15 Healthy Pregnancy Snacks to Nourish You and Baby

Growing a human from scratch is a hungry business. Forming organs and nervous systems takes a lot of work, so it makes sense that snacking is a major necessity when pregnant. My baby is not shy about waking me up for a midnight snack. 

You need to add extra calories into your diet while pregnant (340 to 450 calories per day as you progress in your pregnancy), and snacks can keep up healthy eating during pregnancy. While stopping what you’re doing to snack multiple times a day is a bit of an adjustment if you weren’t a big snacker pre-pregnancy, the good news is that snacking can help make your pregnancy easier if you go about it the right way. 

Let’s take a look at some of the healthy pregnancy snacks that can help you ease annoying or surprising symptoms, manage gestational diabetes, curb pregnancy cravings, and keep you and your baby happy and full when on the go.

Healthy Pregnancy Snacks

Source: Amina Filkins | Pexels

If you’re nauseous

It can be tough to know what to eat while pregnant, especially if everything makes you nauseous. I was very lucky to never be hit with morning sickness, but there were times in the first trimester where if I didn’t eat something carb-heavy when I first woke up, I could start to feel queasy. My saviors were high-quality bread and cereal. When you become pregnant, you start reading all of the ingredient lists on packaged food and realize just how many weird ingredients can be lurking in your favorite snacks. People like to hate on bread, but when made with good ingredients, it’s a healthy and satisfying snack. 

Another easy carb to have on hand was cereal. In the early days of my pregnancy, I kept a box of cereal by my bed at all times so I could pop a handful as soon as I woke up. If you’re craving cereal, you’re not alone. This is a common pregnancy craving that is thought to be caused by the fact that many cereals are packed full of nutrients to make them a healthy breakfast food. 

Challah Back Girls

As a bread-lover (this was many months before the gestational diabetes diagnosis), I started splurging on high-quality bread from local and specialty bakers like Challah Back Girls.

Trader Joe’s

These Trader Joe’s cereal bars just launched, but I would have loved having this option in my first trimester since they have added protein from the peanut butter.

Anything ginger-related, like ginger tea or ginger chews, is also a great snack to have on hand to help keep nausea at bay. Ginger is proven to help treat nausea and may help boost your immunity so you can avoid getting sick. No one wants to fight a nasty cold while pregnant.

Harney & Sons

Gentle and caffeine-free, this herbal tea is a great go-to for soothing your whole system. The lemon peel also adds a lovely lift.

The Ginger People

Bite-sized and simple, these chewy ginger ‘candies’ add the perfect dose of ginger without overwhelming your tastebuds or belly.

If you’re always on the go

A little extra fiber can go a long way when pregnant (if you know, you know). So why not load up your purse with fiber-filled snacks that will keep you full and satisfied while on the go? Popcorn is a great source of fiber and a fairly universally loved snack food.


I like how simple the ingredients are in this brand’s popcorn and that you can buy snack-size bags to keep in your purse or car.

Target | LesserEvil

Another great option for organic popcorn snack packs—these are seasoned with Himalayan pink sea salt, which is full of healthy minerals.

When trying to eat healthy during pregnancy, finding ways to jam-pack your snacks with flavor can make it easier to avoid unhealthy temptations. My favorite salty snack before getting pregnant was salt and vinegar chips, but chips were a major food aversion for me during my first trimester. I also didn’t feel like eating much, so I needed to choose snacks that accomplished a lot, so salt and vinegar-flavored nuts were a big winner in the flavor, fiber, and protein department. Plus—nuts are an easy snack to have on the go.

Whole Foods Market | Wonderful

These sea salt and vinegar pistachios are an irresistibly tangy treat to munch on—and they’ve already been shelled, making them that much more convenient.

Target | Good & Gather

Having a tub of reliable trail mix on hand can save you when you need a quick hunger fix. This one’s blend of nuts, seeds, and dried berries definitely hits the spot.

If hunger catches you by surprise, you can usually find a small veggie and hummus snack pack at a nearby gas station, convenience store, or coffee shop. You can also prep these packs at home or stock up on them at the grocery store so a healthy snack is always nearby.

