Tag Archives: snack

Earth Girl Wellness: Snack Smarter

It is quite tempting to think you are doing yourself a favor when you grab a box of 100­ calorie snack packs. Cookies, crackers, and chocolatey sweets all promise fulfillment in a little snack pack! Before reaching for the supposed convenience in a bag, consider what those 100 calories might actually mean to your health.

Whereas 100 calories seems entirely reasonable when it comes to noshing on a little something, the consequences to your body’s satiety (full feeling) response isn’t what you might expect. Your body expects to receive nutrients that are actually usable whenever food or drink crosses your lips. Many 100­ calorie packs are full of nothing but empty calories. Follow the logic here:

  1. You eat your 100 calorie treat.
  2. Your body doesn’t register any of the nutrition it needs.
  3. Your body says “whoa, where’s my food?”
  4. You grab a second 100­ calorie pack or other calorie filled food to make yourself feel nourished and full. Suddenly, your 100 calories has become 200 calories (or more!) and you still might not feel satisfied.

It would be far superior to snack on 200 calories of real, life­-giving food. Consider healthy options such as air­-popped popcorn, carrot sticks with hummus, or a small nut butter sandwich. Gulp it down with some clean, refreshing water and your body feels satisfied because it can register true, desirable nutrients.

Now, self ­discipline is a wonderful thing! If you are truly able to slowly savor a pack of 100 calorie cookies as your last treat before bed, by all means, indulge! Take care to savor your snack. Tasting each bite, noticing each swallow, and taking a moment to feel the “love” of your indulgence. Some 100 calorie packs can have health benefits, so reach for a pack of almonds or trail mix (without the sweet add ins such as chocolate chips) instead. To save money, create your own 100 calorie packs each week so you have them ready to grab at a moment’s notice. Think about dried fruit, some turkey and cheese, or whole wheat crackers. Your checkbook will thank you as well since most 100 calorie packs are charging for the packaging, not so much the snack!

Earth Girl loves a great snack, but she recommends you choose proper nutrition with life providing calories versus a snack in a pack that has been marketed to trick you into thinking you are doing yourself a favor. Carry on your adventure and snack wisely!

 

Written by Tina Hatcher of Earth Girl Wellness

Snack Healthy!

If you have managed to stick with that New Years Resolution this long, the girls at Bella are cheering you on! However, if you’re like the rest of us and you’re still struggling with those greasy snacks calling your name, then we are here to help!
2e9eb6d6-67df-40b8-85a1-283a4f5c06f4_lWe just discovered falafel and multi-grain chips from Flamous Brands! Their mission is to create snacks that are healthy for you and also non-GMO, vegan, kosher, gluten free, and vegan. These chips contain 21 spices, herbs, vegetables, and legumes meaning that they are packed with extra flavor!
You can get these chips in four different flavors: original falafel, spicy falafel, multi-grain rosemary and thyme, and spicy fiesta! They go great with hummus or by themselves and are the perfect tasty distraction from other unhealthy snacks! So, if you’re looking for a healthy snack to jump back into that resolution or you’re keeping it going, check out Flamous Brands for yourself, and let us know what you think!

Written by Kathleen Duffy

An Indulgent Treat That’s Both Salty & Sweet

The holiday season is in full swing, and at this point your calendar is bursting with fun, festive activities: the Nutcracker, a friend’s Ugly Sweater Party, holiday gatherings at the Hotel Roanoke, you name it! If you need an easy recipe for a holiday treat that is guaranteed to impress your guests without much fuss, we have the perfect fix for you: Country Crack!

You will need:
Cooking spray
35-40 saltine crackers
2 sticks (1 cup) of butter (For crunchier crackers, just use one stick!)
8 ounces (about 1 1/3 cups) semisweet chocolate chips

Step 1: Begin by preheating the oven to 425 degrees F. The ingredients being used have been proven to be sticky, so make sure to line the pan with aluminum foil and non-stick spray.
Step 2: Arrange the saltines in a single layer, placing them salt-side down. As you do this, you can melt the butter and brown sugar together in a saucepan. As it comes to a boil, it will turn a caramel color. From here you will pour the mixture over the crackers.
Step 3: Bake for 3-5 minutes, or just until bubbly, but make sure that they don’t burn! After you remove the crackers from the oven, next you will pour the chocolate chips on the crackers. As they begin to soften, then you can gently smooth them over with a knife.
Step 4: Transfer the pan to the freezer. Leave them sit for 15-20 minutes, or until they become cold. The last step is to break the crackers into pieces.

