Day 22 – Healthy Munchables

What makes a food into a great snack?  Are baby carrots and ranch dressing fun to munch on because the carrots are small, or because dipping them into the dressing is fun, or because we get to eat with our hands?  Let’s figure out some munch-worthy snacks to enjoy without guilt as we move through football games and holiday parties. How about . . .

Chips and salsa – I especially like Food Should Taste Good’s multi-grain tortilla chips.

Shrimp with cocktail sauce.  Lots of protein, delicious, not a big calorie load; what’s not to like?  We are talking about naked shrimp here, not the deep-fried varieties. They are good too, but your waistline will stay nice and slim without all that batter and grease.

Fresh fruit with a yogurt dip – Sweeten plain Greek yogurt with a little jam or honey and serve as a dip for fresh apple slices, strawberries, pineapple, and so on. Use plastic picks to ramp up the “fun, fancy, and festive” factors even more. Why Greek yogurt, you ask?  Why, because it’s thicker than regular yogurt.  Some of the liquid has already been drained out of it.  That makes for a nice thick dip that won’t dribble onto the floor – or the front of your shirt.

Nuts, still in the shell.  Nuts are good for you, but it’s too easy to eat loads of calories’ worth when they are already shelled.  Besides, don’t they just look more fun than a jar or can?  Pistachios and roasted peanuts in the shell are fun too, but a mix of walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, Brazil nuts, and pecans are traditional around the holidays.

IMG_2554

So far these are all very simple and quick to make, and easy to serve. When you have the time, or want something that tastes decadent, try a slimmed-down version of a crowd-pleasing favorite.  It’s already lower in fat than most versions, and if you serve it with crunchy vegetables like baby carrots, celery sticks, colorful bell pepper strips, and jicama, it’s even better for you.

Spinach-Artichoke Dip Make-Under

I came across another post with 5 more recipes for healthy and different tidbits to share with you, too.  [The article is from New Zealand, but most of the measurements are in cups. In the French Onion dip,  1.1 kg onions is about 2.5 pounds, and 113 grams (cream cheese) is about 4 ounces.  Also, be aware that the 220-degree oven is Celsius rather than Fahrenheit.  Translate that to 425 degrees if you try out the recipes for Roasted Salt and Vinegar Chickpeas or Baked Parmesan Zucchini Fries.]

Click here for 5 more tasty tidbits!

Happy snacking to you!

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