Summer is the perfect time for snacking — except for the fact that snacking can be hard on your health and your waistline, or so you’ve been told. The truth is it’s all about choosing the right snacks. Here are three delicious ideas that can keep you snacking guilt-free all summer long:
- Greek Yogurt-Based Dip
By switching sour cream-based dips out for ones made with Greek yogurt, you can cut the calories by half or even more. Try a yogurt and honey dip for apples, or one with onion, garlic and fresh Roma tomatoes for dipping cucumbers. Don’t be afraid to spice it up, either! Throw in some cayenne and paprika for a spicy, smoky flavor and dip in with pretzels or whole-wheat pita. As long as you don’t add a lot of fat or sugar, your dip will stay relatively healthy.
- Real Baked Veggie Chips
We’re not talking about the pseudo-healthy veggie-flavored potato chips here. Real vegetables can make delicious chips when baked in the oven, and they’re a lot healthier than anything you can get out of a bag. Kale chips are popular right now, but you can also throw zucchini, carrots and numerous other veggies on a sheet pan for a healthy homemade snack. (These are great when combined with the yogurt dips discussed above, too.) Especially if you’re using a sweeter vegetable like carrots, you can play with sweet, salty and spicy flavors using cinnamon and nutmeg, as well as salt and pepper.
- Any Recipes Using Salsa
OK, maybe that’s not quite true; not all recipes using salsa are healthy. But salsa is a great way to spice up your snacks without adding very many calories. Even a classic mild salsa dip only has around 20 calories per serving, and fresh salsas like pico de gallo can have even fewer. Try stirring salsa into some hummus for a spicy, high-protein afternoon snack that will keep your cravings at bay till dinnertime, or use it to top some whole-wheat crackers and a little low-fat goat cheese.
Do you have any other healthy snacking recommendations to share? Join the discussion in the comments.