Summer is upon us once again & that means BBQs, beach days, pool parties & trips! However, these fun events often bring with them booze & junky food, making it easy to let your clean eating habits slip away - especially if you're vegan & there aren't many healthy options. While we are in no way advising you to skip out on the fun, you can balance it out by keeping some clean go-to snacks on hand so you can check yourself so you don't wreck yourself. You can bring some of these wherever you go while others are great to have at home when munch-time beckons. Without further adieu, we give you our cheat sheet of healthy and easy vegan snacks to help you meet your goals this summer:
1. Whole fruit popsicles
Perfect for those hot days where you need something heavy, refreshing & light. We love getting creative with fresh fruit & making our own mashups (watermelon and dragonfruit, anyone?)! Just throw your favs in the blender, pour into popsicle molds & let freeze for 4-6 hours. To make it even easier, go to the store & buy some popsicles but make sure you read the label & check that they are whole fruit popsicles - fruit is naturally sweet so processed sugars aren't welcome here!
To be honest, this is something we have on hand no matter what season it is. It's perfect for a mid-day snack, travels well and pairs nicely with lots of dippers. You'll find many delish varieties available at your local store but you can make it yourself as well.The basic recipe consists of garbanzo beans, lemon juice, garlic, tahini (or sesame paste), & salt & pepper. However this can be switched up easily to suit your tastes. Feel free to try swapping the beans and flavor profiles - add some cumin & chipotle to black beans for a Mexican kick, or soy sauce, ginger, garlic and chilis to Navy beans for an Asian version!
3. Trail Mix
This one is fun because there is so much room for variation. It's great to keep in the pantry at home but you can also throw some in a bag as you're rushing out the door. You can find trail mix in bulk bins at your store but making your own is so much better (& healthier!). Simply mix together your favorite nuts, seeds, dried fruits and voila! The more varied the shapes and textures, the better. We love throwing in some granola & vegan dark chocolate pieces ;)
4. Avocado spread
Hey, we're California girls so you didn't think this summer list would be complete without avocado spread. Now, guac reigns king in this realm but there are so many other things you can do to dress up the humble avocado. We like to think of it as the little black dress of the dips world so try making one of these to nosh on throughout the week. Better yet, when you are asked to bring something to a summer party, throw one of these together in minutes & impress everyone! (We'd suggest increasing the quantity, though, so there isn't a mutiny).
-For an Italian version: Mash up 2 avocados, add in 2 grated cloves of garlic, 4 diced sun-dried tomatoes, 4 chopped leaves of basil, squeeze of lemon, olive oil & salt & pepper to taste. Serve with crostini & sliced veggies.
-For a Mediterranean version: Mash up two avocados, juice of half a lemon, 6 chopped red bell peppers in oil, 6 diced olives, 1/2 sprig diced rosemary, 1 tablespoon of capers, olive oil & salt & pepper to taste. This is excellent as an appetizer or mid-afternoon snack.
5. Vive Superfood Cookie Bites
These protein-rich bites of joy are perfect for breakfast in a rush, a mid-day bliss break at work or a sweet reward after a long day. Word from the wise: we advise stashing bags in all your go-to spots so you're prepared when hunger strikes: in your desk, in your bag, in your car. Bonus points for getting into the spirit of the season and grabbing some of the summer seasonal flavors, tart Strawberry Shortcake or crunchy & sweet Blueberry Cornbread Muffin while they're here!
Enjoy the season, all!
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