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A Smarter Snack Selection

February is Snack Food Month, but before you reach for the chips, pretzels, or cookies, think about how snacks can either help or hinder your diet.  Snacking can actually be good for you.  It can help to keep your hunger at bay so you don’t overeat at meals and keep your energy levels up between meals.  However, it’s important what foods you choose for your snacks.  Look for foods that have whole grain, fiber, and protein.  These give your snack “staying power” so you won’t be hungry again in a short while.  Also, pack in nutrition.  You want to feed your body the vitamins and minerals it needs for energy. Also, stay away from foods that are high in sugar and fat.  The end result will be an excess of calories, which usually means added pounds.  I’ve selected a few snack recipes you can try that are both healthy and delicious.  Use them in place of something you know might not be the best option.

 

Baked Broccoli Tots can be made with either uncooked fresh or frozen broccoli.  Blanch the broccoli in boiling water for a minute and then chop it finely.  Mix it with one egg, diced onion, shredded cheddar cheese, breadcrumbs, parsley, salt, and pepper.  Scoop 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of the mix and shape into a “tot” and place onto a greased baking sheet.  Bake tots at 400 degrees for 18-24 minutes, turning halfway through.  You can serve them with your favorite dipping sauce.

 

broccoli-tots-26-of-29
Courtesy of Gimme Delicious

 

When your sweet tooth strikes you’ve got to try this recipe for Fruit Pizza Crackers.  The base calls for using Wasa crispbreads, but any low fat or fat free, whole grain cracker will work.  Top it with a spread made from low fat cream cheese mixed with honey.  Then placed diced fruit of your choice (strawberries, kiwi, blueberries, banana, raspberries, etc.).  It’s that simple!

 

wasa-recipe-668x1024
Courtesy of Homemade Ginger

 

Two ingredients are all you’ll need for Parmesan Zucchini Crisps.  Simply slice two medium zucchinis into 1/8 inch rounds and arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet that has been coated with non stick cooking spray.  Season with a bit of salt and pepper.  Place a teaspoon of freshly grated Parmesan cheese on each slice and bake at 400 degrees for 20-22 minutes until golden brown.

 

Parmesan-Zucchini-Crisps-7
Courtesy of Yellow Bliss Road

 

Check back next week when I’ll be sharing some delicious stir fry recipes.

 

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