Article - Tips and recipes for healthy snacks, by Christina Leon

Tips and recipes for healthy snacks, by Christina Leon

Most of us are familiar with the afternoon slump – we get cravings for sugar or salt and really need a quick boost. It’s easy to be careless about what we eat between meals, but when snacking is done right you can reap the benefits, including increased energy levels, decreased cravings, better concentration and easier weight management.

We were lucky enough to attend a recent Wellness Retreat in Auckland where wholefood blogger and food columnist Christina Leon had some great tips and recipes for healthy snacks.

A few years ago she lost over 25kg and she says during this process she discovered a real enthusiasm for whole foods, clean eating and healthy living.

Here’s are her top five tips to encourage healthy snacking – and be sure to read on to try some of her great recipes!

1. Eat Breakfast

Start the day right with a nutritious meal. Make sure you have a good mix of protein, healthy fats and carbohydrates that will get your metabolism going. You’ll be less likely to go for a quick fix mid-morning.

2. Drink plenty of water

Carry a drink bottle with you to keep track of how much you’re drinking. Add some lemon juice, orange slices or cinnamon to flavour it up without adding sugar. Sometimes we can confuse thirst with hunger, so it’s important to keep hydrated.

3. Avoid packaged snacks

Not only are pre-packaged foods expensive, they are often full of processed ingredients such as refined sugar and flour, which have been depleted of any goodness. If store bought is your only option, read the contents and ensure they’re made of whole ingredients.

4. Make your own healthy snacks

By making your own, you know exactly what’s in your food. If you have children it’s also a good opportunity for them to get involved and learn about healthy eating. Be sure to use whole food ingredients including high fibre carbohydrates like chickpeas, fruit and vegetables along with good quality fats such as nuts, avocado and coconut oil.

5. Do some research and get inspired

There’s so many online resources full of healthy eating ideas, so put aside a bit of time for browsing and gather some inspiration before you hit the supermarket.

Preparation is key when it comes to having healthy snacks on hand. Not only will they stop you from choosing a packaged alternative, you’ll also be less likely to over eat at meal times.

Here are four of Christina’s favourite recipes to whip up on the weekend for a busy week ahead:

Reveal Yourself berry berry bliss balls

Berry Berry Bliss Balls 1

Ingredients:

1 cup raw cashew nuts

1/2 cup almonds

1/2 cup coconut flakes

1/2 cup frozen raspberries

1 tsp freeze dried raspberry powder

1/2 Tbsp pure maple syrup

1 Tbsp melted extra virgin coconut oil

1/2 cup freeze dried raspberries

 

Directions:

1. Add all ingredients into the food processor except the dried freeze raspberries.

2. Process until mixture comes together and you can roll into balls.

3. Remove the food processor blade and add the freeze dried raspberries. Use a spoon to combine the freeze dried raspberries into the mixture, you can break them up a little or keep them whole.

4. Take a handful of the mixture and roll into balls.

5. Take a small bowl and add some freeze dried raspberry powder. Place the bliss ball into the powder and roll until completely covered or leave plain.

6. Store in the fridge for up to 3-5 days.

Lemon, apricot and goji bars

Apricot Goji Bars 1.

 

Ingredients:

1 cup almonds

1/2 cup apricots

1/4 cup goji berries

1/2 cup coconut flakes

Juice of 1 1/2 lemons

 

Directions:

1. Add all ingredients into a food processor and process to a coarse consistency and until the mixtures starts to come together (you can process for a little longer if you prefer your bars less crunchy).

2. Take a handful of the mixture and mould into a cylinder shape or your desired shape.

3. Keep stored in the fridge.

Detox Hummus

Hummus 1

 

Ingredients

1 can of chickpeas

2 large handfuls of spinach

1 large handful of kale leaves (de-stemmed)

Juice of 1 1/2 lemons

1 1/2 Tbsp Tahini

1-2 cloves of crushed garlic

1/2 tsp of sea salt (or himalayan pink salt)

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

 

Directions:

1. Drain and rinse the canned chickpeas

2. Place all ingredients into food processor, blend for 2-3 minutes on low until mixed and smooth.

3. You can add more lemon, garlic or salt depending on your own personal taste.

4. Store in the fridge.

 

Sunflower seed and almond crackers

Ingredients:

1 cup almonds

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

3 Tbsp flaxseeds

1 egg white + 1 free range egg

Himalayan salt

 

Directions:

1. Process nuts and seeds in food processor and process until fine or can leave quite coarse.

2. Add eggs and salt and process until forms a dough like consistency

3. Roll between two sheets of baking paper. You can place into the oven as is or use a cookie cutter to create your desired cracker shape

4. Bake about 10 min at 160 º (careful they do not burn)

5. Once removed from the over, break into rustic crackers or cut in square shape (if you have not already cut out your shapes prior to placing in the oven)

6. Once cooled store in an air tight container.

Check out Christina’s Facebook page for more of her recipes.



Comments | 2

  • photo
    That's great to hear - thanks Lisa smile
    By Melanie Rands on Wed May 11, 2016
  • photo
    Thank you so much for sharing these recipes.
    Very timely as this is just what I am after at the moment smile
    By Lisa Latham on Thu May 05, 2016

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