10 healthy comfort food snacks
Discover our nourishing and comforting snacks that can be swapped in for less healthy options – from ice creams and mousse pots to veggie crisps and spicy popcorn
Are you often left scrambling for a snack when the 3pm sugar crash hits? Looking for a little something to bridge that hunger gap before dinner? We've taken our favourite comfort food snacks – ice cream, cookies, crisps and beyond – and rebooted them into genuinely nourishing treats which will help satisfy those cravings. We've teamed up with registered nutritionist Kerry Torrens, who explains why each of these snacks are genuinely good for you, too.
Is ice cream your comforting treat of choice? Try our banana & peanut butter ice cream for a healthier alternative which leaves you with the same satisfaction as its dairy equivalent. If you love crisps, our healthy kale crisps, spiced with ras el hanout for subtle heat, will be ready in the time it would have taken to pop to the shops.
Find our go-to healthy comfort snacks below, perfect for throwing together and storing for days when snacking is essential.
If you're a serial crisp snacker, ditch the deep-fried potatoes and roast a batch of these brilliantly crunchy kale crisps – they're drizzled with oil and sprinkled with ras el hanout for a gentle, warming heat.
Why it’s good for you: This recipe is a great way of working green leafy veg into your day and makes for a lower calorie, lower carb option to greasy potato crisps; what’s more kale is loaded with immune-supporting vitamin C, even after baking.
Crunchy kale enthusiast? Find more of our nourishing kale recipes served as a side or worked into mains.
These dukkah-crusted squash wedges offer all the comfort of oven-cooked chips without being high in carbs. Simply coat chunky wedges of squash in a crispy, spicy coating of hazelnuts, coriander seeds, sesame seeds and cumin and oven bake until tender.
Why it’s good for you: Contributing to your five-a-day, squash makes a great alternative to both regular and sweet potatoes – that’s because squash is lower in calories, carbs and sugar.
Ditch the salted nuts and bake a speedy batch of simple roast chickpeas instead. It's likely you'll already have these ingredients at hand – simply toss a can of chickpeas with rapeseed oil, smoked paprika, cumin and coriander, along with a big pinch of salt, and bake for 35 mins until crunchy.
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Why it’s good for you: Low in calories and salt, these chickpea nibbles are just the trick if you're craving a crunchy, salty snack, the protein and fibre will fill you up, help stabilise blood sugar and reduce your appetite for other salty snacks.
Try our curried roast chickpeas for a similar snack with a curry flavoured twist.
Popcorn isn't just for the cinema – enjoy the comforting smells of corn popping in your kitchen as you throw together a bowl of healthy spiced popcorn. Simply cook your pack of popcorn then toss with oil pepped up with chilli, garlic and rosemary. This recipe is totally vegan, dairy free and gluten free.
Why it’s good for you: With twice the fibre of potato crisps, a portion of popcorn also provides good-for-you plant compounds called polyphenols, these are protective and help to keep us healthy.
Craving a sweet treat but looking for something light? Our bite-sized cups are chocolatey nutty morsels of heaven and totally dairy free and gluten free. Make a batch then keep in the freezer ready for when sweet cravings hit.
Why it’s good for you: Naturally sweetened with dates, our ‘butter cups’ are made with just three ingredients. With an edge over many other nuts, walnuts are one of the best sources of plant-based omega-3 fats, while the dark, high cocoa chocolate contributes beneficial plant compounds which provide a gentle pick-me-up.
Get your ice cream hit with this low-fat twist on the original, marrying two comforting flavours to achieve sweet, creamy perfection. It's a nifty way to use up ripe bananas, mixed with almond milk, peanut butter and cinnamon.
Why it’s good for you: Naturally sweetened, our ice cream is lower in sugar and fat but higher in fibre than shop-bought equivalents. A portion contributes one of your five-a-day as well as nutrients like potassium and folate.
Instead of reaching for that tub of ice cream, whizz up a bowl of instant berry yogurt. A lighter alternative to ice cream, the yogurt is low-fat and low-calorie which is ideal for eating after exercise or as a quick dessert. And the best news? Three ingredients and two minutes is all you need to make it.
Why it’s good for you: Using frozen fruit not only makes this a great stand-by snack, but the process of freezing locks in nutrients like vitamin C, making frozen berries as good for you as their fresh equivalents.
These energy-boosting cookies make a great substitute to a pack of biscuits. You can play around with the spices and they can be easily stored in the freezer for rainy days. We like them served with yogurt and a handful of fruit.
Why it’s good for you: As their name suggests, our cookies make a healthier alternative to shop-bought ones – that’s because they’re lower in fat, especially saturated fat; lower in sugar including the “free” sugars we’re advised to cut back on, and they’re a useful source of fibre.
Avoid the 3pm sugar crash with these healthy energy balls, inspired by everyone's favourite comfort pudding: apple crumble. They'll give your energy levels a real boost thanks to being nutritionally-balanced, perfect for bridging the hunger gap before dinner.
Why it’s good for you: Naturally sweetened by the dates and dried apple, these energy balls are balanced with dietary fibre as well as the heart-friendly, mono-unsaturated fat from almonds.
Dark chocolate and low-fat yogurt ensures these mousse pots remain healthy, resulting in a creamy, chocolatey dessert which tastes every bit as good as the original.
Why it’s good for you: We’ve kept the added sugars to a minimum in these tasty mousse pots. Contributing one of your five-a-day, a portion also provides useful amounts of vitamin C, potassium and fibre.
Kerry Torrens is a qualified Nutritionist (MBANT) with a post graduate diploma in personalised nutrition and nutritional therapy. She is a member of the British Association for Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine (BANT) and a member of the Guild of Food Writers. Over the last two decades she has been a contributing author to a number of nutritional and cookery publications including BBC Good Food. For more food and health tips follow Kerry on Instagram at @kerry_torrens_nutrition_
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