More than 7 million Americans identify as vegetarian, while another 22.8 million follow a largely vegetarian diet (Vegetarian Times, n.d.). Whether you are a dedicated vegetarian or an omnivore exploring healthier meat-free options, getting the right balance of nutrients is essential. Snacking is a healthy part of any diet, making it important to choose vegetarian snacks that satisfy your hunger while meeting your unique nutritional needs.
A grapefruit a day in addition to your regular meals can speed weight loss. The fruit's acidity slows digestion, meaning it takes longer to move through your system, and you'll end up feeling fuller, and more satisfied, for longer. And the vitamin C-packed grapefruit works to lower cholesterol and decrease the risk of stroke, heart disease, and some types of cancer.
If you're sacrificing snacks to cut calories, stop—to lose weight, you need snacks. "Snacking is an opportunity to fuel your body between meals," says nutritionist Rania Batayneh, author of The One One One Diet. Healthy snacks ensure you won't be ravenous come mealtime and keep your fat-burning metabolism revved up. Here are 21 nutritionist-approved choices for both store-bought and make-your-own snacks. Each nosh packs 150 to 200 calories, is filled with good-for-you nutrients, and will make you feel like your diet is about anything but deprivation.
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While chili may seem like a main dish, a small scoop of this keto variety can provide you enough protein (almost 3 grams!) to keep you going. "Use an Instant Pot for great fast cooking," says Suzanne Ryan, author of Beyond Simply Keto. To make it, brown your ground beef and sausage, saving half the fat drippings. Chop one green bell pepper and ½ onion. Pour meat, fat, veggies, canned ingredients and spices into your instant pot, and cook for 40 minutes. (This is also a great keto meal-prep recipe to have on hand.)
This is a kind of springtime Greek ratatouille. We love the artichokes in this dish—they add their unique flavor and somehow make everything taste just a little sweeter. The olive oil emulsifies with the braising liquid to create a silky sauce that deliciously coats the bright spring veggies. Thin lemon slices, charred and caramelized in a cast-iron pan, make a nice garnish.

Oatmeal is a complex carb, meaning it helps fill you up without spiking your blood sugar. Plus, it's a good source of fiber and eating more fiber helps people lose weight and keep it off. While we think of it typically as breakfast, a small bowl of oats makes a hearty, filling and delicious snack. To make this snack more convenient-keep a packet or two of unsweetened instant oatmeal at your desk or make overnight oats in a mason jar.
Popcorn is high in fiber and even delivers a little protein. A 1-ounce serving (about 3 cups) of air-popped popcorn has 4 grams of fiber, almost 4 grams of protein and clocks in at 110 calories. This combination makes it a snack with staying power. Popcorn is actually a whole grain and 3 cups is a huge serving-especially when you compare it to other crunchy, salty snacks like chips. Many companies are making bagged popcorn, see our favorite healthy popcorn picks.
Make a big batch of this soup and have a cup each afternoon. It’s packed with fiber and gingery flavor that will keep your stomach satiated for hours! Plus this carrot-ginger soup is packed with antioxidants. And since carrots are rich in vitamin A, this healthy snack may also reduce the risk of heart attacks, protect vision, and lower the risk of getting certain cancers. One serving weighs in at a little over 100 calories and 7 grams of waist-slimming fiber.
Most orange vegetables and fruits, like oranges, are spiked with carotenoids—fat-soluble compounds that are associated with a reduction of a wide range of cancers, as well as reduced risk and severity of inflammatory conditions such as asthma and rheumatoid arthritis. Oranges are also packed with Vitamin C, a nutrient that lowers levels of cortisol, a hormone linked to belly fat storage.
“You might assume that you can’t eat pulses like chickpeas, beans, and lentils on the keto diet. But you totally can, especially in smaller portions," says Amy Gorin, RDN, owner of Amy Gorin Nutrition in the New York City area. "Pulses are a good source of satiating protein and an excellent source of filling fiber—and research shows that eating them daily can help your overall health and can even help you lose weight." Roast chickpeas and toss with oil (for added fat) and spices (to amp the flavor).

Snacks can absolutely fit in your diet if you're trying to lose weight. Having ideas for healthy snacks to pack for work snacks, grab and go snacks, store-bought snacks and snacks you can make yourself will help vary the nutrients you get and keep you from going hangry between meals. Remember, think nutrient-dense (fiber, protein, vitamins, minerals) and your snacks will help you get the nutrition your body needs and keep you full.
Feeling in the mood for cookies? While one standard Oreo or Chips Ahoy won't likely derail your diet, it's tough to stop at one. That's where a good substitute comes in. McLachlan recommends 2 graham cracker squares spread with light peanut butter. You'll get a mix of sweet and salty flavors, plus a protein and fat boost from the peanut butter, which will keep you full till your next meal.
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