Snacks are some of the most expensive foods on the market. It is not uncommon to spend $5 on a big grab bag of chips and a 44 ounce soda at a gas station. Not only are you wasting a lot of money when you make such purchases, you are also contributing to an unhealthy waist line.
Cookies, chips, crackers, and soda are all problem areas both for the diet and for the budget. So, here are 10 healthy snacks which have less than 200 calories and are also under $2 per serving.
1. Raw veggies dipped in fat-free ranch dressing
Include lots of bright-colored veggies like carrots, green, red and yellow peppers, broccoli and tomatoes. Red peppers contain almost four times more vitamin C than oranges! Calories: 60 Cost per serving: $1.49. Serving size: 1 cup veggies, 2 tbsp. dressing.
2. Hardboiled egg
One whole egg provides 7 grams of protein but 212 mg cholesterol. If you’re concerned about the cholesterol, toss the yolk and just eat the white. Calories: 78 Cost per serving: $0.28. Serving size: 1 whole egg.
3. Dark chocolate chips – 60% cacao
Dark chocolate contains antioxidants and phenols, which can lower blood pressure. Calories: 80. Cost per serving: $0.11. Serving size: 16 chips.
4. Mozzarella cheese stick rolled up in a turkey slice
Provides 15% of the recommended daily calcium and 18 grams of protein. Try dipping in spicy mustard for some kick. Calories: 90. Cost per serving: $0.85. Serving size: 1 cheese stick, 1 turkey slice.
5. Apple with peanut butter
Apples have fiber to make you feel full longer. Spread on some peanut butter for flavor, but limit the portion size of the peanut butter since it is high in calories. Calories: 105. Cost per serving: $0.95. Serving size: 1 medium apple, 1 tbsp. natural peanut butter.
6. Low-fat cottage cheese
A good source of calcium and protein, but those with high blood pressure should eat cottage cheese in moderation because of the high sodium content. Calories: 110. Cost per serving: $0.90. Serving size: cup.
7. Fresh berries with fat free yogurt
Berries contain antioxidants to help you prevent cancer and heart disease, and yogurt is a nutritious alternative to whipped cream. Sprinkle on some ground flaxseed for additional heart health benefits. Calories: 115. Cost per serving: $1.81. Serving size: 1 cup berries, 1/4 cup yogurt.
8. Whole grain crackers with hummus
Hummus is made from chickpeas, a great lean protein. Whole grain crackers are a preferable alternative to those made with white flour. Calories: 137. Cost per serving: $0.47. Serving size: 10 small crackers, 2 tbsp. hummus.
Almonds make you feel full and studies have shown they can lower cholesterol, but they’re high in calories so limit the portion size. Calories: 160. Cost per serving: $0.55. Serving size: 1 oz.
10. Low-fat yogurt
Another good choice for calcium, providing 20% of the recommended daily allowance. But yogurt can be high in sugar. Reduced-sugar varieties have about 100 calories. Cost per serving: $0.59 Serving size: 6 oz.
As you can see, you don’t have to break the bank when your trying to eat healthy. With a little common sense and sticking with cheap snack food, cutting calories can be fun and you can lose weight at the same time.