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We all know that when you’re pregnant you’re eating for two. That’s why it’s even more important to find healthy pregnancy snacks over ones that provide no nutritional value. While it may seem easier to grab a bag of chips or a cookie, the truth is healthy pregnancy snacks can be just as simple.
The American Pregnancy Association recommends that pregnant women need approximately 300 extra calories a day during the second and third trimester. Within all of the calories consumed daily, 75-100 grams of protein, 1000 milligrams of calcium, 27 milligrams of iron, 600-800 micrograms of folic acid, and 85 milligrams of Vitamin C are all recommended.
You can reach all of those dietary requirements by incorporating healthy meals and snacks into your diet.
If you’re stumped in the snack department, check out our list of healthy pregnancy snacks as well as snacks-on-the-go and ones that are protein packed, among others!
Chapter 1. Best Snacks for Pregnancy
The best snacks for pregnancy incorporate a pregnant woman’s dietary needs. That’s why the follow snacks make the list:
- Apple with peanut butter or cheese. You know the saying, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” An apple a day is also good for pregnant women because it is packed with fiber. This helps to fight constipation that some pregnant women deal with as well as lower cholesterol. Pair your apple with peanut butter for a protein boost or a slice of cheese for calcium.
- Greek Yogurt. Greek yogurt is packed with protein and helps pregnant women meet their daily dairy requirement. It also contains probiotics which is good for digestion. Greek yogurt is also pretty tasty which is always a plus when it comes to healthy pregnancy snacks!
Whether you’re pregnant or not, avocadoes make a great snack. They’re loaded with potassium which can help if you’re experiencing muscle cramps that can accompany pregnancy. If you mash an avocado and spread it on some whole-grain crackers you’re also working on your fiber intake at the same time!
- High Fiber Cereal. When you reach for a snack you want to pick one that will fill you up so that you’re not wanting another one in twenty minutes. High fiber cereal is a great choice because fiber makes you feel full longer. Add some low-calorie milk to work on your dairy requirement and some fruit on top to get your much-needed vitamins.
- Cottage cheese with mangos. This snack is a two-for in that you’re getting your dairy and protein in with the cottage cheese and a good dose of folic acid with the mangos added in.
Chapter 2. Pregnancy Snacks on the Go & Easy Snacks
When you’re looking for good pregnancy snack that you can take on the go, you need to find easy snacks that won’t necessary spoil and don’t need a lot of prep time. That’s why these pregnancy snacks on the go are your best buddies!
- Homemade Trail Mix.
- The trick when it comes to pregnancy snacks on the go is picking foods that you can stick in your bag if you have to. Homemade trail mix falls into this category. You can customize your trail mix to only include the items you like, just be sure to keep it healthy. Almonds, pumpkin seeds, and even dark chocolate (yes we said chocolate!) can make up your trail mix. Whip up a whole batch and take some out when you need it.
- Dried Apricots. When you want a sweet snack on the go, reach for the dried apricots. Rich in vitamin A and beta-carotene, dried apricots help maintain that healthy glow of your skin as well as strengthen teeth and bones.
- Grape Tomatoes.
Grab a cup of grape tomatoes to munch on as you’re headed out the door. They’re low in calories and are packed with Vitamin C.
- Carrot sticks & cucumber slices. Here’s another on-the-go choice that also makes for an easy snack. Cut up your veggies and stick them in a bag and you’re ready to go!
Any of these foods also make great snacks for work or snacks for travelling. They’re easy to reach for or keep at your desk. Take them out when you get a snack attack!
You can also bring them along when you’re on a road trip or catching a flight. The idea is to find healthy snacks that are low maintenance and don’t requires tons of prep time.
Chapter 3. Protein Snacks
Protein is an essential nutrient for both pregnant mothers and their babies. That’s why you need to be conscious of finding snacks that are packed with protein.
- Hard-boiled eggs. It doesn’t get much more protein-packed than an egg. Hard-boil a few eggs at a time so that you can pull them out of the fridge whenever you want. You can choose to eat the whole egg or just the white. The egg yolk is full of nutrients that help with fetal brain and nervous system development.
- Beef Jerky. While this may be an acquired taste, beef jerky has an average of 7 grams of protein and is also low in calorie. This is also an easy snack that you can take with you anywhere.
- Nuts. Nuts are a great source of protein, just be sure to choose ones that are low in calorie or you’re defeating the purpose.
Almonds and cashews are great choices.
Chapter 4. Diabetes Snacks
For pregnant women with gestational diabetes, snacking can be a little tricky. You want to avoid foods that are high in sugar and carbohydrates and ones that are processed. Here are some good choices:
- Air-popped popcorn. As long as you don’t add butter or other toppings, air-popped popcorn is a great snack for pregnant women dealing with diabetes.
- Peanut butter.
Chock full of protein, peanut butter is a smart choice for pregnant moms with diabetes.
- Cup of Spinach. Spinach is rich in anti-oxidants and is a great source of fiber for pregnant women. Melt a slice of American cheese on top to make for a cheesy snack!
Chapter 5. Snacks for Energy
Sometimes you just need a snack for a little energy boost. While you might have grabbed a cup of coffee pre-pregnancy, we all know you should limit caffeine when expecting. Try these snacks for energy instead:
- Salmon. Salmon is packed with vitamins and minerals and plenty of mood-enhancing fatty acids that can provide a real pick-me-up. Just make sure any salmon you eat is fully cooked. Seared, smoked, or raw salmon is not recommended for pregnant women.
Besides being a great source of fiber, lentils give a slow-burning energy which helps to level off blood sugar and give you a boost.
- Hummus. Hummus is a combination of chick peas, sesame seeds, lemon and olive oil. It’s packed with protein to give you a much needed energy.
Chapter 6. Snacks for Nausea
We all know pregnancy and nausea go together like peas and carrots for some women. While eating something to cure your nausea may be the last thing on your mind, there are some foods that can actually lessen your urge to vomit.
Check out these snacks for nausea the next time morning sickness hits you:
- Ginger. Ginger is known to be a great remedy for tummy troubles. Try ginger snaps, ginger jam on toast, or even just some ginger ale.
- Pretzels and Crackers.
Both of these snacks are bland and light enough that they should settle your stomach rather than send it into a tizzy.
- Jell-O & Flavored Popsicles. These aren’t snacks for kids only. Try either one (or both) the next time you’re feeling nauseous.
The next time you’re looking for pregnancy snack ideas, try one from this list of healthy pregnancy snacks, you and your baby will thank us later!