15 Low-Calorie Healthy Snacks
Finding tasty yet low-calorie snacks is important for anyone who is trying to lose weight or cut back on their calorie intake. Junk food is a major problem and can lead to obesity and diabetes, while also compromising on your dietary goals. Eliminating snacks altogether is unnecessary, however, as there are plenty of excellent low-calorie snacks that are easy to find or prepare.
Snacking is not just a way to indulge our sweet tooth or sate our mid-afternoon hunger; they can also significantly contribute to our daily intake of vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, protein and even antioxidants. If your three meals per day are providing you more than recommended caloric needs, finding low-calorie snacks to fill you up, no matter what you’re craving, is extremely important.
List of Low-Calorie Snacks
Some of the best sweet low-calorie snacks rely on healthier forms of sugar or natural sweeteners, such as chocolate-dipped strawberries, sorbet, Greek yogurt drops, frozen grapes, yogurt-dipped fruit and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.
Sorbet: Homemade sorbet is relatively easy to prepare and that way you can control how much additional sugar is added. You can benefit from the rich flavors of many sorbet flavors and most varieties only have 175 calories per sweet cup.
Greek Yogurt Drops: Mix non-fat Greek yogurt with berries of your choice and stir thoroughly. The fruit will begin to break down and you can then scoop out separate drops and freeze them on a cookie sheet. Greek yogurt only has 60 calories per 100 grams, and most fruit like berries is quite low in calories as well.
Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich: A typical peanut butter and jelly sandwich has roughly 190 calories but it packs a decent amount of protein and fiber, if eaten on whole-wheat bread, which can help with digestion and energy levels.
Frozen Grapes: Simply pop a de-stemmed bag of grapes in the freezer for a sweet treat that has only 62 calories per cup. The resveratrol and quercetin also found in grapes can have powerful antioxidant effects on the body, making it the ideal healthy low-calorie snack!
Yogurt-dipped Fruit: Slice up an apple, cantaloupe or pear and dip that fruit in non-fat Greek yogurt. You will only get 60 calories per 100 grams of Greek yogurt and your fruit, but you will get an immune system boost and extra dietary fiber.
Chocolate-covered Strawberries: Not just for romance, these popular treats only have 4 calories per strawberry and 155 calories per ounce of dark chocolate. However, that chocolate also has antioxidant and health-improving properties, thanks to the active ingredients in cocoa.
For those people who love the taste of a salty treat, try low-calorie snacks like microwave popcorn, sorbet, greek yogurt drops, frozen grapes, soy crisps, nuts, milk, cereals, edamame, and pumpkin seeds., soy crisps, pretzels, pumpkin seeds and pickles.
Edamame: With less than 190 calories in every cup of edamame, this is a delightful salty snack that also packs in a decent amount of protein, calcium and iron, without adding any cholesterol to your diet.
Soy Crisps: Instead of traditional potato chips, try soy crisps, which only have 109 calories per ounce. These puffed snacks do possess some saturated fats but only a small percentage, in comparison to the other healthier fats this snack provides.
Pumpkin Seeds: 1 cup of pumpkin seeds does contain approximately 285 calories, but that is more than an average serving, and these seeds are also packed with phosphorus, zinc and magnesium, which can help with bone mineral density and prevent the onset of osteoporosis.
Pickles: There are between 7 and 35 calories in a medium-sized pickled cucumber, as well as a number of probiotics that could regulate digestive processes. However, there is also a high level of sodium in it, so don’t go overboard on your pickle snacking.
Popcorn: Many people don’t realize that popcorn is quite good for you, thanks to its fiber content, as well as magnesium iron and vitamin B6. Combine that with only 105 calories in 1 ounce of popcorn and you have a great low-calories salty snack.
When it comes to replacing savory delights with low-calorie options, switch to balsamic vinegar and cheese, chickpea dip, sweet potatoes, mustard chicken, chilled tofu, seafood salad and crackers with cottage cheese.
Balsamic and Cheese: A chunk of parmesan cheese sprinkled with a balsamic vinegar is a luxurious and savory snack that only contains 122 calories in 1 ounce of cheese, and a minimal amount of calories in the balsamic vinegar.
Chickpea Dip: 100 grams of chickpeas may contain nearly 4oo calories, but when you make this into a delicious dip, the calorie intake will be much lower. The protein and mineral quality of your snack will definitely be worth it!
Sweet Potato Fries: There are roughly 180 calories in 25 sweet potato fries but their dense and delicious nature makes them heartier and more filling than regular french fries, which can prevent overeating or additional snacking.
Chilled Tofu: There are approximately 190 calories in 1 cup of tofu, and when served chilled and topped with various spices, sauces or seasonings, this is a filling, protein-rich snack that doesn’t add too many calories to your daily intake.
Mustard Chicken: Grilled chicken with dijon mustard is a savory treat for many people and with only 100 calories in an average-sized chicken breast, this is a filling and protein-dense snack.
Seafood Salad: If you make your own seafood salad at home, you can monitor how many extra calories are added with different oils or sauces. While a 1-cup serving may have between 300-325 calories, the mineral-dense ingredients and filling nature of the salad will more than satisfy you.
Crackers with Cottage Cheese: There are roughly 20 calories per Triscuit cracker, about 110 calories in 4 ounces of cottage cheese. Add a slice of peach or a grape on top of the cracker for a truly perfect low-calorie snack.
Everyday Low-Calorie Snacks
There are a number of classic low-calorie snacks made of ingredients that most people regularly have around the house, such as vegetables and dip, nuts, string cheese, hardboiled eggs, fruit smoothies and whole-grain cereal and milk.
Fruit Smoothies: Blending the extra contents of your refrigerator into a delicious fruit or vegetable smoothie is a great way to boost your nutrient intake without taking a major hit on calories. A simple mixture of spinach, chopped apples, celery, a dollop of honey and some orange juice can give you a filling snack for under 200 calories.
String Cheese: There is approximately 80 calories in a single piece of string cheese, yet these classic snacks are surprisingly filling, as most cheese is. These are also very inexpensive options for boosting your low-calorie snack intake.
Nuts: One of the best possible low-calorie snacks is nuts, as they can be extremely filling. Almonds, cashews and pistachios tend to be the lowest in overall calories and even a handful can fill you up for hours, while also delivering a burst of beneficial fats and other antioxidants compounds to your system.
Vegetables and Dip: Raw vegetables are very low in calories but high in minerals and dietary fiber. Chopping up celery, carrots, cucumbers and tomatoes, and then dipping them in a Greek yogurt-based blend will keep your calorie intake under 200, even if you have a good-sized snack.
Hardboiled Eggs: There are only 78 calories in a large hardboiled egg but there are also 6 grams of protein, as well as good amounts of vitamin B6, vitamin B12 and vitamin D. Hardboiled eggs are also easy to transport, simple to season in various ways and will give you a solid energetic boost.
Cereal and Milk: Although some people think cereal is only for breakfast, a bowl of bran or whole-grain cereal with milk can also be a filling and low-calorie snack. 1 cup of bran cereal has 165 calories, and there are another 50 calories in a half-cup of milk. Despite being on the high end for total calorie content, the dietary fiber can fill you up as though it is a full meal, helping to prevent further snacking before your next “real” meal.