What do you snack on when you are hungry but shouldn't be?
March 9, 2010 3:57 PM   Subscribe

What do you snack on when you are hungry but you probably shouldn't be?

I don't just mean 'what is a healthy snack for snacktime' with this question :) I am referring to those times where you have had enough to eat, objectively, but are still hungry for whatever reason (hormones, whatever). You should not 'need' to eat given what/when you last did. What is a good snack to minimize the caloric damage in times like that> I am getting bored of carrot sticks...

(I also can't eat popcorn or any corn products due to an allergy)

(no flax or tree nuts either)
posted by JoannaC to Food & Drink (60 answers total) 98 users marked this as a favorite
Jello all the way.
posted by lhude sing cuccu at 4:04 PM on March 9, 2010

lowfat cottage cheese
posted by jclovebrew at 4:05 PM on March 9, 2010 [2 favorites]

Broccoli and humus.
posted by 517 at 4:05 PM on March 9, 2010

When I was on birth control, I had outrageous food cravings. I tried to do healthy as much as possible. Basically, I tried to focus on foods that are guaranteed to make you feel full. Too bad that popcorn is out for you because that was one. However, whole grains are great for curing cravings. Oatmeal or malt-o-meal. Pasta with veggie sauce. Really good fruit juices (Naked, Bolthouse Farms, etc). Granola bars. Gum. Cereal. Carnation Breakfast shakes. Hope this helps.
posted by melangell at 4:06 PM on March 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

posted by qvantamon at 4:06 PM on March 9, 2010

Oh, I came here to recommend carrot sticks. This can be expanded to pretty much any fresh veggies, though -- I like to eat raw peppers, cucumber slices, tomato and spinach with a bit of vinegar splashed on it (like a salad but with no oil or fat).
posted by k8lin at 4:07 PM on March 9, 2010

posted by gnutron at 4:07 PM on March 9, 2010

Fruits and vegetables are good, but I'm starting to recognize that sometimes when I feel like that, I can actually get through it with a glass of water with some Benefiber mixed in, maybe a little bit of lime juice for flavor. Not always, but especially if, like, I just ate an hour ago and for some reason I'm still hungry.
posted by gracedissolved at 4:07 PM on March 9, 2010

First I have a glass of milk. Then I have fruit.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 4:10 PM on March 9, 2010

I have a bunch of Korean nori (seaweed) in my desk at work. One pack is 15 calories - 10 from fat due to the oil on the nori. One, or two, of those will typically fill me up.

Here's a blog about it.
posted by sleepytako at 4:10 PM on March 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

Animal crackers
posted by chrisamiller at 4:10 PM on March 9, 2010

I like rice crackers (either the small Japanese kind or the round, more cracker-like kind) for these times. They are a lot of air, and the part that isn't air is pretty low in calories, and they satisfy the whole hand-to-mouth snacky desire very well. Celery sticks are also crunchy enough to be fun, but pretty low impact. Blueberries and the like, when they're in season, can also be good.

Otherwise, if you like it, herbal tea. It has flavor but no calories (it's not like eating, though, so it may not quite work).
posted by darksong at 4:10 PM on March 9, 2010

Pickles! Super low in calories. Drink water along with 'em, because holy salty snack, batman.
posted by pazazygeek at 4:11 PM on March 9, 2010 [4 favorites]

Carrots. They're sweet and take a lot of chewing!
posted by Wink Ricketts at 4:13 PM on March 9, 2010

Do you like veggies? I find crisp, juicy celery stalks or sweet pepper strips to be great for cleansing the palate and killing the munchies. I also like snacking on chilled dill pickles straight out of the jar. Pretty much anything that's satisfying to bite into and leaves your mouth feeling clean.

Drinking lots of fluids helps too; sometimes we confuse our thirst impulses for hunger.
posted by mossicle at 4:13 PM on March 9, 2010

Veggies all the way. Plain celery sticks have less than half the calories of even carrots. That being said, they get boring after about 6 seconds. Cucumber slices. Snap/sugar peas. Cherry tomatoes.

