30 Healthy Snack Ideas That Won't Ruin Your Diet

When a craving strikes midday or gets you right before bed, it can take all sorts of self-control to ignore them (if we can, in fact, ignore them). Snacking can be difficult when trying to stick to a specific diet, because it can be hard to know what foods are suitable and which are probably better to skip without consulting the ingredients list or doing a Google search.

But you don't have to ignore those cravings completely, all you have to do is snack smarter. Instead of reaching for that bag of potato chips or cookie dough ice cream and hoping it fits into your diet plan (you probably checked it was keto before you bought it, right?), there are plenty of easy snack options that will feed whatever craving you're facing. 

We rounded up 30 healthy snacks that help feed that hunger when even the worst craving strikes. These snacks are packed with the good stuff, which means they have other added benefits that are good for your health too, making them all the more pleasurable.

Trail mix

Trail mix is made with nuts, seeds, and dried fruit, so it's a snack the packs a nutritional punch. Not only is it high in protein (hello, nuts) but it's also heart-healthy and good at lowering your blood sugar (looking at you dried fruit). Any seeds in your trail mix are also likely to be packed with tons of minerals and vitamins, including magnesium, according to Healthline. So while your trail mix is fueling you up during that afternoon slump, it's keeping your heart healthy, too.

One thing to keep in mind: not all trial mixes are alike. Some can be loaded with sugar thanks to all the chocolates and candies added in. (Look, we love M&M's as much as the next person, but they're probably best left out of your trail mix.) If you're looking for something sweet, stick to trail mix with dark chocolate. When adding ingredients or buying a trail mix that's already made, be sure to look for ingredients that are raw and unsalted. This not only keeps the sodium low, but it allows you to really taste the flavors of these delicious ingredients.

Greek yogurt with fresh berries

We love Greek yogurt — not only is it thicker than regular yogurt, helping us feel fuller longer, it tastes good, too. Add some fresh berries and you've got a sweet treat that is good for you. Not only will Greek yogurt fill you up, but it also helps boost your metabolism, shares Medical News Today. Berries, on the other hand, are great to add into the mix not simply because they taste great, but because they are low in calories and have huge health benefits, including helping with brain function (due to being rich in anthocyanidins) while also helping fight off cancer (via Driscoll's). Still not sold? Berries (especially blackberries) also have the power to help reduce inflammation, explains Geisinger Health.

Use plain Greek yogurt and mix in your favorite berries for a sweet treat to keep you full and energized. While this is the perfect treat on its own, you can also drizzle some honey over top for some more added sweetness or sprinkle in granola when you're looking for a little extra crunch. 

Nuts

Nuts are always a good choice when it comes to healthy snacking, as they are high in fiber, protein, and healthy fats. If your goal is weight loss, Livestrong recommends nuts for their ability to keep you fuller longer than other snacks. While all nuts are nutritious, certain ones offer different benefits. For example, hazelnuts are high in folate, which helps your cells grow, and Brazil nuts are packed with selenium, which can help with thyroid disease.

Just be careful not to overdo it when snacking. While nuts are packed with good fats, it can still be easy to go overboard it when it comes to portion sizing. Eating nuts in moderation (like all good things) is the best way to properly enjoy the all benefits that nuts have to offer. And be sure to stick to the raw nuts instead of those that are covered in salt or sugar. Mayo Clinic warns these kinds may taste good, but unsurprisingly aren't as nutritious as raw nuts. 

Popcorn

Popcorn is a great snack, and you don't even have to be sitting in a movie theater to enjoy it (actually, it's probably better if you don't, as a large popcorn at your favorite theater can contain almost 1000 calories with more than your daily dose of sodium). So while we might associate popcorn with a giant tub of the buttery stuff, the popcorn you should really be snacking on is a healthier version made in the comfort of your home. Air-pop it and go easy on the seasoning. 

Popcorn is high in fiber, explains the American Heart Association, which helps make you feel full and may lower the risk of heart disease. And when you make popcorn at home it can also be low in calories, depending on how you choose to top it, so you can enjoy eating this snack without having to worry about overdoing it. Dress up your popcorn with a touch of sea salt, chili lime seasoning, or a little cinnamon sugar to achieve the flavor you love.

