With ski season upon us, there’s the question of what to munch on the slopes. Granola bars, veggie sticks, peanut butter sandwiches, fruit leather – move aside! Here are my top five, easy, healthy and creative solutions for refueling on the go as you’re out there enjoying the Inland Northwest winter wonderland.
Better Granola Bars
Raw and whole food bars and snacks take a pass on processed flours, sugars and oils. Instead, they use dates, nut butters and raw liquid sweeteners (honey, agave, etc.) to create delicious, nutritious alternatives. Try mixing almond butter and Medjool dates in a food processor or blender with cocoa powder, seeds (sesame, hemp, pumpkin) and coconut for a truly raw treat. Or check out my Super Power Balls (see recipe below). Just want to pick up something at the local natural market or co-op? My absolute favorite bar is LARABAR: two-to-nine simple whole ingredients, no added sugar and yummy flavors.
Beyond Veggie Sticks
Chowing down carrot and celery sticks gets old quickly. Consider combining some shredded veggies (carrot, zucchini, kale) with a little flour, egg, spices and water and frying or baking up mini fritters. Enjoy with a couple to-go packets of Organic Spicy Avocado Hummus from Hope Hummus. Rice paper wraps also make handy snacks. Fill with your favorite combination of veggies, guacamole, beans, cream cheese and seeds. The rice paper will stay moist and pliable throughout the day without deteriorating. Finally, check out Cuppow’s BNTO Lunchbox Adaptors for carrying veggie or cracker dips cleanly and conveniently.
A New Kind of PB&J
It’s a fact – sandwich bread goes soggy as soon as you put mayonnaise, mustard or jam on it. In Australia, delis often spread butter on the bread before applying condiments, but who needs all that extra fat? Spread almond or sunflower butter on a mini, sprouted whole-grain tortilla; top with mashed bananas or huckleberry jam and roll away. These sweet and savory “taquitos” hold up well under varied topping conditions.
New School Fruit Leather
Yes, fruit roll ups are fun. They are also typically full of corn syrup and artificial colors and flavors, with a little fruit thrown in there somewhere. If making your own sounds intimidating, experiment with throwing some dried soft fruit (apricots, pineapple, papaya) in a food processor until a nice ball forms. Roll bite-sized amounts in your palms to form small balls, then roll them in shredded coconut or sesame seeds for a little crunch. Adding ginger chews to the mix can give these fruity morsels a warming kick. Do-it-yourself aside, I enjoy the flavorful, no-sugar-added, natural purity of Stretch Island Fruit Leather.
Water with a Kick
Hydration is vital for any form of exercise. Water is nature’s perfect solution, but why not mix it up? Coconut water is naturally fat and cholesterol free, has more potassium than four bananas, and has been labeled “Mother Nature’s sports drink” by many marketers. Due to its growing popularity, it is even easier now to enjoy anywhere. Carry a few packets of Navitas coconut water powder with you, and add it to a cup of water as needed. For an extra energy boost, perk up your coconut water with ¼ cup chia seeds and a squeeze of lime juice. //
Ski Snack Recipe: Super Power Balls
(Makes 25 balls)
1/3 cup goji or maca powder
2/3 cup hemp seeds, hulled sesame seeds and/or pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup chia and/or flax seeds
1 cup granola
1 cup chopped almonds, macadamias or pistachios
½ cup raw dark agave nectar
½ cup almond or peanut butter
pinch nutmeg powder
pinch sea salt
Combine all dry ingredients, except nutmeg and salt, in a large bowl. In a small saucepan, heat nectar and nut butter over medium heat. Bring to a boil for 2 minutes. Stir only to break up clumps or keep from bubbling over. Remove from heat, add nutmeg and salt, and stir for 1 more minute, until boiling subsides. Slowly pour syrup over the dry mix and stir with a large spoon until well combined. When cool enough to handle, use your hands to form bite-size balls. Cool balls on a tray. Once cooled and set, store in containers or plastic bags in the freezer until ready to use them. These bites are perfect for hiking, biking, skiing or a speedy breakfast.