Sugar-Laden "Healthy" Snacks

Sugar is EVERYWHERE. It’s in pasta sauce, bread products, instant oatmeal… just to name a few. What’s worse is that even the ‘sugar free’ stuff can be loaded with artificial sweeteners that are equally bad for you.Unfortunately, even if you’re trying to eat healthy, that nasty little sugar beast has it’s hands all in everything.  Lots of healthy snacks are high in sugar, too.

Get the lowdown on some of your favorite “healthy” foods that are anything but. Check out these 6 healthy snacks high in sugar.


I’ve personally dubbed yogurt the biggest health food myth.  Even brands like Chobani can pack almost 30 grams of sugar per serving - a ridiculous 7 teaspoons (Chobani's Black Cherry Blended Yogurt has 28 grams).  

The Better Option:Plain Yogurt (greek or regular) sweetened with Stevia or honey with fresh fruit added (sugar content varies)

low sugar snack
low sugar snack


I used to live off of CLIF bars. I kept them at my desk. I hid them in my purse. I took them hiking. I snacked on them after working out. I used them to feed my inner sugar demon. CLIF bars pack a whopping 20+ grams of sugar per bar – that’s 5 TEASPOONS OF SUGAR!

The Better Option:Kind Bar Nuts & Spices in Dark Chocolate Nuts & Sea Salt, Nut Delight, Madagascar Vanilla Almond, Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Pecan (5 grams sugar)

low sugar snack
low sugar snack

Nature’s Valley Granola Bars

I swear, if I wasn’t munching on a CLIF bar, I was most definitely snacking on these babies. While a healthier option than our pal Clif, Nature’s Valley bars clock in over 10 grams of sugar per serving (the 2 bars in the packet). Oats n’ Honey gives you a 12 gram fix, while Peanut Butter leaves you with 11, just to name a few.

The Better Option:A ¼ cup of Bear Naked Fit Vanilla Almond Crunch in a snack bag (4 grams sugar)


I’m not a huge Nutella fan, but I was BLOWN AWAY to learn that there’s 21 grams of sugar per serving… and a serving is 2 tablespoons. Who eats just two tablespoons of any nut butter? NOT this girl.

The Better Option: Peanut Butter & Company Dark Chocolate Dreams (7 grams sugar)

Snapple Green Tea

Tea’s healthy, right? Not when it’s loaded with sweeteners.  Snapple's Green Tea comes with 30 grams of sugar - over 7 teaspoons!

The Better Option:Brew your own green tea and sweeten with Stevia or honey (plus get your fun fact here (sugar content varies)

low sugar drink
low sugar drink

Vitamin Water

I’ve personally guzzled gallons of this stuff. XXX was my go-to. No matter what flavor you’re in to, you’re guaranteed to get at least 31 grams of sugar (some, like XXX, have 32 grams).

The Better Option: Take a high-quality multivitamin and guzzle 16 oz. of water with a dash of OJ (sugar content varies)

Again – SUGAR IS EVERYWHERE. Read labels. When in doubt, just eat real food!

Are there any surprises for you on this list?  If so, share 'em in the comments.

Protein Packed Chocolate Chip Blondies

I'll be honest, I don't have much of a sweet tooth.  I'm more of a salt girl, always have been always will be.  But, when I spotted this recipe for protein packed chocolate chip blondies on my friend and fellow health coach Sarah Try's website, I knew I had to give them a try.  In general, I try to stay away from sugar, but this recipe is filled with so many healthy ingredients, that I'll let the sugar thing slide.  Here’s what you’ll need:

  • The SECRET ingredient: 1 can of garbanzo beans, aka chickpeas – drained and rinsed
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 1/3 c amber agave nectar
  • 1/4 c natural cane sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1/4 c ground flaxmeal
  • 1/4 c no sugar added nut butter (mix and match based on your personal preference!)
  • 1/4 c dark chocolate chips, 1/4 c pecans (optional)
  • Coconut oil (to grease pan only)

Mix everything minus the optional ingredients (chocolate and pecans) in a food processor or blender. If you are using a blender, make sure to use a spatula to really stir the mixture.  Once mixed completely, add the chocolate chips and/or nuts and hand stir them in.