It's not really easily snackable because it takes a tiny bit of prep, but when I feel like eating boat loads of salty food I shouldn't, I roast green beans. Toss a half pound with 1 tsp of olive oil and a little kosher salt, roast for 20 min @ 425, tossing halfway through. I've been known to devour this in about 2 minutes. If you close your eyes and try really hard, you can pretend they're french fries; the oil and salt is almost convincing... (I'm currently on Weight Watchers and this is only 1.5 points for a whole plate of food, so this is as good as it gets.)
posted by cgg at 4:16 PM on March 9, 2010 [4 favorites]

The best tip I have is to go brush your teeth. You'll be less likely to want to snack on anything when you have a minty taste in your mouth.

I like tea too (especially peppermint tea). Liquids in general, like juice if you crave some sugar.

If I actually am a little hungry, I like bananas or maybe something with protein in it: hardboiled egg, some cheese, bean salad, glass of milk...

When I was a little kid, I would eat handfuls of torn-off iceberg lettuce, cold and crunchy :)
posted by SarahbytheSea at 4:18 PM on March 9, 2010

I keep boiled eggs on hand for when I need a quick bite between meals. Taking a minute or so to peel the egg is also a great way to get a break from whatever routine I'm invoved in at the time.
posted by buggzzee23 at 4:21 PM on March 9, 2010

I think it also depends on what you are "hungry" for. Sometimes, I'm full but I just feel like I need a bit of something sweet or rich to finish out my meal. For me, sugarfree hot chocolate is perfect. It's hot, so you have to drink it slowly, which makes it last longer, it's sweet and IT'S CHOCOLATE!!! You can make it with water or, if you haven't gotten all your milk in for the day, skim milk.
posted by SweetTeaAndABiscuit at 4:23 PM on March 9, 2010

Apple slices and a little bit of peanut butter. This also goes well with milk
posted by _cave at 4:30 PM on March 9, 2010

I like to keep a bag of frozen edamame beans in the freezer for snack. They're ready in 5 minutes.

..and I like to put raisins or prunes in a bowl of yogurt (though it's not super low calorie)
posted by bonobothegreat at 4:32 PM on March 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

Oops, missed the allergy. I know that a lot of people with tree nut allergies are also allergic to peanuts. You could go with cheese instead of peanut butter, if it's an issue.
posted by _cave at 4:33 PM on March 9, 2010

Nthing have a drink. Carbonated water is also a good choice, it has 0 calories and the carbonation helps to fill the stomach. Between carbonated water, plain water, black coffee, and the different flavours of tea you can get a decent amount of variety.
posted by crazycanuck at 4:33 PM on March 9, 2010

Grapes! You can eat like thirty of them at a crack, which is good for times when you want to shovel food in, but you don't want to pay for that action later. They're cold, wet, sweet... what's not to like?
posted by heyho at 4:36 PM on March 9, 2010

I eat crispbread or crackers with Sunbutter, a sunflower seed butter. I'm allergic to peanuts, and it's the closest thing to a peanut butter substitute I've had yet. I love the stuff. It comes both in creamy and crunchy.
posted by spinifex23 at 4:37 PM on March 9, 2010

I suck on cough drops. Very strong taste and sort of delicious. Fishermen's friends or whatever. I know this is not technically "snacking" but it's what I usually do. Also: apple slices with cinnamon.
posted by jessamyn at 4:40 PM on March 9, 2010

posted by qvantamon at 7:06 PM on March 9 [+]

Carrots. They're sweet and take a lot of chewing!
posted by Wink Ricketts at 7:13 PM on March 9 [+] [!]

The poster stated that she's tired of carrots.

