15 Non-Dairy High-Protein Snacks for Weight Loss
Are you on the hunt for delicious, non-dairy high-protein snacks that will help you achieve your weight loss goals?
Look no further! Whether you’re a vegan, lactose intolerant, or simply trying to cut back on dairy, there is a wealth of tasty and nutritious options you can choose from.
In this blog post, we’ve rounded up some of the best non-dairy snacks that are not only high in protein but also perfect for keeping you feeling full and energized. So, grab a snack and get ready to power through your day!
All these snacks contain at least 5 grams of protein and are under 250 calories per serving.
Remember always to check product labels for added ingredients and be mindful of portion control.
Why is Protein Important for Weight Loss?
Overall, including adequate protein in your diet is a helpful strategy for weight loss and weight management.
- Satiety: Protein is the most satiating macronutrient, which means it makes you feel fuller for longer. Eating protein-rich foods makes you less likely to feel hungry and snack on unhealthy foods, which can lead to weight gain.
- Metabolism: Protein has a higher thermic effect than carbohydrates and fats, so your body burns more calories during digestion.
- Helps build muscle: As you age, you lose muscle. Eating adequate protein can help preserve muscle mass during weight loss, which is important for maintaining a healthy metabolism and body composition.
- Blood sugar control: Eating protein in each meal helps to slow down the absorption of carbohydrates, and that will prevent spikes in blood sugar levels. This can be beneficial for weight loss, as high blood sugar levels normally lead to increased fat storage.
Non-Dairy High-Protein Snacks
The next time you’re feeling a little hungry, try one of these great choices to reap all the benefits of additional protein.
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Smoked Salmon with Cucumber and Dill
With approximately 18 grams per three-ounce serving, smoked salmon is a great source of protein as well as healthy fats, making it a nutritious snack option.
To make this high-protein snack, top one or two slices of cucumber with smoked salmon slices and a garnish of fresh dill. This combo makes for an excellent low-calorie bite that can help keep you feeling full.
Black Bean Dip
Black beans are naturally rich in protein, fiber, and a range of essential nutrients, making them a beneficial addition to any meal or snack.
Half a cup of beans has approximately 6 grams of protein in addition to fiber and folic acid.
To make black bean dip, the beans are typically pureed or mashed with other ingredients, such as garlic, lime juice, and spices, to create a flavorful dip.
You can enjoy this dish with a range of foods, such as vegetables, tortilla chips, or whole-grain crackers, making it a versatile and satisfying snack option.
Keep the portion size small to stay within the 250-calorie range.
Hummus with Vegetables
Hummus with vegetables is a great snack for weight loss. It has protein, fiber, and healthy fats, which help you feel full for longer and can therefore help with weight loss.
Half a cup of hummus has approximately 10 grams of protein. The vegetables add crunchiness and volume, increasing satisfaction and helping you stay fuller for longer.
For the best pairing with hummus, consider using raw or boiled vegetables like carrots and celery sticks.
What to make it easier? Try shelf-stable individual hummus cups sold in most supermarkets.
Nuts are packed with protein, fiber, and healthy fats and make an excellent snack. One serving (about a handful or 1 ounce) has between 5 and 7 grams of protein, depending on the type of nut.
Eating nuts can help keep you full for longer due to the combination of nutrients. Nuts also have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help with weight loss.
Great choices of nuts include almonds, walnuts, pecans, and pistachios.
Remember that for weight loss, it’s important to keep the serving size to one portion (a handful). Pair them up with fresh fruit to add volume to your snack. To keep within the calorie limit, avoid pairing nuts with dried fruit or other items that are high in calories or sugar.
Seeds are often overlooked but make a great snack.
One ounce of pumpkin seeds contains 5 grams of protein and also contains fiber and healthy fats. These nutrients help keep you full for longer while also giving vital vitamins and minerals.
Seeds are a versatile option that can be used in a variety of ways. You can snack on them as they are or add them to other foods for extra flavor and texture.
Eggs are a great source of protein and contain all the essential amino acids. They are also packed with other nutrients like B vitamins, iron, and selenium.
One large egg contains 6 grams of protein.
Boil some eggs and take them with you for a healthy snack that’s full of beneficial nutrients. For a more substantial light meal, make an omelet with vegetables.
Tuna is a terrific source of lean protein. One pouch contains around 18 grams of protein, making it an ideal snack choice for weight loss.
Tuna pouches are convenient and ready to eat — no cooking required! Enjoy them straight from the pouch, or pair them with some low-calorie crackers.
