For many busy people (including me), the most dangerous time for lapsing into a bad habit (junk food) is when hunger strikes at an inconvenient moment. And the most dangerous of all could be pseudo-healthy packaged foods (non-fat chemical pudding bars, “diet” desserts, etc.)
Keep these ideas on hand for when that happens, and you’ll be ready to power through in a healthy way!
1. Spicy Black Beans add 1 tbsp salsa to 1/4 cup black beans; top with greek yogurt for a creamy kick
2. Raw veggies and Hummus (with red/green pepper strips is easy and delicious)
3. Jicama sticks sprinkle with lime juice and dip in chili powder – crunchy and delicious!
4. Avocado cut in half, remove pit, sprinkle with lime, salt and olive oil and eat (I could live on this)
5. Plain Yogurt topped with nuts and/or fruit
6. Use cucumber slices as crackers Spread them with hummus, super-thin cheese slices, or olive tapenade
7. Apple dipped in Nut butter Almond, sunflower, peanut, etc.
8. Fruit “pie” Take whatever fruits you have in the freezer and pop them into a microwave-safe container. Microwave until bubbling, add complementary spices (vanilla, cinnamon, etc.), sprinkle with some chopped nuts. Instant happy!
9. Applesauce sprinkled with fresh cinnamon
10. Banana, kale, and almond milk smoothie
11. Almonds Raw, unsalted, organic
12. Carrot-Mango Smoothie Two Carrots, 1 cup frozen mango, 2 tbsp lime juice, and about a cup of water. Blend until smooth and thank me later -)
13. Homemade frozen pops blend real fruit (strawberries, mango, banana, watermelon – or a mix of whatever you have!) and freeze as-is, no need to add anything at all, particularly sugar!
14. Coconut-Chia “Pudding” Few tbsp Chia in Coconut Water or Coconut Milk, wait 10 minutes, then eat or store in fridge
15. Quick Quesadilla Whole wheat (or corn) tortillas with any leftover veggies inside (keep pickled jalapeños on hand for this) – throw in cheese, or not, and microwave until warm
16. Hard Boiled Egg cut in half, add salt/pepper, and enjoy
17. Sunflower Seeds
18. Cottage Cheese
19. Trail Mix – make your own! Mix dried fruit, sunflower seeds, chopped nuts, granola, whole-grain cereal, etc.
21. Lemony Avocado With Endive Dippers ⅓ chopped avocado + 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice and a pinch of salt. Scoop with endive leaves.
22. Rice Cakes
23. Asian pear slices
24. Dried Fruits
25. Mixed fruit salad Cut up whatever you have, and toss with one tablespoon fresh-squeezed orange juice.
26.Air-popped non-GMO popcorn
27. Inside-out mango Cut crosshatches into a (pitted) mango half, and sprinkle with lime juice and cayenne pepper. Turn inside out and eat! (yes, this is messy but worth it)
29. Sweet Potato Fries one small sweet potato sliced in thin sticks, tossed with 1 teaspoon olive oil, and baked at 400° (or hotter if your oven allows) for 10 minutes
30. Handful of olives
31. Veggie wrap Wrap a lettuce leaf around an organic pickle spear, and any veggies you have on hand (peppers, carrots, etc.), add mustard or hummus if you like
33. Ants on a Log Spread sunflower seed butter on celery and top with raisins
34. Steamed Veggies Delicious as-is, with a splash of olive oil, garlic, lemon, etc.
35. Peanut Butter and Bananas On whole wheat bread
37. Rosemary Mash Hand-mash canned white beans with olive oil and chopped fresh rosemary. Serve over radicchio leaves for color/flavor contrast.
38. Cherry Tomatoes
39. Organic String Cheese
40. Small Green Salad Add a spritz of lemon/olive oil dressing
41. Bean salad Whatever canned beans you have, plus diced onion, any herbs on hand, and add a glug of olive oil and vinegar
42. Kabobs veggies on a stick, lightly broiled in the oven
43. Organic Carrots slice on the bias into “chips” for fun
44. Grilled Pineapple Put on the grill or a skillet on medium heat for 2 minutes or until golden
45. Baked Apples One smallish apple, cored, filled with 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and baked until tender
46. Warm Pumpkin Seeds 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds baked at for 400° for 15 minutes or until brown. Sprinkle with a bit of salt.
