Megan Callahan, MS, RD, LD
Hy-Vee Registered Dietitian
August 1, 2020
Did you know around 97% of all people snack sometime during the week? Snacking is trending because we are becoming more aware of our hunger and nutrition needs, we have time constraints with preparing meals, and we are experiencing changes in the availability of the variety of food in the places we live. When choosing snacks, it is important to keep in mind: Will the food or drink give you the most nutritious bang for your buck?
Your Hy-Vee dietitians picked two of their top choices in August for their Dietitian Pick of the Month available at your local Hy-Vee: Hy-Vee Kombucha and Hy-Vee Energy Bites. Both of these snacks foods add nutrition to your day, taste great and are a super snack to satisfy your hunger.
Here are 5 things you should know about Hy-Vee’s Kombucha and Energy Bites, plus a few more healthy snack ideas to get you through the week.
- Kombucha originated in Northeast China around 220 B.C. and is a form of fermented tea made by combining a SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast), tea (usually green or black), and sugar, as well as varying flavorings or fruit juices. It has recently become very popular and trendy, with many different varieties available to consumers. Hy-Vee Kombucha has a unique variety of flavors that taste delicious.
- Hy-Vee Kombucha is produced in the Rocky Mountains with filtered Rocky Mountain creek water, giving it a super smooth finish with a hint of tea flavor. It tastes mildly acidic like vinegar and is slightly sweet because it is fermented with fruit and herb flavors. The fermentation of Kombucha produces probiotics which may be beneficial for a healthy gut and your immune system.
- Hy-Vee Kombucha is a source of polyphenols from the tea, which are packed with antioxidants. Polyphenols may provide health benefits such as lowering cholesterol and lessening digestive issues, diabetes and difficulties in weight management. Your Hy-Vee dietitians recommend consuming no more than 4 to 6 ounces a day, and we do not recommend consumption for children or for pregnant or lactating women.
- Hy-Vee Energy Bites might taste like cookie dough, but they’re loaded with nutrition from whole-grain oats, chia, flax and coconut — plus a few mini chocolate chips to satisfy a sweet tooth. When you compare a Hy-Vee Energy Bite to a chocolate chip cookie, it has fewer calories and two-thirds less sugar, which makes it a super choice for better energy.
- Each Hy-Vee Energy Bite provides 130 calories, at least 3 grams of protein and 2 grams of fiber — two nutrients that help you feel full and provide quick yet sustainable energy for pre- and post-workouts. Your Hy-Vee dietitian recommends no more than 1 or 2 for a snack.
Healthy snacks between meals can prevent you from over-eating. They can also help you stabilize your blood sugar and stave off a snarly mood that might come from hunger. But the trick to building the perfect healthy snack is to combine carbohydrates with protein and a little bit of fat. This combination is ideal for feeling full and satisfied, so you’re less likely to dip into the office candy bowl. Try spending one to two minutes every night packing healthy snacks for the next day. Here are a few simple ideas with our favorite Hy-Vee Kombucha pairings:
Cucumber Roll-Ups — Thinly slice a cucumber into horizontal strips. Spread a thin layer of light cream cheese or light Laughing Cow cheese spread on the cucumber slice and roll. Repeat to use the remaining cucumber strips. Hy-Vee Kombucha Pairing: Pineapple Passion.
Prosciutto-Wrapped Melon — Pick up thinly sliced prosciutto in the meat department or at the charcuterie counter. Wrap the prosciutto around a slice of cantaloupe for a sweet and savory snack. Hy-Vee Kombucha Pairing: Ginger.
Peanut Butter Banana & Berry Bites — Trim the top of a strawberry and spread a small amount of peanut butter on the top. Place a slice of banana on top of the peanut butter and skewer with a toothpick. Three or four of these berry bites is the perfect mid-morning or afternoon snack. Hy-Vee Kombucha Pairing: Watermelon Cherry Lime.
For more dietitian tips and recipes, visit Hy-Vee.com/recipes-ideas.
Apricot-Almond Health Balls
Makes 20 balls
Similar to the Hy-Vee Energy Bites, these no-bake snacks provide healthy carbohydrates and protein for sustained energy
All You Need:
1 cup Hy-Vee old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup whole-grain brown crisp rice cereal
1 (2-oz.) pkg Hy-Vee sliced almonds
½ cup chopped Hy-Vee dried apricots
¼ cup ground flaxseed meal
2 tbsp chia seeds
2 tbsp Hy-Vee mini semisweet chocolate chips
¼ tsp Hy-Vee salt
1 cup unsalted almond butter
¼ cup agave nectar
1 tsp Hy-Vee vanilla extract
All you do:
- In a large mixing bowl, stir together oats, cereal, almonds, apricots, flaxseed meal, chia seeds, chocolate chips and salt.
- In a 2-cup liquid measuring cup or small bowl, combine almond butter, agave nectar and vanilla; stir until well mixed. Add to oat mixture; beat with electric mixer on medium-low speed until well-mixed.
- Shape mixture into 1-inch balls. Place balls in a baking pan. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week or in freezer for up to 1 month.
Nutrition facts per ball: 150 calories, 10g fat, 1g saturated fat, 65mg sodium, 14g carbohydrate, 3g fiber, 6g sugar, 4g protein. Recipe source: Hy-Vee.com: https://www.hy-vee.com/recipes-ideas/recipes/apricot-almond-health-balls. The information is not intended as medical advice. Please consult a medical professional for individual advice.