Ah, snacks. What would we do without them? We would probably all be significantly more grumpy, for one thing. I mean, I know I would at least.
I live according to a ‘Work Hard, Snack Hard’ philosophy. But for new vegans (and long-time ones too!) it can be a challenge to come up with quick, portable and tasty things to chow down on at work. Here are some ideas for all of you baffled snackers out there!
This is kind of an obvious one, but still needs to be said. An apple, pear, banana, nectarine, tangerine or some berries in a tupperware are some of the easiest and most nutritious snacks out there. If you’re one of those super organized meal-prepper types, you might even want to portion out several days worth of tupperware containers filled with berries or other fruit that keeps well in the fridge. I like to switch it up week to week to keep it interesting. You could also keep a container of nut butter at work if you’re able, and dip apple or banana slices into it!
For some reason, vegans seem to be universally obsessed with hummus. Is it because it’s chock-full of protein? Or maybe because it comes in so many delicious flavours? Or perhaps it’s because it’s so easy to make at home. In any case, it is a substantial and filling snack that can accompany a variety of things. Combined with a full container of veg, pita and perhaps some falafel, it can make a full meal too! Here’s a non-exhaustive list of some things to dip in hummus:
- Veggies: Carrots, cucumber, broccoli, grape tomatoes, or bell peppers… or whatever your heart fancies!
- Oat cakes: These come in a variety of types and flavours depending on your preference. But any sort of crunchy cracker or rice cake is nice with hummus if oat cakes aren’t your thing!
- Wholegrain pita (cut into triangles or strips).
3. Sesame Snaps
These can be a bit tricky to find depending where you live, but once you spot them, make sure to SNAP up a bunch of these sweet and crunchy treats (I’m sorry). Yes, they do have a fair amount of sugar — but are more a more filling and nutritious than a biscuit. Sesame seeds are full of minerals like copper, manganese, tryptophan, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc and selenium, as well as vitamin B1. These are so easy and convenient to throw into a purse or lunchbox as an ’emergency energy boost’ kind of snack, for when you find yourself getting a little hangry while on the go.
4. Vegan Yogurt Pots
Scoop some soy or coconut yogurt into a tupperware (or jar, if you’re the fancy Pinterest type). Top with your choice of fresh fruit, nuts, muesli, chia seeds, flax seeds, peanut/almond butter, jam and/or dried fruit. Stir in some vegan protein powder if you’ve got it. Done. I prefer to buy the unsweetened variety and stir in a bit of maple or fruit syrup — this way I can control the amount of sugar!
5. Homemade Snack Balls
Okay, so this one takes a little bit of preparation but hear me out: Can you chuck a bunch of stuff into a food processor? Okay. Can you turn on the food processor? Awesome. Can you then grab a handfull of said stuff and roll it into a ball? If you can do all of these things, and have 20 minutes to spare — then you can make your own healthy snacks that will last you ages! And the best part is? They basically taste like dessert. They’re generally made with dates (or other dried fruit), nuts, seeds, and whatever other yummy mix-ins you want! Here is an AMAZING collection of recipes to kick-start your protein-ball making experience. They’re totally worth having to explain to people that you’re eating a ‘snack-ball’.
Almonds. Cashews. Walnuts. Brazil nuts. Peanuts. Grab a handful of any combination of these that you want. Throw into a container. Done. I personally get a bit of flavour-exhaustion (is that a thing?) from eating just nuts on their own, so I prefer to mix in some dried fruit/chopped dates, dark chocolate pieces, and perhaps some flaked, toasted coconut. Then you can grab a handful with a bit of everything mixed in and create a taste explosion! (Did I really just use ‘taste explosion? I feel like Guy Fieri. But it’s the truth).
7. Chia Pudding
Don’t ask me how this one works. All I know is that when you stir chia seeds into your non-dairy milk of choice and leave them in the fridge to do their thing, magic happens. If you don’t like the consistency, you can blend it. In addition to their pudding-creating magic, chia seeds are a source of Omega 3, protein and fiber. Make up a big batch of this pudding and portion out a few days worth to keep in the fridge.
What sort of things do you snack on at work? Comment below if you’ve got a favourite packed lunch snack to share!