Juicing has become an increasingly popular way to get more fruits and vegetables into your diet. By extracting the juice from fresh produce, you can pack in a concentrated dose of nutrients without all the fiber. Many people find juicing to be a convenient way to boost their intake of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
But juicing also comes with some downsides. Since the fiber has been removed, fruit and vegetable juices get absorbed very quickly into your bloodstream. This can cause a rapid spike and subsequent crash in blood sugar levels if you don’t pair your juices with something else. That’s why it’s important to include a source of protein, fat, or fiber when drinking fresh juices to help stabilize your blood sugar.
The ideal juicing snack will provide satiety and sustained energy, without packing on the calories. Here are some of the best snacks to pair with your homemade juices.
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds make excellent juicing companions. They contain protein, healthy fats, and fiber to help blunt the glycemic impact of straight fruit or vegetable juices. Just an ounce or two is enough to get the job done.
Some great options include:
- Pumpkin seeds
- Sunflower seeds
- Chia seeds
Try pairing your favorite seeds or nuts with a veggie-based green juice for a nutritious and satisfying snack. The healthy fats will also help your body absorb the fat-soluble vitamins in the juice too.
Another portable and protein-packed option is to choose a protein bar. Look for ones with at least 5-10 grams of protein and fiber, and minimal added sugars. Some good options include:
- Clif Builders Bars
- Kind Bars
- Lara Bars
- Think Thin Bars
The protein and fiber will provide steady energy, while the carbohydrates in the protein bar will help manage your blood sugar response. Be careful of protein bars with 20+ grams of protein, as your body can only use about 10-15 grams at a time.
Low-Fat Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt makes one of the best pairings for fresh juice. It adds creaminess and protein without a lot of sugar. Just 6 ounces of Greek yogurt provides 15-20 grams of protein, as well as calcium, probiotics, and other nutrients.
Choose unsweetened or lightly sweetened Greek yogurt varieties. The thick, rich consistency pairs nicely with thin, light juices. The probiotics in the yogurt will also help promote healthy digestion and gut health.
Some fun ways to eat Greek yogurt with juice:
- Stir in some cinnamon or vanilla extract
- Top with fresh fruit like banana slices, berries, or peach chunks
- Swirl in a tablespoon of jam, honey, or maple syrup
- Add chopped nuts or seeds for crunch
Cottage cheese is a protein powerhouse, providing around 13 grams of casein protein in each half cup. Casein digests slower than whey, resulting in a steadier rise in amino acids over a few hours rather than a quick spike. Combine cottage cheese with fresh juice for a muscle-building snack.
Choose low-fat or fat-free cottage cheese varieties to keep calories down. Top your cottage cheese with any of the mix-ins suggested for Greek yogurt above to take your snack up a notch. Berries and cottage cheese make an especially tasty pre- or post-workout snack.
Hard Boiled Eggs
Hard boiled eggs require minimal prep time, making them one of the easiest high-protein snacks around. Two large hard boiled eggs provide 12-13 grams of protein. The healthy fat in the egg yolks will also help you absorb the fat-soluble nutrients in your veggies and fruit juices.
Keep a batch of hard boiled eggs in your fridge and grab one or two when juicing for a nutritious pairing. Turn it into a mini meal by adding a side of fruit or raw veggies like carrot and celery sticks.
These immature soybeans are a protein powerhouse, providing a whopping 17 grams of protein per cup. They also contain 8 grams of fiber to help stabilize blood sugar further. Edamame makes a tasty savory snack to pair with a fruit-based juice.
Look for shelled edamame that you can quickly heat and eat. Steam or microwave on high for 1-2 minutes until warmed through. Sprinkle with a little sea salt and pair with your favorite juice.
Cubes of Low-Fat Cheese
Skipping the dairy? You can still get a protein boost with cubes of reduced fat cheese. Just 1 ounce of cheddar, Swiss, Monterey jack or provolone provides 7 grams of protein. Cheese also contains calcium for bone health.
Cut larger cheese sticks or blocks into small 1-inch cubes. They make the perfect no-prep finger food to pair with juice for an on-the-go snack. For variety, try different cheese types like pepper jack, smoked gouda or havarti.
Apple or Banana
If you want something simpler, fruits like apple or banana make a great juicing side. Bananas offer potassium and fiber, while apples provide antioxidants and fiber. The natural sugars and carbs will help prevent a blood sugar crash.
An apple or banana is the perfect choice if you want something sweet and simple to go with your savory green juice. While fruits are great for an energy boost, be sure to balance them out with a protein or healthy fat when juicing to maintain stable blood sugar levels.