Also, since fruit and crackers always jacks up my blood sugar like candy, I stick to non-sweet vegetables like celery (with hummus or peanut butter), pickles, edamame with onion salt, or rely on low fat cottage cheese, a small handful of roasted almonds, sliced turkey, and tuna with balsamic vinegar. Anything high in protein will fill you up fast.
posted by zoomorphic at 4:46 PM on March 9, 2010

Kimchee! Essentially calorie free!
posted by sourwookie at 4:47 PM on March 9, 2010 [3 favorites]

I am literally eating pickles and lowfat small curd cottage cheese as I write this. Perfect snack, esp. the protein. I get the little individual serving six packs so I can stop after one serving and not idly eat half a tub of cottage cheese.
posted by mckenney at 4:50 PM on March 9, 2010

String cheese or little Babybel cheeses.

I just had a string cheese not 30 seconds ago.
posted by lilac girl at 5:00 PM on March 9, 2010

Laughing Cow cheese wedges. Pickles and a limited quantity of olives. A tablespoon of light cream cheese spread on three slices of deli turkey, then rolled up. Cucumber slices and onion dip made with light sour cream. Anchovies on Wheat Thins.
posted by lemonwheel at 5:05 PM on March 9, 2010

I chew gum and drink a glass of water.
posted by advicepig at 5:07 PM on March 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

Cucumbers (I like the tiny ones from Costco, but any English cucumber will do), peeled and cut into spears, with chopped dill and salt and pepper.
posted by halogen at 5:09 PM on March 9, 2010

(Low fat mozzarella) string cheese fan here. Especially the slow way, peeling off a string at a time.

And I like green tea too. It's caffeinated but not much. Also, have you tried rooiboos tea, which is completely decaf, yet? Addictive!
posted by bearwife at 5:11 PM on March 9, 2010

Warm, mostly clear soup.
posted by amtho at 5:12 PM on March 9, 2010

Maybe too weird for you (or anyone), but I find a couple of big leaves of lettuce, plain, pretty filling in a way that carrots or other veggies aren't.

If this is after a meal, you could just try waiting it out for half an hour to see if the urge goes away. Sometimes satiety takes a little time to kick in.
posted by DarkForest at 5:13 PM on March 9, 2010

Turkey jerky. Added benefit: the saltiness forces me to drink lots of water.
posted by invisible ink at 5:20 PM on March 9, 2010

I'm not sure if sunflower seeds are kosher with your allergies or not, but I find they're good because the movement of your mouth involved in getting the yummy seeds out of the shell somehow makes me feel less hungry. I think it takes my mind off of my empty stomach.

Also, the shells are fun to spit.
posted by elder18 at 5:31 PM on March 9, 2010

Gherkins. Apples. Celery. Miso soup. Crispbread. Radishes. Snow peas. Wafer-thin turkey ham.
posted by hot soup girl at 5:32 PM on March 9, 2010

Best answer: Here's a list I keep on hand, hope it helps!

Under 50 calories:

* Two cups Cauliflower
* Half a bulb Fennel
* One Cup of Star Fruit: 32 calories
* One Cup of Apricot: 34 calories
* One Cup of Watermelon: 34 calories
* One Cup of Strawberries: 50 calories
* One Cup of Apple Slices: 50 calories
* Half Cup of Papaya: 27 calories
* Half Cup of Cantaloupe: 27 calories
* Half Cup of Plums: 27 calories
* Half Cup of Honeydew Melon: 30 calories
* Half Cup of Blackberries: 31 calories
* Half Cup of Raspberries: 32 calories
* Half Cup of Peach: 33 calories
* Half Cup of Pineapple: 37 calories
* Half of Grapefruit: 39 calories
* Half Cup of Blueberries: 42 calories
* 12 Cherries: 43 calories
* Large Tangerine: 48 calories
* One Pear: 49 calories
* 4 Ounces of Unsweetened Flavored Applesauce: 50 calories
* Miniature Box of Raisins: 45 calories
* Half a Frozen Banana: 45 calories
* ½ cup Jicama with Salsa or Yoghurt Dip 1 ½ cups Sugar Snap Peas: 40 calories
* Celery Stalk with ½ Tablespoon of Peanut Butter: 47 calories
* ¼ Cup of Edamame with Sea Salt: 47 calories
* 1 ½ cups Salted Pop Corn: 48 calories
* 8 ounces of Miso Soup: 36 calories
* Large European Cucumber with Vinegar: 45 calories
* 5 Kosher Dill Pickles: 50 calories
* 8 Endive Leaves with ½ Ounce of Reduced Fat Feta: 47 calories
* Slice of Fat Free American Cheese: 30 calories
* 2 Slices of White Meat Turkey Wrapped in 2 Lettuce Leaves With Mustard: 48 calories
* 1 Ounce Smoked Salmon on Two Wheat Crackers: 50 calories
* One Tofu Dog With Mustard and Sauerkraut: 50 calories
* 2 Egg Whites With One Ounce Feta and Hot Pepper Relish: 50 calories
* ¾ Cup of Almond Milk: 45 calories
* One large Tomato Broiled with One Ounce of Low Fat Fresh Mozzarella: 50 calories
* 1 Rice Cake, multiple flavors
* 3 ounces of Ranch dip, made with 0% Fage Greek Yogurt
* Sugar-Free Fudgecicle