This is a great time to add toppings. This recipe originated from Trisha Yearwood’s Sweet & Saltines. The secret to Country Crack is the sea salt that is grinded on top. That’s the kicker! Other good toppings could include crushed peppermint or even bacon.
If you’re at a loss for time, don’t stress! This recipe can be made in 35 minutes tops. It’s simple and delicious, and your dessert will be the talk of the night.

Enjoy!

 

Written by Lani Maddox

Putting the Fun Back in Family Road Trips!

On family road trips, do you spend the entire drive listening to the music your kids prefer, playing their favorite games and generally doing everything you can to keep them content – and peaceful – in the car?

It happens with the best intentions, but too often parents sacrifice their own enjoyment to keep the kids happy, thinking they can’t please everyone. Fortunately, with some creativity and the right travel “tools,” it’s possible for everyone to enjoy the drive.

Here are some ways parents can reclaim their fun on the family road trip:

* Expand musical horizons. Sure, you want everyone to connect with each other in the car and enjoy all the sights they’ll see. But it’s also okay to set aside some non-talk time. Pop in music they’ve never heard of and introduce the kids to different musical genres. There are a variety of songs out there that are kid-friendly. Do some research before your trip– you may even find a few new songs to enjoy yourself!

* Find an audio book that appeals to all. Bestsellers, non-fiction, self-help and children’s titles – audio books offer a great way for everyone to participate in the fun, including the driver. Look for material with age-appropriate content if you’ll all be listening together. “Borrowing” books through an exchange service is a great way to access a variety of titles. Cracker Barrel offers a service that allows you to get an audio book at one  location and return it at any other Cracker Barrel in the country. When you return the audio book, you’ll receive a full refund less an exchange fee of $3.49 for every week you kept the book. Visit www.crackerbarrel.com to learn more.

* Introduce kids to games from your childhood. Playing games is a great way to pass time in the car, but if you dread the thought of playing one more princess- or shape-shifting-robot-themed game, why not introduce the kids to games you loved as a child? Many require nothing more than your imagination, like group storytelling or license-plate bingo. Others like the low-tech classic peg game or Simon, the original electronic memory game you played as a kid, travel well in the car and provide challenging fun for all ages.

* Pack a snack bag with everyone in mind. Everyone will get hungry on the road, so if it’s not yet time for a stop, a snack bag can save the day. Pack with balanced nutrition and broad appeal in mind. Travel-friendly options like fruit and whole-grain snacks can be appetizing and satisfying. Be sure to toss in a few sweet treats for some extra fun. Look for nostalgic options that will appeal to kids while reminding adults of their own childhood, like Moon Pies or Cracker Jacks. 

Whether you are packing up to go visit a family member over the weekend this fall, or preparing early for a holiday getaway, these tips are sure to help your trip be a little less stressful for everyone involved!

Bakeology: Delicious Natural Snacks

We can give you a long list of reasons to fall in love with Bakeology.
Their delightful cookie bites are made with organic coconut oil, organic flax seeds, and other various pure ingredients that will help satisfy your sweet tooth in a healthy fashion. Don’t be surprised if you feel a natural energy buzz after eating a couple of cookies!
Creators Dawn and Sasha (a fabulous mother/daughter team) began
Bakeology with the desire to share their home baked, pure creations with everyone. They believe that the experience of enjoying a cookie should never be marred by unnatural chemicals often used to lengthen shelf life.
Their website also devotes an entire section to yummy recipes from the mother/daughter pair that you can create in your own home– including this one for brownie bites that we will be making multiple times for the upcoming fall/winter seasons!
Order their cookie bites here— seriously, they will change your afternoon (or morning!) snack experience forever!

 

 

Hot Damn, Donuts!

