Jump straight to the suggested recipes

Just as important as a good breakfast and a nutritious lunch, are tasty, healthy snacks for work or school, for after school when the kids come home hungry or for a little something before bed. Lunches will be covered later, but for now we’re going to look at snacks. As with meals, it’s good to get a balance of protein, fat and carbs in snacks, so choose a couple of complementary snacks. For example, balance fruit with some fat, so that it doesn’t cause your blood sugar to spike.

Nuts are one of the easiest and most versatile snack items. But like grains, they contain anti-nutrients. They should be soaked to neutralise them, then dried at low temperatures to preserve the nutrients. They can then be ground to use in nut butters, snack bars and baking.

Sweeteners – if you’re in good health with no weight problems, you can use small amounts of whole sweeteners such as raw honey, dehydrated sugar cane juice (rapadura, shakkar, muscavado) or maple syrup. Otherwise, you’ll need to avoid these, but will probably still have desires for sweet stuff. In my opinion, the best sweeteners for you would be stevia combined with glycerol, and these are included in a couple of recipes. But as much as possible, avoid sweet things and let your taste buds acclimatise to different tastes.

Bad snacks: The following are usually a combination of processed carbs and bad fats. They may have been subjected to intense heat and had the nutrients destroyed. They won’t have been properly soaked. The grains might be puffed, making them toxic. The last three are high in sugar.

  • Most brands of chippies and corn chips
  • Rice cakes and most commercial crackers
  • Roasted nuts
  • Muesli bars – see my review of NZ bars
  • Dried fruit (in excess)
  • Cakes and biscuits
  • Chocolate and lollies

Good snacks:

  • Crispy nuts or homemade nut butters
  • Homemade jerky
  • Hard boiled or devilled eggs
  • Savoury eggnog
  • Raw veges
  • Dips like hummus or guacamole – homemade or bought (but check the ingredients)
  • Small amounts of fresh or dried fruit (with a fat source)
  • Full fat cheeses (If you can’t get raw, keep quantities moderate)
  • Yoghurt or kefir
  • Smoothies made from yoghurt, kefir or coconut milk
  • Meat stock (see lesson 4) or homemade vege soup made from stock
  • Baked tempeh (soy is not generally recommended, but small amounts of fermented soy is permissible, especially for vegetarians or vegans, whose other options may be limited)
  • Acceptable chippies, corn chips & crackers (see shopping guide) occasionally
  • Home baking (see lesson 7)

Combinations of the above are good, like:

  • Homemade trail mix
  • Cheese and crackers
  • Celery with nut butter
  • Fresh fruit with crispy nuts or nut butter
  • Raw veges with dip

If you sometimes need a small snack at bedtime as well, some of these are suitable. A cup of hot stock, gently warmed raw milk with honey, or a small bowl of yoghurt or kefir are especially soothing.

Sports snacks:

This can be a dilemma for those eating whole foods, but faced with a range of highly processed sports foods. Some ideas on what to eat when:

  • Before workouts, eat normally (at least 1-2 hours before)
  • During workouts, sipping water is generally all that’s needed. If you’re taking part in an endurance event (over 3 hours), you may need to refuel. Some people need to refuel with carbs, others go better with fats. Contact me to discuss, if needed. Some suitable sports drinks are covered under Beverages (lesson 3)
  • After workouts, try Kombucha (lesson 3) or raw honey to replace glycogen.
  • For protein after a weights workout, any protein is good, but for a portable snack experiment with meat jerky (and some fat), a raw egg shake with some berries or raw honey, a homemade protein bar (see recipes), or a couple of raw egg yolks. Then have some liver, meat or raw fish as soon as you get home.


Homemade Jerky

This section is for those are working through the lessons of the cooking course. Otherwise jump straight to the recipes

Optional reading:

  • Carbs: Nourishing Traditions P21-25
  • Sweeteners
  • Snacks: Nourishing Traditions P512
  • Coconut products: Nourishing Traditions P160
  • Energy bars


Make these snacks:

At least 2-3 of these:

A homemade dip:

Note: If you have a dehydrator, are at home during the week, or don’t mind leaving your oven on low all night, you can complete this week’s assignment whenever it suits. But for everybody else, the crispy nuts & jerky will need to be done at the weekend. It won’t take huge amounts of time, but you will need to be around. The cashews need to be cooked separately from the other nuts as they can only be soaked for 6 hours, overnight is too long. They also come out better cooked at a higher temperature.

Here’s a suggested timeline:

  • Friday pm: Set raw almonds or peanuts to soak in salted water; slice meat & marinate
  • Saturday: First thing in the morning, drain the nuts and meat and set to bake. If they are not ready at bedtime, turn off the oven and leave them in overnight.
  • Sunday morning first thing: If yesterday’s things are not ready, turn the oven on again. Set raw cashews to soak in salted water
  • Sunday early afternoon (max 6 hours later): Take out yesterday’s stuff and turn the oven up. Drain the cashews and set to bake.
  • Later in the week: Make the nut butter and trail mix


  • Make a batch or two of different crispy nuts each weekend (as many as you can fit in the oven at one time) until you have a range of different ones
  • Then you only need to redo them as they run out



Notes on the Recipes

The recipe suggestions come from a variety of sources. Some are in the recipe blog section of this site, some are from books I may have recommended to you eg Nourishing Traditions (NT) or Gut & Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) and some are from other people’s blogs.

They are marked with the following icons to make it easy to see which ones are suitable for your diet or not suitable       . But you still need to double check each recipe to make sure. Also refer to my Pinterest page for more ideas.

= GAPS or SCD friendly, and mostly suitable for Paleo
= contains grains of some kind (but may be gluten free)
= contains dairy, and there is no dairy free option
= contains eggs, and there is no egg free option
= contains peanuts, cashews, tree nuts or seeds

Suggested Recipes

  • Savoury egg nog
  • Mince & Vegetable Jerky         
  • “Crispy” nuts       
  • Trail mix with “crispy” nuts, seeds, dried coconut and dried fruit
  • Fresh fruit with nut butter
  • Fresh coconut flesh (young or old)
  • Glass of milk kefir ~ see above
  • Smoothie ~ see above
  • Cheese with homemade crackers
  • Devilled eggs
  • Homemade snack bars – made with creamed coconut, coconut oil, ground nuts or nut butter and a little honey or dried fruit
  • Creamed coconut fudge         
  • Almond flour baking ~ GAPS P200
  • Egg free banana muffins ~ GAPS P210
  • Egg free cookies ~ GAPS P212
  • Coconut flour & honey muffins
  • Orange cranberry muffins     

Dip / spread with vege sticks or crackers or bread:

  • Ghee
  • Anything from breakfast
  • Avocado dip / Guacamole – GAPS P172
  • Navy bean hummus
  • Anything from the Dinner condiments list