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The Sweets & Snacks Expo Show, the largest confectionery and snack event in North America, is the place to see the latest, greatest and most innovative new snacks and treats, from bean snacks to low-sugar candy. Founder of Eat This, Not That! and Health and Wellness Contributor at the TODAY Show, David Zinczenko, went to bring you back the hottest (and healthiest!) new eats that'll replace your standard go-to snacks.
I've chosen the most impressive picks from the expo that happen to be healthier versions of your usual standby snacks. Whether they're lower in calories, higher in protein, have less artificial ingredients, are perfectly portioned or simply made cleaner than your usual candy or snacks, we found the best of the best healthier treats at the Sweets & Snacks Expo that are Eat This, Not That!-approved.
From healthier candy (yes, really), beans as snacks and overnight oats in a portable bar, the following picks are spins on classic foods you love (and probably already have in your pantry). We promise you're gonna love them just as much — and so will your body.
Core Foods Overnight Oatmeal Bar, $48 per 16-pack ($3 per bar), Amazon
This item is available in six flavors: Coconut Cashew Mango, Dark Chocolate Cherry, Lemon Poppy Seed, Peanut Butter, Chocolate Peanut Butter and Blueberry Banana. If you love the convenience of overnight oats but want the added benefits of gut-healthy probiotics, you'll love the CORE Bar. And just like overnight oats, you'll also find CORE Bars in the fridge because they're made with real ingredients — oats, nuts, dates and chia seeds — and zero added sugar or preservatives. The combination of probiotics and prebiotics enhances the bar's gut-friendly benefits to promote digestive health. You can also make your core happy on the go: These bars will last out of the fridge for a week.
Nutrition per 57-gram bar (Peanut Butter Chocolate flavor, for example): 220 calories, 9 grams fat (2 grams saturated fat), 160 milligrams sodium, 30 grams carbs (7 grams fiber, 9 grams sugar), 7 grams protein
Just the Cheese Crunchy Baked Cheese Bars, $24 per 12 two-bar packs ($2 each), Amazon
This item and additional flavors (Aged Cheddar and Jalapeño) is also available at Wegmans and other natural grocers in the Northeast.
Instead of "made with 100% real cheese," these bars are "made of 100% real cheese." You can't beat these baked cheese bars for an authentic cheesy taste that you can take on the go. Plus, they'll still give you that crucial crunch of a satisfying snack. Use these low-carb, high-protein cheese bars as a snack on their own, or pair them with apples for an added serving of fiber.
Nutrition per pack of 2 bars (Grilled Cheese flavor, for example): 150 calories, 12 grams fat (8 grams saturated fat), 320 milligrams sodium, <1 grams carbs (0 grams fiber, 0 grams sugar), 8 grams protein
Enlightened Bada Bean Bada Boom Crunchy Broad Beans, $24 per 24-pack ($1 each), Amazon
This item comes in six flavors — Garlic & Onion, Sweet Cinnamon, Sweet Sriracha, Mesquite BBQ, Sea Salt and Cocoa Dusted — and is also available in select stores. When your mom said to eat your beans at every meal, she probably didn't know it would be as easy as grabbing a bag of these snacks! Bada Bean Bada Boom is a crunchy broad bean snack that packs in an impressive seven grams of protein and five grams of fiber in a 100-calorie serving. You'll find yourself throwing these in your gym bag, purse, desk or glove compartment to stave off the mid-day munchies. You can also try the savory flavors, like Sea Salt, as a topping to soups and salads, while the sweeter flavors, like Sweet Cinnamon, make great additions to your morning oatmeal or yogurt.
Nutrition per 1-ounce bag (Sweet Sriracha flavor, for example): 100 calories, 3 grams fat (0 grams saturated fat), 130 milligrams sodium, 15 grams carbs (5 grams fiber, 1 gram sugar), 7 grams protein
Shrooms Snacks Splits Jerky, $8, Amazon
This item is available in three flavors: Filet Mignon + Portabella, Peppered Beef + Portabella, and Turkey + Portabella. Flexitarianism is in. Eat more plants while still eating the beef you love with this ultimate hybrid snack. Shrooms Snacks pairs marinated mushroom jerky made from meaty portabello mushroom caps with perfectly-chewy filet mignon jerky made from grass-fed, USA-bred beef.
