Bite-size foods are an easy way to 'go further with food' as part of your well-rounded meal or as a nutritious snack on the go.
Balanced bites are not only fun to eat, they may help us eat less!
When foods are in petite portions, they may help you to be more engaged with eating by being in tune with their flavors and reflecting on how hungry or satisfied you are.
Here are some great reasons to include better bites into your day plus some fun recipes to get you started!
A bite of food that is balanced with some protein, smart fat and fiber has a good chance of satisfying your hunger for a few hours
Aim to snack only when you are physically hungry and choose snacks that are made up of mostly whole foods contributing helpful nutrients. Including snacks that contribute some protein, good fats and fiber, served in sensible amounts, will help keep you from going overboard on calories
'Go further' by incorporating high quality and functional ingredients such as flax meal, walnuts, dates and garlic, pepper and chia seeds!
Play with your food
Yes, it's okay to play with your food! In fact, it can be a very good thing because it engages more of your senses. Food that you interact with by dipping, cracking, rolling or picking up with chopsticks, may be more satisfying not only to your tummy but your brain too
Three Bite Sized Recipes
Omega Walnut Quinoa Bites
This tastes like a yummy falafel slider! It's easy to make and so delicious cold or hot. Enjoy them as an appetizer, snack or feature them as a high protein entrée.
Total Time: 25 minutes
2 cups Signature Kitchens®/SELECT™ California walnuts, toasted
1 cup O Organics® garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained (a little less than a 15 ounce can)
1 cup cooked O Organics® quinoa (quinoa can be cooked in a rice cooker just like rice)
2 tablespoons O Organics® flaxmeal or ground chia seeds
1 tablespoon O Organics® balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 large egg + 1/4 cup egg whites (or 2 eggs total can be substituted)
2 teaspoons minced garlic (available in jars in the produce department)
1/2 teaspoon smoked salt (any other salt can be substituted)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons O Organics® Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided use
Garnish: Open Nature™ Plain Greek yogurt (optional)
1. Combine walnuts, garbanzo beans, quinoa, chia seeds or flaxseeds, balsamic vinegar, cumin, eggs and egg white, garlic, salt, pepper and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in food processor and pulse to blend well.
2. Start heating a large nonstick frying pan over medium heat. When hot coat with 1 1/2 teaspoons of the olive oil.
3. Quickly using a cookie scoop, 1/8 cup measure or rounded tablespoon measure, place small balls of the mixture into the prepared frying pan, gently flattening each so they look like mini burgers (about half of the mixture will be used). Cook about 3-5 minutes or until the underside is golden brown, then flip the Omega Walnut Quinoa Bites over to lightly brown the second side (about 2 minutes).
4. Heat remaining oil and repeat Step #3 to cook the remaining bites. Serve each with a dollop of plain Greek yogurt if desired.
Servings: 8 (3 bites each)
Servings Per Recipe: 8 Serving Size: 3 bites
Calories 265, Total Fat 20 g, Saturated Fat 2 g, Polyunsaturated Fat 13 g (Omega-3s 3 g), Monounsaturated Fat 5 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Sodium 252 mg, Potassium 228 mg, Total Carbohydrate 13 g, Dietary Fiber 4.2 g, Sugars 1 g, Protein 8 g, Vitamin D 0 IU, Calcium 45 mg, Iron 1.6 mg
Cookie Dough Bites
For all those cookie dough lovers out there, here is an eggless, flourless, oat- and flax-filled snack ball that tastes just like chocolate chip cookie dough!
Total Time: 15 minutes
1 3/4 cups Signature Kitchens®/SELECT™ old-fashioned oats, divided use
5 tablespoons Lucerne® whipped butter (salted) or your favorite light margarine
3 tablespoons Lucerne® Neufchatel or light cream cheese
6 tablespoons Signature Kitchens®/SELECT™ packed dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon O Organics® Golden Flaxmeal blended with 4 tablespoons hot water (cooled for 10 minutes)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon maple extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup O Organics® Golden Flaxmeal
1/3 cup Signature Kitchens®/SELECT™ mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
2/3 cup Signature Kitchens®/SELECT™ walnut pieces, toasted
1/2 cup O Organics® unsweetened shredded coconut (pulse in mini food processor if desired)
1. Put 1 1/4 cup oats in a food processor and pulse until a fairly fine powder forms; set aside.
2. Cream the whipped butter or light margarine, cream cheese, and brown sugar together in a large mixing bowl until well blended, scraping side of bowl. Add in the flaxseed and water mixture and vanilla and maple extract and salt then beat briefly on low speed.
3. Gradually add the oat powder, remaining 1/2 cup oats, 1/4 cup ground flaxseed, mini chocolate chips and walnut pieces into the mixture, beating on low speed just until combined.
4. Cover the mixing bowl and refrigerate for an hour if possible. This will make the dough easier to roll and work with but it isn't necessary. Use a cookie scoop to scoop out balls a little smaller than golf balls (or use clean hands) then roll each ball in the coconut then place in serving bowl or storage container. Keep in the refrigerator until ready to serve!
Servings: 11 (2 balls—2 tablespoons each, or 4 mini balls—1 tablespoon each)
Servings Per Recipe: 11 (2 balls or 4 mini balls)
Calories 270, Total Fat 14 g, Saturated Fat 4.5 g, Polyunsaturated Fat 6 g (Omega-3s 2 g), Monounsaturated Fat 3.5 g, Cholesterol 7 mg, Sodium 98 mg, Potassium 205 mg, Total Carbohydrate 30 g, Dietary Fiber 4.5 g, Sugars 10 g, Protein 7 g, Vitamin D 14 IU, Calcium 37 mg, Iron 1.7 mg
Source: Albertsons Wellness Services Dietitians
Mocha Java Power Bites
These bites taste like your favorite coffee drink and yet hit the spot when you have a food craving or hunger pang.
1 tablespoon Signature Kitchens®/SELECT™ decaffeinated instant coffee crystals (caffeinated can be substituted)
1 tablespoon hot water
1 cup pitted Medjool dates
1 cup Signature Kitchens®/SELECT™ walnuts or cashews
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup O Organics® unsweetened coconut
1. In small dish combine coffee crystals in hot water and stir to blend.
2. Put all the ingredients, including the coffee mixture, in a food processor and pulse until blended and a soft texture forms (about 10 seconds). There will still be small pieces of walnut visible.
3. Use a small cookie scoop (holds 1 tablespoon of water) to scoop out a tablespoon of the mixture, pressing against the side of the bowl, then drop the ball in a mini cupcake liner or place in a storage container. If you don't have a small cookie scoop, you can take a tablespoon of the mixture and roll into a ball with clean hands.
4. Ideally, store the power balls in refrigerator in a covered container for up to a week. These power balls are stable at room temperature though.
Servings Per Recipe: 12 Serving Size: 2 bites each
Calories 124, Total Fat 8.8 g, Saturated Fat 2.6 g, Polyunsaturated Fat 4.7 g (Omega-3s 1 g), Monounsaturated Fat 1 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Sodium 2 mg, Potassium 138 mg, Total Carbohydrate 12 g, Dietary Fiber 2.5 g, Sugars 8 g, Protein 2.2 g, Vitamin D 0 IU, Calcium 16 mg, Iron .6 mg