Snacks that align with the Mediterranean diet can help support many facets of your health: your brain, heart, digestive system and more. That’s just one of the reasons the eating pattern was ranked the best in the world by the U.S. News & World Report for six years in a row. These tasty snack recipes highlight foods like nuts, fruit, veggies and whole grains to help you reap the benefits of the Mediterranean diet. Plus, they’re packed with delicious pre- and probiotic ingredients like bananas, beans and yogurt that offer microbiome-supporting fiber and bacteria to help protect your body against chronic disease and inflammation. Recipes like our Banana-Blueberry Muffins and Tahini-Yogurt Dip are flavorful, nutrient-packed bites that can help you feel your best.
Tiramisu-Inspired Energy Balls
These sweet energy balls draw flavor inspiration from the classic Italian dessert tiramisu. Instant espresso powder adds bitterness, while dates provide sweetness to create balanced flavor. A dusting of cocoa powder at the end mimics the dessert’s iconic look. When rolling the balls, keep a small bowl of water nearby to keep your fingers moist—it’ll make rolling much easier. And don’t skip the chilling, as it helps the mixture stay together.
Chocolate-Peanut Butter Protein Shake
This creamy high-protein shake will keep you satisfied for hours and tastes like a chocolate-peanut butter banana milkshake. You don’t even need to add protein powder, thanks to the naturally occurring protein in the soymilk, Greek yogurt and peanut butter.
These super-moist and tender muffins get a protein boost with the addition of cottage cheese and peanut butter. The banana, which adds natural sweetness, doesn’t overpower the flavor of the blueberries. Frozen blueberries work just as well as fresh. For a different twist, try raspberries or chopped apple.
Easy Black Bean Dip
This creamy bean dip is great for a party or picnic. Smoked paprika and ground chipotles add a robust, earthy flavor, but you can also use regular paprika and cayenne if you don’t have the other spices on hand.
High-Fiber Guacamole Snack Jar
A healthy, zesty snack is never far away when you stack red bell pepper strips, pepper Jack cheese and guacamole in a mason jar. Swap the pepper Jack with regular Jack or Cheddar cheese to cut the heat. To bulk up this snack, add pretzels, crackers or tortilla chips alongside.
Serve this creamy yogurt dip with baby carrots, sliced radishes or whole-wheat pita triangles.
Cottage Cheese Snack Jar
This creamy, crunchy snack packs 20 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber in one small mason jar. Adding the chickpeas right before serving will keep them crunchy. If you want to store everything in one jar, opt for 1/4 cup rinsed canned chickpeas instead.
Not a fan of kale? These crispy baked kale chips will convert you! For the best result, don’t overcrowd the baking pans.
Banana-Peanut Granola Bars
These healthy, homemade granola bars are reminiscent of peanut butter-and-banana sandwiches. Be sure to look for dried banana, not banana chips. The chips are cooked in oil and, if not stored properly, can have an off taste. We tested several sticky sweeteners, including maple syrup and honey, but found brown rice syrup held the bars together the best.
Berry-Mint Kefir Smoothies
Kefir is similar to yogurt, full of gut-friendly probiotics. But it has fewer carbs and a more drinkable consistency–perfect for smoothies.
Sprouted-Grain Toast with Peanut Butter & Banana
Jelly is delicious, but nothing beats the natural sweetness of a nutritious banana. It’s the perfect addition to creamy peanut butter and a crisp slice of fiber-rich toast.
Coconut-Cashew Breakfast Bites
Never skip breakfast again: keep these coconut and date breakfast bites in the fridge or freezer, and you’ll always have a grab-and-go option for busy mornings.
Peanut Butter and Apple-Cinnamon Topped Toast
This peanut butter and apple-cinnamon topped toast is sure to satisfy for breakfast or a snack.
Make perfectly crunchy veggie chips at home with this healthy recipe. Use a mandoline to slice the beets extra-thin for the optimum crunch!
Almond Butter & Roasted Grape Toast
A slice of almond butter toast gets topped with roasted grapes for a sweet, nutty bite. This three-ingredient twist on a classic PB & J makes for a quick and tasty breakfast or snack.
Read the original article on Eating Well.