Our family eats healthy meals most of the time. We don’t eat out a lot and our helper cooks a balanced diet for us, including brown rice, meat and vegetables, for every meal. The challenge is finding healthy snacks that are reasonably priced and convenient.
Good snacks tend to be quite expensive (nuts and protein bars) or difficult to bring on the go especially in our tropical heat (fruit and yogurt). With a growing toddler who constantly snacks, it has been difficult to find healthy and wholesome foods that won’t break the bank. After spending a ton on various organic snacks, I decided to make my own healthier snacks for Zoey.
Here are some of the snacks we have available in our home.
1) Dehydrated Fruits and Vegetables
Dehydrated apples, skin on for adults, skin off for Zoey
Broccoli Chips & Potato Chips
I bought an Excalibur dehydrator off Amazon last year and it was easily one of the best kitchen appliances I have ever purchased. I saved a bunch by buying an American unit and using a step down transformer with it. Total cost was around $300 whereas it easily costs twice of that if buying in Singapore.
I use it mainly to dehydrate fruits and vegetables. Zoey loves the apples and broccoli. Other fruits I have tried include kiwi, peach, bananas and mangoes. I am planning to make beef and salmon jerky with it in the future and hope I can add them to the snack list.
2) Roasted Seeds & Nuts
Almonds, Sunflower Seeds & Hazelnuts roasted with Olive Oil & Salt
Store bought nuts and seeds can be very expensive. A small pack of salted roasted almonds easily costs $2. I found out that I can buy big bags of almonds for less than $10 in Mustafa. All I need to do at home is toss them with some oil & salt, chuck into the oven and in 15 mins, have a big jar of roasted almonds salted to my own taste. It tastes really good, is a great snack on the go and is fairly cheap. I’ve now ventured into roasting other nuts such as hazelnuts, which are slightly more expensive but oh so good, and sunflower seeds, which are great as a light snack and even cheaper than almonds.
3) Granola Bars
Made with oats, protein powder, almonds, sunflower seeds, hazelnuts, honey, peanut butter and eggs.
I’ve meddled with a couple of different granola bar recipes, but tonight was the first time I got a chance to make granola protein bars as Irene bought some whey protein powder this week. These are high protein, low sugar and so dense that a small little square will be very filling. The nuts give it that extra crunch while the peanut butter and protein powder provides the chewiness. They don’t have to be refrigerated so will be easy to bring on the go. Zoey had a small piece and insisted on having more as her bedtime snack.
The best part about making these healthy snacks is I know exactly what goes into them and I can customise it to our individual preferences. This is the reason why we seldom have potato chips or other unhealthy snacks in our home. It is definitely cheaper, healthier and more fun when we make our own.