Grease an 8 x 8 baking pan or round pie pan with coconut oil and pour mixture into pan.

Bake for 30 minutes at 350 oF and let cool for 10-20 minutes.  They should appear slightly underdone when taken out of the oven - they will firm up after cooling.

Make this recipe vegan by omitting the chocolate chips! 

12 servings. 5g fat/150 cal/4g protein per bar

Pantry on the Go: Healthy Snacks When You Need 'Em

I’ll admit it – I’m kind of a food snob.  Not in the way of judging others, but in the way that I like to be in total control of the foods that are available to me.  The last two weekends I’ve spent out of town and I’ve been partially or fully at the mercy of others for my food choices… needless to say, this did not make me happy.  So, I took matters into my own hands, planned ahead, and packed a Pantry on the Go.

What’s a Pantry on the Go?

A Pantry on the Go is just what it sounds like – a travel pantry.  Not only great for travel, having a well-stocked Pantry on the Go can you help make healthier food choices every day.  The pantry lives in your purse or computer or gym bag (you could even stock your desk at work!) – whatever you carry with you each day.  Load up your pantry with healthy snacks that pack protein, healthy fats, and complex carbs (like veggies) to keep you full, happy, and energized all day long

What are some of my favorite Pantry on the Go items?

This isn’t the first time I’ve raved about Shakeology®and it probably won’t be the last. 


This nutritional powerhouse meal replacement is packed with:

- Protein (both regular and vegan options provides COMPLETE protein with all nine essential amino acids) - Antioxidants (for a healthy heart, blood pressure, and to keep your immune system strong) - Vitamins and Minerals (I still take a handful of vitamins every day, but this really already gives me everything I need) - Phytonutrients (alkalizing and detoxifying) - Pre- and Probiotics(healthy bugs for your tummy; aid in digestion and nutrient absorption)

I usually keep packets around to give to clients as samples, so I just grabbed a few this weekend, but you can also throw some in a plastic baggie and you’re good to go.  I paired with some single serving coconut milk boxes and a shaker cup – this could just as easily be made with water or regular milk.

For more information on Shakeology®, email me.

  • Larabars

If you haven’t tried Larabar, what are you waiting for?  And, if you have, then you’ll probably as in love with them as I am.  

“LÄRABAR® is a delicious blend of unsweetened fruits, nuts and spices. Made from whole food, each flavor contains no more than nine ingredients. Pure and simple, just as nature intended.”

Currently available in 19 unique flavors like Apple Pie, Lemon Bar, and PB&J, Larabar offers something for everyone.  Stock up and have them ready to grab and go.  For more info visit

  • Fruit and veggie pouches (aka baby food)

I’m sure this one will seem a little strange to some, but I love the vacuum-sealed fruit and veggie purees made for babies and toddlers.  They typically have no added sugar, are high in fiber and vitamins, and are organic.  Happy Tot or Ella’s Kitchen are my go-to brands.  Tip: I buy them on sale and then freeze them until I need them.

ella's kitchen
ella's kitchen
  • Justin’s Nut Butter Packets

I think Justin’s nut butter packets were sent straight from heaven (or maybe that’s just what I tell the nut butter lover in me).  The packets come in flavors like Organic Peanut Butter, Classic Almond Butter, and Honey Almond Butter.  Each packet is filled with just over 2 tablespoons of “incredibly delicious, all natural” (according to Justin – and I have to agree) nut butter.  If you’re like me, you’ll probably squeeze the packet straight into your mouth, but you can also use on a sandwich or with fruits and veggies!

justins nutbutter
justins nutbutter

Check them out at

  • Mixed Nuts

Did you know that eating a handful of nuts a day can add years to your life expectancy?  It’s true!  Unfortunately, these little protein and fat powerhouses can be costly, so buy in bulk and package handfuls individually at home to save bucks.

  • Fruits and Veggies that Travel Well

Nothings better than fresh fruits and vegetables, but this can get tricky and bulky when traveling. I suggest picking a few fruits and veggies that travel well without requiring refrigeration or large packaging.  I usually opt for bananas or apples for fruits and green beans, snap peas, and carrot sticks for veggies.

In the comments, tell me what you’ll put in your Pantry on the Go?