By April Dupee
We all love a good snack, but the wrong ones (hi, cookies) can leave you feeling like Sleepy from the seven dwarfs, far from the Happy you were striving for.
But not all snack foods leave you feeling sluggish. In fact, here at Nutritious Life, we’re big fans of having two (healthy!) snacks a day.
The secret snack sauce? Aim for some combo of healthy fat, protein, and fiber. It’s okay to hit two out of three here, but if you’re going for a high-protein snack, you’ll want to look for something with 5 to 15 grams of protein. Also key: Make sure your snacks are actually, well, snacks, so aim for about 100 to 200 calories.
If you need some inspo, check out the delicious high-protein snack recipes, products, and ideas below. There’s something here for everyone—promise.
(Featured photo: Shutterstock)
Made with only chickpeas, sunflower oil, and salt, this baked chickpea snack offers 6 grams of protein and 6 grams of fiber in just one serving.
$13 for 4, amazon.com
Many protein bars contain excessive amounts of sugar and unwanted additives, but RX Bars are simply made with dates, nuts, and egg whites. These naturally sweetened and protein-rich bars are perfect when you need a quick satisfying snack.
$38 for a pack of 24, amazon.com
Steve’s Paleogoods Original Paleokrunch
Don’t feel like making your own granola? No problem. This Original Paleokrunch granola is loaded with nuts and seeds, providing 7 grams of protein per serving.
Pillars Drinkable Greek Yogurt
Take your Greek yogurt on-the-go with Pillars Drinkable Greek Yogurt that comes in a variety of delicious flavors. With just 100 calories per bottle, you’ll get an impressive 18 grams of protein.
Buy at your local grocery store
88 Acres Roasted Pumpkin Seed Butter Pouches
This allergy-friendly pumpkin seed butter provides 8 grams of protein in a convenient packable pouch. Spread some onto whole grain toast, crackers, or veggies for an easy protein-rich snack.
$39 for 20, amazon.com
Purely Elizabeth Oat Cups
Oats on the go! Try their fun flavors like raspberry pitaya and blueberry lemon.
$40 for 12, amazon.com
Good Culture Cottage Cheese
Cottage cheese is making a comeback, thanks to brands like Good Culture that now offer this nutritious high-protein snack in single-serving cups and delicious flavors. One container provides 17 grams of protein at only 150 calories. Win-win.
$34 for 8, amazon.com
Harvest Snaps Green Pea Snack Crisps
Ditch the chips and satisfy your crunch cravings with Green Pea Snack Crisps. Green peas, a little oil, and salt make for a simple yet protein-packed snack.
Epic Meat Bar
Traditional beef jerky often has sugar and nitrates, but Epic’s meat bars are made with simple ingredients, including HQ meat. Try their Chicken Sriracha bar for 13 grams of protein and just 130 calories.
Pumpkin Spice Latte Protein Balls
Enjoy all the flavors of a pumpkin spice latte in a convenient on-the-go bite. Oats, vanilla protein powder, and pecans bring the protein while cozy spices and coffee add that signature flavor that made fall famous.
Rosemary Maple Tempeh
Tempeh (aka fermented soybeans) packs in serious plant-based protein: a ½ cup serving provides a whopping 15 grams. Rosemary, garlic, cayenne pepper, and apple cider vinegar create a savory crave-worthy marinade.
Strawberry Veggie Smoothie
Sneak more veggies and protein into your snacks with this oh-so-refreshing smoothie. Just blend cauliflower, zucchini, strawberries, nut butter, and vanilla protein powder together for a quick high-protein snack.
Cinnamon Spice Roasted Pepitas
Don’t overlook pepitas, an unsung hero in the seed family. In addition to providing important and hard-to-find minerals like magnesium and zinc, they also deliver 6 grams of protein per ½-cup serving. Make them snack-worthy by tossing in coconut oil, honey, and cinnamon.
Vegan Chocolate Gingerbread Protein Muffins
Cozy gingerbread gets a protein-boost in this recipe thanks to almond flour and chocolate protein powder. Try this one the next time you need a midday pick-me-up.
Peanut Butter Berry Yogurt
Take your Greek yogurt up a notch by mixing in peanut butter for a boost of flavor, satiating healthy fats, and protein. Top with fresh antioxidant-rich raspberries for an elevated PB&J combo. Mmm.
Avocado Boat Egg Bake
Avocados + eggs = the ultimate satisfying and easy snack. Top with herbs for an extra hit of flavor and antioxidants.
