Portable and Nutrient-Rich Snacks – Balancing the demands of daily life while also trying to eat nutritious foods can be tricky. It’s tempting to opt for convenience over health — especially with so many fast food and vending machine options available. But reaching for a snack that’s filled with sugar or a long list of unreadable ingredients isn’t the best choice.
When your energy dips between meals, it’s important to eat something nutrient-dense to tide you over until your next meal. Snacks with high sugar content or low fiber won’t keep you full as long as protein and fiber-rich foods will. They also won’t provide a sustaining source of energy, which can result in another energy crash later.
The best snacks provide a combination of protein, fats, and carbohydrates. Your body takes the longest to digest meals that feature all three key nutrient groups. Together, those key components will increase your satiety and create stable blood sugar levels.
Convenience doesn’t have to mean compromising when it comes to the quality of ingredients. These snacks are easy to eat on the go while still offering plenty of nutrition.
Fruits and Veggies
Fruits and vegetables are some of the most nutritious and filling foods that you can eat. But they’re often what gets ignored when you’re in a hurry or too hungry to make a full meal.
Fortunately, there are plenty of fruits that naturally make great on-the-go snacks. Bananas and apples are easy to take with you wherever you go. Try pairing either fruit with a squeezable pouch of nut butter for a more filling treat.
The following options also make delicious and nutrient-dense snacks:
1. Drinkable Greens
Don’t have time to prepare veggies? Drinking your greens is an easy way to ensure you’re still getting those important nutrients. Super greens powder is a simple and tasty way to combine a variety of fruits and vegetables into one convenient beverage.
2. Veggies and Hummus
Made from chickpeas, hummus is a great source of protein and comes in a variety of flavors. Pair it with carrot sticks, cherry tomatoes, and sliced bell peppers for a simple way to eat more veggies.
3. Berries and Yogurt
Berries are a nutrient-rich treat that is also chock full of antioxidants. Add berries to some plain Greek yogurt for a delicious and protein-filled snack.
4. Apples or Celery and Nut Butter
Apple quarters and celery sticks taste delish with a spoonful or two of nut butter. This is a great option for kids and picky eaters.
5. Prefab Smoothies
Love drinking smoothies but don’t like how long it takes to make them? For a modest time investment, you can prep the ingredients for several smoothies at once. Cut up and portion out all of the ingredients into individual bags, then freeze them. Next time you want a smoothie, all you have to do is dump the bag of ingredients into the blender.
Protein, Fats, and Grains
Protein, fats, and grains all provide important nutrients for the body. Protein allows the body to build and repair muscle and tissue and supports the immune system. Once-vilified fats provide a great source of energy and help regulate blood sugar levels. Whole grains are an easily accessible energy source for the body that provide a valuable source of fiber.
One of the most ubiquitous snacks out there is the granola bar. But just because it’s popular doesn’t mean it has a nutritious combination of protein, fats, and grains. Whenever possible, stay away from bars that have high grain and sugar content but minimal protein or fat. And in general, prioritize pairing a grain or carbohydrate with a protein or fat to increase satiety.
Here are some great snack options that provide nutritious sources of protein, fats, and whole grains.
6. Jerky and Meat Sticks
Jerky and meat sticks are a great source of protein that’s easy to keep on hand. Snackers can choose from a wide variety of options — from beef to turkey and even bison meat.
7. Hard-Boiled Eggs
Hard-boiled eggs are a simple-to-make, protein-filled snack you can take with you. Save yourself time by peeling the eggs in advance and placing them in reusable containers for grab-and-go convenience.
8. Nuts, Trail Mix, and Nut Butter
Nuts are a great way to get a combination of protein and fats all in one bite. Keep a jar or bag of nuts or trail mix on hand for an emergency snack solution. Or keep several squeezable pouches of nut butter tucked away in a bag or a drawer for a fast snack.
9. Charcuterie on the Go
Charcuterie doesn’t have to be fancy to be nutritious. While the occasional slice of salami won’t hurt you, smoked turkey makes for tasty snacking with less saturated fat. Add a mini wedge of Parmesan and some nuts and whole-grain crackers for a delicious, filling snack.
10. Canned Tuna and Crackers
Canned tuna packs the protein, plus it’s easy to store in a drawer or pantry. Pair it with some whole-grain crackers for a satisfying nosh.
Don’t let your active lifestyle get in the way of eating well. These snacks are great options to have on hand for when your schedule gets the best of you. That way, you can keep doing what’s important to you without having to compromise on health.