Under 10 calories

* 1 navel orange segment
* 1 Whopper (malted milk ball)
* 2 large strawberries
* 4 1/2 mini marshmallows
* 1 wheatables cracker
* 12 1/2 blueberries
* 1 shoestring french fry
* 1 peanut M&M
* 3 green or red grapes
* 1 1/2 twizzlers black licorice bites
* 1 Jell-o sugar free gelatin snack
* 1/4 cup fat free Redi-Whip
* 18 roasted/salted sunflower seeds
* 2 1/2 baby carrots
* 2 teddy grahams
* 3 plain M&Ms
* 7 pieces Pirate's Booty
* 3 cherry tomatoes
* 42 cheerios
* 2 Fritos
* 10 wheat chex
* 2 1/2 baked Cheetos
* 2 1/2 jelly beans
* 1 1/2 almonds
* 1 french onion Sun Crisp
* 3 altoids mints
* 3 watermelon balls
* 1 animal cracker
* 9 Brach's cinnamon imperial hearts
* 1 cashew half
* 1 apple slice
* 2 Skittles
* 4 cheddar Goldfish crackers
* 1 Keelber mini vanilla wafer
* 1 dried pineapple piece
* 1 pecan half
* 2 1/2 pistachios
* 1/3 cup air-popped popcorn
* 1 Big Cheezit cracker
* 1 gummy bear
* 1 reduced-fat Pringle
* 1 Snyder's of Hanover honey mustard/onion pretzel nibbler
* 4 semisweet chocolate chips
* 1 Tostitos Scoops
* 1 large celery stick
* 1 pickle
* 4 radishes
* 1/2 cup Cabbage soup/aka Weight Watchers soup
* 1 ounce pickled Ginger
* 5 sugar-free meringue cookies (recipe link)
posted by for_serious at 5:32 PM on March 9, 2010 [59 favorites]

Sunflower. Seeds.
posted by Night_owl at 5:58 PM on March 9, 2010 [2 favorites]

I really like lupini beans--they're satisfying, tasty and healthy. They are quite labour intensive to prepare from scratch (you have to soak them for two weeks, replacing the water every day), so if you are looking for a quick snack, I recommend the kind that comes in a bottle or tin. They are soaked in salted brine, so I rinse them with plain water before eating them to reduce the sodium. As you eat them, bite the skin and then squeeze it a little so the bean pops out into your mouth (discard the skin).
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 6:19 PM on March 9, 2010

Best answer: When I'm hungry, I eat what I'm hungry for. Sometimes it's fruit or edamame or milk, sometimes it's a cookie or a sandwich or yogurt, sometimes it's cheese. Mmm, cheese. The right snack to eat when you're hungry is the snack your body is asking for.

