In those days that you’re running from meeting to meeting, not able to sneak a lunch or a full meal, it’s all about the bite-sized snacks. Finding the ideal snacks that’ll help keep you full and energized before you head to your next real meal, is key.
But where do you start?
The key to a good and filling snack comes down a few things: protein, fiber, and healthy fats. Forget the colorful, artificially-sweetened snacks that line the grocery store snack aisle. Instead, go for the more nutrient-filled and better-for-you options that are not only easy to find but delicious to snack on. They’re what will keep you moving until your next sit-down meal.
They’re often named the superstar of the nuts family, and a favorite for people who just need a very quick snack to hold them over until dinner. And here’s why: almonds are known as natural appetite suppressants, studies show. Though almonds do come with a bit of a higher calorie count (a handful will run you about 150 to 200 calories), they are very high in fiber, which means that you’ll be less likely to consume other high-calorie foods later in the day.
Hard-boiled eggs take a little while for your body to digest, which means that you won’t be hungry shortly after consuming them, all the while also helping to control spikes in your blood sugar. One egg comes in at just around 80 calories, which means consuming one when you’re feeling especially hungry won’t run your total calorie count very high.
You can have it for any meal of the day — it doesn’t have to just be for breakfast — because avocado toast can become your new go-to filling snack. Loaded with protein, healthy fats, and fiber, this delicious bread plus avocado dish is really all you need to jumpstart your energy for your next big project.
An apple a day, keeps the doctor away, as the old saying goes, but the fiber-loaded fruit can also keep the hunger pangs at bay thanks to its nutritional content. Bring one with you to work and eat when you feel the energy dip coming on. You’ll be surprised how effectively it does the job.
You may have likely ordered it at a sushi restaurant, but did you know you should also be keeping some edamame close to your desk in case a hunger pang strikes? Buy it shelled or still in the stalk — edamame will keep you full, either way. One cup of the vegetable holds roughly 120 calories and nine grams of fiber.
If you prefer a more salty snack, try roasted edamame. It’s low on the sodium while giving you the crunch and salty aftertaste you crave.
It’s simple to make (all you need is the office microwave), very inexpensive, and low in calories (as long as you don’t do the full-butter variety). It’s filled with whole grains and fiber, and you can create your own —by adding kernels to a brown paper lunch bag, you can make your own portion-controlled variety. Top it with spices like paprika for a little extra flavor or even drizzle with Sriracha for a hot kick.
Made with chickpeas, so it’s naturally high in protein, hummus is a filling side-dish or snack that you can easily assemble in your office luncheonette. If you choose to make your own (it’s much easier than you think), or if you opt for the grocery store variety, simply use some baby carrots to scoop and serve it, and you’re all set until dinnertime.
Much like almonds, which will keep you full until your next meal, peanut butter is loaded with healthy fats that’ll make sure you’re not overeating at your next meal. But taking the traditional “ants on a log” route will give you that nostalgia kick, plus, knowing that celery contains virtually zero calories, you’ll get the crunch you want without sacrificing additional nutrients.
An inexpensive, portable, and nutritious option, string cheese comes in at around 80 calories per stalk and nearly with 6 grams of protein. You can opt for the low-fat or “light” variety” for less saturated fat, but know that you’ll still be consuming fewer calories and added fiber than with other snacks.
Another snack in the “not just for breakfast” category, oatmeal is an easy-to-make quick meal that’ll keep you full, and the best part is you can customize it however you wish. Add in chia seeds for extra fiber, top it with nuts for some crunch, or even dried fruit if you prefer a more sweet route.
Editors pick: To get that much-needed middle of the day pick-me-up, try these Health Lab protein balls. They’re a convenient nourishing snack for on-the-go! Our fave: The Cacao Brownie Protein Ball.