In my attempts to eat healthier and lose weight, I continue to struggle with bad snacking habits. I get caught in my evening television time when the need to nosh is at its highest. Before summer started, I tried to keep to a *No Eating After 8:30* rule; it hasn’t been working. My husband has been taking on some extra work and sometimes that pushes our dinner until 9 o’clock at night. It is easy to continue to mindlessly nibble until bedtime. I have been looking into options that still appeal to me, help with portion control and that aren’t filled with so many additives that it takes me an hour to read the ingredient list.
I would like to share some of my current favorites. I am NOT saying that these snacks are diet friendly or super healthy. I am saying that flat-out snacking denial doesn’t work for me, but I knew I had to stop eating bags of processed junk food.
- Kirkland Dried Real Sliced Freeze-Dried Fruit Snacks Variety Pack: These pouches come in plain Fuji Apple, Fuji Apple with Cinnamon and a Banana/Strawberry mix and I absolutely adore them. All three are under 45 calories and really are delicious. I have a salad for lunch and will usually have one of these on the side, but I will have a different variety for a nighttime snack too. The box comes with 20 pouches for about $15 in Costco. The price is slightly higher on their website and considerably more expensive on Amazon.
- Sheila G’s Original Chocolate Chip Brownie Brittle: Available at Costco (best price), Amazon and my local Publix, if I am craving something sweet and crunchy, Brownie Brittle is perfect. My favorite part of the brownie has always been the corner piece and I have been known to try to call all four as mine. It’s easy to understand that I thought I found heaven in a bag when I discovered this yummy snack. The trick is to never bring the bag to the couch with you. When the need hits, break off a small piece and walk away. The large bag from Costco is resealable and costs maybe a $1 more than the tiny bags do at the grocery store.
- Angie’s Artisan Boom Chicka Pop Sea Salt Popcorn: We had a mission as a family: to find a bagged (not microwave) non-GMO popcorn and I am happy to share we did in Angie’s Popcorn. Like the Brownie Brittle, the cost of the large bag in Costco is cheaper than buying the smaller versions at Target. We pick up both the Sea Salt and the Sweet & Salty Kettle Corn to satisfy the different tastes of our family of five. Knowing that the corn is not genetically modified is huge for me and it really is delicious. I fill a cereal bowl (instead of eating the entire microwaved bag like I used to!) and do not go back for seconds. If you really prefer the microwave, then I’d love to recommend Newman’s Own Butter. The price at Target for a box of three is great and they do not coat the inside of their bags with anything toxic to our systems.
- Organic Fruit: Grapes, strawberries, blueberries, and apples are almost always available in our home. The berries and grapes are perfect for that hand-to-mouth mindless eating that happens during this last season of Dexter. Your body isn’t going to mind if you eat a half pint of Wish Farm blueberries once in a while and there are so many fun dips you can create for apple slices.
- Roasted Asparagus: Eaten hot or cold, I love the way I make my asparagus. Heat the oven to 400 degrees, rinse off the stalks and cut off the woody ends. I lay them single file in my Pampered Chef roasting pan, drizzle with Newman’s Own Extra Virgin Olive Oil and sprinkle with garlic salt. Depending upon the thickness, cook for 12 to 14 minutes. Choosing the right number of stalks, you can eat them right away or place any leftovers in tin foil to eat cold as a yummy snack.
I do know that snacking is something most of us can do without or if you are hypoglycemic making snacks required, there are healthier options out there like more veggies and lean proteins. This list is for people like me, who aren’t looking for perfect but do want to be better about what goes into our mouths.
What are your favorite snacks that allow for great portion control?
xoxo ~ Melissa