It’s time to take the pressure off. Eating a plant-based diet can absolutely offer you all of the protein you need, so stop worrying about it. Whether you’re snacking post-workout, grabbing a quick bite before heading out the door, or simply in need of an afternoon nourishing pick-me-up, choosing a protein heavy hitter to snack on can help up feel fuller, longer. Take the pressure off with these 5 Convenient and Healthy Portable, Protein Snacks for Plant-Based Eaters!
Popcorn is quite simple. Just buy a packet of popcorn kernels, fry them in oil in a covered pan, and add salt, or anything you like. You can really create your own flavor here, like cinnamon, plain salt, salt and pepper, spicy, and so on. Just make sure that the frying pan is covered. That is very important, otherwise, the popcorn kernels are going to be popping all over your stove top, cabinets, the floors, you get the idea. It is going to look like an explosion in Molly Weasley’s kitchen (Yes, I read all the Harry Potter books 😉 )
That same vegan nacho cheese sauce makes for a serious plate of nachos. We use freshly fried tortilla wedges (they're sturdier than store-bought chips) as the base for vegan refried beans and chili, Roasted-Tomato Salsa, guacamole, and tons of fresh and pickled veggies. Layering the chips and toppings for even coverage is a little extra work, but it's worth it for the many more balanced bites you'll get.
Toasted bread is a blank canvas for creativity. At dinner, you can stretch the bounds of typical “breakfast” toasts, too. Smoked salmon is a rich and luscious fish, and a little goes a long way: a pound will easily feed a family of four. Creamy yogurt, tangy capers, and crisp red onions balance the fattiness of the fish, but you can let people pick and choose the toppings they want with their smoked salmon toast. No one would say no to a bit of smashed avocado on this easy breakfast for dinner dish.
If you're looking for a creative way to add more fruit to your diet, try frozen banana pops. Slice several peeled bananas in half and insert popsicle sticks. Coat each half with an ounce of low-fat plain yogurt. Put the pops in the freezer, and soon you'll have ready-to-eat low-calorie treats. At just under 80 calories a pop, this is a snack you can feel good about.
Dried fruit is a portable, healthy snack. Eating fruit helps with weight-loss because it's packed with filling fiber (and important vitamins and minerals). Look for fruit with no sugar or sweeteners added and pair dried fruit with nuts for a snack with a balance of healthy carbs and protein. Dried fruit is also a great option to keep at your desk at work.
Volumetrics is an eating plan championed by Barbara Rolls of Penn State University, and it's based on getting more mileage out of low-density foods. For example, a huge salad—or in this case, nearly 4 cups of popcorn—will leave you more satisfied than a square of chocolate, and for far fewer calories. If you're someone who gets depressed by measly portions, reach for healthy snacks that have a high water content like fruits, veggies—or our favorite crunchy munchie: popcorn. For a pre-popped variety, we love SkinnyPop because it's free of additives and tasty without being too salty.