One of the most important things to do while pregnant is to ensure that you’re feeding yourself and baby the proper nutritional ingredients to support healthy development and growth. YET – it’s sooo much easier said than done! For starters, if you are experiencing morning sickness or food aversions during your first trimester, you may not want to eat anything besides bagels..and that’s OK! Now is a time in your life to tune into your body as much as possible and be gentle on yourself. Once you make it to the second trimester you may find that your food aversions completely go away, and you can focus on eating more nutrient dense meals.
But morning sickness and food aversions isn’t where the challenge to eat healthy stops. There’s fatigue. LOTS OF IT. Especially if you’re a working mama to be, you may not want to come home after work and spend 30 minutes in the kitchen preparing a meal. Your hunger levels may be super sporadic throughout the day, and you may not even have the energy to figure out what the heck to make!
SO to help all my preggy ladies out, I’m creating a guide of all the snacks and natural food products I’ve bought throughout my pregnancy thus far to help you find snacks and munchies you can consume that still have some nutritional benefits! You’ll also find that some of these products are great substitutions for cravings, like healthier mac and cheese and cheez-it posers. Before I was pregnant I’d try to cook at home as much as possible because obviously home cooked meals are the absolute healthiest but in all reality, fatigue, morning sickness, a busy schedule and on and on can make it VERY hard to eat every single meal and snack made from scratch. And some of these snacks/products have really helped me out when I had crazy food aversions and morning sickness. So if you’re going to be buying anything prepared from a box or from the cracker aisle, here are some of the healthiest options you can find!
I’ll be adding to this list consistently as time goes on so there will always be new snacks and food products to look into!
Live Love Pop salt and vinegar popcorn: It’s 35 cal a cup, gluten free, non gmo, full of fiber, whole grain, and doesn’t use any artificial ingredients. It REALLLLY satisfies any salty and sour cravings you get during pregnancy.
Kite Hills chive cream cheese spread: This is a vegan cheese brand that I love. I put their chive cream cheese spread on everything like bagels, obvi, and I’ve even mixed it with Giardinara for a creamy salty dip. Weird combo? Maybe!
Simple Mills Cheese crackers: If you ever crave cheese-zits, eat these instead. They legit taste almost the same! They’re gluten free and grain free and made with almond flour, flax seeds and sunflower seeds. There’s even 3g of protein and vitamin E in each serving! Weee for healthy options.
Milkadamia nut milk: This is a step above almond milk as this nut milk is made with macadamia nuts! I love this brand so much, I drink Milkadamia in the evening after dinner when I want something slightly sweet but not hungry enough to actually eat solid foods. I also add it to my morning coffee and my smoothies – it’s so creamy and delicious. Oh and bonus: it also has 50% more calcium than dairy milk.
Purly coconut butter: Instead of using butter on toast or if I want to use a buttery spread (which I was oddly craving buttery spreads during my first trimester), I use coconut butter instead of actual butter. It gives you healthy fats and a super creamy consistency. It has healthy omega 3 fatty acids, and is even more nutrient dense than regular coconut oil.
Annie’s Organic Mac n Cheese: Growing up I used to ALWAYS eat Kraft mac n cheese. I’d literally eat the entire box! Now I tried Annie’s organic mac n cheese once and it honestly tastes exactly like Kraft, but with way less sodium, and the cheese blend doesn’t have all those crazy processed chemicals and ingredients. I actually spent about 20 minutes in the mac n cheese aisle at the grocery store because I wanted to compare labels between all the “healthier” mac n cheese brands and I found Annies to be the best!
Probiotic cashew cheese: This is a vegan cheese spread that is packed with probiotics to help your digestive system, and it is so addicting. I could eat the entire container with gluten free crackers. Bonus: I’ve also noticed that it helps you with natural elimination the morning after you eat it wink wink. My favorite is the “garlicky herb” variety. YUM!
Probiotic rich coconut yogurt: If you are a strict no-dairy allowed type of gal, I recommend adding coconut yogurt to the mix! Ever since I became preg I started to crave cheese and yogurt, so added these two foods back into my diet even though I was dairy-free pre-pregnancy. Make sure you find a brand that is fortified with probiotics so that you can maintain a healthy gut.
PB Fit Powdered PBJ: In my first trimester I craved peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for lunch. Actually more specifically I craved actual peanut butter – and I’d eat it by the spoonful! To help save needless extra calories, I found a powdered peanut butter. Most brands are wayyyy lower in calories and fat, allowing you to indulge in even more peanut butter, and in my opinion taste the same as the real thing! Oh and some brands offer chocolate powdered peanut butter which will satisfy your peanut butter craving AND chocolate craving.
Bone broth: Oh how I love bone broth, especially when I’m craving something salty. I sipped on bone broth quite a lot in my first trimester when I couldn’t stomach certain foods and was feeling under the weather. It is literally the same thing as soup broth, but made by simmering the bones of beef or chicken in vegetable stock for extended periods of time. The vitamins and minerals from the bones infuse the stock, giving you bone broth! It satisfies your cravings, tastes like normal savory beef or chicken broth – but with wayyy more nutritional benefits! Make sure you find a brand that looks gelatinous when chilled, that means its the real deal.
Made Good Vanilla Crispy Squares: These LEGIT taste like rice crispy treats – but without all the preservatives and processed ingredients. Any time I’m craving a sweet treat I grab one of these and feel like I’m back in grade school.