I'm not being snarky, I swear, but when your body is hungry, it means that "objectively" you haven't had enough to eat at that time. Recommended portion sizes and what everyone else says to eat and even what filled you up yesterday are subjective measures in that they don't always line up with what your body actually needs right now to stay well-fueled and healthy. Absent some medical condition that screws up your hunger signals, I would encourage you to listen to your body and use your hunger, not ideas about how much ought to be enough to satisfy you, as the objective judge of how much food you need.
posted by decathecting at 6:23 PM on March 9, 2010 [2 favorites]

And I just posted this recipe in another AskMe, but now that I think about it, you might be interested in homemade kale chips too. (Involves minimal cooking; very easy.)
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 6:27 PM on March 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

It's not always fun, but you can generally beat hunger by drinking water. Drink down a half litre of water. Still hungry? Drink another one. Repeat until you're no longer hungry. I promise you will no longer be hungry by the time you hit 2 or 2.5 litres.
posted by Diplodocus at 6:36 PM on March 9, 2010

I don't know about the calories and carbs and stuff, I'm a little cowed by for_serious's list! But I always keep fresh apples and cheddar cheese on hand. I slice the apples, slice the cheese, then eat each apple slice with a cheese slice on top.

You get the crunch of the apple, a bit of sugary yum, protein from the cheese, a semi-elaborate preparation (more elaborate and time-consuming than opening a bag of chips anyway), and a nice mid-afternoon ritual.
posted by ErikaB at 6:37 PM on March 9, 2010

Frozen grapes!! They're too cold to eat quickly, so it lasts a long time.
posted by honeybee413 at 6:40 PM on March 9, 2010

Coffee, herbal tea, pickles, deli meat.
posted by crabintheocean at 6:43 PM on March 9, 2010

Miso soup - I keep the cup sized serving packets in my desk at work. Salty salty goodness.
posted by Wantok at 7:05 PM on March 9, 2010 [2 favorites]

Any kind of frozen fruit. Peaches are my favorite. You kinda suck on them and it turns into peach sorbet in your mouth. I've also got raspberries in there now.
posted by cmoj at 7:21 PM on March 9, 2010

posted by canadia at 7:26 PM on March 9, 2010

Pork rinds.
posted by Bron at 7:54 PM on March 9, 2010

Tootsie Roll Pops. Take a long time to finish, they're 60 calories each.
posted by mmf at 7:55 PM on March 9, 2010

Carrots and mustard.
posted by anniecat at 8:05 PM on March 9, 2010

Cut up watermelon, mmmm.
posted by contessa at 10:32 PM on March 9, 2010

Apples are the food you want. Sweet, filling, almost no calories compared to their mass.
posted by talldean at 5:19 AM on March 10, 2010

If you can buy pomegranates where you are, I recommend them. One pomegranate lasts me ages, will keep my hands busy as I dismantle it to get at the seeds, and tastes lovely while providing only few calories (I assume).
posted by altolinguistic at 7:11 AM on March 10, 2010 [1 favorite]

Mr. Deludingmyself has this problem regularly. He also usually needs something to do with his hands, so lately oranges have been a great answer - they're in season right now, tasty, low calorie, and they keep him busy peeling, separating segments, deseeding, etc.
posted by deludingmyself at 7:57 AM on March 10, 2010

In addition to carrots or broccoli and some kind of fruit - an orange or a banana, maybe - I like to bring cashews or sunflower seeds to work. Just two or three tablespoons. The fattiness tastes good and is satisfying. Plus gum satisfies the chewing urge.
posted by croutonsupafreak at 8:54 PM on March 10, 2010

Instant oatmeal has become a frequent snack for me, after having it recommended to me by AskMefi in a breakfast-related question. 1 pouch of regular instant oatmeal is 100 calories. Fruit-flavored sweet varieties are about 130 calories. Some of the really sweet types (Quaker brand cinnamon roll, etc) are 160. No matter what, one pouch will satiate my hunger until my next planned meal.
posted by Vorteks at 10:17 AM on March 11, 2010

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