(Nutrition)

Looking For A Mid-Day Pick-Me-Up? Try One Of These Healthy Snacks

Yes, you can make your own energy bars.

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If you need more energy during the work day, having the best healthy snacks on hand is the way to go. Ahead, nutritionists share some of their favorite recipes.

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Crystal Zabka-Belsky, dietitian at Clean Eatz Kitchen, likes Cran-Pineapple Peanut Butter Protein Balls: 3 c. whole oats, 2/3 c. dried cranberries, 2/3 c. dried pineapple, 2/3 c. ground flaxseed, 1 c. omega-3 peanut butter, 2/3 c. honey, ¼ c. honey-roasted peanuts, and 2 tbsp. vanilla and almond extracts.

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Combine all ingredients and roll into 30 balls using an ice cream scoop, then refrigerate. “This protein ball packs a powerful punch with 5 grams of protein if you’re looking for a little pick-me-up during the workday,” Zabka-Belsky tells TZR.

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Dr. Daryl Gioffre, celebrity nutritionist, author, and founder of Alkamind recommends celery boats. “They’re a stalk of celery with raw almond butter and hemp seeds (or any other nuts and seeds you’d like to add),” he tells TZR.

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“Celery boats will help you boost energy, burn fat, and crush your cravings for sugar,” says Gioffre. “Not only is celery a good source of antioxidants and other healthy, disease-fighting phytonutrients, it’s also high in minerals which reduces the acidity and inflammation in the body.”

Dr. Daryl Gioffre

Kristen Kellogg, founder at Mapped Wellness and certified health coach, recommends making a protein shake: 20 grams Truvani Chocolate Plant-Based Protein, 1 tbsp. cashew butter, and 8 oz. unsweetened coconut milk.

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Blend everything together (ice optional). “Having protein on hand is key to keep you going — a protein shake is a quick and easy way to refuel of your gas tank,” says Kellogg.

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Julie Olson, nutritionist and founder of Fortitude Functional Nutrition, recommends these Cinnamon Ginger Energy Balls: ¾ c. pitted dates, ½ c. almonds (raw), ¼ c. cashews (raw), ½ tsp. cinnamon, ¼ tsp. ground ginger, ½ tsp. vanilla extract, ¼ tsp. sea salt, and sesame seeds.

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Add the ingredients to a food processor and blend until well-mixed and sticky. Transfer to a medium-sized mixing bowl and form into even balls with your hands. Then store the rest in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.

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If you’re craving a sweet-and-salty, protein-rich snack (8 g. per serving), Zabka-Belsky recommends making this Nutty Beef Jerky Trail Mix: ½ c. honey-roasted peanuts, ¼ c. beef jerky, ¼ c. chocolate peanut candies, ¼ c. dried pineapple, and ¼ c. dried Craisins.

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Combine all ingredients and divide evenly into four separate containers. “The additional nutritional benefits of this high-protein, high-fiber trail mix include midday workout recovery, enhanced digestion, stabilized blood sugar, and improved immunity,” says Zabka-Belsky.

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Kellogg says that if you don’t want to prep, prepackaged snacks aren’t necessarily out of the picture when it comes to healthy snacks. “For a midday gut check, dried seaweed is the most nutrient-dense prebiotic veggie,” she says. “It’s great for gut health.”

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For Brownie Batter Protein Balls, Olson says you need: ⅓ c. pitted dates, 2 c. black beans (cooked), ½ c. chocolate protein powder, ⅓ c. pumpkin seed butter, ½ tsp. sea salt, 1 tbsp. cacao powder, & ½ c. organic dark chocolate chips.

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Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine everything but the chocolate chips in a food processor until smooth and form into one-inch balls. Melt the chocolate chips as an optional drizzle. Refrigerate at least one hour to set.

Julie Olson/Fortitude Functional Nutrition

Olson also suggests Energy Bar Snacks: ½ c. pecans (chopped), ⅓ c. sesame seeds, ¼ c. pumpkin seeds, ¼ c. sunflower seeds, ¼ c. ground flaxseed, ¼ c. dried unsweetened cranberries (optional), ¼ tsp. sea salt, 2 tbsps. raw honey, and ¼ c. sunflower seed butter.

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Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toast the seeds and nuts in a pan over medium-low heat for 5 minutes. Put in a bowl and add the ground flaxseed, cranberries, and sea salt. Add honey and sunflower seed butter and mix. Press into a lightly greased, parchment-paper-lined square pan. Bake for 15 minutes.

Julie Olson/Fortitude Functional Nutrition