As we all are well aware that starving and eating junk food get contested all the time. But then what to do when just a tasteful snack is all what the heart and tummy longs for? The solution is quite simple! Find out ways and means to turn healthy food tasteful. And this is exactly what we are here for. We looked back and researched to find some super healthy snacks and drinks that the Indian food palette can boast off and tada! Here we are. Be it occasional hunger bursts, or sugar cravings, we’ve got you covered.
What healthy snacks can be stored on your work desk?
- Makhana - Do you always find yourself secretly drooling over fried potato chips, even though you know they will add up to the calories? Then your search for a good substitute stands over. There is a really good alternative available in the form of makhana. Address the health-conscious drive in you as you munch makhanas. You may roast them ghee, salt and pepper and jar a handful of them. It is low on calories and full of many nutrients like protein, potassium, carbohydrate, fiber, and minerals like magnesium, iron & zinc.
- Beaten moong - Do you stress-eat sometimes? Then this snack is for you. It has been popular on Indian streets and is now receiving its due recognition. You can find them being sold on the Indian streets or purchase them online or from a shop near you. In between those long zoom calls, take a minute off and sprinkle some chat masala and lemon juice to spice them up. Beaten moong is rich in antioxidants and is regarded good for the digestive system.
- Dry fruit mix - Take a mini jar and fill it with moderately grounded almonds, pistachios and cashews. This mini jar will be your own powerhouse of energy. Besides dry fruits are high on vital vitamins, minerals and proteins. This makes them good for the health of your bones, muscles, nerves, teeth and skin.
- Khakra chips - Hailing from the states of Gujarat and Rajasthan, Khakra typically a pre-meal roasted snack. It works as a super healthy alternative to any packaged junk food. If eaten in a moderate quantity, it does not lower down the appetite but satisfies the hunger pangs in the moment. Often accompanied by a pickle or chat masala, it ranks high among the healthy evening Indian snacks.
- Whole wheat biscuits - Find these in a bakery near you or order them online. Mostly topped with nuts, these biscuits are quite filling and can be savored with tea and coffee if not eaten on their own. Laden with fibre and other important minerals and vitamins, whole wheat is considered good for the health of your heart.
Which Indian snacks are healthy for those recurring hunger bursts?
- Oats - One of the healthiest whole grain food, oats can be consumed in multiple ways. You may cook them in little milk and later add some chopped fruits to it or cook them in ghee and spices till they soften. There are quite a few options of ready oats that can be prepared by adding some water on a mid flame. This quick meal will make you quite full.
- Puffed rice - A very popular base for most of the Indian namkeens and mixtures, puffed rice is really light on the stomach but quite hunger satiating. They can be eaten raw or roasted with a tempering of curry leaves, mustard seeds and ghee. Puffed rice is a great combination of high fibre, protein and complex carbs.
- Sprouts - Sprouted lentils and pulses along with chopped onions and tomatoes, lemon juice and sprinkled with coriander leaves can serve as a great snack. They can also be stored for a few days and eaten sporadically. They are known to enhance the nutritional value of the grains and improve the overall health of the digestive system.
- Corn - Being rich in fiber, minerals, vitamins, and carbohydrates, corn makes a really healthy and tasty option over any junk food. In its boiled form, it can be mixed with butter, chaat masala and salt to taste. Because of the high fiber content, it can aid with digestion. It also contains valuable B vitamins, which are important to your overall health. Corn also provides the bodies with essential minerals such as zinc, magnesium, copper, iron and manganese.
- Bhelpuri - Bhelpuri is a savory dish that is made up of puffed rice, peanuts, and vegetables, sprinkled with mixed spices. You can load it with nuts and herbs to make it an ideal quick Indian snack. An interesting thing to note here is that bhelpuri is known by different names in different states of India with the preparation being almost the same. Nonetheless it remains to be a healthy choice to satisfy cravings without sabotaging your diet.
How these healthy Indian preparations can quench your sugar cravings?
- Fruit bowl - This choice might require quite a bit of conviction, given the craving that usually hits. Chop some seasonal fruits, put all them together in a bowl and eat. Some fruits have high sugar content yet continue to be real whole foods.
- Sweet lassi - Very simple to prepare, grab a bowl of curd, add a spoonful of sugar and churn in a mixer. And sweet lassi is ready! Since curd in itself is rich in bacteria that lubricate the intestines, it smoothens the whole process of digestion.
- Raisins - Despite their tiny size, raisins are loaded with energy and are rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They are naturally sweet and high in sugar and calories, but are still beneficial to your health when eaten in moderation. They can potentially aid indigestion, boost iron levels, and keep your bones strong.
- Dates - Whenever you’re hit with a craving something sweet, instead of going for candy or sugar, opt for dates instead. They’re just as sweet and way better for you. They are known for their rich concentration of antioxidants which can be beneficial for your cardiac and pulmonary health.
- Kheer/pysum - Prepared in many different ways, kheer is a sweet dish very popular in India. Made with ragi, boiled rice and even makhanas in milk and sugar, it is easily digestible and it increases your appetite. It can also be sprinkled with some cardamom, saffron, cashews and almonds to enhance the taste while making it healthier.
How do these popular Indian preparations help you battle the summer heat?
- Lemonade - The most easy and quick drink to have in summers in lemonade or popularly known as shikanji. All you need is some moderately cold water along with sugar and lemon juice. To spike it up, you add a dash of chaat masala to it. A good way is to prepare and store a concentrated form of this in the refrigerator. When required just add water, stir and enjoy.
- Buttermilk - Buttermilk is amazingly refreshing and quickly cools down our body. A glass of buttermilk topped with cumin seeds, mint and salt, is well suited to quench our thirst and cool our body in the hot summer months. It contains less fat and fewer calories than milk due to removal of butter. It is a good source of protein and calcium.
- Kokam juice- Kokam sharbat or kokum juice is a popular Goan summer coolant drink which is perfect to sip on warm summer days as it is very refreshing. Kokam is a fruit belonging to the same family as mangosteen and has culinary and medicinal uses. It is native to the southern states of India and the ripe fruit is dark Purplish in color.
- Sattu powder - Be it indigestion you’re worried about or the rising heat, a refreshing sattu drink is what you need for all your summer problems. S It is also often referred to as ‘poor man’s protein’ because it is an inexpensive source of nutrients that are beneficial for your health–especially protein. Just take a glass of water, add a spoonful of sattu powder and salt to taste.
- Panna - Apart from being famed as a heat beater during the season of summer, Aam Panna is a health drink that comes with a number of impressive health benefits. The main ingredients of this drink are raw mangoes which naturally makes it a tasty yet healthy beverage. Apart from being a tasty addition to a healthy diet, Aam Panna comes packed with a lot of essential nutrients.