If you haven’t visited Mama Crockett’s Food Truck, then you are missing out on an amazing and unique experience! They are serving up something that Dunkin Donuts and even Krispy Kreme can’t compete with: their signature apple cider donut rolled in cinnamon and sugar.

image2You never have to worry about them being stale, because they are made to order— customers can watch the entire process through the truck window! They are served hot and crispy, and I can already tell you, just one is not going to leave you satisfied (about three did the job!).

image3Mama’s is buzzing, not only because of these donuts, but also the awesome customer service by owners F.W. Willis, Coulter and Shad Sims. People leave happy with their purchases, and many of them eagerly await their next visit because of the interaction they have with these three gentlemen. They never miss an opportunity to make a customer feel special— associating great memories with donuts that already speak for themselves.

image7Today (Thursday, July 2) Mama Crockett’s is parked at Rivers Edge on Reserve Avenue in Roanoke AND at Miller Park in Lynchburg from 11 am until 2 pm. Follow them on Facebook to stay informed on their daily whereabouts— and believe us, they are more than worth the drive!

 

Written by Lani Maddox

The Gift of Kindness

bellawebLooking for a great gift for the health-conscious person in your life? Give them a delicious surprise from Kind Healthy Snacks. Their new, Limited-Edition KIND Holiday Cube is not just a gift, it’s an experience. Filled with 20 seemingly indulgent Nuts & Spices chocolate flavors, the cube sides fall away to make a perfect present!

Plus, this is a gift that keeps giving. Inside you’ll find a #kindawesome card which you can use this season to celebrate someone spreading kindness in your world. Simply:

  1. See a KIND act, big or small.
  2. Give the #kindawesome card to the person doing the KIND act.
  3. Share that the card can be redeemed for a sample of KIND snacks as a thank-you for being KIND.

Visit www.kindsnacks.com for more information and to order a box for the special person in your life today!

Quick, simple holiday entertaining tricks

The holidays are that special time of year when we open our homes and welcome guests from far and wide. It is a chance for us to connect with old friends and family we may not have seen since the previous holiday season.

If you’ll be hosting holiday guests this year, you know there are plenty of preparations to be made. While the main course and the sleeping arrangements may require some additional thought, you don’t need to get bogged down in the decorations. Follow these tips to create a beautiful holiday motif in just a matter of moments.

* Dress up the curtains. Wrapping paper and Christmas print ribbon only appear once a year, so when they do make the most of them. Use some of that print ribbon and wrap it around your curtains to make festive, holiday bows. This will bring your furnishings into the holiday spirit and give the room a more complete look.

* Serve a festive snack. The main course may be extravagant, but there’s no reason the snacks have to be laborious. This year, offer your guests Wheat Thins Holiday snacks. These better-for-you hexagon-shaped snacks feature festive imprints, including snowflakes, a gingerbread man, a bell and a candy cane. Plate them on a holiday platter and serve them with a garlic dip, a spinach artichoke dip or another of your own creation for a fun, unique snack. Share your entertaining ideas for Wheat Thins Holiday snacks on Twitter @WheatThins.

* Dress up your house plants. Why should the tree get all the attention? If you have plants in your home, decorate them with festive ornaments of their own.

* Create a sparkling centerpiece. A centerpiece doesn’t have to be a large, dramatic thing. For a simple, yet elegant centerpiece, place vintage ornaments on a cake stand and surround them with holly leaves or evergreen twigs.

* Place your wishes in a wreath. Create a touching piece that will engage and entertain your guests. Hang an unadorned twig wreath from a wall. Then supply your guests with small, blank cards and markers to write on and ask them to write a message about the season or the upcoming year on the card before adding it to the wreath. Your guests will enjoy creating their own messages as well as reading the messages of their fellow event attendees.

* Create decorations from candy. If you’re looking for simple decorations to adorn your house with, fill tall, slim drinking glasses with candy canes for a festive, yet elegant appearance. Tie a red ribbon around each glass to complete the look.

Preparing your home for that holiday get-together doesn’t have to mean hours of decorating. With these simple tips you’ll be able to showcase your Christmas spirit and spend your newly-found free time enjoying the season.