If you are like me, you know that getting the “food-cranks” can be a nightmare for yourself and everyone around you. To keep the “food cranks” at bay, I need to eat something every few hours. So I try to keep a stash of healthy, high protein snacks on hand: in my purse, at my office, and in my car.
I also try to make sure my high protein snacks contain healthy fats and are low in sugar. That way they “stick to my ribs” longer and help me get through the day with out spiking and crashing my blood sugar.
There are a lot of new “healthy” protein bars on the market these days, and I’ve tried a few of them. But watch the sugar content. Most of them are still very high in sugar, and are really more like a candy bar. Remember the World Health Organization’s recommended guidelines of not eating more than 25 grams of added sugar a day (6 teaspoons.) Some of the protein bars have upwards of 15 grams of added sugar!
Many of them also use soy protein which I try to avoid because it’s highly processed and likely GMO. If the label doesn’t say “organic” or “non-gmo” it’s almost guaranteed to be GMO soy.
I also really prefer savory snacks over sweet snacks. But I have yet to find any packaged protein bars in savory flavors, like curry, teriyaki or garlic and herb. I keep waiting for someone to come out with one—maybe I’ll just have to make my own?
Healthy Vegan Snacks
Being vegan can make it a bit more difficult to figure out high protein snacks.
Nuts and seeds are a great snack, as are veggies and hummus, or apples and almond butter. But I’m always on the lookout for new things to try. So when I saw the recipe for these quick energy snacks I wanted to give them a try.
No-Bake Energy Bites*
1 cup (dry) oatmeal (I used gluten-free oats)
2/3 cup toasted coconut flakes
1/2 cup peanut butter or almond butter
1/2 cup ground flaxseed or wheat germ
1/2 cup chocolate chips or cacao nibs (optional)
1/3 cup honey or maple syrup
1 TBSP chia seeds (optional)
1 tsp vanilla extract
Stir all ingredients together in a medium bowl until thoroughly mixed. Cover and let chill in the refrigerator for half an hour.
Once chilled, roll into balls about 1″ in diameter.
Store in an airtight container and keep refrigerated for up to 1 week.
Makes about 20-25 balls.
Substitution ideas abound for just about any of these ingredients! Feel free to substitute in your favorite nut butter (almond butter, sunflower seed butter, etc.) for the peanut butter. And you could also add in some wheat germ in place of some or all of the flaxseed. A word of caution, against substituting agave nectar for the honey, as the honey’s thickness helps hold things together.
Some other fun substitutions for the chocolate chips (or an addition to them) include:
- Chopped dried fruit (apricots, dates, raisins, etc.)
- Dried berries (cranberries, cherries, etc.)
- Chopped almonds, pecans, walnuts, or sunflower seeds
- Other grains (different kinds of oatmeal, rice cereal, etc.)
*Courtesy of Gimme Some Oven