Snack Ideas for Mums to Be
snack ideas while pregnant
When you're pregnant, hunger can strike when you least expect it.
On the bus, at a work meeting, at the post office queue, at 9:30pm after you're already brushed your teeth... I've been there too. If you are like me, when I felt hunger (especially in 1 & 2 trimester) I needed to eat immediately. Once I got it figured out, I never left my house without a snack in my bag (and it has continued ever since; although now I carry some food for my toddler :) ).
Another opportunity to nourish your body
As you know eating well during pregnancy is important, and snacking is also eating. We've got that extra opportunity to nourish our body and give the growing baby some necessary nutrients. Making sure that you have a healthy snack within your reach is crucial and will help to avoid giving into cravings or impulse eating of a first (edible, hopefully) thing you see.
Here's a handy list of healthy snacks to munch on during pregnancy:
homemade energy balls or granola bars - hands down one of my favorite type of snack when I was pregnant. I say homemade, as that way you know what you're eating and have control over the sugar intake. Lots of store-bought granola bars and balls are often covered, rolled and sprinkled with sugar (i.e. sugar, honey, syrups, etc.). They are usually quick and easy to make, you can freeze them and grab as needed. Plus, they travel nicely. There are LOTS of recipes out there, so why not try these or these. If you feel adventurous, you can always swap or add ingredients and create your own flavors.
soaked nuts - any type of nuts are good, but I especially recommend walnuts for their high Omega 3 content or almonds for great fat/protein ratio and calcium amount. Peanuts are also great (although they're technically legumes), as they're rich in folate. Soaking nuts makes them easier to digest and helps with better calcium absorption.
prepped and cut veggies or fruit - if you've ever done a meal prep, you know that having washed and prepared fresh veggies in the fridge can be just wonderful. It saves time and fuss when we're hungry and need to eat 'like right now'. Cut some bell peppers, cucumbers, carrots, lightly boiled broccoli or sliced zucchini (get creative with any other favorite veg). Having variety of ready-to-eat veggies in the fridge will give you all the colors of the rainbow and give a quick boost and crunch when you're hungry. They are also easy to pack and eat on the go. The same goes for fruit: I didn't often feel like a whole fruit, so having some apple quarters or peeled orange pieces ready in the fridge was an ace idea.
hard boiled eggs - keep a few of them in the fridge. Easy, protein, iron and vitamins D packed snack that can also become a meal if you add it to a salad or sandwich.
toast with nut butter - never fails :) I encourage you to go for homemade nut butter or store-bought one that only contains nuts and sea salt (optional: add honey for sweetness or cacao nibs for antioxidants and crunch). Also, choose sourdough bread, if possible, for less sugar, easier digestion and some fermented gut loving goodness.
popcorn - properly prepared popcorn (not the microwave version; buy whole kernels) is a whole grain loaded with fiber and minerals. Perfect not only for a movie night! You can make it ahead and take with you to work the next day. You can also sprinkle some spices or cinnamon for extra flavors.
smoothie - easy and simple way to pack in some vitamins and minerals. Always try to aim for some added veggies; even better if they make up 70% of the smoothie. Extra bonus, if you add in some good quality protein powder for a more filling version.
crackers with nut butter, tahini or hummus - easy and no fuss, especially if you love the crunch! step 1: choose your favorite healthier crackers; step 2: smear them generously with nut butter/ tahini / hummus; step 3: demolish :)
roasted chickpeas - it's a real simple recipe and hits the spot when you crave something crunchy. Easy to prepare in advance and store for later snacking. Here is one of my favorite recipes (salad is great too, scroll down for roasted chickpeas instructions). You can add cinnamon and sprinkle of coconut sugar for a sweet version too.
hot chocolate or golden milk - if you fancy something sweet, but not really feeling like eating. Here's a lovely and simple recipe for a golden milk. For hot chocolate, simply warm up some milk, add a heaped teaspoon of raw cacao powder and some honey or maple syrup to sweeten.
What are/were your favorite snacks during pregnancy? Please comment below or let me know over on Instagram!