The next time you need to ward off between-meal hunger, skip the vending machine and instead prepare a superfood snack. Superfoods have received their super status because of their ability to boost the immune system, fight disease, and curb hunger, making them the perfect foods to reach for when you need a midday pick-me-up. Here are 6 superfood-filled recipes that will help you snack smart.
1. Sesame-Garlic Nori Chips
When hunger strikes, prepare a batch of Melissa Joulwan’s sesame-garlic nori chips, a cholesterol-free snack that’s high in vitamin A. The recipe, which is in the cookbook Well Fed: Paleo Recipes For People Who Love to Eat and can be found via PopSugar, yields 6 servings, with each containing 42 calories. According to The Kitchn, nori is made by shredding edible seaweed and then pressing it into thin sheets, and can be found at Asian grocery stores, Whole Foods, and some regular supermarkets. The Best of Raw Food notes that seaweed is an excellent source of iodine, calcium, iron, magnesium, vitamins A, B, and C, and fiber, and contains anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties.
- 12 nori sheets
- ¼ cup water
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- Pinch ground cayenne pepper
- Salt, to taste
Directions: Preheat the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit. Cover two large baking sheets with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Place six sheets of nori, shiny side up, on the baking sheet. With a pastry brush, lightly brush the shiny side of the nori with water, be sure to reach the edges, then carefully align another sheet of nori on top and press them together. Repeat with the remaining sheets until they’re buddied up. Using kitchen shears or a sharp knife, cut the nori into one-inch strips, then cut those strips in half crosswise. You will end up with about 42 chips.
Arrange the chips in a single layer on the baking sheets. In a small bowl, combine the garlic, sesame oil, and cayenne. Use the pastry brush to coat the top of the chips, then sprinkle generously with salt. Use your fingers to sprinkle sesame seeds across the tops of the chips. Place on the middle rack of the oven, and bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the oven, taste, and sprinkle with salt if you like. Allow them to cool before eating for maximum crunch.
2. Spiced Pears and Pomegranate
Two superfoods — pomegranate and almonds — work together to create Allrecipes.com’s sweet and satisfying snack, which yields 4 servings. Southern Living explains that pomegranates are a good source of fiber, help regulate your cholesterol, prevent arthritis, protect your skin, and can eliminate plaque from the mouth.
- 3 pears, peeled, cored, and cut into wedges
- 1 pomegranate, skin and light-colored membrane removed
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped almonds, optional
- 4 sprigs fresh mint leaves for garnish, optional
Directions: Place the sliced pears and pomegranate seeds into a bowl. Toss with lemon juice to coat. Combine the brown sugar, nutmeg, and cinnamon in a small cup or bowl, then mix into the fruit. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving to blend the flavors. Serve in individual dishes, and garnish with a sprinkling of chopped almonds and a sprig of mint.
3. Garlic Parmesan Flaxseed Crackers
Flaxseed, which may reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke, and diabetes, has been praised for centuries for its noteworthy nutrients. In fact, WebMD notes that flaxseed was cultivated in Babylon as early as 3000 BC, and in the 8th century, a king believed in its benefits so strongly that he passed laws requiring his subjects to consume it. If you’d like to start reaping flaxseed’s many benefits, we suggest making Verywell’s fiber-filled garlic parmesan flaxseed crackers, which pair perfectly with Foxes Love Lemons’ creamy roasted garlic and parmesan dip.
- 1 cup flaxseed meal
- ⅓ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 1½ teaspoons garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup water
Directions: Heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix all ingredients together. Spoon onto sheet pan that’s covered with a silicone mat or greased parchment paper. Cover the mixture with a piece of parchment or waxed paper. Even out the mixture to about ⅛ inch. After you spread it out, remove the paper and go around the edges with your finger and push the thin part inwards to even it up. Bake until the center is no longer soft, about 15 to 18 minutes. If it starts to get more than a little brown around the edges, remove from oven. Let cool completely; it will continue to crisp up. Break into pieces, and enjoy!
4. Honey-Glazed Almonds
Fight off midday hunger with Cooking Light’s honey-glazed almonds, a great on-the-go snack that’s filled with spicy and smoky flavors. The recipe yields 10 servings. SFGate recommends eating a handful of almonds every day, noting that the nutritious nut promotes heart health, prevents weight gain, and may even help fight diseases like diabetes and Alzheimer’s. In addition, almonds are rich in vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, potassium, protein, and fiber, and are naturally low in sugar.
- 1½ cups raw, unblanched almonds
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1½ tablespoons honey
- ½ teaspoon ground chipotle chile powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon salt
Directions: Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the almonds in a medium nonstick skillet; cook over medium heat for 6 minutes or until lightly toasted, shaking pan frequently. Combine the remaining ingredients in a 2-cup glass measure. Microwave at high for 30 seconds. Add honey mixture to pan, and cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Arrange almond mixture on prepared baking sheet in a single layer; let stand 10 minutes. Break apart any clusters.
5. Dark Chocolate Blueberry Cookies
Packed with dark chocolate, blueberries, oats, and almonds, SparkRecipes’ cookies curb cravings and deliver a powerful dose of nutrients. Dr. Axe states that blueberries contain a broad range of antioxidants, which help reverse inflammation, protect the brain from degeneration, reduce the risk of disease, and aid in heart health. It’s important to note that these cookies won’t rise as much as baked goods normally do, but instead will have a heartier, denser texture. The recipe yields 20 servings.
- ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
- ½ cup mashed ripe bananas
- ½ cup Splenda brown-sugar blend (or a similar sugar alternative)
- 2 egg whites
- ¼ cup whole-wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¾ cup raw oats
- ¼ cup dark chocolate chips, at least 60% cocoa
- ¼ cup dried blueberries
- ¼ cup sliced almonds
Directions: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Cream the bananas, applesauce, and sugar. Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract. Beat in the flour, baking powder, and cinnamon. Blend the raw oats, chocolate chips, blueberries, and almonds. Place on lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes.
6. Greek Hummus Dip with Veggie Dippers
Betty Crocker’s Greek hummus dip with veggie dippers is a fiber-filled snack that will curb your hunger. The superstar of this recipe, which yields 10 servings, is Greek yogurt; Healthline notes that it is an excellent source of protein, probiotics, vitamin B12, potassium, calcium, and iodine, a mineral that is important for proper thyroid function.
- 1 (7-ounce) container plain hummus
- 1 (6-ounce) container Greek fat-free plain yogurt
- ½ cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 medium plum tomato, seeded, chopped
- 2 tablespoons chopped green onions
- 2 tablespoons quartered pitted kalamata olives
- 1 cucumber, thinly sliced (15 slices)
- 1 large red bell pepper, cut into 15 (1¼ inch) squares
- 30 pita chips
Directions: In a medium bowl, mix hummus, yogurt, feta cheese, lemon peel, and lemon juice. Spread on shallow serving plate or pie plate. Top with tomato, green onions and olives. Place cucumber slices and red pepper squares alternately around hummus. Serve with pita chips.