Because everyone deserves to stuff their face sometimes.

When I hear “football,” I think about commercials, beer, and snacks. Look, I’m not NOT a fan of the sport, but despite how entertaining the game’s commercials may be, I usually experience a bit of boredom while sitting through a game. Boredom = wanting to stuff my face. And ideally, I should be stuffing my face with healthy snacks. Nothing against fatty chicken wings and fried mozzarella sticks, but here are some of my tried-and-true fave snacks that are a tad bit more nutritious.

Artichoke

Warm Spinach Artichoke Dip

A sneaky way to get in iron-rich spinach and protein-packed beans!

Ingredients

1 tbsp Olive oil

1 16-oz can lima beans

1 cup light mayo

4-oz fat free cream cheese

1 tsp Tabasco sauce

1 tsp capers

¼ tsp dry mustard

¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper

1 14-oz artichoke hearts

1 10-oz bag frozen spinach

¾ cup shredded mozzarella cheese

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

½ cup sliced green onions

1 tbsp lemon juice

Directions

Combine first 8 ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Add remaining ingredients and mix. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly at the edges. Let cool for a few and voila!

Zucchini

Zucchini Fries

The parmesan and breadcrumbs hide the fact that you’re actually eating something green.

Ingredients 

3 medium zucchini (cut into sticks)

2 large eggs

½ cup panko breadcrumbs

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 tsp garlic powder

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp fresh ground black pepper

Directions

Combine all of the dry ingredients. In another bowl, beat the egg lightly. Dip the zucchini sticks into the eggs, and then the breadcrumb mixture. Grease a baking sheet, and bake ‘em at 425° for 20-25 minutes (or until lightly browned).

Honey

Honey Roasted Chickpeas

Low-cal, protein, sweet, crunch. Win.

Ingredients

15-oz can organic garbanzo beans

½ tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp honey

½ tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp nutmeg

¼ tsp sea salt

Directions

Drain, rinse, and dry chickpeas. Spread them on a lined baking sheet and put them in the oven at 375° for 40-45 minutes, or until crispy. While they’re still hot, toss them with the oil, honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. You can put them back in the oven for a few, or eat them right away!

Mozzarella

Mini Caprese Skewers

They look cute…. plus Mozzarella. Enough said.

Ingredients

1 pt grape tomatoes (halved)

10 to 14 mozzarella cheese balls (cut into thirds)

32 wooden skewers 

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp pepper

6 thinly sliced basil leaves

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Thread one tomato half, one piece of cheese, and another tomato half onto each skewer. Place skewers in a shallow serving dish. Whisk together oil and next three ingredients. Drizzle oil mixture over skewers; sprinkle with basil and salt and pepper to taste.

Popcorn

Spicy Popcorn

Popcorn is such a great fiber fix, and the spice makes it easy to forget the absence of loads of added butter and salt.

Ingredients

1 cup popping corn

1 tsp chili powder

¼ tsp paprika

¼ tsp salt

2 tbsp vegetable oil

2 tbsp unsalted butter (melted)

Directions

Combine chili powder, paprika and salt in a small bowl. In a large covered pot, warm oil. Add a few kernels of corn and shake until they pop. Add remaining kernels, cover and cook, shaking pot often, until 4 to 5 seconds lapse between pops. Remove from heat and shake until popping stops. Immediately pour popped corn into a large bowl and toss with melted butter. Cover with spice mixture, toss again, and serve.

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