30 Summer Snacks Under 100 Calories
Healthy snacks for summer
From ice cream to hot dogs to sugary daiquiris, calorie-laden summer treats are tough to resist. The good news is, you don’t need to completely deprive yourself of these seasonal favorites (and smart choices can help you avoid packing on pounds throughout the warmest months). But if you make a habit of reaching for one of these nutritious snacks instead, you’ll find it far easier to stick to your diet goals. Each has less than 100 calories, and contains good-for-you ingredients to keep you healthy, happy, and fit—all summer long.
“Easy to find and portable, blueberries are a great low-calorie summer snack,” says Erika Horowitz, RDN. One cup of these brightly colored berries contains just 84 calories, as well as fiber, vitamins K and C, and cancer-fighting anthocyanins. Also good: Research indicates that, like cranberries, blueberries have compounds that prevent bacteria from sticking to walls of the bladder, helping to prevent urinary tract infections. To incorporate this powerhouse fruit into your diet try our Greek yogurt with chocolate, walnuts and blueberries as a healthy and easy snack.
Greek yogurt and raspberries
For a nutritious 100-calorie treat that feels decadent, combine ½ cup plain Greek yogurt with 1/3 cup fresh raspberries in a bowl. “The protein from yogurt and fiber from raspberries make this a satisfying snack,” says Horowitz. As a bonus, you’ll be getting about 187mg of calcium, which is 18% of your recommended amount (RDA).
Keep a bag of purple grapes in your freezer to have a healthy, refreshing treat on hand for hot summer days. (A 1-cup serving of the fruit has just 62 calories!) In addition to being low-calorie, “frozen grapes provide copper, vitamin K, and antioxidants,” says Health’s contributing nutrition editor Cynthia Sass, MPH, RD.
A hard-boiled egg
Craving a hunger-busting snack stat? “As far as whole foods with great nutritional value and convenience go, you can’t really beat a hard-boiled egg,” says Horowitz. One egg has just 70 calories, plus plenty of B vitamins, vitamin D, and choline, a nutrient that helps support memory. And because eggs contain healthy fats and “high-quality” protein, they’ll help keep you full for longer, she adds.
There’s a reason why this little nut appears so frequently on lists of the “best” healthy foods (this one included!). Almonds are packed with fiber, protein, calcium, and vitamin E, and contain fewer calories than many other nut varieties. Horowitz is a fan of Blue Diamond Almonds 100 Calorie packs ($21 for 32 bags; amazon.com). “They contain healthy fat to keep you satisfied,” she says. The pre-portioned packs are also the perfect size to stash in your beach bag. For a delicious and easy snack try this honey-and-chili glazed almond recipe.
Mashed avocado crackers
Think of this as a bite-sized version of your avocado toast obsession: Top a few whole grain crackers with two tablespoons of mashed avocado for a quick-and-easy 100-calorie snack. “Avocados are high in heart-healthy monounsaturated fatty acids and an excellent source of potassium, which helps regulate blood pressure and balance sodium in the body,” says Wendy Bazilian, RD, co-author of Eat Clean, Stay Lean.
The classic summer fruit is packed with impressive health benefits. Not only is watermelon low-calorie (one cup has less than 50 calories), it’s also a good source of lycopene, a chemical pigment that may help guard against certain kinds cancer. And thanks to its high water content of 90%, those juicy slices can also prevent bloating and keep you hydrated on hot days.
Cucumbers and olive tapenade
Craving something savory? Quarter a cucumber, slice it into bite-size pieces, then top with a small amount of olive tapenade. One cup of cucumber slices has just 16 calories, while olive tapenade has plenty of healthy monounsaturated fats, Sass explains. More good news for swimsuit season: Cucumbers have extremely high water content, which helps prevent bloating.
“This summer-friendly fruit has vitamins A and C, potassium, and fiber,” says Horowitz, adding that a 1-cup serving contains just 90 calories. And like blueberries, cherries are a rich source of anthocyanins, important antioxidants that have been found to help reduce inflammation and lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels.
Tofu lettuce wrap
For a more substantial snack or light summer lunch, make a lettuce leaf wrap with baked tofu and a squeeze of fresh lemon. A ½ cup of tofu has about 95 calories and “provides high-quality plant protein that has actually been shown to be protective against some cancers,” says Annie B. Kay, RDN, the lead nutritionist at Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Stockbridge, Massachusetts.
Another easy-to-pack beach snack? String cheese. Although nutritional information can vary by brand, most pre-packaged varieties contain fewer than 100 calories per serving. String cheese is also a good source of calcium and satisfying protein, says Horowitz.
A tuna pouch
Instead of packing tuna sandwiches in your beach cooler, opt for a pouch of tuna (try it in this fat-burning tuna and white bean crostino recipe). Horowitz is a fan of Starkist Chunk Light Tuna in water ($39 for 24, amazon.com), which contains 17 grams of protein and just 70 calories per pouch. “It’s a protein powerhouse,” she says. For a flavor boost, mix in one tablespoon of salsa, hummus, or avocado (just watch the serving size to keep calories in check).
This small tomato variety (not to be confused with its slightly sweeter cousin cherry tomatoes) reaches peak season mid-summer. For a juicy snack, have 1 cup of grape tomatoes (25 to 30 calories) in a bowl with a drizzle of olive oil and freshly ground pepper. “Grape tomatoes are low-calorie and loaded with water, vitamin C, and antioxidants,” says Sass.
