Healthy Snacks for Real Moms and a GIVEAWAY!

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{This giveaway is now CLOSED}

I mentioned in my last post that things have been a little hectic in the Kids Heart Real Food household.  Hectic in the best sort of way, but when things get busy, finding time for cooking and food preparation is difficult.  If I am actually able to carve out some time to spend in the kitchen, I usually use it to make food for Tyson.  When I get hungry, I’m left scrambling to find a snack that is quick and easy – but healthy so that I don’t feel like garbage for the rest of the day.  I’m sure you can all relate to this dilemma!

I wanted to share some of the things I’ve been snacking on these days.  As you know, I’m a big, big fan or preparing things ahead of time in big batches to keep in the fridge or freezer.  This comes in especially handy during really hectic times because snacking is as simple as opening up a tupperware container or reaching into the freezer.  All of these snacks are very transportable, meaning they are easy to pack for days when you are on-the-go and need snacks throughout the day to keep you going.  I always try to eat snacks that are high in protein, which takes longer for the body to break down and digest than carbohydrates.  This means that the snack will keep me fuller for a longer - a very important factor when I’m busy and barely have time to snack as it is.

Here are some of my favourite quick, easy and healthy snacks for busy moms:

1)  Greek Yoghurt

I buy the plain flavour and add a bit of honey and top with a mix of nuts, raisins, goji berries and coconut flakes.  Sometimes I will add in fruit as well.  Lately, I have been making big batches of  homemade granola and just mixing that into the yoghurt.  I made this recipe for Almond Butter Banana Granola last week and it is AMAZING.  I actually tripled it and  put some in the freezer so it wouldn’t go stale.

Yoghurt

2)  Fresh Veggies or Mary’s Crackers and Hummus or Bean Dip:  

I’m sure you have all heard this before, but to eat more vegetables throughout the day, it really does work to have them peeled, cut and ready in your fridge.  Think beyond carrots, celery and cucumber and try radishes, mushrooms, green beans, turnip and kohlrabi (if you haven’t tried kohlrabi, you should!  I need to do a Real Food Close-Up on this guy as he is so, so good).

I often make big batches of hummus or bean dip on the weekends to eat throughout the week.  It makes a great baby/toddler food as well – very high in fibre and protein.  Two of my current favourites are this Curried Sweet Potato Hummus and this Lemony White Bean Dip with Dill.

Along with the veggies, my favourite crackers to use with my hummus or bean dip are Mary’s Crackers.  They are gluten-free for those who are avoiding gluten or just want less of it in their diet.

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3)  Green Drinks

When I want a boost of vitamins and minerals I will whip up some  Green Lemonade, adding in some chia seeds for protein.  I am also a BIG fan of green smoothies as a complete snack, something I will be talking about it a future post.  Both are great for snacking on the go – especially in the car.

4)  Soup or Salad

I know most people think of soup and salad only at mealtime, but I make big batches of both on the weekend to have in my fridge for both meals and snacks throughout the week.  The only difference at snack time is the portion size.  A small bowl of my Potato, Celeriac and Leek Soup  or Overnight Kale Salad is really satisfying and keeps me satiated between meals.  This is  yet another way to incorporate more healthy veggies into your diet.

Celeriac, Potato and Leek Soup

5) Handful of Nuts or Roasted Chickpeas

6) Apple + Nut Butter

If you haven’t tried this I recommend you do so.  Now.  You will be addicted.

7) Energy Bars

I typically try to make my own high-protein snack bars using beans (yes beans!) as the base and freeze a whole bunch of them so I can grab one from the freezer when I need one.  I always use this Homemade Energy Bar formula from No Meat Athlete.  It’s great because you can change it up depending on what’s in your pantry.  And trust me, it is delicious and does not taste like you are eating chocolate beans!

However, this past month my freezer supplies have dwindled.  So it was a welcome surprise when Wellness Foods sent me some samples of The Simply Bar to review.

Simply Bars

I typically avoid most protein bars because more often than not, they contain a lot of processed and scary sounding ingredients.  However, when I looked at the ingredient list for The Simply Bar, I was surprised at how short it is.  Like really short.  And the ingredients are a lot more real than most protein bars out there.

