced mix of satisfying nutrients, including 7g (9% DV) of plant-based protein, CLIF Nut Butter Bars are a snack-time must for Alex Caspero, Registered Dietitian at Delish Knowledge. These bars are made with organic nut butter and rolled oats for a quick, easy snack that can help satisfy hunger.
These crunchy fava beans are vegan, gluten-free, and soy free, making it a great plant-based satisfying snack. They also pair well with a nice chianti. According to Registered Dietitian Sheri Berger, “Fiber and protein are known to have a high satiety factor, meaning it helps you feel full longer compared to other types of nutrients. This combination also helps stabilize your blood sugar levels.”
These seaweed snacks are a go-to choice for dietitian and mom of three Dani Lebovitz, MS, RDN, founder of Kid Food Explorers. She likes that these snacks are the perfect salty, crunchy, nutrient-dense food for families. Additionally, Dani says, “Seaweed provides a boost of antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids, delivering health-protective benefits with each bite.”
Lisa Young, Ph.D., RDN, Author of Finally Full, Finally Slim, love having a handful of nuts for a snack, as a little goes a long way. Her favorite snack is nuts: “nuts are a healthy fat, and some nuts like walnuts contain omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for our diet.”
“Biena chickpea snacks are my favorite packaged snack,” says Melissa Mitri, MS, RD, Nutrition Writer and Owner of Melissa Mitri Nutrition. Not only do they contain both protein and fiber to help curb cravings, but they are also delicious and portable. Mitri adds, “If you love crunchy, salty snacks, these are great to keep on hand and help keep your blood sugar levels steady.”
A single serving of Unbound walnuts provides plant-based protein and Omega 3 ALA essential fatty acids, immune-boosting minerals, antioxidants, and other essential nutrients that support energy, brain function, and heart health. Whitney English, MS, RD of Plant-Based Juniors like that these contain minimal ingredients and allow walnuts to be just as crave-able as other salty snacks, like chips.
Hippeas White Cheddar Chickpea Puffs are Chelsea LeBlanc, RDN, owner of Chelsea LeBlanc Nutrition favorite grab-and-go snacks! She says, “One serving has 4 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber, making it a filling snack that powers me through to my next meal.” According to the current 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, we should aim for 1.5 cups of beans, peas, lentils, or chickpeas each week. “This crunchy snack is a convenient and tasty way to sneak some beans in!”
If you like BBQ chips, you’ll love these Savory BBQ pistachios. This savory snack contains a host of nutrients and antioxidants. Christine Milmine, RDN, adds, “Not only are pistachios fun to crack, but they also contain healthy fats, plant-based protein, and fiber! This combo could help you feel more satisfied.
There are many Bobo products and flavors, but this lemon poppyseed version is the go-to pick for Jessie Carpenter, MA, MS, RD, LD, owner of Nutrition Prescription. “Both the lemon poppyseed bars or bites because it curbs my sweet tooth. They are chewy in texture and hold up well if crammed into a bag for an on-the-go snack. Furthermore, they are gluten- and dairy-free; are very low sodium; and provide 3g protein and 2g fiber each.”
Yes, trail mix is a dietitian-approved snack. Especially brands that contain whole nuts, seeds, naturally sweet dried fruit, and minimal chocolate. Jill Merkel MS, RD, CSSD, LD, says. “Any nuts or trail mix is a good source of fat, which helps you to feel satisfied longer.”
Guacamole singles paired with veggies and tortilla chips offer a well-rounded snack solution. Kristin Draayer, MS, RDN, CPT, chose these because “the guacamole provides healthy fats, the veggies add fiber and micronutrients, and the tortilla chips provide carbohydrates to keep you energized and satisfied.” In addition, this snack is easy to take on the go, making it a convenient option for busy lifestyles.
Not just for kids! Patricia Kolesa MS, RDN, owner of The Dietitian Dish, chooses these Go-Go Squeez Applesauce Packs as “they’re an easy way to get a serving of fruit in one pack on the go. Each pouch contains 3 g of fiber, plus they’re under the travel size requirements, so you can easily take them as a snack on a flight!”
These GFB Instant Oatmeal packs are a must for Sara Haas, RDN, LDN, author of Taco! Taco! Taco! “I love these GFB Instant Oatmeal packs for many reasons. First, I love that the packaging also serves as the bowl! It’s also low in sugar but has plenty of flavor.” Great for on-the-go snacking, traveling, and camping.
This article was produced by Delish Knowledge and syndicated.
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