Whole Foods Market | Overt

This snack pack is full of fresh vegetables like carrots and olives that have plenty of fiber, as well as a stellar hummus for dipping.

Target | Sabra

Creamy protein-packed hummus meets crunchy salted pretzels in this simple yet satisfying snack pack.

If you struggle with restless legs syndrome 

Sometimes, a quick drink is the best snack you can have around to curb late-night hunger or to get you to your next meal. Luckily, two great snacks for dealing with restless legs syndrome come in liquid form. 

It can be hard to get some much-needed rest when restless legs syndrome kicks in. One of the causes of restless legs syndrome is low potassium levels. When your body doesn’t have enough potassium, the result can be uncomfortable muscle spasms. Eating more fruits and veggies is a great way to add more potassium into your diet—especially leafy greens. You also need to stay hydrated. Chances are, though, you’re already making an effort to eat fresh produce and drink plenty of water every day.

The healthy snack that made my restless legs syndrome almost disappear was coconut water, which is hydrating and jam-packed full of electrolytes. When I cut coconut water from my diet to help lower my sugar intake after being diagnosed with gestational diabetes, my restless legs syndrome came back in full force. So, if your diet allows for more sugar than mine, consider adding this tasty drink to your snack routine. 

Trader Joe’s

This pasteurized organic coconut water from TJ’s is a delicious and refreshing choice for electrolytes or for simply staying well-hydrated.

Restless legs syndrome can also be a result of an iron deficiency, which is very common in pregnancy. Your doctor can walk you through your options regarding iron supplements. Mine advised that I take my supplement with orange juice every day since vitamin C helps iron supplements absorb better.

Whole Foods Market | Uncle Matt’s Organic

I love that this orange juice option is pasteurized and supplemented with other helpful nutrients.

If you’re diagnosed with gestational diabetes

As a vegetarian, I massively feared gestational diabetes my whole pregnancy, knowing it would mean that managing my carb-heavy diet would become quite difficult. Sure enough, gestational diabetes came for me, and overnight, I had to replace my beloved carb-heavy snacks with low-carb options. My doctor urged me not to go keto and to keep complex, plant-based carbs in my diet. 

One fun low-carb snack that many pregnant women will appreciate is pickles. This salty treat can help replace chips and other less healthy snacks.

Whole Foods Market | Grillo’s Pickles

If you’ve seen these pickles all over social media—the hype is real. Go for the spicy version for an extra punch of flavor.

You need a lot of protein while pregnant. Cottage cheese is a great snack if you want to keep things low-carb—and it has a solid amount of protein.

Whole Foods Market | 365

Pro tip: Low-fat cottage cheese has a smidge more protein than the full-fat variety. This one’s organic and a single serving is less than 100 calories.

My doctor also warned me not to cut out fruit (which gets a very bad rap for being carb-heavy even though they are a complex carb, which is a good thing) but did advise I swap out the high-sugar tropical fruits I was eating for berries which have less sugar. You can eat berries on their own, top with whipped cream for dessert, or add them to that cottage cheese whenever you want a sweet snack. If eating sounds terrible (which is a very real occurrence during pregnancy), berry-centered smoothie recipes go down easy and can be really hydrating.

Whole Foods Market | 365

Keeping a pack or two of berries handy in your freezer means they’ll be ready to use at a moment’s notice. You also won’t have to worry about them spoiling before you’re ready to use them.

Don’t forget to treat yourself

When you’re pregnant, does every snack need to be healthy? Not at all—you totally deserve to treat yourself for all the hard work you’re doing. But if you can find healthy snacks that you can enjoy eating, you can make your snacks solve some of your most annoying pregnancy problems. So go for that ice cream sundae that will hit the spot, but also try to incorporate nutrient-heavy snacks into your diet that can make your pregnancy more enjoyable.

Source link: https://theeverymom.com/healthy-pregnancy-snacks/ by Katherine Ballesta-Rosen at theeverymom.com