Edamame

Edamame have lots of health benefits to chew on. According to Well + Good, they are high in protein so you get a ton of natural energy when eating edamame and stay full longer after enjoying them. Healthline also says they are also packed with fiber and vitamin K, and have the power to help lower cholesterol, resulting in edamame being one healthy snack.

We love edamame not only for the solid health benefits it offers to our body, but also for the taste, which is buttery and sweet. There are plenty of ways to snack on these green beans too, including the most traditional way: steamed and sprinkled with sea salt (similar to what you might find at your favorite sushi bar). But we're all about trying out new things with our snacks, and say spicing edamame up with a five toast salt and sesame seeds is definitely worth trying.

Watermelon

There's a reason why watermelon is a sought-after refreshing treat during the hot summer months. HealthyWomen states that not only is it low in calories, but it's contains a lot of water (up of 92%) to keep you hydrated — hence why it tastes so good on those really hot and humid days. And that pretty pink color isn't just for show. The hue comes from the antioxidant lycopene, which has been said to help with the risk of diabetes and cancer, according to WebMD

But it doesn't have to be 90 degrees and muggy to enjoy this juicy fruit. Watermelon is great any time of the year as a healthy, thirst-quenching snack. Simply slice it up or cutting it into cubes and putting it in your favorite salad. And in case you're not already sold on eating more watermelon, Healthline points out this fruit is loaded with vitamins A, B6, and C which can help keep your skin nice and soft.

Hummus

Packed with healthy dietary fiber, says Healthline, hummus is a nutritious snack that will get the job done right — and by job, we mean feeding that hunger. Hummus is made with chickpeas, a powerful legume that offer incredible health benefits on their own. (The Cleveland Clinic explains chickpeas can offer protection against things like heart disease and diabetes.) Hummus is also made with other impressive ingredients, including olive oil and garlic, which can help with inflammation.

And while hummus is good for you, what you pair with it may not always be. We know how tempting it is to load up on bread or crackers (which are fine in moderation), but if you're looking for a healthier, low carb snack option, you might want to stick with a side of cut-up veggies, like celery and carrot sticks. Another option is to enjoying a mix of veggies and pita bread, so you get the best of both worlds.

Granola Bars

If you're craving something sweet that will actually fill you up, certain granola bars might just do the trick. (Plus, they are the perfect "on-the-go" snack when you're out and about on a walk, a hike, or exploring your town.) Packed with delicious ingredients like peanut butter, rolled oats, chocolate, and seeds, granola bars are the perfect treat when your sweet tooth has gotten a hold on you. Women's Health says these bars are wholesome and rich in fiber, providing a great snack for anyone looking for a healthier option. Personally, we're big fans of these homemade Almond-Quinoa Energy Bars, which are sweet but chewy and full of protein. 

Be mindful of which granola bars you choose, as some come packed with sugar and carbs. Luckily, you'll be able to tell these apart from the healthier versions pretty easily. Instead of being made with natural and raw ingredients, the labels will have added sugar and sweeteners, according to Healthline.

Apple with Peanut Butter

Hearing apples are good for you isn't anything new. Apples have a reputation for "keeping the doctor away," so we already know they are full of health benefits. Apples are rich in a fiber called pectin, which Insider explains can help with your gut health and immune system. But did you know the chewing required when eating apples is also beneficial? According to Everyday Health, the chewing actually helps make you feel fuller faster, because you are taking your time eating rather than scarfing it down and not really enjoying it. Funny how that works. So we say, leave the skin on and get that extra amount of chewing going.

Peanut butter can also keep you staying full for a longer amount of time. When enjoyed in controlled amounts, peanut butter is a great healthy snack with lots of protein says WebMD, which can help keep your energy up. When apples are dabbed with peanut butter, you have a snack that is sweet and nutty, without having you worry about ruining your diet. 

