Trader Joe’s is chock-full of healthy snacks that are easy to grab on the go and tame that hunger. Plus, many of them happen to be super affordable and high in key nutrients, like fiber, protein and good fats to hold you over until your next meal.
Whether you’re looking for something healthier to crush those sweet or savory cravings or you’re just seeking some new non-perishable snacks to stash away in your car or office desk, there’s something for everyone at TJ’s.
1. Jicama Sticks
Jicama is a round root vegetable with a slightly sweet flavor and plenty of fiber, which helps fill you up without filling you out.
“Trader Joe’s does the leg work for you by peeling and cutting this veggie into perfectly-portioned sticks. They’re great when paired with a flavorful dip like Trader Joe’s Everything But the Bagel Greek Yogurt Dip or their Organic Buffalo Hummus,” says Charlotte Martin, RDN, CPT.
These are perishable, so you’ll want to keep them in your refrigerator. A pitfall is a low protein count, so pair them with a good dip that has protein and healthy fats to boost satiety.
Nutrition facts per serving (7 sticks): 30 calories, 0 grams of fat (0 grams of saturated fat), 0 milligrams of sodium, 7 grams of carbs (4 grams of fiber, 2 gram of sugar), 0 grams of protein
Buy it: Trader Joe’s stores; Price: $2.79 per 9.5-ounce bag
2. Fruit Bars
These are Trader Joe’s version of That’s It bars, basically, and they’re delicious. “They’re made from just two ingredients, both of which are fruits. These sweet-and-chewy pressed fruit bars are a great source of fiber and natural sugars for an energy boost that won’t send your blood sugar on a roller coaster ride,” Martin says.
Plus, they’re individually wrapped and aren’t perishable, so they’re perfect for taking on the go. Their flavors include Apple + Banana, Apple + Strawberry, Apple + Mango and Apple + Coconut. A drawback to these is their lack of protein, so pair this bar with a cheese stick or some nuts!
Nutrition facts per serving (one bar): 90 calories, 0 grams of fat (0 grams of saturated fat), 25 milligrams of sodium, 19 grams of carbs (3 grams of fiber, 15 grams of sugar), 0 grams of protein
3. Salt and Pepper Pistachios
Pistachios are a great, non-perishable source of the “filling trio,” Martin says, which includes protein, fiber and healthy fats. “But what I love most about pistachios is that you can enjoy 49 pistachios in just one serving for under 150 calories!”
Plain pistachios can get boring quick, especially if you’re eating 49 of them. “These salt-and-pepper pistachios give a nice little kick that’ll keep you coming back for more,” she says. And don’t worry about the tapioca dextrin in the ingredient list. It’s a starch that’s used to help the seasoning stick to the pistachios, and it’s harmless, Martin reassures.
Nutrition facts per serving (1/4 cup without shells): 140 calories, 13 grams of fat (1.5 grams of saturated fat), 360 milligrams of sodium, 9 grams of carbs (3 grams of fiber, 2 grams of sugar), 6 grams of protein
Buy it: Amazon.com; Price: $15.95 per 13-ounce bag
4. Roasted Seaweed Snacks
If you love sushi, then you’ll probably love these seaweed snacks, too. “These roasted seaweed snacks are just seaweed that’s pressed, roasted and then cut into little sheets. They’re super low in calories, high in vitamins A and C and even have a bit protein and fiber, too,” Martin says.
To boost your snack’s protein content, pair the seaweed with low-sodium jerky or some roasted broad beans or chickpeas, all of which aren’t perishable. They come in two flavors: Original and wasabi, so if you like things spicy, try the latter.
Nutrition facts per serving (1/2 package): 30 calories, 2 grams of fat (0 grams of saturated fat), 60 milligrams of sodium, 1 gram of carbs (1 gram of fiber, 0 grams of sugar), 1 gram of protein
5. Ancient Grains and Nuts Granola
“When searching for a healthy, store-bought granola option, I typically recommend one with no more than 6 grams of sugar per a third-cup serving, and this one ends up clocking in at about 3.5 grams of sugar per a third-cup,” Martin says.
There’s a variety of whole and ancient grains — like oats, quinoa and amaranth, plus nuts and seeds, like chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds and cashews — so it’s high in protein and good fats.
“I typically recommend pairing granola with something else, like plain Greek yogurt or cottage cheese, because it’s easy to overdo it when you’re munching on it straight from the bag,” she says. So, keep it to one portion only!
Nutrition facts per serving (3/4 cup): 220 calories, 10 grams of fat (4 grams of saturated fat), 15 milligrams of sodium, 29 grams of carbs (4 grams of fiber, 8 grams of sugar), 5 grams of protein
6. Seeds and Grains Crispbread
“Give these crispbreads a chance; they’re surprisingly tasty! I love them because, unlike many crackers on the market, these are made with simple, fiber- and protein-rich ingredients, like sesame seeds, flaxseed, oatmeal, wheat bran and more, without any added sugar,” Martin says. Plus, they come in a gluten-free variety for people avoiding gluten.
Dress them up as you like. “My favorite ways to top them are with mashed avocado with a sliced hard-boiled egg, hummus with crumbled feta and Trader Joe’s Mixed Nut Butter with sliced banana,” she says. Keep perishable ingredients in the fridge and simply spread on crispbread when you’re ready to dig in.
Nutrition facts per serving (1 cracker): 110 calories, 6 grams of fat (0.5 grams of saturated fat), 210 milligrams of sodium, 10 grams of carbs (3 grams of fiber, 0 grams of sugar), 4 grams of protein
Buy it: Trader Joe’s stores; Price: $2.99 per 7.75-ounce bag
7. Just Beets
“I have a love-hate relationship with beets. They’re nutrient-rich but I feel neutral about their earthy taste. That is, until TJ’s beet chips came along,” Martin shares. They’ve got the texture and crunch of chips but without the added fat and extra calories.
“Don’t get too concerned about the sugar amount in there. None of this sugar is added sugar; it’s natural sugar from the beets,” she says. The natural sugar paired with the fiber will help you kick the afternoon slump without the subsequent energy crash you’d get from fiber-less, high-sugar snacks. Plus, you can carry them around on the go.
Nutrition facts per serving (1 package): 140 calories, 0.5 grams of fat (0 grams of saturated fat), 120 milligrams of sodium, 29 grams of carbs (7 grams of fiber, 17 grams of sugar), 4 grams of protein
8. Organic Popcorn With Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
This isn’t your average movie theater popcorn. “Trader Joe’s has a few lighter, air-popped and lightly-seasoned alternatives that make for an excellent grab-and-go snack when you’re looking for crunch,” Martin says.
This one keeps it simple by pairing organic popcorn, organic extra-virgin olive oil and sea salt. “It’s lower in fat and calories than traditional crunchy, salty snacks like chips, and it’s got protein and fiber,” she says.
Add in more protein, good fats and flavor by mixing it with other Trader Joe’s products, like dry-roasted nuts and unsweetened shredded coconut for a DIY trail mix. Keep your mix portioned in baggies for easy snacking without overdoing it.
Nutrition facts per serving (2 cups): 130 calories, 6 grams of fat (1 gram of saturated fat), 170 milligrams of sodium, 18 grams of carbs (3 grams of fiber, 0 grams of sugar), 3 grams of protein
Author: Isadora Baum
Source: Live Strong: The Best Cheap Snacks at Trader Joe’s, From Jicama Sticks to EVOO Popcorn