We have all been there – it is 3pm and you hit a wall – hangry, tired, and unable to focus. A great way to avoid the slump is with a nutritious snack. Adults and children alike need snacks to refuel between lunch and dinner, especially after a long day at school or work.
Snacks can be an easy way to provide additional nutrients throughout your day, boost energy and mental focus, and help to maintain stable blood sugar. Ideally, snacks should be a combination of protein, healthy fat and fiber rich carbohydrates to provide needed energy and lasting satiety.
Everyone’s nutritional needs are different, so listen to your body cues and consider changes in activity and/or growth to determine size and frequency of snacks throughout the day. Planning and prepping quick, portable, and balanced snacks doesn’t take a lot of time, and can become part of your routine like packing lunches.
Fun and simple snack ideas:
- Homemade energy balls or bites
- Snack box – make your own mini bento box with rolled-up deli meat, cheese or hard-boiled eggs, and fruit or veggies
- Fruit and nut butter
- Crackers and cheese
- Snack mix – choose your favorite nuts, whole grain cereals, and dried fruits
- Hummus and vegetables
- Whole grain cereal topped with fruit and nuts
- Roasted chickpeas and fruit or veggies
- Smoothies – blend in protein, fruits and veggies
- Yogurt, fruit and granola parfait
This Pumpkin Spice Energy Bites Recipe is the PERFECT fall snack:
Pumpkin Spice Energy Bites
Yield: 24 Balls
- 2/3 cup Pumpkin Puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
- 1 cup Almond Butter (or other nut butter)
- 1/2 cup Maple Syrup
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 3 cups Rolled Oats
- 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp Nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp Ginger
- Pinch of Salt
- 1 Tbsp Chia Seeds (or flax seeds)
- 2 Tbsp Roasted Pepitas
- Combine pumpkin, nut butter, maple syrup and vanilla in a bowl. Stir until smooth
- Mix oats, spices, seeds and pepitas in another bowl.
- Combine dry ingredients into wet ingredients.
- Chill in fridge. (approx. 1 hour)
- Use spoon to scoop out mix and roll into balls. Makes 20-24 balls.
- Store in air tight container for up to a week in the fridge.
Want to learn about Nutrition Coaching? Schedule a free 30-minute Nutrition Coaching Strategy Session to speak with our Registered Dietitian about your health goals and see if nutrition coaching would be a good fit for you.