Stay Fit and Healthy throughout the Day with Homemade Snacks
The time between meals can often be a danger zone for your efforts to eat healthy. Whether the reason is hunger, boredom, or stress, there are many things that can attract you to quick, and often unhealthy snacks, high in refined sugar and saturated fat. I will show you how to avoid those traps by preparing your own healthy alternatives. They will bring you through the day with the power of natural ingredients and superfoods!
Eating Healthy Is So Easy. It all comes down to making the right choices when you stock up your pantry. Changing your old habits and deciding against the junk food you find in the supermarket, takes you a big step closer to your goals. I know the story very well. There are many snacks to choose from, and certainly only a few of them are healthy, or help you manage your weight.
Try not to bring unhealthy snacks into the house. If they are not available, you won't be able to snack mindlessly. Healthy snacks provide energy in the middle of the day, or during exercise. They can also decrease your hunger, and keep you from overeating at meal time.
Some years ago, I made the decision to cross out meat and dairy products from my diet plan. I decided to go plant-based for ethical and health reasons. This does not, however, mean that I'm nibbling on carrots and salt crackers all day. There is a huge variety of delicious snacks that get me through long days of work and exercise. Without unhealthy fats and refined sugars, they are the perfect alternative to store-bought chocolate bars, cookies, and fatty chips.
Searching for simple recipes, I stumbled upon bliss balls and raw vegan energy bars. They looked so heavenly chocolaty and rich! I was positively surprised when I saw that they only contained healthy ingredients that wouldn't mess with my goals and help me to stay on track! In no time, I had made my own version. Since then I have always come up with new creations and got my family, friends, and colleagues hooked on my raw vegan snacks, too.
All it takes is 20 minutes, and a blender or food processor. I like to take some time on Sunday evenings to prepare my healthy snacks for the week. Nuts, seeds and fruits have become my best buddies. I always keep some in the kitchen, so I am ready to get the snack game on. In combination with superfoods such as maca, chia seeds, and hemp protein, nuts and dried fruit make a great base for bliss balls and raw vegan energy bars. Once you try these easy to prepare snacks, you will think of more and more delicious combinations.
Remember, that it is still ok to have an unhealthy treat once in a while. If you want to splurge on a candy bar, potato chips, or that piece of cake, then it's fine but only now and again. The key is balance and moderation.
Bliss balls are an easy no-baking, no-fuss, no-prep snack that anyone can make. These raw vegan energy bites are super versatile! On some days, I use apricots and coconut flakes as a base, other times I feel more like having a combination of nut butter and dates. The choice is all yours!
Mix and match nuts and seeds, and healthy ingredients such as coconut, dried mangos, chia, and cacao nibs. Always make sure to use quality ingredients. You only want to get the best out of your bliss balls. These snacks are full of fiber, minerals, and vitamins! They're dairy-free, free of refined sugar, and gluten-free. They taste amazing and are perfectly sweet because of the natural sugars in the dried fruits. They satisfy any sweet tooth, even kids love them.
Bliss balls pack and travel well! They can be kept in the fridge for up to 5 days, and even be frozen for longer storage. That makes them the perfectly healthy snack! My favorite recipe includes a mixture of cashews, popped amaranth, and dates. To make it a somewhat special treat, I add maca and raw cocoa powder. This is how you can make them yourself!
A Serving of Bliss on the Go
Raw cocoa is made with unroasted cocoa beans, which preserves their nutritional content. Regular cocoa is heavily processed and roasted. It has a lot of refined sugar added to it, and therefore loses its health benefits. Raw cocoa is mood-boosting and great for your body, inside and out! The beans are rich in various essential minerals, including magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc and potassium. All the more reasons to add raw cocoa to your diet!
Maca powder is considered to be one of the world’s natural superfoods. It is grown high in the mountains of Peru.The plant itself is a funny looking root vegetable. But don't be fooled by its appearance! Maca's benefits include a positive effect on hormone balance and energy levels. An interesting fact: Maca was considered a very potent aphrodisiac, and a traditional fertility secret of the Peruvians…
It is time to try it yourself! These bliss balls are incredibly tender on the inside, and crunchy on the surface. They are the perfect snack to have around when you’re craving something sweet but healthy. Each bite provides a little fiber, protein, healthy fat, and natural sugars for an energy boost. Have one, have three – no one is looking ;)
- 200 g of cashews
- 4 – 6 dates, depending your sweet tooth
- 1 tbsp raw cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp maca powder
- 2 tbsp popped amaranth
- A pinch of salt
- 3-4 tbsp water
- Blend the nuts in your food processor.
- Add the dates, then mix well.
- Blend in the cacao, maca and a pinch of salt.
- Add the water gradually to get the right consistency. You need the balls to stick together, but still be able to roll them..
- Roll small balls with the palm of your hands, and then roll them in amaranth, cocoa, or coconut flakes.
- Enjoy right away, or keep them in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Packed with chia seeds, coconut, amaranth, and goji berries, these energy bars are tropically light and delicious! Whether as a quick snack on the road, or as a small breakfast on a hectic morning, you are always prepared with these homemade raw vegan treats.
Chia seeds are one of the most popular superfoods. Super versatile and easy to digest, they are a great ingredient in healthy meals and snacks. I’ve been using chia seeds in my smoothies, and as an egg substitute in recipes, for a while now. I love making chia pudding for breakfast, or simply adding it to my granola.
The seeds are dense in nutrients, and truly have an energy boosting power. Originally grown in Mexico, the Mayans referred to them as “runner`s food” - runners and warriors would fuel up on them, while running long distances, or during battle. No wonder, because the small seeds come with high levels of essential fatty acids, protein, calcium, iron, and fibers. They are nutrient-packed superfoods in every way!
These energy bars are wonderfully sweet, rich, and above all summer fresh. Try them yourself, but be careful: The risk of addiction is extremely high ;)
- 3 tbsp chia seeds
- 1/3 cup of coconut flakes
- 2 cups of popped amaranth
- 5 seedless dates
- 2 tbsp goji berries
- 2 tbsp ground flax seed
- 3 tbsp almond butter
- 1 tbsp agave syrup
- 2 tbsp apple sauce
- Put all ingredients in a blender or food processor, and pulse minimally, until it is all combined.
- Form a big ball, wrap it in plastic foil, and place it in the fridge for half an hour. This will make further processing easier.
- Spread the dough evenly to the preferred thickness on a dish or baking pan.
- Cut into desired shapes, and store in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
By now I hope you are running to the kitchen to create your own energy balls and bars!
These snacks are extremely versatile. Allowed is everything you like, so you can decide, according to mood, which variation you would like to try now! Using peanuts or almonds instead of cashews? Replace cocoa with the popular vegan vanilla protein? Be experimental and try different flavors. You will see it is quite easy to make your own perfect healthy snack!
Tip: Green smoothies are also a perfect healthy snack.
I hope you enjoyed reading my article, and found it helpful! I'm traveling a lot myself, and know very well how hard it can be to stay on track of your goals! Learning which snacks fuel my body with the right nutrients and powerful superfoods was, definitely a huge step forward! Feel free to leave me any question you might have and don't forget to check out my blog for more inspiration!
Best Jennifer <3