Staying healthy can sometimes seem like a chore. But contrary to many people’s perceptions, guilt-free snacking can be easy and inexpensive. Here are few tips on how to make simple healthy snacks in 2015.
Love the occasional sausage roll but hate the calories it contains? Make your own lighter alternative. These ultimate makeover sausage rolls from Angela Nilson use lean pork mince mixed with green lentils and breadcrumbs, to cut down on the snack’s usual fatty content. She uses regular puff-pastry to encase the rolls, but light puff pastry is also widely available now and tastes just as good.
If you have leftover pork and lentil mix, try using it in a lighter version of a Scotch egg too. Choose medium or small eggs rather than large and, when you’ve dipped your prepared egg in breadcrumbs, bake your snack rather than frying it. Not only will it be just as delicious with fewer calories, it’ll also be less messy to make
Fruit is at its best in the summer, when strawberries, raspberries, peaches and nectarines are in abundance – though autumn’s blackberries give the season a run for its money too. In winter, however, snacking on fruit can be tedious, when apples, bananas, oranges and grapes are your main choices.
Yet it’s easy to pep up your fruit snack repertoire: these spiced apple crisps, for example, are easy to make and contain no added sugar. Alternatively, bananas mashed on toast with peanut butter are an energy-filled treat that’s great for a mid-afternoon or pre-run snack. And if you’ve got a good smoothie maker – like the Breville Blend-Active, which conveniently lets you blend in-bottle – get hold of some frozen fruit and light yoghurt to create healthy, fruit-filled and filling drinks.
Snacks for work
Often, snack cravings attack during mid-mornings or mid-afternoons at work – particularly if your day seems to be trundling along very slowly. It’s important to have some good snacks tucked away on these occasions, so you don’t turn to crisps and chocolate. Keep a steady supply of nuts – like almonds, hazelnuts or unsalted pistachios – to hand or jazz up a simple seed mix by adding your preferred blend of spices and baking for around 20 minutes.
Pairing dips with crudites and breadsticks can also keep hunger at bay, in small portions. Homemade hummus and mackerel pate are simple to prepare and packed with flavour.
What about those moments when your sweet tooth is begging for some satisfaction? Try making large quantities of carrot cake or banana bread, and freeze it in batches so you can keep snacking on it for weeks to come. Alternatively, make your own low-sugar flapjacks, or give these super-healthy banana, apricot and date bars a try. And if you simply must have a chocolate hit, always opt for dark chocolate, rather than milk or white varieties, as it’s a good source of antioxidants as well as being very tasty indeed.
What are your favourite easy healthy snacks?