When you hear the words “convenience foods” what usually comes to your mind? Chips? Pop-tarts? Mac&Cheese? Candy Bars? Most people don’t usually picture the healthiest foods, when the word convenience is put in front and this really is no surprise.
A lot of people have a notion that healthy food is just not convenient Fortunately, that is not the case. Luckily there are many foods, snacks and full on meals that are super convenient and healthy too!
You may have to think a little bit out of the box, but for the most part there are TONS of foods out there that are quick, easy, delicious and yes even convenient! There are plenty of healthy foods that can be easily stored and prepared quicker than it would take you to order takeout.
You don’t need to prepare everything from scratch (although that is ideal), all you need to do is be conscious of what you are feeding your body and maybe have a little food attitude adjustment as well!
Here are my top picks for healthy convenience foods:
Fresh Fruit: Fruit is really the definition of “fast-food”. Fruits such as apples, pears, bananas and grapes are made with natural “grab and go” packaging. Other fruits such as pineapple, watermelon and mangos can be bought in already pre-cut and pre-washed containers. Stash a few in your fridge, and you will always have a nutritious snack on hand.
Eggs: Hard boiling eggs takes about 15 minutes maximum. Pre-boil eggs some at the beginning of the week, and you’ll have a protein rich morning or afternoon snack that will keep you feeling full.
Pre-Cut Vegetables: You can either pre-cut them yourself, or buy them already cut for you. Either way, you’ll have a fiber filled snack that taste great and is versatile too. Try dipping your veggies into some hummus, peanut butter or sour cream for some extra flavor.
Nuts & Seeds: Nuts and seeds are full of so many beneficial vitamins, minerals and healthy fats, that provide several benefits and keep you energized. Watch the serving size, and avoid added sugar and salts, but do create your own variety of trail-mix to have on hand. Keep some in your pocket-book or even in your car, this way you won’t be tempted to pull over for some fast food.
Low-Fat Cheese: Low fat cheese is loaded with protein so it will keep you satiated throughout the day. I absolutely love cottage cheese, and have a small carton of it almost everyday! Add some ground flax-seed or fresh fruit into the mix, and you got yourself a well balanced, nutritious snack that will hold you over until your next meal.
Plain Yogurt: I bet you guys saw this one coming! I prefer Greek yogurt because it is packed with protein, and contains no added sugar! You can sweeten it by adding fruit, nuts, flax-seed or low-fat granola. Enjoy it for breakfast, lunch, or an after dinner snack! Similarly, you can use it as a substitute for sour cream, as a dipping saws for your veggies or in fruit smoothies. The opportunities are endless!
What are your favorite healthy convenience foods?