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When you need to get your snack on

Me around 3 o’clock in the afternoon when I’m “hangry”. Photo courtesy of www.thefatlossauthority.com

We all know the feeling:  it’s 3 pm, you’re at the office, and you either need to get your snack on, or rip someone’s head off.  Repeat to yourself that ripping someone’s head off at the office is frowned upon.

You’ve now entered the “hangry” zone.

So let’s revisit our options:  snack, or rip a coworkers head off.  Guess that leaves us with the snack option … so what are you going to eat?

This part requires a little bit of advanced planning and cooking if you want to make something fancy, but you can be as easy as grabbing some portable healthy snacks like:
– one piece of fruit with a small handful of raw nuts or seeds
– an apple, cut up into slices, with some nut butter
– some mini carrots with some store bought hummus or bean dip
– a healthy, gluten free cracker with some cheese (if you are not sensitive to dairy)
– a healthy protein bar, like Zing bars

It’s important that your snack have a little bit of protein, a la the nuts and seeds or dips, so that your blood sugar doesn’t take another nose dive in 30 minutes and leave you even more hangry.

Now, let’s get physical, and take it up a whole other notch on the snacking ladder.  These recipes do require that you actually take the time to make them, so make a huge batch, divide it up into individual serving sizes, and freeze them.  This is what I do with all my baked goods and granola (and maybe even homemade chocolate truffles), et voila, instant Hanger Management!

Here’s some great snack recipes I’ve previously posted:
–  30 Second Banana Ice Cream
Gluten Free Granola

Time for a new one!  I debated which recipe to post this week (soup vs. snack), but since I’ve gotten so many requests on Facebook from the picture that I posted on Sunday while I was making this recipe, I figured I’d give my readers what they want!  (See how that works?  Do you have a burning question or want a recipe?  Send the request my way, and I’ll try my best to answer!).  These almonds remind me of Cinnabon cinnamon buns that I can no longer (or will no longer) eat, and will make your entire house smell like heaven!  This recipe is inspired by, and a tweaked version of this one.

Without further ado …

Maple Cinnamon Roasted Almonds

2 cups             whole, raw almonds
¼ cup             maple syrup
2 tsp               coconut oil
2 tsp               vanilla
1 tbsp             cinnamon
½ tsp              sea salt
parchment paper

1.  Soak almonds overnight in a glass bowl with cold, purified water.  Make sure the almonds are covered by at least 3 inches of water.  This step isn’t mandatory, but it will increase the digestibility (i.e. nutrient content that you actually absorb) of the almonds.
2.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.
3.   Place a piece of parchment paper over a baking sheet.
4.  If you soaked your almonds, rinse them in a colander with lots of cold water, and spread them out on the baking sheet.
5.  Bake for 15 minutes.
6.  In the meantime, in a large saucepan, mix together the maple syrup, coconut oil, vanilla, and cinnamon.  Heat for about 2 minutes over medium heat, until the mixture just starts to boil.  Turn off the heat.
7.  Once the almonds are done baking, add them to the saucepan, and stir them until all the almonds are evenly coated with the maple syrup mixture.
8.  Turn the oven down to 300 degrees fahrenheit.
9.  Spread the almonds back onto the parchment paper lined baking sheet, and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, moving them about every 10 minutes.
10.  Take them out and let them cool on the baking sheet for about an hour, until the coating has set.
11.  If you soaked your almonds, they will still be sticky.  If you didn’t soak them, the coating should harden up.  Store in an airtight container in the fridge, and enjoy for the next week!

Reader question:  What is your favourite healthy snack?

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