Nutrition per 1-ounce bag (Shrooms Filet Mignon + Portabella flavor, for example): 90 calories, 1 gram fat (0 grams saturated fat), 310 milligrams sodium, 14 grams carbs (1 gram fiber, 11 grams sugar), 7 grams protein
Bubba's Fine Foods 'Nana Chip, $19 per 6-pack ($4 each), Amazon
This item is available in three flavors: Blazing Buffalo, Not-cho Nacho and Grand Garlic Parm. This crunchy snack might be made with green banana chips but they definitely don't taste like it! This is a savory — not sweet — snack. The green banana chip base is rich in gut-healthy prebiotics and has 90% less sugar than traditional banana chips. Use these Paleo-friendly bites as a snack on their own, or dip them into your favorite salsa, guacamole or blue cheese-yogurt dip.
Nutrition per 1/2 cup (Grand Garlic Parm flavor, for example): 150 calories, 9 grams fat (8 grams saturated fat), 180 milligrams sodium, 14 grams carbs (1 gram fiber, <1 gram sugar), 2 grams protein
Smart Tart, $30 per 12-pack ($3 per pack of 2), The Smart Co.
This item will also be available on Amazon and at retailers near you soon.
Start your day smarter with a Smart Tart! While your classic frosted breakfast pastry's only claim to fame is to appease your sweet tooth with a chemistry lab's worth of artificial flavors and colors, the Smart Co. aims to help you kick start your day with the nutrients you need to tackle your to-do list. In each two-pack, you'll find four grams of fiber and 16 grams of protein for nearly half the sugar you'd get if you grabbed a bag of Pop-Tarts. Because these don't come frosted, you have a blank canvas to cover each pastry with the topping of your choice: try peanut butter, chocolate-hazelnut spread or even a thick Greek yogurt.
Nutrition per pastry (Strawberry Chia flavor, for example): 180 calories, 6 grams fat (2.5 grams saturated fat), 135 milligrams sodium, 28 grams carbs (2 grams fiber, 9 grams sugar), 8 grams protein
SmartSweets Peach Rings, $3, available exclusively at Whole Foods nationwide on June 4
Other varieties (Sweet Fish, Sour Blast Buddies, Fruity Gummy Bears and Sour Gummy Bears) of this item are available now at Whole Foods, GNC Live Well and Amazon.
Instead of being loaded with sugar, this candy is loaded with fiber! These Peach Rings contain an entire day's worth of prebiotic, soluble fiber in each bag. Soluble fiber is fermented by the probiotic bacteria in your gut, helping you absorb essential nutrients, keep your appetite in check, lower inflammation and regulate body weight. This is a particularly important benefit, as surveys show only 5% of Americans meet fiber intake recommendations. Oh, and did we mention they have 21 fewer grams of sugar than the same serving size of Trolli Peachie Os?
Nutrition per 1.8-ounce bag: 80 calories, 0 grams fat (0 grams saturated fat), 75 milligrams sodium, 33 gra,s carbs (28 grams fiber, 3 grams sugar), 0 grams protein
Peatos, $15 per 4-count ($4 each), available on June 24
Do away with that feeling of regret after making your way through a huge bag of empty-calorie cheese puffs. Instead, grab a bag of Peatos. Made from peas and lentils instead of corn and potato, Peatos have twice the protein and three times the fiber of your favorite bag of Cheetos, so you'll feel full and satisfied after snacking.
Nutrition per 1 oz bag (Ranch flavor, for example): 130 calories, 8 grams fat (1 gram saturated fat), 180 milligrams sodium, 12 grams carbs (3 grams fiber, 1 gram sugar), 4 grams protein