48. Veggie Egg Salad Low-fat tortilla rolled around egg salad and shredded carrots
49. Warm Tomatoes Cut plum tomatoes in half, broil with 2 tablespoons breadcrumbs and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese
50. Bowl of bran flakes Add 1/2 cup milk (or substitute) and berries
51. Guacamole with veggies
52. Trisquits (the original ones with just 3 ingredients) dipped in cottage cheese or hummus
54. Sugar Snap Peas I love to put a bag of these out instead of popcorn on family movie night – they disappear!
55. Half of a fresh peach with a scoop of cottage cheese in the middle
57. Strawberry Salad 1 cup raw spinach with ½ cup sliced strawberries, 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, and a dollop of dijon mustard
58. Baked (or microwaved) potato topped with salsa
60. Peanut Butter Yogurt Dip with fresh fruit
61. Frozen Grapes Red and green, seedless
62. Cheesy Roasted Asparagus drizzle asparagus spears with olive oil and grated parmesan cheese, bake for 10 minutes at 400°
63. Banana Smoothie ½ cup sliced frozen banana (or add a little ice), ¼ cup plain yogurt, blended until smooth
64. Fruit Chips Crispy dehydrated apples, pears, etc – YUM!)
65. Tropical Juice Smoothie ¼ cup pineapple juice, orange juice, apple juice, and any frozen fruit you have on hand, blended
66. No-Chop Gazpacho Combine tomato juice, cucumber, bell peppers and onion in a mini chopper/blender; pulse just until chunky. Add a splash of red wine vinegar.
67. Frozen Banana Peel before freezing
68. Oatmeal simple and delicious
69. Sliced tomato with a sprinkle of feta and olive oil
70. Kale Chips Tear kale leaves into large pieces and place on a baking sheet. Spritz with olive oil and bake at 375° until crisp. While still warm, sprinkle with salt.
71. Stuffed Mushrooms Briefly microwave button mushroom caps until softened. Fill with leftover pesto or tomato sauce
72. A couple of squares of dark chocolate 70% cacao or more
73. Sun dried tomatoes (real ones – click here for the best explanation I’ve seen)
74. Chickpea Poppers Completely dry canned chickpeas. Mix with a bit of extra-virgin olive oil, season with dried oregano and garlic salt and roast at 400° until crisp.
75. Cocoa nibs over canned pears
77. Frosty Melon Blend honeydew with plain yogurt, and ice if desired.
78. Nutty Banana Blend Blend frozen banana with fresh peanuts and a splash of almond milk.
79. Orange or Grapefruit slices
81. Stuffed Figs Split plump dried figs and stuff with toasted hazelnuts. (this is from Rachel Ray, and is DELICIOUS)
82. Strawberry-Banana Smoothie Frozen strawberries and bananas blended with a little almond milk (or similar). Easy peasy and delicious.
83. Edamame Easy to keep on hand in freezer
84. Baby potatoes Microwave them for 3 to 5 minutes, sprinkle with pepper and sea salt
85. Roast Cauliflower Sprinkle with olive oil, pop in oven and pull out when browned. Eat.
86. Radish Slices slice thinly and enjoy all the crunch of a potato chip, with none of the nasty.
87. Tortilla “Pizza” Add thin tomato slices (remove seeds/liquid) and finely sliced/diced fresh veggies to a basic whole wheat tortilla. Bake directly on the rack in a toaster oven for about 10 minutes at 350 – delicious even without cheese!
88. Whole grain cracker smeared with goat cheese Add an apple slice or grape for extra deliciousness
89. Watermelon + pistachios + lime juice
90. Sliced Cantaloupe
91. Ear of (non-GMO) corn wrap in damp paper towel, pop in microwave, add fresh ground salt and pepper
92. Canned soup Lentil and black bean are particularly filling (look for organic varieties, stock up when on sale)
94. Mixed veggies Easy to keep on hand in freezer, pop a cup or two in the microwave for a delicious quick snack/meal
95. Black Bean Hummus Puree drained black beans with garlic clove, and a dash of lemon juice, tahini, and cumin
96. Apple Quesadillas put thinly sliced apple and a tiny bit of grated cheddar on a whole wheat tortilla, quickly warm in a pan and serve
97. Easy Tzatziki blend organic Greek yogurt with sliced cucumbers, garlic, olive oil and a squeeze of lemon. Let flavors combine then scoop up with raw veggies.
98. Acai bowl blend unsweetened frozen acai pulp (available at many supermarkets) with just about any liquid (recommend almond milk or coconut water) and some greens of your choice. Put in bowl and top with diced fruit, nuts, etc.
99. Cucumber salad Sliced cucumber, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper
100. Grated carrot salad Grate a carrot or two, add some bits of red onion and sprinkle with a mix of red wine vinegar and dijon mustard.
101. A softly scrambled egg, with a little freshly ground salt & pepper … simple and delicious!