Choosing Healthy Snacks for Heart Health
Our heart is considered the most hardworking of all organs. It beats 24 hours a day, seven days a week, it circulates nutrient-filled blood all over the body, and it helps maintain our overall state of health.
Naturally, you want to make sure what you’re eating is always, at the very least, good for the heart. If you’re craving for something to munch on, but also want to make sure they’re good for the heart, we made a list of the 7-best heart-healthy snacks to satisfy both your cravings and your health needs.
1. Baked Sweet Potato Fries
Sweet potatoes are one of the best sources of healthy carbs, antioxidants, and minerals that help maintain heart health like potassium. And, who can resist baked sweet potatoes? They’re one of the best snacks if you want something sweet and filling minus the guilt.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
- 2 large sweet potatoes, cut into thin strips
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2. Whole Grain Toast with Peanut Butter
A good ‘ol fashioned peanut butter sandwich is always good. Peanut Butter itself is packed with protein and healthy fats that are good for the heart. You can make your typical peanut butter sandwich healthier by using whole grain bread for that extra fiber kick.
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 2 minutes
- 4 slice bread, whole wheat
- 1/4 cup peanut butter, all-natural
3. Edamame Hummus
Hummus is a favorite healthy dip by your everyday fitness buffs. Adding edamame to it will ramp up its fiber and folate content, two nutrients that are always good for the heart. This recipe has a lot of ingredients, but it’s really simple to make.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
- 1 package (16 ounces) frozen shelled edamame, thawed
- 1/2 cup tahini
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/3 to 1/2 cup lemon juice
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup minced fresh mint
- 2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
- Assorted fresh vegetables
- Rice crackers
4. Chia Seed Parfait
Sometimes we just need to satisfy our sweet tooth, but anything with too much sugar on it isn’t exactly good for our body, especially our heart. This is why we looked for something sweet and tasty, but not guilty and this high protein, high fiber Chia Seed Parfait recipe was the answer.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
- 2 cups reduced-fat plain Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup agave nectar or honey
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds or ground flaxseed
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup fresh raspberries
- 1 cup fresh blueberries
5. Rosemary Parmesan Popcorn
Popcorn isn’t just a movie treat anymore. People are now into eating popcorn regularly and why not? It’s satisfying to eat and the crunchiness and texture that comes with each bite is heavenly. However, many common popcorn brands aren’t what you would call healthy. So, we found this recipe that makes this otherwise non-heart-healthy snack good for the heart.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
- 1/4 cup fresh rosemary leaves
- 10 cups popped popcorn
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
6. Crispy Kale Chips
You can’t go wrong with kale for anything health related. It’s a superfood for a reason, and one of those reasons is just how good it is for the heart. The best part? Kale doesn’t taste that bad once you learn how to make a good recipe for it, and this Crispy Kale Chips recipe is one of them.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
- 1 bunch kale, washed
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 to 3 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning
- Sea salt, to taste
7. Chili-Lime Roasted Chickpeas
Roasted chickpeas can help manage blood cholesterol levels. They’re already good on their own, but this recipe is sure to add a zesty side to every bite.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
- 2 cans (15 ounces each) chickpeas or garbanzo beans, rinsed, drained and patted dry
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon grated lime zest
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
Eating heart healthy snacks doesn’t have to be dull or boring. With the right ingredients, and a little bit of internet browsing, you’re bound to find something that will satisfy your cravings and give your heart a healthy boost.