top 10 healthy snacks

When you’re looking for a mid-morning or afternoon snack, you should be aiming for about 300 kJ or 100 cal.

Snack packs are tasty, convenient, and portioned for calorie counters. But do they have any nutritional value?

Give these treats a try instead – here’s our pick of the top 10.

Stash them in your desk drawer, fridge, or car — wherever hunger pangs hit you. The best part: most will curb your appetite for hours because they’re high in filling fibre or satisfying protein.

  1. Mid-morning fill-up: Just add hot water to a small packet of apple and cinnamon instant oats – it smells and tastes great. No chocolate guilt, and there’s a bonus: plenty of filling, cholesterol-fighting oat fibre.
  2. Peanut butter and crackers: Make sandwiches out of about six small multigrain crackers and 1½ teaspoons peanut butter. You’ll get about 2 grams of fibre and a little healthy fat and plenty of satisfying, filling protein.
  3. Apple mousse: Mix a half cup of unsweetened applesauce with 3 tablespoons of fat-free yoghurt, and 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon. Make a batch and refrigerate in portable snack cups. Supplies 20% of your daily vitamin C and counts as one serving of fruit.
  4. Veggies and dip: Cut up some of your favourite veggies (almost 0 cal) and tuck into them 2 tablespoons of hummus (protein and fibre in one hit). For veggies, think broccoli and cauliflower, carrots, sugar snap peas, capsicum, cucumber and celery sticks – all of them filled with fibre, vitamins, and protective phytonutrients.
  5. Cafe mocha: Stir a packet of no sugar added Hot Chocolate mix into hot coffee for an instant afternoon pick-me-up that only tastes decadent. It actually delivers 30% of your calcium, iron, and even some fibre. Add a splash of milk for more goodness. Compare that to 200 calories for the smallest Starbucks Caffe Mocha (2% milk, no whip), with 6 grams of fat.
  6. Mexican potato: Microwave a medium potato and slice in half. Save one piece for tomorrow. Mash the other half inside the potato skin and top it with 2 tablespoons of salsa. Eat the whole thing, including the skin. Warm, spicy, satisfying and 2 grams each of protein and fibre, some vitamin C, plus a little iron.
  7. Finger food: Grab a handful of nuts to get a great fibre and protein hit and the bit of fat will keep you going until dinner time. Almonds, unsalted peanuts and walnuts are great!
  8. 8. Have a banana: these are my favourite “meal in a peel” – keep one in your gym bag for a post workout energy hit
  9. Happy hour combo: Mix ½ cup of tomato juice with ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 2 drops of Tabasco sauce, and a dash of lemon juice. Serve over ice with a celery stick and about a dozen dry roasted peanuts.
  10. Custard & banana dessert: Need an evening sweet treat? Grab some custard, slice up a banana and add a sprinkle of cinnamon – delicious!