Thursday, January 16, 2014

10 Healthy, Slow + Simple snacks to satisfy your cravings that won't break your resolutions!

Jessica Gordon Ryan/ The Entertaining House
1. Roasted, spiced chickpeas.
Packed with lean protein. These will satisfy any salt craving! Recipe here.

Jessica Gordon Ryan/ The Entertaining House

2. Edamame.
Pre-shelled and seasoned, these can be found in your grocery store, usually near the fresh veggies. We eat them straight out of the container. Sometimes we sprinkle them on salads. I wonder how these would be spiced and roasted? Hmm, I will have to get back to you on that!

Jessica Gordon Ryan/ The Entertaining House

3. Popcorn.
We love Jiffy Pop! Remember watching the aluminum dome expand over your stove top when you were a kid? It's just as fun now! Truth be told microwave popcorn is worrisome to me. And it really doesn't taste that good. Looking for a sweet alternative? Kettle Corn is a little sweet and a little salty without the sugar and calories that caramel corn has!

Jessica Gordon Ryan/ The Entertaining House

4. Chocolate covered strawberries.
Sounds decadent? It shouldn't! These treats are super easy to make. Use semi sweet or dark chocolate which is better for you than milk chocolate. Melt your chocolate. Dip your strawberries and let them harden on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. A few of these are packed with nutrients. And chocolate makes you happy. And has antioxidants. What's not to love about these?

Jessica Gordon Ryan/ The Entertaining House

6. Chocolate dipped clementines.
I cannot eat enough citrus. I love all sorts of oranges. Blood oranges are a favorite of mine but there's something about the Clementine. So portable, so easy to peel and so easy to eat, I usually keep a couple in the car for an emergency. For a special, slightly decadent treat we love these dipped in chocolate. Pop 'em in your mouth perfection! 1 clementine has 10-12 slices, so, if dipped in chocolate you may not want to have more than that... Vitamin C and antioxidants... I say this will keep the colds at bay, don't you?!

7. A cup of homemade soup. 
I love soup and often have batches sitting around for a meal or a snack. Soups are warming and filling. We nosh on tortilla soup, low-fat bean soups, and chicken soup all the time. They're great for meals and the leftovers are perfect for snacking on. (Do stay away from the cream-based varieties!)

8. Greek yogurt with peanut butter and honey.
Peanut butter makes me happy. I cannot get enough of it. Add just a teaspoon for a hint of flavor with your honey and you have a wonderfully decadent treat that's low in sugar and packed with protein.

9. Cheese, crackers, fruit and nuts.
In moderation. We love cheese and crackers, serve with a side of fruit, some grapes, a sliced apple or pear and you'll be recharged in no time. Note, this also makes a fine dinner with a glass of wine!

Jessica Gordon Ryan/ The Entertaining House

10. Dark chocolate fruit and nut bark.
I have a chocolate problem sometimes. I've learned not to deny my cravings. I found that when I avoided them I ate everything in sight, and then still craved what I craved. So now, if I want something I allow myself to have it. In smallish doses. And I try to make it healthy. So a small piece of fruit and nut bark often does the trick. I use really good chocolate for this. In my mind Ghirardelli is the best that is easily found. Use whatever kinds of fruit and nuts you prefer, as many as you want. Pour the fruit and the nuts directly into the melted chocolate and stir well. I used about 1 cup of nuts + 1 cup of dried fruit to 1 bag of 60% dark Ghirardelli chocolate chips. I spread the mixture onto a parchment lined cookie sheet and tossed it into the fridge to set. Once nice and hard I stuck the top of a sharp knife into the chocolate and chipped away to make generous bite-sized pieces.

It's still January... too early to fall off that wagon. Hope these keep you inspired for a little while longer!