A handful of nuts can really hit the spot, both in terms of satisfying hunger and packing in quality nutrition at snack time. If you choose walnuts, a palm-ful (about half a cup) brings in 9 grams of protein, plus omega-3 essential fatty acids, fiber and a decent dose of copper and manganese. Give your taste buds a new take these healthy faves with a dash of spice and some sea salt, baking for 15 minutes to add crispy crunch.
Ta ta, tomatoes! This salsa’s gone tropical, filled with chunks of mango, colorful peppers and fresh, flavorful herbs. Scoop it up with whole-grain crackers or organic blue corn chips for a healthy, hearty snack. It’s also great on grilled salmon (who needs creamy sauce?) or piled on a bean burger as a sweet and colorful condiment. Dip, dunk and heap on to your heart’s content—the whole bowl comes with just 311 calories and a little more than a single gram of fat.
Poppers made with peppers are spicy, deep fried and stuffed with gooey, melted cheese. For a lighter, milder, hot-from-the-oven snack, try these creative veggie bites. Crunchy chunks of cauliflower are tossed with olive oil and herbs, then coated with nutritional yeast for a cheesy taste without the dairy. Baked, not fried, they’re OK to pop in your mouth any time the munchies strike!
Piled high, nachos are more of a meal than an appetizer. But if you fill your plate with deep-fried chips, clogging cheese and over-the-top toppings, your tummy may be headed for trouble. Instead, sub in healthy favorites, starting with oven-baked sweet potato chips. Black beans, fresh guac and creamy Greek yogurt are stacked in the center for easy dipping. Keep it light and vegan, or add extra-lean ground turkey seasoned with Mexican spices if you like meat.
Simple. Satisfying. Healthy. Heavenly? With just 364 calories and 4 grams of fat, this light, layered breakfast is a dieter’s dream. Start the day with creaminess, crunch and a kick start from a cleverly mixed-in scoop of protein powder. Pre-make parfaits for easier mornings, drizzling on honey until just before serving.
They may not be able to tow you on water skis, but these flavorful vegan “boats” do make the perfect healthy appetizer for any party. They’re also filling enough to serve as a main course. Plus, it’s fun to fool your non-vegan friends with the convincingly authentic appearance of the crumbled walnut “meat!”
If you dread dry, bland diet breakfast food (fiber cereal, anyone?), these moist muffins will make mornings happy again. With just 136 calories and a single gram of fat, they’re a light, sweet start to the day or a deliciously guilt-free mid-morning snack. Bananas boost energy, while fiber-rich flaxseed fills you up, keeping those weight-loss efforts on track!
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