For another wholesome snack option, you can make your own trail mix with nuts, seeds, coconut flakes, whole grain cereal and dried fruit. Trail mix provides a hefty dose of protein, healthy fats, carbs and fiber. Just be mindful of portion sizes, as calorie count can add up quickly.
Some tasty trail mix combinations:
- Almonds, cashews, pumpkin seeds, dark chocolate chips, raisins
- Walnut pieces, sunflower seeds, dried cranberries, banana chips
- Pecans, pistachios, peanut M&Ms, pretzel sticks
Aim for a quarter cup serving of trail mix alongside 8-12 ounces of juice for a balanced snack. The mix of flavors and textures makes for an energizing treat.
Popcorn is a surprisingly healthy whole grain snack when air popped. Make a batch at home with no oil or butter, and season with your choice of herbs, spices or nutritional yeast. Four cups of air popped popcorn has about 4 grams of fiber and 5 grams of protein.
Popcorn is lower in calories than other crunchy snack options, allowing you to eat a sizable portion. It provides energy from complex carbs without spiking your blood sugar. The volume can help you feel satisfied between meals too.
Some tasty popcorn seasoning combos include:
- Nutritional yeast, garlic powder, onion powder, pepper
- Cinnamon and nutmeg
- Lemon pepper
- Smoked paprika and lime juice
The fiber-rich popcorn helps balance out the glycemic impact of fruit-based juices. Just be sure to measure your portions and avoid adding excess sodium, butter or oil.
While fried potato chips should be avoided, kale chips make a healthy alternative to pair with your juice. To make your own, simply rinse and dry kale leaves, coat lightly with olive oil and seasonings, and bake until crispy.
Kale provides vitamins A, C, K along with antioxidants. Baking instead of frying removes excess calories while maintaining crunch. Make a big batch on Sunday to have kale chips on hand all week.
Some of the best seasonings for kale chips include:
- Sea salt
- Garlic powder and parmesan
- Spicy southwestern spices
- Lemon pepper
About 2-3 cups of kale chips makes a wise pairing for 8-12 ounces of fresh juice. The nutrition and fiber in the kale complements the vitamins and minerals in juice for better blood sugar regulation.
Carrots and Hummus
Vegetables naturally pair well with vegetable juices. Carrots dipped in hummus make for a tasty, plant-based snack with juice. Carrots provide fiber, vitamin A and antioxidants. When paired with protein-rich hummus, they help stabilize energy.
Hummus also contains heart healthy fats, fiber and plant-based protein. Opt for hummus made without hydrogenated oils, excessive sodium or preservatives. You can also make your own easy homemade hummus in just 5 minutes.
Baby carrots are the perfect vehicle for scooping up the garlicky, savory hummus. For variation, try other cut veggies like bell peppers, broccoli, cucumber slices or celery sticks too.
Creamy, nutritious avocado toast has become a popular snack and for good reason. It packs fiber, healthy fats and phytonutrients that pair nicely with fresh juices.
Start with a slice of 100% whole grain bread, rice cake or other whole grain base. Top with mashed avocado, along with optional additions like:
- Sliced cherry tomato
- Crumbled feta or goat cheese
- Everything bagel seasoning
- Sliced hard boiled egg
- Red pepper flakes
For a vegan twist, use hummus instead of cheese or skip the cheese entirely. The healthy fats from the avocado will help you absorb the fat-soluble vitamins and carotenoids in juice too.
When it comes to the best snacks for juicing, balance and moderation are key. Focus on snacks that add protein, fiber and healthy fats to help manage your blood sugar and hunger levels. Nuts, seeds, Greek yogurt, eggs, cheese, veggies and fruits make excellent choices.
Avoid fried foods or junk food that can spike your blood sugar. Portion control is also important, even for healthy snacks. Around 1-2 servings of your snack plus 8-12 ounces of fresh juice makes a balanced mini meal.
Pairing the right snacks with your juices can make for a nourishing part of your diet. Just be mindful of your snack choices so that juicing can be a healthy lifelong habit.
|Snack||Serving Size||Nutrition Highlights|
|Almonds||1 oz||Protein, fiber, healthy fats|
|Greek yogurt||6 oz||Protein, calcium, probiotics|
|Apple||1 medium||Fiber, vitamin C, carbs|
|Hard boiled egg||1 large||Protein, healthy fats|
|Edamame||1 cup||Plant-based protein, fiber|
|Trail mix||1/4 cup||Protein, carbs, fiber, healthy fats|
|Popcorn||4 cups||Whole grain, fiber|
|Carrots & hummus||1 cup carrots, 2 Tbsp hummus||Fiber, plant-based protein, vitamins|