Grain-Free Lavender Honey Granola
Pepitas, almonds, cashews, and walnuts provide heart-healthy fats and tons of protein, while honey, lavender, and coconut add unbeatable flavor. You def want this one in your high-protein snack stable.
Pesto Salmon Tartine
The traditional bagel and lox combo is given a nutritious makeover with this pesto salmon tartine recipe. Protein-rich sprouted grain bread and smoked salmon are layered along with pesto and cucumber for a light, savory snack you’ll <3.
Nut and Seed Bread
Bread is kind of a misnomer here, but you won’t be disappointed. For this recipe, you’ll mix nuts and seeds—almonds, walnuts, pecans, chia seeds, and pumpkin seeds—with eggs, then simply, bake. You’ll crave this crunch.
Chocolate Protein Balls
Whip up these easy protein balls in seconds for a convenient snack made with everyone’s favorite combo: chocolate and peanut butter.
Tuna Chickpea Salad
Don’t just reserve salads for lunch and dinner. Grab a small bowl and try this flavorful recipe made with protein-rich chickpeas, tuna, and veggies.
Cilantro Lime Avocado Yogurt Dip
Mix Greek yogurt with avocado (helloooo, healthy fats) and flavor-boosting ingredients like garlic, chili powder, lime and cilantro to create a refreshing versatile dip. Pair with veggies or chips for a simple high-protein snack.
This recipe layers protein-rich wheat tortilla, turkey, and ham with hummus and veggies. Pack extra and now you’ve got some lunch!
Chocolate Post-Workout Smoothie
This protein-packed smoothie will satisfy your chocolate cravings while providing healthy fats from peanut butter and powerful antioxidants from blueberries. Cheers.
Veggie and Parmesan Mini Egg Muffins
Sneak in more veggies with these mini egg muffins loaded with protein thanks to ingredients like eggs, egg whites, wheat germ, and cottage cheese.
Creamy Berry Parfait with Quinoa
This isn’t your typical parfait. Here, you’ll find protein-rich quinoa instead of traditional granola, plus Greek yogurt, walnuts, honey, vanilla, and cinnamon for a seriously delicious snack.
Nuts are nutrient powerhouses. In addition to providing a healthy dose of protein, they also provide an ideal balance of healthy fats and fiber. Plus, they’re loaded with antioxidants and minerals.
Wanna give your Greek yogurt even more of a boost? Swirl in walnuts (omega-3s, anyone?) and wheat germ, which is loaded with nutrients including folate, B vitamins, and of course, protein. Score.
White Bean Soup with Spicy Chorizo
Warm up a small bowl of this soup for a nourishing protein-rich snack. Spicy chicken sausage and cannellini beans are a protein dream team. Plus, butternut squash and kale add flavor and immune-boosting antioxidants.
Protein-Packed Corn Muffin
Say hello to the healthiest corn muffins you’ll ever bite into. Garbanzo flour and cornmeal create a delicious high-protein, gluten-free muffin you can enjoy on its own or with your fave hearty warm dish. (May we suggest this mac and cheese?)
A Glass of Milk
Your mom was right: Milk is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the block, and one glass provides 8 grams of complete protein. Just remember to check your mustache.
Eggs contain all nine essential amino acids, which makes them an ideal protein source for those who want a meatless option. They also provide hard-to-find nutrients like vitamin D and choline, an essential nutrient for DNA synthesis, nervous system maintenance, and a humming metabolism.
Get 6 grams of protein and a healthy dose of bone-building calcium with just one stick of string cheese.
Almonds are one of the highest protein nuts. They also provide an impressive amount of nutrients like fiber, unsaturated fats, and antioxidants like vitamin E.
This cheap and filling classic provides 20 grams of protein in just one 3 oz serving. Add some flavor to the humble tuna by mixing in antioxidant-rich herbs, spices, or fresh lemon juice.
One cup of edamame provides a whopping 18 grams of protein, making soy one of the best plant-based sources around. Bonus: Edamame also contains high amounts of several key vitamins and minerals such as folate, vitamin K, and iron. Buy frozen and microwave when you’re in rush.
Greek yogurt is popular for a reason: One single-serving container has around 14 grams of protein and tons of gut-friendly bacteria at about 110 calories.
Pair this lean protein with veggies and cheese for a well-balanced snack. Just be sure to look for quality low-sodium and nitrate-free options like Applegate Oven Roasted Turkey Breast.
If you want an excuse to eat more peanut butter, then here it is: Two tablespoons of this popular nut butter provide 8 grams of filling protein. Make it even nuttier by spreading on nut and seed bread or simply on whole grain crackers. Either way, you can’t go wrong!