String Cheese

Another simple, on-the-go snack option is string cheese. Since it comes in a wrapper, it's easy to throw a string cheese in your bag to enjoy later on. Just peel off the plastic and you're good to go. When you check out the nutrition label on string cheese, you'll notice it has fewer calories than other cheeses, but these little sticks still provide plenty of protein to help feed that hunger. When choosing a string cheese for a snack, stick with those made with mozzarella cheese, which can have less salt and saturated fats than other options, says Eat This, Not That!

Sting cheese is great on its own but can also be accompanied by other items. Whole wheat crackers are a good option when you're looking for a crunchier bite, or try pairing your string cheese with a side of fruit, such as grapes, to help give it that picnic feel.

Hard-Boiled eggs

A simple snack that offers tons of rewards, a hard-boiled egg is a lean protein that will fill you up. Not only does this food have lots of protein, but a hard-boiled egg is also packed with lots of vitamins and minerals, all good things to help your body stay healthy. For example, Healthline states vitamin D helps your brain function properly, while the calcium found in egg yolks can help make your bones stay strong, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Boil a few eggs ahead of time so they are cooled off and ready to be cracked when the hunger strikes. Of course, you don't have to just stick with a hard boil egg as a snack. There are many different options to incorporate your hard-boiled eggs, such as making an egg salad or deviled eggs instead. Or you can make it really interesting and include the best of both worlds: deviled egg salad.

Kale Chips

Kale is known for being one super green and we can't argue with that. With all its health benefits (including the possible protection against cancer and type 2 diabetes, according to Medical News Today, plus the ability to help support a healthy heart) kale is a vegetable you shouldn't say no to. Eating kale for dinner is great, but so is chowing down on it during snack time. We love kale chips because they are the healthier option when craving a crispy snack. Nuts.com says these crispy leafy greens can help add energy to your day, and since they are low in calories, you can go all in and enjoy as many as you like without concern about your diet goals.

And another good thing about kale chips? They are super easy to make. All you have to do is bake them in the oven with your favorite seasonings (can't go wrong with the classic sea salt and garlic) and voila!

Chia Pudding

The thing about chia pudding is that it looks super indulgent, but is still really good for you. The key ingredient are the chia seeds, which (according to WebMD) are high in fiber and have antioxidants that can help fight against inflammation. Not only are these seeds good for your body, but they have a mild nutty taste that is really versatile, so they can be added to just about any dish says Bob's Red Mill, no matter the flavor profile.

Chia pudding is as filling as it is tasty, so you won't get any of those pesky hunger pains an hour after you snack. If you're interested in planning ahead, we suggest you try out cardamom coconut chia pudding made with overnight oats. You can prep the night before, so all you have to worry about the next morning is eating.

Avocado Toast

We know, we know. Avocado toast is such a trendy dish that it's almost overdone. But we can't deny how great this healthy snack is for filling you up and while still enjoying what you're eating. Good Housekeeping says avocados are packed with fiber and healthy fats, and when you choose the right bread to go along with it, (say, of the multi-grain variety) you'll get even more fiber in that slice of toast, too. Your cholesterol and digestive system will thank you.

Another reason why we still can't get enough of avocado toast? It's just so darn easy to make, right down to only really needing the two ingredients. However, this simple dish is also incredibly versatile (one more reason for our loyal love affair) so you can mix things up by adding in other items, such as salmon, sesame seeds, tomato, or onion. Naturally, nothing says mid-morning snacking like a poached egg on top.

Guacamole

Speaking of avocados, you'll get plenty of them (and all their benefits) by whipping up a fresh bowl of guacamole. Since it's made with avocados (which, as stated above, are packed with healthy fats), snacking on guacamole is a solid choice. It may look light, but thanks to those smashed avocados, guacamole is one of those snacks that, according to CookingLight, will help keep you fuller longer. And when you add in the other traditional guacamole ingredients, you get even more health benefits (not to mention so much flavor). Chopped red onion offers not only a nice bite, but can help with your digestive system thanks to its prebiotics, says SwedishAmerican. The tomatoes are packed with antioxidants that can keep your heart healthy, while the cilantro can help with inflammation.

