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When Meghan and I decided to change our diets and start eating a low gluten diet, one thing that concerned me was “What were we going to eat for snacks?” A staple in my diet were granola bars, and going low gluten meant finding an alternative for these. We also used to pack pita bread with hummus, which of course was now not part of a low gluten diet. The good news is that there are lots of great snack options out there. Some of them you can find ready to go at the store, others take a couple minutes to put together in the morning. Below is my list of the top 10 gluten-free snacks that are part of Meg and my diet.
#10: Yogurt: Unless you are also taking the low dairy route, yogurt should be a snack staple. I actually tried a few varieties of soy and almond yogurts, which had mixed results. I found that the soy Greek yogurt was the most similar to Greek yogurt. Once again, companies make so many flavor varieties that you can always change up your snack.
#9: Lara Bars: These snack bars are made with dates and are a pretty good substitution for a granola bar. What I really like about the Lara Bar is the variety of flavors. How can you pass on Carrot Cake, or Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough? They are great for an afternoon snack.
#8: Real Sticks: We recently found these at Whole Foods and now they are a part of our snack rotation. The nice thing about these snacks is that they are low in carbs, which many of the other options are not. You can find out a bit more about Real Sticks on their website: http://www.vtsmokeandcure.com/real-sticks.html. The cracked pepper is so far our favorite.
#7: Roasted and salted pumpkin seeds: Remember when you would carve a Jack-o-Lantern and have to set aside the seeds to that they could dry, and then be baked and salted? Well, now it is easy to find already roasted and salted pumpkin seeds at the store. I love the dispenser for them at Whole Foods, in fact, I love the entire aisle of dispensable goods at Whole Foods (more on that in a later post). Keep a container in your desk and you will always have a crunchy salty snack nearby.
#6: Hard-boiled eggs: Eggs are a great source of protein and when hard-boiled are convenient to bring to work and make a great snack. Simply put 4 eggs in a pot of cold water. Bring the water to a boil and boil for 1 minute. Remove the pot from the heat and cover, allow to sit for 12 minutes. Remove the eggs from the pot and run under cold water for 1 minute. You will have perfectly cooked hard-boiled eggs.
#5: Baby carrots and hummus: Hummus comes in so many flavor varieties you can always change it up to keep your snacks interesting. Send a small container of hummus (Joseph’s even makes a 4-pack of snack size hummus containers) with a bag of baby carrots for a mid-morning snack. You can mix it up by sending celery or sliced peppers or cherry tomatoes as well.
#4: Rice cakes with peanut butter: A gluten-free alternative to a slice of bread with peanut butter. I like the buttered popcorn flavored rice cakes, which go well with some fresh ground peanut butter. I think rice cakes would also be good with Nutella, I should probably try that.
#3: Kind Bars: These bars are predominantly fruit and nut bars, but several varieties also contain yogurt and chocolate. Once again, a nice variety of flavors will keep your snacks interesting.
#2: “Bumps on a log”: This is the classic snack from back in elementary school. Slice up a couple celery stalks, spread them with peanut butter and top with raisins. For a twist, use almond butter and golden raisins, or sprinkle on some chopped nuts.
#1: Roasted almonds: I have always been a fan of almonds, and now that you can get them in so many flavors, they are definitely a part of my snack routine. In fact, there is probably a container of almonds in my desk pretty much at all times.
There are also a few things that I bake for snacks, and I will be sure to include these in some posts shortly. So, if your snacking is getting stale, give some of these a try. And be sure to let me know what you snacks find their way to power you through your day.