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Pregnancy

Healthy Pregnancy Snack Ideas

Tasty and healthy pregnancy snack ideas to keep you and your baby happy.
Written by the Theralogix team of Registered Dietitians
 Here are a few tasty and healthy pregnancy snacks to keep you full and support a healthy pregnancy. 

While the whole “eating for two” concept isn’t entirely accurate, you do need a few extra calories when you’re pregnant, particularly during the second and third trimesters. In fact, you need about 340 more calories during the second trimester, and 450 more calories during the third trimester.  

That’s where snacks can help. In addition to breakfast, lunch, and dinner, healthy pregnancy snacks can help you meet your nutrition needs and keep you energized throughout the day. Choosing a healthy pregnancy snack isn’t rocket science, but there is a specific formula to help you create tasty, balanced snacks: plant + protein.  

Plants are bursting with vitamins, minerals, fiber, and other phytonutrients (plant nutrients) that help support a healthy pregnancy, while protein helps keep your immune system in fighting shape, builds and repairs tissues, and helps keep you fuller for longer. Your protein needs actually increase a little during pregnancy, too, which makes protein even more important.  

The following healthy pregnancy snacks can give you an idea of how to use this simple formula. But there are thousands of plant + protein combinations – let your imagination run wild.  

Quick and Easy Pregnancy Snacks 

Pregnancy is exhausting. Sometimes you need a no-cooking-required, throw some ingredients together kind of snack. Well, here are a few ideas. 

Whole wheat crackers and cheese 

Not only do whole wheat crackers add a satisfying crunch to any snack, but they also pack fiber, healthy carbohydrates, and B vitamins – all essential nutrients to give you long-lasting energy. Cheese is a great source of protein – but be sure to choose a variety made with pasteurized milk to protect yourself and your little one from foodborne illness.  

Apple and peanut butter  

You know what they say, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” They’re on the right track – but it’s not just apples. Pair any fruit you like with protein-packed peanut butter, like pears, bananas, or strawberries. And if the fruit you choose has edible skin – eat it! That’s where most of the fiber is.  

Pineapple and cottage cheese  

Sweet and savory all in one simple, satisfying snack. Choose your favorite bowl, lay your base with a serving of cottage cheese, and top with pineapple. Fresh, canned (in 100% juice), or frozen pineapple are all great options.  

Veggies and hummus 

Prep carrot and celery sticks, bell pepper slices, sugar snap peas, or any other vegetables you like so they’re ready to take the plunge into your favorite hummus when it’s time for your afternoon snack. Not a fan of hummus? Your vegetables still deserve a fun, protein-packed dip. Try mixing a ranch seasoning packet with a container of plain Greek yogurt – a healthy alternative to regular ranch dressing.   

Dark chocolate, berries, and nuts 

A square of dark chocolate with a handful of berries and nuts – the perfect combination for when your sweet tooth strikes. Dark chocolate and berries are both rich in antioxidants, powerful plant compounds that help keep your cells healthy. Nuts are a great source of protein to balance out your snack and keep you fuller for longer.  

On-the-Go Pregnancy Snacks 

The best on-the-go snacks can live in your backpack or purse without the fear that they’ll go bad. These snacks fit the bill – no refrigeration required and perfect to tuck away in plastic baggies.  

Trail mix 

The best part about trail mix – it’s totally customizable.  

Make your own mix at home with your favorite nuts, seeds, dried fruit, and maybe even a little dark chocolate to satisfy your sweet tooth. These basic ingredients create a snack that’s packed with healthy fats, protein, and fiber to keep you full while you’re out and about.  

Protein bar 

Stash these in your car, your gym bag, your purse, and your backpack. They’re an incredibly convenient option, ready to tag along on all your important errands and come to the rescue when hunger strikes. Just make sure you read the Nutrition Facts label diligently – many options are loaded with added sugar. Try to choose a bar with 5-10 grams of protein, at least two grams of fiber, and minimal added sugar and saturated fat.  

Whole wheat crackers and nut butter 

While you can purchase premade peanut butter crackers, you can also easily make this balanced snack at home. Spread your favorite nut butter (almond, peanut, cashew, etc.) on one whole wheat cracker, top with another, and portion into snack bags so they’re ready to accompany you on any mid-day errand.  

Prep-Ahead Pregnancy Snacks 

These options require a little bit of preparation, but they’re flavorful, balanced, and totally worth it. Bonus: they keep well so you can make several at one time and stock your fridge (or freezer in the case of smoothies) for the entire week.   

Yogurt parfait 

Yogurt is rich in calcium, a key nutrient for bone health during pregnancy. Nuts and seeds are packed with fiber and protein, and fruit adds essential vitamins and minerals, as well as a splash of mood-boosting color. Layer these nutritious ingredients to your liking, cover tightly with a lid or plastic wrap, and enjoy the fruit of your labor all week long.  

Chia seed pudding 

Chia seeds are packed with plant-based omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and protein. Try incorporating these gems into chia seed pudding. It’s delicious, healthy, and only requires two ingredients: chia seeds and your choice of milk (almond milk, dairy milk, soy milk, etc.). Combine two tablespoons of chia seeds with ½ cup of milk, mix well, and chill for at least 2 hours. Feel free to add honey, fruit, or nuts to really make it your own.  

Smoothies 

Smoothies are already a pretty quick snack, but this trick makes them even more convenient. Put smoothie-size portions of your favorite greens and fruit into plastic zipper bags and store them in your freezer. When you’re ready for a smoothie, dump the contents of one of your baggies into your blender, add your choice of milk or juice, and blend to your desired consistency. 

All of these healthy pregnancy snacks use the same tried and true formula to make sure they’re balanced: plant + protein. And now that you’ve seen this formula in action, you’re ready to create your own balanced snacks to keep you and your little one well nourished.  

If you find yourself having the same few snacks over and over again, try this berry goat cheese crostini recipe. This simple snack (or appetizer) comes together in just 20 minutes and is sure to get you out of your snack time rut. Just make sure your goat cheese is pasteurized to keep you and your little one safe.  

Berry Goat Cheese Crostini 

Makes: 6-8 servings 

Prep time: 5 minutes 

Total time: 15 minutes 

Oven temperature: 375 degrees 

Ingredients:  

  • 1 ½ cups frozen blueberries 
  • ½ cup sliced strawberries 
  • 1 tsp vanilla 
  • ½ tbsp maple syrup 
  • 3 tbsp water 
  • 2-3 tsp cornstarch 
  • ½ French baguette 
  • 4 oz goat cheese (pasteurized)  
  • Olive oil cooking spray 

Directions:  

  1. Combine blueberries, strawberries, vanilla, and maple syrup in a medium saucepan (covered) over medium-low heat.  
  1. Once simmering, gently mash fruit with a fork or potato masher. Whisk in cornstarch. Cover once more and allow to simmer over low heat until needed.  
  1. Meanwhile, slice baguette into ¼-½ inch slices. Place on baking sheet and spray each side with olive oil cooking spray. Place in oven for 7-10 minutes until crisp, flipping halfway through.  
  1. Once bread is crisp, remove from oven and let cool. Spread layer of goat cheese on each slice and top with 1 tbsp of berry sauce.  

Nutrition information:  

Serving size: 2 crostini 

Calories: 110, Total Fat: 3 g, Saturated fat: 2 g, Trans Fat: 0 g, Sodium: 127 mg, Total Carbohydrate: 16 g, Dietary Fiber: 1.5 g, Protein 4.5 g 


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