In my pre-diet days, I loved the oh-so-easy snacks. I’d just grab something from the fridge or cupboard that would quickly satisfy my carb or salt cravings.
Snacks on a diet don’t have that happy-go-lucky quality. For me, snacks now require careful planning from the grocery store right up to the finished product. Even a simple nosh like an apple requires making sure I always have apples in the house.
But this post isn’t about the simple snacks. I don’t know about you, but sometimes an apple, a handful of carrots, or a bowl of popcorn (how to make your own in the microwave, oil-free) just won’t cut it. I want a snack more interesting in taste and texture that is also
- Low in calories, i.e., has little or no fat. (Sugar isn’t a problem for me; I use artificial sweetener.)
- Healthful because it has nutritious ingredients.
- Filling so that I don’t get hungry again so quickly.
- 2 Weight Watcher (WW) points or less so it doesn’t overwhelm my daily count. (Roughly 100 calories.)
To that end, I am now experimenting with snack recipes, mine and others’, with the express purpose of keeping the calorie count down. As part of this effort, I decided to compile a list of all my low-calorie recipes to better understand how to replace empty calories with good ones. I thought you’d find this list helpful.
Quick Breads: A snack with flour always helps me with carb/sugar cravings. The trick to keeping these snacks low-cal is to replace fats. My intention is to revisit some of my older recipes and see if I can alter them. When I do, they’ll be re-posted and listed here.
- Banana Bread with Carob Chips
- Butternut Squash Brownies
- Pumpkin Cornbread Squares
- Zucchini Cinnamon Squares
Cobblers: I’ve adapted a great recipe that had no eggs or oil.
Bean Bakes: The main ingredients—3 eggs (no substitute) and 2 cups of navy beans—are roughly 110 calories or 2 WW points per serving. These ingredients provide some fat and a lot of protein; hence they are very filling, and this is why I love them. (Note: these links will bring you to The Bean Bake Blog.)
- Chocolate-Cauliflower Bean Bake (Yes, that’s right!)
- Chocolate-Orange Bean Bake
- Cauliflower-Carrot Bean Bake with Ginger and Garlic
- Mango Bean Bake
- Mushroom Bean Bake with Sage and Olive
- Pumpkin “Pie” Bean Bake (without the liquor which is optional)
Quinoa Puddings: A ½-cup serving is filling, in part, because the quinoa provides protein. However, to be low in calories, the puddings also require liquid egg substitute and almond or other low-calorie milk.
I’ve made these puddings with mango, banana, pumpkin, chocolate, squash, and plums. Check out Quinoa Puddings: Basics and Variations.
Chocolate Cravings? More Quinoa Stuff: Baking with cooked quinoa instead of flour is a great way to save on calories and still have a filling snack.
- Quinoa Brownies for Serious Chocoholics (no oil, no flour)
- Protein-Packed Chocolate Quinoa Cookies
- Navy Bean Brownies with Carob Chips