A Canadian women by the name of Cathy Richards created The Simply Bar because she suffered from chronic digestive issues and couldn’t find a protein bar that didn’t upset her stomach.  The company has been around for 10 years and The Simply Bar comes in lots of yummy flavours such as Lemon Coconut and Cocoa with Raspberry.   To celebrate their anniversary, they have launched a new “Canadian-inspired” flavour of The Simply Bar – Maple Pecan, which they sent me to try.  Like all of The Simply Bars, this new flavour has some pretty impressive stats:

  • 16g of protein (non-gmo soy based) and 9g of fibre per bar
  • Only 1g of sugar and 140 calories per bar – this is particularly impressive, as most protein bars out there have 5 to 10 times the amount of sugar, which is always a turn-off for me
  • Free of gluten, milk, refined sugars, additives/preservatives and bad fats – all of which can cause digestive distress in some people

So what about the taste?  I had one for a mid-morning snack yesterday and it was pretty darn good!  The main component of the bar is soy crisps, which make it taste a bit like a rice krispie square, which I think is a good thing.  The maple flavour really shines through and the big chunks of pecan are a nice touch.  Very enjoyable.

WellnessFoods_SimplyBar_MaplePecan_$2.79

The only hesitation I have with this product is the last ingredient listed on the label, which is “natural flavour”.  From my experience, this can be a catch-all term for a number of things, including some pretty yucky ingredients.  However, based on the values and reputation of Wellness Foods, I’m not too concerned.

The Simply Bar kept me full for longer than I expected – which was surprising considering it didn’t feel all that filling when I was eating it because of how light it is.  I would definitely recommend The Simply Bar as a quick and easy high-protein snack on jam-packed days.

And because Wellness Foods knows that I have a lot of readers who are busy moms  who would love an easy and healthy snack option, they have generously allowed me to give away a box of the new Maple Pecan Simply Bars to one lucky Kids Heart Real Food Reader!

How to enter

Receive up to 5 entries by:

  1. Subscribe to the Kids Heart Real Food RSS feed in your RSS reader or sign-up for e-mail updates (button located on right side of page).
  2. Facebook Like Kids Heart Real Food
  3. Follow me on Pinterest
  4. Tweet it and while you’re there follow me! You could say something like: Win a free box of Maple Pecan Simply Bars from @SimplyChoices and @kidsheartrealfd http://wp.me/p2H9Qy-f7
  5. Comment: What is your favourite healthy snack during busy times?

Please leave a *separate comment* for each entry!

This giveaway is open to Canadian and United States residents only, and you’ve got until midnight on Wednesday, August 14th to enter. I’ll announce the winner next Thursday morning, so be sure to check back!

Good luck!

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42 comments

  1. outtolunchcreations

    My favorite healthy snack is trail mix. My pantry is always overflowing with nuts and seeds so every week I mix a couple different ones together so I have a trail mix to nibble on during week. I also add sugar free carob chips and dried fruit into the mix for a treat!

  2. Laurie

    Thanks for the opportunity! I have added you to my RSS… and saved that potato soup in my bookmarks! Looks so warming.

  3. Laurie

    My favourite healthy snack during busy times is definitely some fruit with something substantial, like a trail mix. They’re both easy to grab — usually in the summer I opt for seasonal things (like plums and a handful of almonds). In the winter I’m alllll over clementines.

    Or homemade cookies :)

  4. Amy MacArthur

    My fave snack is actually just a tall glass of water…usually I find I’m not hungry and actually just getting dehydrated from running around after a 7,4,20 month old and breastfeeding a 3 week old

  5. Kristen

    Favourite snack is a handful of almonds and an apple! Or sometimes apple dipped in SunButter – Love it:) And you have helped to get the hubby eating more healthy…using your overnight kale receipe, he has kale and sunflower seeds after the gym!!! You rock Sarah:)

  6. Pingback: GIVEAWAY winner! + Interesting Reads | Kids Heart Real Food
  7. Pingback: Eating Healthy at the Cottage | Kids Heart Real Food

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