Healthy Late Night Snacks
19 healthy ideas for late-night snacks
Dinner has wrapped. The dishes have been cleaned and put away. Two or three hours have passed. Aaaannnnd...now you are hungry again. Do you try to be sensible and remain healthy? Or do you just throw in the towel and grab at the first (and generally worst) thing that you see? With the following ideas, you won’t have to indulge in the latter and end up feeling guilty. You can enjoy some healthy, late-night muncheroos that will leave you satiated so that you can hop into bed happy.
- Guacamole with fresh veggies or vegetable chips: The avocado and veggies are high in fiber, so you'll feel fuller, longer. The good news is that the fat in avocados is "healthy" fat, meaning that it is not saturated. This is a nutrient dense snack you don't have to feel guilty about.
- Edamame (in shells, takes longer to eat!) with Maldon sea salt and crushed red pepper flakes: The edamame is high in fiber and protein, and the red pepper can help to speed up your metabolism. This snack is very low in fat.
- Whole grain crackers with goat cheese: This is just the right about of savory to satisfy your craving, but the fiber in the crackers and the dense goat cheese will fill you up fast.
- Freshly popped popcorn with (take your pick!) black pepper, Chinese five-spice powder, shavings of fresh parmesan: Popcorn is a great go-to snack (without a lot of butter, of course), and the spices can make up for the taste of butter without the added fat and calories.
- Pistachios and small cubes of Gouda: The healthy fats in the nuts and cheese will fill you up — you probably won't want more than a little handful!
- Stuffed grape leaves: Rich in nutrients, this snack is not something you have to feel guilty about.
- Multi-grain toast with avocado and sea salt: Slice half an avocado and spread it onto the toast for a fiber-rich snack.
- Fresh fruit (strawberries, kiwi, banana) with vanilla yogurt, a sprinkle of flaxseed and a drizzle of local honey: The fruit will give you a dose of Vitamin C, the yogurt supplies protein (just check the sugar content and don't have more than a serving!), the flaxseed provides fiber, and the honey satisfies your sweet tooth. This is a well-rounded snack.
- Greek yogurt and fresh fruit smoothies...add honey, chia seeds or protein powder to bulk it up: Sometimes a sweet smoothie is all you need. The great thing about smoothies is that there's really no perfect recipe to follow. You can mix and match ingredients to figure out what you like best.
- Crunchy granny smith apple pieces with almond butter and a dusting of cinnamon: The cinnamon actually satisfies your sweets craving, and the almond butter and apple provide protein and fiber.
- Small rice cake with peanut butter and banana: The rice cake is crunchy, so you feel like you're eating more. The peanut butter and banana are a sweet source of fiber and protein.
Sometimes it also helps to have a few healthy snacks prepared — so that when you're hungry, you don't just reach for the most convenient option. Make these snacks ahead of time so you can grab them when you've got a late-night craving:
- Nuts (cashews, almonds, walnuts) roasted with cumin, thyme, pepper, salt: Roasted nuts are easy to make, and you can keep a small container of them on hand for when you need a little crunch.
- Chickpeas roasted with olive oil, salt, cumin, turmeric. Toss with spices, bake on cookie sheet at 400 degrees Farenheit for about 35 minutes: This snack is surprisngly addictive! Chickpeas are high in protein and fiber, and the spices will satisfy your salt craving.
- Celery stalk, cream cheese, dried cranberries or small apricot pieces: A favorite among kids, this snack is also a great source of nutrients for adults! Keep a little container of this ready made snack in your fridge, so that you can reach for it instead of something more sugary or fatty.
- Frozen chocolate-covered banana: Peel a banana, cut it in half, and stick a popsicle stick into it so that it resembles a pop. Melt some low-fat chocolate, and dip the banana into it. Place the chocolate covered banana onto wax paper and let it sit in the freezer. Have this snack when you're craving ice cream — it's (almost!) as good without the extra sugar, fat, and calories.
- Nuts (cashews, almonds, walnuts) roasted with cinnamon and allspice, little salt (or a dash of sugar): Roasted nuts can be savory or sweet, but when you use cinnamon they take on a sweeter taste.
- Layer greek yogurt, granola, berries in jars and keep in fridge. Drizzle with honey and top with fresh mint when ready to dig in: When you're craving ice cream, this is a good alternative. The berries and granola add texture so you feel like you're eating more.
- Fruit salsa (mango, peach, strawberry) with cinnamon baked tortilla chips: High in fiber, this is a much better option than reaching for salty potato or tortilla chips and salsa from a jar.
- Baked apple chips. Slice thinly, sprinkle with cinnamon, bake at 325 degrees Farenheit for about one hour: Much better than potato chips, this is a fiber-rich snack that won't leave you feeling bloated.
Try to choose snacks that have protein and fiber but are low in saturated fat. These will keep you full until breakfast, without making you regret your decision to snack!
Tell us — what's your go-to healthy late-night snack?