By Jenna Rennert for Vogue.
We've all been there: It's late at night and you're standing barefoot in the kitchen, ravenously searching for something to eat. How to plan in advance to avoid having to resort to that calorie-filled tub of salted caramel ice cream? We spoke to New York City nutritionist Robin Barrie Kaiden, M.S., R.D., C.D.N., C.S.S.D. Here, she lists the five best snacks to keep in your pantry so that when hunger strikes, you're prepared.
1. Fat-Free or Low-Fat Plain Greek Yogurt
"Yogurt is high in protein, which keeps you full and is a great source of calcium," says Barrie Kaiden, who suggests opting for the plain flavor since it has no added sugar. For extra sweetness, sprinkle a few blueberries on top; add chia seeds for fiber and a dash of cinnamon for an antioxidant kick. Or mix in a pinch of cayenne pepper or crushed garlic to create a healthy dip for a few slices of crudité.
2. Fresh or Frozen Fruit
"Fruit makes the perfect snack, since it's so easy to take on the go," says Barrie Kaiden, who suggests combining apples, bananas, or peaches with a spoonful of almond butter for a nourishing bite. If there's a fruit you love that's not available or not in season, get it on ice. "Frozen grapes or store-bought frozen strawberries make a refreshing summer treat," she says, "and are a great addition to keep in the freezer to top off oatmeal or to make quick smoothies."
3. Raw vegetables
"I love keeping a Tupperware container full of fresh veggies in my fridge," says Barrie Kaiden, who suggests stockpiling a few slices of cucumber, celery, carrot, or jicama. Serve with a half-cup of fresh-made salsa, guacamole, or hummus for dipping, and with the vegetables' high water and fiber content, "you'll stay full for hours."
4. Healthy Snack Bars
Not all bars are created equal. "Many popular ones are made with tons of sugar," says Barrie Kaiden. Stick to treats with all-natural ingredients, like real fruit and nuts, such as Larabar or RxBar, created with protein-packed egg whites.
This snack has all the crunch of chips or pretzels with far fewer calories. "If you're craving something salty, grab a handful or two of popcorn," recommends Barrie Kaiden. Pair a bag made with oil, corn, and salt like Pipcorn with a few slices of turkey or a dozen almonds for a filling snack.
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