Crunchy and filling roasted chickpeas are a perfect snack.
One cup of chickpeas provides a little over 250 calories, 14 grams of protein, and 12 grams of fiber. Chickpeas also contain folate and iron.
Making roasted chickpeas is very easy. You can try this recipe, or you can buy them in your favorite health food store or online retailer.
Nut Butter Individual Packets
Nut butter individual packets are a healthy snack because they are high in protein. They contain 5-8 grams of protein per serving, depending on the type.
Nut butter also has other important nutrients like fiber and healthy fats as well as minerals like zinc, magnesium, and iron.
Plus, they’re super tasty! Try Justin’s Honey Almond Butter Squeeze Packs.
Fruit with Nut Butter
A childhood classic with a twist!
One serving of nut butter (2 tablespoons) contains about 5-8 grams of protein, depending on the type you choose.
Make sure your nut butter has no added sugar. You can buy freshly ground nut butter without any added ingredients in health food stores.
Apples are a great combination to pair with nut butter. Celery works too!
Do you have a sweet tooth? Then chia pudding is for you.
Chia seeds are packed with protein (4 grams per two tablespoons) as well as fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, and iron.
The extra gram of protein comes from the other ingredients in the pudding. Try this chia seed recipe with 7 grams of protein and only 170 calories.
Plant-Based Protein Bars
Protein bars are an excellent high-protein snack option. They are usually made with protein-rich ingredients like soy, brown rice, or pea protein isolate.
They are also convenient and portable, making them an excellent on-the-go snack. As well as their high protein content, protein bars often contain other nutrients such as fiber, vitamins, and minerals, making them a well-rounded and nutritious option.
Overall, protein bars can be a healthy and satisfying quick bite for individuals looking to support their fitness goals or maintain a balanced diet.
Tofu, Chicken, or Beef and Vegetable Skewers
At home? Why not have a common restaurant appetizer as a snack?
Tofu, chicken, or beef and vegetable skewers perfectly combine protein and vegetables.
To make it easier, you can have them already prepared, then warm them up in a toaster oven or air fryer.
Dairy-Free Yogurt with Berries
Plant-based yogurt and berries make a nutritious and satisfying snack that offers several benefits.
Berries are packed with antioxidants, fiber, and vitamin C, while plant-based yogurt provides probiotics, calcium, and vitamin D.
The protein content in plant-based yogurt varies depending on the type of plant protein used, but it can range from 5-17 grams per serving. Combined with the fiber from the berries, this snack can help keep you feeling full and satisfied for longer.
Make sure to read the labels to select a plant-based yogurt that’s high in protein with no more than 5 grams of sugar.
Keep it simple! Protein shakes are an easy way to get protein and other important nutrients.
They are usually made with plant-based protein powders, making them dairy-free, vegan-friendly, or even gluten-free if you use the right ingredients.
Protein shakes can contain up to 20 grams of protein per serving and provide essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
How to Incorporate Non-Dairy High-Protein Snacks into Your Diet
Incorporating non-dairy high protein snacks into your daily diet is a healthy way to maintain energy levels, promote satiety, and support muscle repair and growth. Here are some tips and ideas to help you get started:
- Meal prep: Preparing snacks in advance can save time and ensure that you always have healthy options on hand. Examples of non-dairy high-protein snacks that can be prepped in advance include homemade protein balls or bars, roasted chickpeas, or edamame.
- Pack snacks for when you’re on the go: Keeping non-dairy high-protein snacks in your bag or car can help you resist the temptation to reach for unhealthy options when hunger strikes. Some convenient portable options include single-serve nut butter packets, protein shakes, or a trail mix made with nuts and seeds.
Remember, it’s important to choose snacks that are both high in protein and satisfying to help you stay full and satisfied between meals.
The Bottom Line
Non-dairy high-protein snacks offer several benefits for a healthy diet. They can help maintain energy levels, promote satiety, support muscle repair and growth, and provide essential nutrients.
Incorporating these snacks into your diet can also help you resist the temptation to reach for unhealthy options when you need a quick bite.
Nutrition information was obtained from:
Fooddata Central. FoodData Central. (n.d.). Retrieved April 22, 2023, from https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/
Dr. Su-Nui Escobar is a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist in Miami, FL. She is passionate about helping women over 40 live their best lives through healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle. Su-Nui is a doctor in clinical nutrition, able to translate complicated evidence-based science into practical advice. Su-Nui is the former spokesperson of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.