Summertime Snackness

Lana del Rey famous cooed about ‘Summertime Sadness.’ But now – we are going COO-COO for SUMMERTIME SNACK(ness)! Snacks put the FUN in FUNCTIONAL; they help tide us over between meals, balance our blood sugar and energy, and are OPPORTUNITIES to FEED YOUR ESSENCE!

Ideally, your snacks should have a balance of:

Fat – fat is your FRIEND. Fat slows down your body’s response to sugar, liberates fat-soluble nutrients, pads your organs, and helps with immunity and hormonal metabolism. Plus, it’s delicious.
Fiber – Gut health, immunity, cholesterol/blood-sugar lowering, probiotic-fuel, what does FIBER not do? You’ll find fiber in the complex starches below!
Protein – Build those bones, muscle, hair, nails, and skin with PROTEIN. This also keeps you full and slows down that blood sugar cascade.
Complex starch – this type of carbohydrate is a bit more COMPLEX for your gut to break down than, say, SIMPLE starch (WHITE stuff – bread, rice, pasta, etc.). Opt for beans, steel cut oats, fruits, veggies, flax crackers, organic popcorn, pumpkin, sweet potato, and quinoa.

AND NOW, THE SUMMERTIME SNACKS:

#essenceapproved S’MORES
You can use organic graham crackers, Simple Mills cookies, or make your own ‘graham’ crackers using almond flour. We’re not going to torture you with fiber crackers here; but please use 80% dark chocolate (we love Hu Kitchen brands) and organic marshmallows!

Ombre Layered Smoothies (recipe courtesy of Del Monte Fresh)
Blend 1 ripe banana with ½ cup coconut milk and a handful of ice cubes in a blender. Pour 1/3 into a glass and let it chill in the fridge while you make your next lovely layers. THEN; place 1/2 cup Fresh Cut Mango in the blender + blend. Pour half into your glass and return the glass to the fridge. Add ½ cup mixed berries to your blender, blend and top off your glass.

Fleas on a Log
Chop 3 stalks of celery into 4 pieces. Stuff with unsweetened sunflower seed butter, and top each with a bit of cinnamon and chia seeds.

Watermelon Slurpee
Blend 2 cups of watermelon with 1/2 cup club soda crushed ice, fresh mint, and ½ cup crushed ice. If you add vodka, we won’t tell.

Avocado Hummus
Blend 1 avocado with 1/4 cup tahini, 1 clove garlic, 1/4 cup diced cilantro, 1/4 cup canned + rinsed chickpeas, and a squeeze of lemon in a blender. Sprinkle some anti-inflammatory red pepper flakes as garnish.

Gran-YES-a (not-gra-NO-la, which has too much sugar!)
Preheat your oven to 400ºF and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. In a large mixing bowl, mix 3 cups gluten-free rolled oats with ½ cup nut butter, ¼ cup chia seeds, ¼ cup hempseeds, 1 cup chopped walnuts, ¼ cup chopped brazil nuts, 1 tsp cinnamon, ½ tsp turmeric, and ¼ cup melted coconut oil. Toast for 20 minutes; toss around, and bake another 15 minutes or until golden brown. Add ½ cup goji berries once out of the oven; store in the refrigerator in an airtight containers.

Sweetheart Sweet Potato Toasties
Preheat your oven to 400ºF and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Slice the ends of an organic sweet potato off, then cut it lengthwise into 1/2-inch thick slices. Arrange the slices in a single layer on the baking sheet.
Bake until the slices are tender; ~20 minutes. Top with nut butter, greek yogurt, or labneh (kefir cheese!)

Essentially Yours this summer and always,
The Essence Dietitian Team.