Three Protein-Packed Snacks

Quick and easy, once the prep is done these snacks are pretty much grab-and-go.

Protein is really important.

From helping to maintain muscle mass, to keeping you full and preventing not-so-great food choices, to ensuring your immune system is running on all cylinders, protein is a critical component of your day to day diet. Your body only keeps small stores of proteins circulating for use, and these stores need to be replenished frequently. The best way to do this is to include a variety of protein sources in your day to day diet.

Personally, I’m not a huge fan of the protein shake. They are definitely useful for quick post-workout refueling, but (usually) they aren’t delicious. Real food is delicious, and has the added benefits of additional fiber, vitamins and minerals, and other factors that can help your body maximize on the nutrients you’re giving it.

Some of my favorite snacks are protein heavy, don’t require super special kitchen skills, and are super satisfying to boot:

Hard-boiled eggs
It took me years to figure out how easy this snack is, but better late than never! These are my favorite protein-packed snack, for ease of preparation and versatility.

For making hard boiled eggs easy: Tip 1: Let the eggs sit in warm water for 10 minutes to bring them up to room temperature. This will help keep the eggs from cracking when you bring them to the boil. Tip 2: Boil them with baking soda: it helps the eggs peel more easily when you’re done. I was never told a specific amount, and I dont ever measure, I just dump a bunch in. For a small saucepan, I probably use 2-3 heaping tablespoons. If you have a batch that doesn’t peel easily, try more baking soda next time.

Once peeled, you can go with classic salt and pepper, but I also love a bit of smoked paprika or some cajun seasoning for a little bit of a kick.

Natural peanut butter on celery sticks
A throwback to my childhood, I still love this snack. The salty, crunchy celery is a nice complement to the protein-packed creamy peanut butter, plus the celery will do great things for your fiber intake. Smear a celery stick with as much peanut butter as desired: I try for a thin spread, since the peanut butter can carry a big calorie load. Want a little sweet on the top? Dot the peanut butter with some raisins or sultanas for a little extra pop. Peanut-allergy? Try with almond butter, or another nut butter of your choice.

Beef Jerky
Not the store-bought stuff! Make-your-own jerky is actually pretty easy, despite being the most-labor intensive on this list. Really, the hardest thing is slicing the meat, and if your butcher will probably do that for you. Alternatively, in the US you can sometimes find beef sliced for carne asada – this is perfect for making jerky. Check out international or hispanic markets for this. Once the meat is cut, marinate it for a few hours, in the over for a few more, and you’re done! There is a great at-home recipe here, complete with great pictures and instructions, but a quick google will give plenty of at-home jerky options.

Am I missing something excellent? I’m always looking for new ideas. Leave me a comment and let me know what I should try!

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