When figuring out what to pair with your guacamole, opt for baked tortilla chips (but don't go overboard, as LiveStrong says they can be high in sodium). Veggies, like celery or bell peppers, are also great alternatives if you're looking to steer clear of chips entirely.

Cottage Cheese with Fruit

If you're looking for an all-around good snack that is a good source of protein and calcium, Healthline says cottage cheese is your match. Thanks to being packed with protein (along with its thick texture), cottage cheese can fill you up while fueling your body with B vitamins and other nutrients. Plus, cottage cheese is a low-calorie snack, so it will work well with just about any diet.

Plain cottage cheese isn't packed with a ton of flavor, but that's what makes it so perfect. It's a great accompaniment to a variety of other ingredients, such as fresh herbs and veggies (we love mixing in some dill and cucumber or tomato and basil) or fruits like banana and pineapple. If you don't have any fresh fruit or veggies on hand, don't worry. Try mixing in applesauce with a touch of cinnamon for a sweet, easy snack.

Dark Chocolate Covered Almonds

Dark chocolate and almonds are the perfect combination of something sweet and crunchy, but did you know it can also offer some health benefits? Dark chocolate can not only help with keeping your heart healthy, but can also boost your mood, according to The Daily Meal, making you feel downright good while eating it. Dark chocolate can also help keep your gut healthy and make sure your metabolism stays in check, thanks to fiber that "encourages the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut," explains Everyday Health

According to LiveStrong, almonds are high in protein so they give you that boost of energy when needed to power through that afternoon crash. Mix them together with dark chocolate and you get a healthy snack that offers a lot in just a few bites. But don't get too carried away – Healthline states that while dark chocolate might have less fat and calories than other candy, it still has a high-fat content, as do nuts. Eating too much of this snack all in one sitting may have you feeling too full come dinner. 

Roasted Chickpeas

Chickpeas, or garbanzo beans, are a protein-packed legume (thanks to having all nine essential amino acids, according to Fitness Gene) that are considered one helluva "superfood" by some. Medical News Today says that chickpeas also containe choline, which can help with memory and muscle control. And since they are high in dietary fiber, chickpeas have the ability to help lower cholesterol and keep your digestive system working properly, states WebMD

While you can simply eat these little guys straight out of the can, roasting them will really take this snack to the next level. One of the simplest ways to roast chickpeas is by sprinkling them with olive oil, sea salt, and curry powder, and popping them into the oven. The end result will offer some serious flavor without being too overwhelming.

If you're looking for something different, there are endless ways to flavor your roast chickpeas, such as our sweet and spiced maple za'atar recipe.

Canned Tuna on Crackers

A can of tuna can be a fantastic snack for when you're really hungry since it's made of lean protein, according to WebMD. The fish is also a good source of vitamin D, which can help not only your bone health but also boost your immunity. On top of all that, Healthline says canned tuna contains iron and omega-3 fatty acids, all good things that will help you fight fatigue and keep your heart healthy.

You don't even have to get fancy when eating canned tuna, which makes it all the better. Choose to stir a little mayonnaise and capers for some added flavor and a smooth texture, and pair with low-fat or whole wheat crackers. If you want something heartier, try adding beans or an egg for even more protein that will definitely keep you full until dinnertime, like a mini niçoise salad. 

Fresh Smoothie

When we think of smoothies, we right away think of a nutritious snack — but some smoothies can be packed with sugar, especially if they are pre-made. If you're going to make you're own or order one fresh from a juice bar (which we think is the best way to enjoy a smoothie), you'll have the power to keep it as healthy as you want by using only whole foods, says Simple Green Smoothies. Order or make your smoothie with no added sugars (the natural sugars from the fruit will make it sweet enough) and consider adding some protein (think of all the nutritious ingredients we discussed earlier: yogurt, almond or peanut butter, avocado, and chia seeds) to help keep you full throughout the day.

The health benefits of a smoothie really depend on what you put in it, so choose wisely. Fruits and vegetables all have their own health benefits, and while you don't necessarily need to add protein, it is a great way to keep yourself from any additional snacking, therefore making it the heartiest and healthiest option.

