Grab & Go: 13 super-healthy packaged snacks to stash in your yoga bag

PranaSpirit Grab & Go 13 super-healthy packaged snacks to stash in your yoga bag

Originally Published August 2017 yogajournal.com

IN AN IDEAL WORLD, you’d pick up a piece of fresh fruit or chop up some veggies for your post-practice nibble. In the real world, there’s often just enough time to unwrap and inhale whatever packaged morsel has been sitting in your yoga bag or office drawer for weeks. We understand. Which is why we set out to find the most nutritious (and tasty) snacks beyond the produce aisles.

We began by talking to nutrition experts who are also yoga teachers, and while they all said that the most nutritional snacks are fresh, they also agreed that prepackaged alternatives can be nourishing.

“A lot of yogis think that eating a sattvic diet—a class of foods in Ayurveda that are light, nourishing, and delicious—must mean eating fresh,”

says New York City nutritionist and yoga teacher Ilene Cohen, RD. “And while that’s certainly ideal, choosing snacks that are minimally processed and well balanced also qualifies.”

Kara Lydon, RD, RYT, a nutritionist and yoga teacher and author of Nourish Your Namaste, agrees: When it comes to packaged snacks, look for minimal ingredients lists that contain wholesome components, “like naturally-occurring sugars and easy-to-digest sources of protein and fiber,” she says. “These give your body the nourishment it needs before and after yoga.” With these guidelines in mind, we tasted more than one hundred packaged snacks and asked our experts to weigh in on their faves, too. Here are the 13 you’ll want to keep stocked in your pantry.

  1. Foodie Fuel Snacks (Coconut Vanilla)
    Have a hankering for something dessert-ish?
    These nutty bites hit the sweet spot, plus they’re loaded with protein-rich sunflower, flax, pumpkin, and chia seeds for energy and satiation. Just be sure to watch portion size, as one serving contains 8 grams of coconut sugar. (foodiefuel.com)
  2. Made In Nature Kale Chips Supersnacks (Rosemary Truffle)
    This is a tasty way to get a serving of the superfood kale, and the addition of organic sunflower seeds, cashews,
    and nutritional yeast makes it a great, balanced source of B12, says Cohen. (madeinnature.com)
  3. Soul Sprout Almond Butter Big Bite (Cacao Almond)
    These taste more like a dessert than a snack, but the combination of protein, carbohydrates, and healthful fat makes them a replenishing post-practice nosh, says dietitian Jennifer Brown, who teaches yoga in Phoenix. Just keep in mind that coconut syrup, which is sugar, is the second ingredient, she says, so you’ll want to keep your portion size in check. (soulsprout.com)
  4. Rhythm Superfoods Beet Chips (Naked)
    The ingredients list for these chips couldn’t be any shorter: beets. “No need to worry about any additives,” says Brown. “This is a good one if you need a quick pick-me-up before practice.” (rhythmsuperfoods.com)
  5. Eden Pocket Snacks (Quiet Moon blend)
    The abundance of whole, organic ingredients in this convenient, single-serving package makes it a favorite among our experts and staffers alike. “This mix of organic pumpkin and sunflower seeds, tamari-roasted almonds, raisins, and dried cherries is just as pure and nutritious as one you’d make for yourself,” says Tiffany Cruikshank, who founded Yoga Medicine and is an acupuncturist and Chinese medicine practitioner. “A sign of a good prepackaged snack!” (edenfoods.com)
  6. Peeled Snacks (Much-Ado-About-Mango)
    Mangoes are an excellent source of betacarotene, an antioxidant that fights free radical damage and also protects our eyes, hair, and skin, says Cohen. “I’d pair a serving of these with a few almonds or some Greek yogurt so you’re balancing mango’s carbohydrates with protein and healthy fat,” she says. Cruikshank adds that it’s important to drink plenty of water when you eat dried fruit, which lacks the hydrating and satiating liquid content found in the fresh variety. (peeledsnacks.com)
  7. Mamma Chia Chia Squeeze (Mango Coconut)
    Don’t let the kid-friendly pouch fool you: It’s loaded with organic chia seeds and real-fruit purees, making it a nutritious snack for all ages. “It’s hard to find snacks with fiber and healthful fats,” says Cruikshank. “This is nice because it has both.” (mammachia.com)
  8. Bard Valley Natural Delights
    Organic Medjool Dates Keep it simple with these pitted dates, a concentrated source of good-for-you carbohydrates that’ll help fuel your practice because they digest slowly, nixing the crash that comes with sweet treats, says Brown. “Pair these with a handful of nuts to add some healthful fat and protein,” she adds. (natural delights.com)
  9. The Real Coconut Coconut Flour Tortilla Chips (Chipotle Barbecue)
    Organic coconut flour and coconut oil make this chip nutritionally better than those that are made from less-nutritious flours—plus they’re much more filling, so we weren’t tempted to pop more than one serving at a time. “I’d dip these chips into protein-rich hummus for even more nutrient balance,” says Cohen (therealcoconut.com)
  10. Simple Mills Sprouted Seed Crackers (Original)
    These crackers contain minimal ingredients, and those that are on the list—sprouted seeds, tapioca, cassava, hemp seeds, sunflower oil, sea salt, and rosemary extract—make them superior to most on the market. “Snacks with seeds are great,” says Cruikshank, “because they add fiber and healthful fats.” (simplemills.com)
  11. Once Again Almond Butter (Creamy)
    Dry-roasted, unbleached, organic almonds are the only ingredient you’ll find in this better butter. Bonus: It’s available in travel-friendly, single-serving packs, perfect for fueling up on the go. (onceagainnutbutter.com)
  12. Kuli Kuli Moringa Superfood Bars (Black Cherry)
    “Moringa is an up-and-coming green with many of the same benefits of kale,” says Brown. This superfood — combined with cherries, almonds, dates, tapioca syrup, and organic sunflower oil—means these bars are nutritionally superb and taste great. (kulikulifoods.com)
  13. Enjoy Life Not Nuts! Seed and Fruit Mix (Mountain Mambo blend)
    If you suffer from food allergies, you’ll love this nut-free, gluten-free, dairy-free mix, which is tasty and wholesome. “Seeds provide a good amount of protein and fiber in addition to other nutrients and antioxidants,” says
    Cohen. (enjoylife.com)

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