These tips for making smarter snack choices and strawberry smoothie bowl recipe have been sponsored by General Mills, Cascadian Farm and Annie’s. All opinions expressed here are my own.
Back in the olden days, food was rather uncomplicated. You grew it, harvested it, cooked it, and put in on your plate for mealtime. Fast forward a few decades and we are busier and lack the space and ability to grow all of our own food. Eating has become more complicated. Despite time and budget constraints, it is possible to turn back the clock to a simpler way of eating. And making smarter snack choice doesn’t have to be complicated. With the selection of natural and organic foods at Walmart, making smart snack choices can be part of your weekly shopping trip. If you love smoothie bowls, check out my chocolate almond butter smoothie bowl recipe!
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What is the Best Snack Food?
In my mind, the best snack foods are simple, natural, and (as my budget allows) organic. Annie’s and Cascadian Farm products from Walmart make it into my pantry regularly. I trust the ingredients and find them at a great price at Walmart.
I have tried to turn back the clock to a simpler way of eating in my house when I can. But what exactly is the best snack food? Obviously, everyone will have their own nutritional and caloric needs but here are some things to keep in mind:
- Size matters: Snacks should be just the right size. You want enough calories to satisfy you but not fill you up completely.
- Nutrition counts: Choose foods that are low in saturated fat and processed sugar while also being high in fiber and moisture. Fresh fruit is better than chips and nuts are better than fruit snacks.
- Read the label: For any prepackaged food items, you should recognize the ingredients. If there are lots of numbers and chemical names, you might want to find something else to snack on.
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Making Smarter Snack Choices
How many times have you opened up the pantry and grabbed some cookies because you were hungry and in a hurry? Did you succumb to that candy bar in the grocery checkout lane because you were starving and forgot to eat breakfast? We are our own worst enemies when it comes to making smarter snack choices. Without a little bit of thought and preparation, it is far too easy to grab junk food instead of snack food that is actually GOOD for you. How do you make smarter snack choices? Here are a few tips:
I highly recommend not bringing children to the grocery store if at all possible. That way, there are no little hands tossing cookies and chips into your cart. Start out in the produce section and stock up on fresh foods before hitting the center aisles. Be thoughtful of what you are buying. Which meal is it for? Will you be able to eat all of it before it starts to spoil?
You need to read labels. Do not be fooled by the FRONT label. Turn over the package and read the fine print. Do you recognize the ingredient names? How many ingredients are there? Simple foods make the best snack food. I have certain brands that I trust and I look for with key words like organic, or no artificial ingredients. With Annie’s and Cascadian Farm products from Walmart I know that I am making smarter snack choices.
Prepare your produce on the weekend and store it in small containers in the refrigerator. Making smarter snack choices is much easier when the better for you snacks are right there and ready to eat. Chop celery, wash berries, and peel carrots all at one time. Then just pack them into the refrigerator so they are ready to grab when you are in a hurry.
The best snack food doesn’t have to cost a fortune. You know what costs a lot of money? Packaging. Lots of prepackaged little bags of fruit snacks and tiny bags of pretzels create a lot of packaging waste. They also cost a lot to create and those costs are passed on to you, the consumer. Buy large bags of pretzels and pour dried cereal into your own reusable plastic containers. Keep those in easy reach in your pantry for you (and your kids!) to grab in a hurry.
This one is tough. We are all in a hurry… me included. However, food is meant to be savored and enjoyed. While sometimes you need to grab a snack and run, make time for your food whenever possible. Sit down at the table and eat mindfully. Savor the flavors and textures of your food. Be conscious of the things you are snacking on. This strawberry smoothie bowl recipe with Cascadian Farms Granola takes less than 10 minutes to make and is such an incredibly smart snack choice loaded with nutrients!
Strawberry Smoothie Bowl Recipe
- FOR SMOOTHIE
- 1 cup frozen strawvberries
- 1 cup Greek vanilla yogurt
- enough apple juice to thin slightly (about 1/4 cup)
- 1/2 banana, sliced
- 2 large strawberries, sliced
- 1/4 cup Cascadian Farms granola
- 2 to 3 TBSP pumpkin seeds
- 1 TBSP flax seeds
- 1 TBSP ground hemp seeds
- In a blender, combine frozen strawberries, juice, and yogurt. Blend until smooth. Pour into a bowl
- Top with remaining ingredients
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 874Total Fat: 10gCarbohydrates: 72gProtein: 8g
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Diane has a Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology with a Minor in Health Management and Policy. She spent many years working in cancer research, academics, and biotechnology. Concern over the growing incidence of human disease and the birth of her children led her to begin living a more natural life. She quickly realized that the information she was learning along the way could be beneficial to many others and started blogging as a way to share this knowledge with others. While passionate about health and the environment she can’t quite give up her favorite Cheetos and Diet Coke! Learn more about her HERE.