Frozen Yogurt

Who doesn't love a big ol' bowl of ice cream after a long day? Luckily for anyone with a sweet tooth, swapping your favorite ice cream with frozen yogurt can help you stick to your diet plan. This frozen treat is not only tasty but can also help benefit your digestive system, says LiveStrong, as it can contain live bacterial cultures. Other benefits to eating frozen yogurt can include helping with bone density and heart health (via Organic Facts). Frozen yogurt is generally also lower in calories and fat than ice cream, just be sure to read your nutrition label and watch out for too much added sugar.

Treat frozen yogurt like how you'd treat your ice cream and top it off with your favorite toppings, including fresh fruits (or roasted strawberries), walnuts, or some chocolate sauce (opt for dark chocolate, as we know that has the most health benefits). You can also get crafty and make frozen yogurt bark, a popular snack made of berries, yogurt, and honey, all frozen together on a baking sheet. Just break off and enjoy.

Ants on a Log

Growing up, chances are you enjoyed ants on a log as an after-school snack — but this healthy treat doesn't have to just be for kids. Ants on a log (or peanut butter spread over celery and topped with raisins) is a great snack for just about anyone, especially those looking for a healthy, easy, and nutritious option, says Michigan State University. This simple, three-ingredient snack is easy to make and has plenty to offer, including protein (thank you, peanut butter), a satisfying crunch courtesy of the celery, and a touch of sweetness from the raisins.

This oldie but goodie can be customized to your liking, too. While the standard ingredients work well, Healthy Little Foodies says you can always change things up by using a banana or cucumber instead of celery, or cream cheese rather than peanut butter. Swapping out the raisins with other dried fruit still provides that natural sweetness, but you can also use olives if you're looking for something a bit saltier. 

Greek Salad

The Mediterranean region knows a thing or two about nutritious, but flavorful, cuisine, and this includes its salads. Greek salads are not only pretty to look at, with all the bright colors, but also incredibly tasty and nutritious. The dish is low in calories since it's packed with healthy veggies and nutrients, and easily customizable if you're avoiding a particular ingredient, making it perfect for anyone looking for a diet-friendly snack. LiveStrong explains that tomatoes and lettuce provide plenty of vitamins C and A, while the cucumbers have a good amount of potassium.

Traditionally, a Greek salad consists of tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, Feta, and olives, all tossed in olive oil, but you can always add more ingredients to the plate. Try adding lean proteins, such as chicken or fish, or slices of avocado if you'd like to keep it vegetarian-friendly. Regardless of how you prepare a Greek salad, you won't be disappointed in its colorful display of delicious and nutritious ingredients. 

Turkey Roll-up

If you're looking for a low-carb snack that is simple to make, you might want to consider enjoying a turkey roll-up in your near future. Easyhealth Living says the lean protein from the turkey will provide a substantial snack, but what we really enjoy about this dish is how we can build it to our own liking.

If you're not feeling the tortilla wrap (or maybe don't have any in your kitchen at the moment) use turkey meat or lettuce as your exterior, rolling it around whatever you choose, such as cheese, cucumbers, tomatoes, or a condiment like mustard. We also love to include a pickle spear for an added tangy flavor. If you're in a rush (or just want to keep it simple) you can always go with the classic turkey and cheese pairing: these two ingredients are packed with protein to keep you satisfied.

Egg Salad

As stated before, eggs are a great option when you're searching for foods to fit into your diet — and they're not only for breakfast. Eggs are high in protein, so having them for a snack will help provide added energy when you need it. Plus, they have other added health benefits, including keeping everything from our brains to our immune system working properly, according to Penn Medicine. Egg salad is a great option for a snack because it's low carb and filling, says Fit Foodie Finds, and can be customized to your preference with some easy additions.

An egg salad can be made with as few (or as many) ingredients as you like. You can't go wrong with a little mayonnaise and a sprinkling of salt and pepper, but you can also change things up by adding anything from dijon mustard and chopped cornichons to fresh herbs, lemon, or even Greek yogurt. Eat it straight from the bowl, make it into a lettuce wrap, or stuff inside a bell pepper or avocado. 

