Holiday foods tend to take center stage around this time of year, and for good reason! They have special memories tied to the holidays, sometimes they are recipes that are only made this time of year, and you indulge more into these favorite foods. And that is great! Maybe it’s just me, but if I eat too many of my favorite holiday sweets in a row I don’t feel very good after, and I crave healthier foods to help balance it out. I have no plans on giving up my holiday indulgences, but rather include healthy seasonal winder snacks in between my sweets! That way I don’t miss out on my favorite holiday foods and can still feel well at the same time. If you can relate to my story, try out some of these healthy winter snacks!
1. Baked Sweet Potato Fries + Greek Yogurt Dipping Sauce
A savory snack to help hold you over until the big meal! Cut your sweet potato into strips that resemble French Fries and toss them in olive oil, salt, pepper, and any other seasonings of your choice (chilli powder would be great!). While those bake in the oven, mix Greek yogurt with a splash of lemon juice, chopped chives, and a pinch of salt and pepper.
2. Granola + Yogurt + Dried Cranberries and Chopped Apple
This is a great snack because it combines protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats! Use your favorite granola, you can find some tasty seasonal flavors, too. The dried cranberries and chopped apple add flavor, texture, and fiber.
3. Chilli Roasted Chickpeas
If you are looking for a crunchy, salty snack, this is for you! Drain and rinse 1 can of chickpeas and add to a bowl. Add olive oil, chilli powder, cumin, salt, and pepper and mix well. Add a little extra of the spices if you like it spicy. Spread the seasoned chickpeas out on a baking tray and bake until they are nice and crispy.
4. Baked Oatmeal
It’s one of the biggest trends on social media, and I like this one that tastes like carrot cake! Ingredients include ¼ cup unsweetened apple sauce, 2 tablespoons almond milk, 1 egg, 2-3 teaspoons maple syrup, 2/3 cup rolled oats, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder, pinch of salt, 1 medium carrot finely grated, ¼ cup raisins, and ¼ cup chopped pecans. While the oven preheats to 350°F you lightly grease 2 small oven-safe ramekins. Into a blender add everything except the carrot, raisins and pecans. Blend until smooth and creamy. Stir in the carrot, raisins, and pecans until combined. Add batter to the ramekins and bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean.
5. Winter Fruit Salad
This fruit salad helps increase your fruit intake during these colder months and uses up the more seasonal produce. In a large bowl, combine chopped apple, orange slices, pomegranate seeds, kiwi, and pears. In a small bowl, combine 3 tablespoons honey, 2 tablespoons lime juice, and 2 tablespoons lemon juice. Add this mixture over the fruit and enjoy! Besides adding flavor, the juice mixture will also help prevent browning because of the antioxidant powers of the Vitamin C in the lemon and lime juice.
The Bottom Line
The holiday season should be an enjoyable time eating foods you love. Sometimes eating too much of a food item (like sweets) leads to physical uncomfortable feelings. Try adding some of these healthy snacks into your day to break it up and add variety to your diet. It’s about what you add in, not necessarily what you take away.