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Healthy Winter Snacks


It is all to easy to indulge during the holiday season. There is an abundance of sweet drinks and decadent treats around every turn. Rest assured, you can still enjoy holiday foods without packing on those unwanted pounds. Here are some healthy snack ideas that will keep you on track while allowing you to enjoy the holiday.

Pumpkin Spice Granola

Many store bought granolas often have added sugars. Fortunately, making granola at home is very simple and leaves you the option to customize flavors. This pumpkin spice granola brings a little extra holiday to every food you sprinkle it on. It also packs a lot of fiber and healthy fats in every bite. To make, combine oats, chopped pecans, chia seeds, melted coconut oil, maple syrup, pumpkin pie spice seasoning, and cinnamon. Toss ingredients together and spread out evenly on baking sheet. Bake for about 25 to 30 minutes at 325 degrees, stirring granola once halfway through baking. Once granola is golden brown, remove from oven and toss in dried cranberries. Top onto yogurt, smoothies, cereal, or enjoy as is.

Chocolate Peppermint Smoothie

Although the temperatures are getting cooler, a smoothie serves as a nutritious snack year round. This chocolate peppermint smoothie will also help bring in the holiday spirit due to its hint of peppermint flavor. In a blender, combine half a banana, 1 scoop chocolate protein powder, unsweetened almond milk, peppermint extract and ice. Blend ingredients until smooth.

Cinnamon Apples

Cinnamon apples are satisfying snack that can be made in less than a minute. This snack is reminiscent of apple pie but provides great portion control since it is a single-serving snack. Start by placing a sliced apple in a microwave safe mug with a teaspoon of water. Top with a sprinkle of brown sugar and cinnamon. Microwave for about 45 seconds, or until apple is tender.

Pomegranate Arils

Pomegranate seeds, otherwise known as arils, are a delicious holiday treat. The arils provide a good source of potassium and vitamin K. The trickiest part to enjoying this delicious snack is getting the seeds out of your pomegranate. As easy solution is to place a cut open pomegranate in a bowl filled with water. The seeds will sink to the bottom making them easier to dig out.

Holiday Teas

Although your local coffee shop may start offering up some high-calorie holiday drinks this time of year, it doesn't mean that you can't find a healthier alternative that will satisfy. Next time you are tempted, choose a flavored tea to sip on. From peppermint to sugar cookie, you can be sure to find a flavor that reminds you most of the holidays. Sipping on a hot cup of tea may also help to resist the urge for something sweet.

Pumpkin Yogurt Parfait

Pumpkin is a favorite among many this time of year. Unfortunately, our beloved pumpkin pie is usually packed with sugar and fat. A pumpkin yogurt parfait is easy to make and will give you the flavors of pumpkin pie for a lot fewer calories. Combine canned pumpkin, vanilla Greek yogurt, pumpkin pie spice and a drizzle of honey. When ready to serve, layer yogurt mixture, chopped pecans and cinnamon.


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Kristen Bourque, RD, LD has been writing health-related articles since 2000. Her nutrition articles and recipes have been featured in "Today's Dietitian" as well as the Canadian magazine "Glow". Kristen combines her love of nutrition with cooking on her personal blog, Swanky Dietitian

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