There is nothing worse than a sand-filled, sun-melted snack at the beach. But since those ocean waves and fresh salty breezes really work up an appetite, it is usually a smart idea to pack a snack, even if you just are headed for a quick jaunt to the shore. Here are seven beach-approved, healthy snacks to stash alongside your beach blanket and sunscreen!
Beach Day: 7 Healthy Snacks to Pack
1. Citrus. Out of all of my beach fruit-snacking experiences, citrus remains the most successful. It not only has a sturdy, sand and sun-blocking rind and a sweet flavor, but it is incredibly juicy and hydrating. And unlike bringing along water bottles or cans, the container, aka rind, is 100% biodegradable. Plus citrus is rich in fiber and vitamin C, so it will fill you up and give you a free, radical, antioxidant-fighting boost.
2. Banana. Bananas are another sand-proof and sun-proof fruit. They have a convenient rind that peels easily away for snacking success. Plus that instant energy boost from fruit carbohydrates will energize your body. Bananas are also rich in potassium — an electrolyte that helps you stay hydrated. Bananas are a good source of fiber and easily digested. Bring along a peanut butter or almond butter squeeze pack and crackers to pair with your banana if you want a heftier snack.
3. Salted Nuts. Nuts are a good choice if you are looking for some sustainable fuel to last your beach day. They provide healthy fats, protein — and salted varieties provide sodium — which may be lost during sweating and exercise down by the shore. For best results snack on your salted nuts alongside a tall bottle of water — this will help hydrate your body instead of leaving you feeling thirsty.
4. Snack Bag Crackers. There is nothing wrong with packing a snack bag of crackers for your beach adventures. Choose whole grain or seed-filled crackers for more nutrients and fiber. Crackers offer complex carbohydrate energy, yet are easily digestible. Enjoy with a beverage since crackers can be quite drying.
5. Frozen Coconut Water. My favorite on-the-beach sip is half-frozen coconut water. I stick a tetra pack of coconut water in the freezer overnight and bring it frozen to the beach. By the time I am ready to chug it, it is half-thawed and still totally chilled. Delicious! And so hydrating since coconut water is rich in electrolytes and has more potassium than a banana.
6. Veggies! Good old fashion veggie sticks may sound boring “inside” but step out on the beach and you may find juicy, crispy, nutrient-infused veggie sticks oddly appealing. Stash some sliced cucumbers, radishes, carrots, celery, jicama, and more in a plastic baggie along with some ice. The ice will help keep those sticks cool by the time you are ready to munch. Bring along an almond butter snack pack to pair with those veggies — especially the celery! Bonus: unlike sliced fruit, veggies do not ‘brown’ and oxidize in a baggy. Tip: pack with a lemon slice or toss in lemon juice to keep your veggies extra crisp and fresh.
7. PB&J. You really can’t beat this classic sandwich for beach-side eating. Unlike most lunch sandwiches, PB&J’s will keep fairly well even when bombarded with sunshine. Use extra thick or toasted bread to keep the sandwich from getting melted or soggy.
— kathypatalsky, Babble
This article was originally published on June 6. 2012.