Although some coffee beverages can end up being worse for you than a candy bar, it is possible to enjoy a cool drink without downing calories. Next time you’re visiting your local café, ask for an iced cappuccino made with skim milk. This drink will set you back about 90 calories, but it also contains bone-building calcium and 5 grams of filling protein, Horowitz says.
Dark chocolate chips
If you’re craving something sweet, treat yourself to a small amount of 70% dark chocolate chips (a ¼ cup may have about 70 calories). “Dark chocolate has been shown to improve cholesterol profiles, help lower blood pressure, and support brain health,” Sass says. It also contains important antioxidants and monounsaturated fatty acids, which may help speed up metabolism.
It’s the classic nutritious, low-calorie snack that will fill you up for hours: “Air-popped popcorn is a caloric bargain at just 30 calories per cup,” says Horowitz. (That means you can eat three cups and only consume 90 calories!) Popcorn is also packed with the antioxidant polyphenol, which neutralizes harmful free radicals, and is thought to protect against heart disease. Just make sure to skip the salt for a healthier snack.
Frozen Greek yogurt bars
If you need a quick, store-bought snack, Horowitz recommends Yasso Frozen Greek Yogurt Bars (the yummy chocolate fudge flavor is just 80 calories per pop). “This bar is a portion-controlled, cool, refreshing summer treat,” she says. “Made with Greek yogurt, it packs in 6 grams of protein and doesn’t have too much sugar.”
Starting your morning with this refreshing citrus fruit will set you back a mere 80 calories. And thanks to its high water content (90%!), grapefruit may also help ward off summer weight gain. Grapefruit is also a great source of vitamin C, “which is critical for helping in the formation of collagen for healthy skin and protecting our immune system,” says Bazilian.
Hummus and celery
For a quick pick-me-up, Sass recommends spreading two tablespoons of hummus on crunchy celery. Most brands of hummus have about 25 calories in a tablespoon, while celery has 6 calories in a medium stalk. “Hummus provides some plant-based protein, fiber, and minerals, and celery contains fiber and potassium,” says Sass.
Iced chai tea
Quench your thirst with iced chai tea, another low-calorie summer beverage. While you can order it at your local coffee shop, it’s also easy to brew at home. To add extra flavor, “play with nutrition-packed spices like cinnamon ginger, turmeric, and cardamom,” says Kay. Looking for a healthy dessert? Try this creamy chia chai pudding recipe for something truly satisfying.
Make a quick Asian slaw that’s light enough for even the hottest summer days with savoy cabbage, carrots, and rice wine vinegar. “This combination is tangy and nutrient-dense,” says Kay. Cabbage is particularly low in calories: one cup has just 22 calories, and is also a good source of antioxidants and vitamin C.
If you find yourself hungry at a summer cocktail party or BBQ, make your way to the closest shrimp platter. One medium shrimp has just 7 calories, so you can have a dozen without going over 100 calories. “They’re also high in protein, vitamin B12, and the antioxidant selenium,” says Sass.
Nothing says “summer” like chilled gazpacho soup. And thanks to nutrient-rich ingredients like tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, and onions, you can enjoy the traditional Spanish soup without worrying too much about calories. To make it at home, try our Summer-Garden Gazpacho recipe, which can be on the table in just 30 minutes and has just 88 calories per cup.
Summer melon soup
If gazpacho’s not your thing, Kay recommends whipping up a bowl of chilled fruit “soup” by mixing 1 cup of cantaloupe melon (about 50 calories) with ¼ of an avocado (about 60 calories) and some chopped mint in a blender. This light, refreshing snack will cool you down and max out your RDA of vitamin A.
Walnuts and raspberries
For another delicious way to enjoy in-season raspberries, mix ¾ cup of berries with 4 walnut halves. “You’ll get a whopping 6 grams of fiber, while walnuts offer a host of phytonutrients,” says Bazilian. The combination of slimming fiber with the plant-based omega-3 fatty acids in walnuts will give you sustained energy, she adds.
Sugar snap peas
One cup of sugar snap peas with three tablespoons of white bean dip will give you a crunchy summer snack that’s less than 100 calories. “Snap peas offer vitamins, minerals, and fiber,” says Bazilian. “Paired with high-fiber, plant protein-rich white beans, they’re a tasty way to provide sustained energy and [trigger] a balanced blood sugar response.”
Loaded with beta-carotene and magnesium, “sweet potatoes have a bigger nutrient bang for the caloric buck than white potatoes,” says Kay. They also contain resistant starch, a healthy carbohydrate that triggers feelings of satiety. For a savory snack, enjoy half a baked sweet potato (which has about 50 calories) with a drizzle of lime juice and a little bit of olive oil.
While there are some nutritious store-bought varieties out there, making your own homemade fruit popsicles lets you control how much sugar you’re adding. One of our favorite recipes: Prosecco Pops, which clock in at just 74 calories each. (If you prefer, you can use apple juice instead of prosecco.) After pouring the mixture into the popsicle molds, add any fresh fruit you have on hand, such as kiwi or strawberries.
One cup of sliced mangos packs a serious nutritional punch: You’ll get 3 grams of filling fiber, 77% of your RDA of vitamin A, and 100% of your RDA of vitamin C. “Vitamin C is important for a healthy immune system and healthy skin, while vitamin A also supports and promotes a healthy immune system, healthy skin, and eyes,” says Bazilian.
Have some leftover quinoa in the fridge? Make a quick quinoa salad by tossing ½ cup of quinoa (about 100 calories) with some chopped parsley and lemon juice. “Quinoa, which is actually a seed that acts like a grain, is relatively high in protein,” says Kay.