Open a PDF version to print this topic

HealthInfo Waitaha Canterbury

Smart snacking for adults

Ngā kai nohinohi mō ngā pakeke

Snacks can help curb your hunger and provide an energy boost between meals. But it's important to remember that snacks aren't meals.

Smart snacking means being careful about what type of snacks you eat, how much and how often. Most popular snacks are sugary and fatty, like biscuits, cakes and chocolate. Or they're salty and fatty like crisps, movie popcorn, instant noodles and crackers.

If you eat lots of these foods, you can gain weight. Sweet and chewy snacks like lollies, dried fruit and fruit leathers can also cause tooth decay.

Snacks do not need to come in packets. You can make them easily and cheaply at home.

Healthy snack ideas

Choose snacks low in kilojoules (calories), fat and added sugar.

Fruit and vegetable ideas

More snack ideas

Smart snacking tips

Here are some ideas for snacking, including ideas for when you're shopping, when you're at home and work. There are also some tips for when you're snacking or wanting a snack.

Tips for shopping

Tips for home and work

Tips for when you want a snack

Hummus recipe



  1. Blend all the ingredients in a food processor until smooth.
  2. Add more lemon juice, water or salt to your preferred consistency and taste. The flavour and consistency will vary with different brands of chickpeas and lemon juice.

See the Health Promotion Agency's website for more healthy snack recipes.

Written by Masters of Dietetics student, University of Otago. Adapted by HealthInfo clinical advisers. Last reviewed March 2022.

Page reference: 635316

Review key: HIHEI-34305