Smoked Salmon with Cucumber

If you're looking for something a little fancier to upgrade your everyday snacking habits, why not give smoked salmon a go? Here's why we love smoked salmon: it's not only a solid source of protein, but EatingWell states it keeps our metabolism healthy, too. Two big wins in our book. And even when it comes to diet-friendly foods we're looking for something that tastes good (you'll notice no unsalted rice cakes on this list). Luckily, this ingredient has that incredibly smoky, bold flavor we just can't get enough of.

Smoked salmon is always a crowd-pleaser when served over a crostini at a party, but it can be just as fun to enjoy while at home in your sweat pants. Sure, you can add it to a cracker, but we like using a cucumber as our foundation then adding cream cheese (or Greek yogurt) and dill. Talk about an explosion of flavor in one bite.

Caprese Skewers

As a low-calorie, easy-to-eat snack, Caprese skewers are a fan favorite. There are only four ingredients needed: cherry tomatoes,  bocconcini (aka those small mozzarella balls), fresh basil, and either a balsamic reduction or a little olive oil. This snack is super simple to make and looks pretty good, too. Bonus: Medical News Today says fresh mozzarella is high in protein, naming it one of the healthiest cheeses around.

If you look through your kitchen and can't seem to find any skewers, there's no need to fret. You can still enjoy this dish the old-fashioned way — by making it into a Caprese salad. Simply layer all the ingredients on top of one another on a platter rather than sticking them with a skewer. (This is also the best option if you have regular tomatoes and mozzarella cheese instead of the mini balls and cherry tomatoes.) No matter what way you choose to stack your snack, we promise your Caprese creation will not disappoint.

Dried Fruit

While fresh fruit is an incredibly nutritious snack suitable for most diets, we love dried fruit too. Though the water content may have been removed during the drying process, that does not mean it isn't healthy. Harvard Health Publishing says dried fruit contains more fiber and antioxidants than fresh, making it good for your heart and your diet. And if that isn't reason enough to get chewing, PharmEasy reports dried fruit can also help boost your metabolism.

Another great thing about dried fruit (besides all the health benefits) is you can eat it without giving much thought or preparation. Simply eat dried fruit right from the container, or mix them with some nuts and granola for an easy homemade trail mix. Just be sure to check the nutrition label and pay attention to portion sizes: Health.com warns that some dried fruits come packed with added sugars.

Artichoke Salad

We're big lovers of artichoke hearts. And really, how could we not be? Their mild, slightly nutty and bitter flavor, goes well with so many ingredients, which is probably why they are added to a variety of dishes. Artichoke hearts can be eaten pretty much however you like, but we prefer adding them to a simple salad for a snack during the day. Mix in red pepper, olives, and balsamic vinegar for a quick and easy snack that is healthy and tasty, or buy them marinated and skip the prep work entirely. 

Just be careful when using marinated artichokes instead of the plain variety that comes in a can. While full of vitamins C and A, Livestrong states that these little flavor bombs can be fairly high in calories and sodium. Depending on your diet plan, those may be things you're looking to avoid.

Baked Sweet Potato

When you think of sweet potatoes, you may think they work best as a side for dinner with your favorite chicken dish. However, sweet potatoes are also great on their own as a filling snack or small meal. Not only do they taste amazing (we love that mild sweetness they offer), but they are also good for you. Everyday Health calls sweet potatoes a low-glycemic food, meaning they won't spike your blood sugar and are suitable for those living with or at risk of type 2 diabetes. And since sweet potatoes are high in fiber and water content, according to NDTV, they can help with sustaining a healthy lifestyle. Rich with vitamins, potassium, and magnesium, Time says sweet potatoes are full of nutritional benefits. 

Snacking on a sweet potato can be as easy as popping it in the oven (or microwave) with some oil and sprinkling a little cinnamon over top once it's baked to golden perfection. You can also make your own sweet potato chips or mashed sweet potato with chopped pecans for a bowl of hearty goodness.