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How to Make Heart-Healthy Snacks in No Time

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Learn how to make delectable treats that promote good health in this sample chapter.
This chapter is from the book

We all like snacks, but healthful, good-tasting snacks aren’t always easy to find. Most are filled with fat and non-nutritious calories and don’t offer much beyond a quick jolt of sugar. I recommend that adults have only one snack a day, either mid-morning or mid-afternoon. Eating in moderation at breakfast, lunch, and dinner should provide the nutrition you need to fuel the day and a small snack can supplement these meals, if needed.

In order to be prepared, determine early in the day that you will stay away from the fat and calorie-loaded snacks that are so handy at the store. Cut up fresh fruit and vegetables ahead of time and keep them handy for snacking. Try partnering vegetables with great tastes, such as Fresh Vegetable Avocado Dip or a lowfat prepared spread. Opt for low-sodium, whole-wheat crackers and string cheese, graham crackers and lowfat peanut butter, or a sliced banana and a cup of lowfat, fruit- flavored yogurt.

When you have a few minutes to prepare special snacks, consider Mix with a Kick, Super-Quick Pizza, or Caliente Corn Chips for a fun change of pace. The recipes in this chapter include salsas and spreads to add to your favorite vegetables, fruits, breads, and crackers. And, if you want to really add some spice to your snack life, offer Hot Pepper Shooters as a surprising crowd-pleaser!

Mix with a Kick

6 c. popped popcorn, no added salt or fat

4 c. spoon-sized wheat biscuit cereal

2 c. unsalted small twist pretzels

½ c. dry roasted peanuts, no salt added

1 t. chili powder

¼ t. cumin powder

1 t. hot pepper sauce

½ t. garlic powder

canola oil nonstick cooking spray

Preheat the oven to 300°F. In a large bowl gently stir together the popcorn, cereal, pretzels, and peanuts. Spread the mixture into a 9x13-inch baking dish. In a small bowl, combine the chili powder, cumin, pepper sauce, and the garlic powder. Spray the popcorn mix 2 or 3 times with the cooking spray. Sprinkle the spice mix over the popcorn and stir to coat the mixture with the spices. Bake 30 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. Remove the dish from the oven and cool. Store the snack in an airtight container. Serves 12.

Nutritional Information

Per serving

Calories: 231

Total Fat: 5g

Saturated Fat: 1g

% Calories from Fat: 18

Carbohydrates: 43g

Protein: 6g

Cholesterol: 0mg

Sodium: 254mg

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