After a couple weeks where my toddler barely wanted to leave the house due to the cold weather, we finally got out for our first hike with friends in a couple weeks. I was so jazzed to meet up with some other mom friends and get some good socializing in. As I was pulling into the parking lot (a whole 10 minutes early!), I saw the whole hiking group taking off. Apparently I had read the meetup time wrong in our Facebook group and showed up almost 30 minutes late! Womp womp.
Luckily, I had been to this trail a few times and it was a short and sweet walk. I hiked in with my son on my back (I love our current carrier – but have my eyes on this toddler-sized one next) and met up with everyone almost right before we decided to turn back. We had a great time, but once we got to back to the trailhead, my son wasn’t ready to go home. So we turned around and did the whole thing again on our own!
(Here’s a sweet candid photo a friend took of us at this same trail a few months ago when I carried him on my front!)
I’ve been hiking with my son now since he was about 10 months old. I love the time we have together out on the trails. But one of the big things I noticed was that our time outside started shrinking and shrinking as he got older and snacking more. That toddler hunger is no joke.
It wasn’t until another mom friend recommended that I start carrying snacks to get a little more time in that I was able to relax more and enjoy our hikes together. I could stretch our half-hour walks into over an hour by handing him back snacks when he asks for them (… and of course letting him down to explore when he wants to stretch his legs).
Being prepared with snacks has proven to be the easiest way to keep him up on my back – so I actually get some mileage and exercise in instead of just following him around (which is fun too – but not always what I’m after). Not only does it keep him occupied, but it keeps him from melting down from hunger before we get back to the car.
I’ve learned that keeping snacks around – not just for my son – but also for myself is the difference between keeping up with my GFDF diet and lifestyle, finding something that won’t make me feel great later, or going hungry until I can get home.
I’ve also heard from a lot of you that you are looking for some easy and quick-fix snacks that are gluten-free and dairy-free too. So I wanted to round up a few healthy and super easy snack ideas that you can integrate into your life right away.
When I started working on this post, I had a full list of snack ideas – but then I realized that while some are quick and homemade, others are straight from the grocery store – and even easier if you have busy lives and hectic schedules. I know I rely on the store quite a bit for snacks around our house.
With that in mind, here is a handy list of 21 snack ideas that are not only gluten-free and dairy-free, but are healthy AND store-bought.
1. Coconut or almond milk yogurt
2. Dried fruit or banana chips
3. Raw or roasted nuts or seeds
I love these, because they’re so convenient. No need for a knife or a giant jar to get your peanut butter fix. You can enjoy the pouch plain, spread the nut better on some crackers or eat with some fruit for a healthy snack in between meals. Here’s another chocolate option (yum!!).
These are great, because they’re individually wrapped so they keep in your purse or car forever. You don’t have to worry about a big mess, plus the variety pack is nice when you get sick of eating the same old snacks.
This isn’t exactly an “on the go” snack, but if you plan ahead, you could pop some and keep it handy for going to the movies. Or to keep in your desk for popping during a quick work break. This is my favorite brand.
7. Olives or pickles
You can easily find olives or pickles in just about any grocery store. They’re a good healthy and salty bite when you’re in the mood for something crunchy.
8.Crackers and hummus
I love these crackerspaired with hummus of any flavor.I’ve found these at both my regular grocery store AND at Costco on occassion.
This is a great high-protein snack to take with you on hikes, stash in your car, or keep at your desk for a midday snack.
These are some of my favorite snack mixes. Fruit, nuts and spices all mixed into one tasty snack. I love the convenient size to stash away in your bag or take on the go wherever you are. You can even find these at Costco sometimes!
11.Tortilla chips + guacamole or salsa
The mini cups of guacamole from Costco are great for packing in a lunchbox or to take on-the-go with some tortilla chips. Any brand will do, but I like these blue chips from Garden of Eatin’.
Maybe not an everyday snack, but these chips are still gluten-free and better than many other options out there if you’re looking to satisfy a craving.
This brand is great!Pack these tasty pretzels in a snack bag and take them on the go. A great salty and crunchy snack to get you between meals that’s gluten-free!
14. Kale chips
I recently tried these kale chips and while they aren’t super cheap – they were really delicious. I gobbled up most of the bag in one sitting and didn’t feel bad for one minute about it.
These apple chips are divine. I consider them a bit of a splurge since they aren’t exactly inexpensive, but they’re really yummy to take on the go. And when I get a sweet craving, they’re a good option.
16. Sugar snap peas
Simple and easy to find – sugar snap peas can be found in pre-washed bags or fresh from the produce department. Eat them on their own or with a little hummus.
I’ve tried a number of Purely Elizabeth granola flavors and I have loved every single one. This is a great snack idea to stash in your car or divide into smaller portions and throw in your bag to snack while out and about.
Larabars are one of my go-to snacks for carrying around in my purse and car. My favorites are the peanut butter chocolate and blueberry muffin varieties. Give this variety pack a try and find your favorite flavors!
19.KIND Bars (some varieties)
KIND Bars are my go-to granola bar. With super yummy flavor options, these are a huge upgrade from my old-school Chewy bars that I used to eat. Not all KIND Bars are dairy-free so be sure to choose a flavor without chocolate or yogurt ingredients!
Not exactly sexy, rice cakes are a great healthy snack option – especially when combined with peanut butter or almond butter. When you have a craving for something crunchy, it’s a much healthier choice than chips or something from a vending machine.
I consider these one of my son’s snacks, as I usually buy them for him… but I’ve been known to enjoy these once in a while too. Applesauce in a pouch seems ludicrous – but it’s beyond convenient for snacking on the go. I always keep a stash of these in my house and in a bag in the trunk of my car for those desperate moments when we need to eat something before we make it home.
You can see that some of these snack ideas are great for packing in a car or in your purse, while others are better to keep in your fridge for right before you want to eat them. Either way – there’s more than enough healthy snack options that you can get straight from the grocery store without having to do any extra work.
We try to keep Larabars, KIND bars, and applesauce pouches in the trunk of our car for anytime snacks if we’re out of the house. Bonus points for these three since they easily fit in my pockets while hiking! Honestly, it makes the world of difference just simply being prepared for healthy snacking than having nothing ready for you when you need it.
>> GFDF Buying Tip: I buy all three of these: Larabars, KIND bars, and applesauce pouches through Amazon’s Subscribe & Save service every month so I never have to check if we need any at the store – they show up automatically on our doorstep!
I hope if you’ve been on the hunt for some healthy gluten-free and dairy-free store bought snack ideas, that this list has been useful for you!
Now it’s your turn – tell me in the comments below what YOUR favorite GFDF store bought snack is?