How to build a Healthy Snacks box
Healthy snacks can be tricky at times, this is where your homemade healthy snacks box can help. There are so many quick to grab supermarket options but we don’t want to be over-reliant on these. Read on for ideas to create tasty snacks for your healthy snacks box.
Should we be snacking?
Snacking is something that most people do, and should do. It’s important to listen to your body’s hunger cues and eat when it’s needed, and not feel guilty about eating what our body needs. I personally, usually eat three meals and three snacks every day, sometimes four snacks. Whilst there’s certainly nothing wrong with enjoying some crisps or biscuits, these fun foods do need to be balanced out. This can be where your healthy snacks box can come into it’s own. A way to help get in those fruits and vegetables (10 a day linik?) and key nutrients we all need plus those fun foods too.
Simple home-made snacks
Right so let’s start with the homemade element of the healthy snacks box. Making homemade snacks takes time. As mum to a busy family of 6 children, I totally get it. I don’t have time to bake each day. So I have a set day, usually a Sunday where I plan to bake or make up some easy snacks that will last the family 3 days. Then that’s almost half the week sorted. When you make things yourself, you’re in control of exactly what goes into it – which means its easy to ensure there’s less fat, sugar and salt, as well as all those added ingredients whose names you can’t pronounce.
Below I’m sharing some of my favourite baking recipes that go well in a healthy snacks box.
This banana flapjack is something I’ve been making since I was pregnant with my first baby. For over a decade it’s been a regular in my kitchen and a firm winner. It contains far less sugar than the flapjacks you buy from the supermarkets. The recipe is so simple and there are plenty of variations that you can try out. Try adding in a few seeds, some choc chips or some other dried fruit to add variety.
I also love these apple granola bars, when I have spare apples to hand.
If you’re feeling adventurous, then why not try a savoury flapjack? A completely different take on the usually sweet snack, but great for your tastebuds and great for your health! This carrot and cheese flapjack is something I created to help get more vegetables into my toddlers diet. It’s a perfect way to add a little more plants to your day.
Easy Energy balls
For a small snack that packs a lot of energy, try my apple and pecan energy balls. Bursting with flavour, goodness, and plenty of energy too, they are perfect for little ones to eat after a hard day at school or as an afternoon snack with a cuppa. You can even get the kids to help make them, as they’re sure to love rolling them into shape – and sampling them too.
Scones – savoury or fruity
Scones are so quick to make, ready to bake in 10 minutes and you can customize them to suit your tastebuds.
There are so many savoury variations, I love these broccoli and cottage cheese scones you could also try a courgette and stilton scone or stick to the standard raisin version. Add in fruit for variety such as blueberries or these blackberry scones.
Snack box combos
It can be so easy to buy snacks and reach for packets of crisps or cookies, which are both delicious, but it’s important to have balance and snack on a range of foods. Snacking healthily definitely doesn’t mean compromising on flavour. This is where snack boxes can be a useful way to help you bring variety and balance into your diet.
Top tips for your heathy snacks box for the day:
- Include a variety of foods that cover all the food groups. This helps your meet your nutritional needs, enhances the fullness factor and can keep your blood sugars more balance too. If you are planning to make a healthy snacks box that cover you for the day then try this plan.
- Include 2-3 snacks in your box. That could be 1 portion fruit with a protein rich food (eg fruit and a mini cheese), 1 vegetable portion with a carbohydrate rich food (eg: peppers and crackers) and 1 fun food (eg: some chocolate).
- Save one snack to be your “fun snack” where you include the food that brings you pleasure. This could be a homemade baked item or something shop bought.
Carbohydrate Snack Ideas
- Rice cakes
Protein Snack Ideas
- Nuts or seeds
- Hardboiled Egg
- Cold meats
- Nut butter
- Tahini or hummus
How to pair your snacks:
Writing out a list of ideas can be so helpful. We used to have one stuck to the inside of our snack cupboard door so whoever made snacks had a reminder. 1 portion of fruit or vegetables per snack and pair it with either a protein food or a wholegrain starchy food. Start by writing out a list of the snack foods you like in each food group (I’ve started you one above) and then you can mix and match.
Carbohydrate + Fruit or Vegetable
Protein + Fruit or Vegetable
Carb and Protein + Fruit or Vegetable
Some ideas for you.
- A mix of nuts and dried fruits is a delicious snack, and there’s plenty of different varieties to make a whole selection of different mixes. You can make up a week’s worth and then just grab a pot each day to take to work, on trips out, or just when you’re at home and feeling peckish. Take a look at some of my favourite combinations.
- Cheese and wholegrain crackers with a portion of fruit gives you dairy, protein, carbs and fruit.
- Hummus with vegetables is a classic for a reason. The pairing of protein rich hummus with vegetables works.
- Fruit with yoghurt and seeds again just works with the protein, healthy fats and fruit.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Does every snack need to be paired in this way?
Not every snack needs to be perfectly paired as it is also great to just dive in and have some of the foods you love just because they taste so good! Plus if you are taking a snack box out with you for the day you will have plenty of variety if you use some of the ideas above.
What should I pack my healthy snacks box in?
There are so many lovely snacks boxes on the market now which can make your snacks even tastier! I don’t know about you, but having a squashed banana in my bag is not enticing! You could choose one with seperate compartments for each food, or choose to divide up a large box with cupcase liners and smaller tupperware. Alternatively you can use smaller pots per snack.
I hope this helps you plan and enjoy your snacks, whether this be for working from home, for a trip away or your feeding your children.