We are always looking for healthy, convenient snacks, especially if they are delicious and help quell the cravings for unhealthy snacks or insatiable munchies in between meals.
Depending on the type of diet you are following and your weight loss goals vs weight maintenance or weight gain goals, the composition of your snack choices may vary.
Although there are many benefits of eating healthy fats, plenty of people are looking for the best low-fat snack ideas.
In this guide, we will discuss what to look for in the best low fat snacks for healthy weight loss or weight management, and provide a list of the best low fat snacks to give you some ideas and inspiration to help you stick to your diet and weight loss goals.
We will look at:
- Are Low Fat Snacks Good for Weight Loss?
- What Are the Best Low Fat Snacks for Weight Loss?
Let’s get started!
Are Low Fat Snacks Good for Weight Loss?
Snacking can be a helpful way to maintain your blood sugar levels and curb your appetite between meals, which can actually help prevent overheating at your next meal time.
In fact, according to a review, having regular mini-meals or snacks not only boost the nutritional value of your overall diet but also promote satiety and curb overeating later, thus helping support weight loss.
That said, research suggests that many of the most popular snack food choices are not only high in calories but are also high in fat.
Healthy fats like the monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fat found in nuts, seeds, nut butters, avocados, and fatty fish are generally considered to be beneficial for your health and can be part of a nutritious weight loss diet.
However, if you have cardiovascular disease risk factors or are following a low-fat meal plan, you will want to avoid high-fat snacks, even if they are generally considered “healthy weight loss snacks.“
The benefit of the best low fat snacks for weight loss is that as a macronutrient, fat contains the most calories per gram, with 9 calories per gram of fat versus 4 calories per gram of carbohydrates or proteins.
Because you have to create a caloric deficit to lose weight, you can enjoy larger portions of the best healthy low fat snacks while still having fewer calories than if you choose snack foods that are higher in fat.
In other words, there is a lot of overlap between low fat snacks and low calorie snacks for weight loss.
If you like to eat or “graze“ when you get the munchies and feel more physically or emotionally satisfied by having low calorie snacks that are larger in size, low fat snack foods can fit the bill, even in cases where you are not necessarily following a low fat diet but simply want to lose weight.
There isn’t a strict definition of what a “low fat snack“ means in terms of the total fat content, but in general, a healthy low-fat snack should have no more than 5 g of total fat per serving and 1 gram of saturated fat.
When you are looking for the best low fat snacks for weight loss, look for low calorie snacks that have high-quality protein and fiber to increase satiety because cutting fat will make the snack less filling (fat has been found to increase satiety and curb appetite because it takes longer to digest).
What Are the Best Low Fat Snacks for Weight Loss?
Here is a list of some of the best low calorie, low fat snacks.
Some of the best fat free snacks are fruits.
The best fruits for snacks to emphasize in your low-fat diet are strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries, as berries are rich in antioxidants, fiber, vitamins, and minerals and lower in sugar than tropical fruits.
Melons are also low-sugar fruits and excellent fat-free snack ideas.
Watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydew are all essentially non-fat snack food ideas that are also low in calories, high in water (so more filling), and rich in antioxidants, vitamin C, and potassium.
Other healthy fruits for low-fat diet snacks include kiwi, grapefruit, oranges, clementines, grapes, cherries, papaya, apricots, apples, pears, bananas, pomegranates, pineapple, guava, star fruit, peaches, and nectarines.
Keep in mind that while fruit makes a great nonfat snack for certain dietary needs, fresh fruit only provides carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals but no fat or protein, so if you may want to pair fruit with a low-fat protein source to increase satiety with your fruit snack.
#2: Silken Tofu Ice Cream
One of the best healthy alternatives to ice cream for those who want to cut calories and fat while boosting protein and having a healthy plant-based ice cream is to make ice cream with silken tofu, which is the softest variety of tofu.
Tofu is made from soybean curd and is a good plant-based protein and a complete protein, which means that it contains all nine essential amino acids.
Most tofu is also fortified with calcium and vitamin D, which are essential nutrients that are particularly challenging to get on a vegan diet.
Although firm tofu will not work well because it won’t whip up, silken tofu falls apart almost like a thick Greek yogurt when you purée it.
Tofu is not sweet, so you will either need to add a natural sweetener such as maple syrup, honey, or agave syrup or a non-caloric sweetener (such as liquid stevia) if you are following a low-carb diet.
Then, you can add different flavorings depending on your favorite flavor of ice cream.
Vanilla extract works well. You can also add cocoa powder, fresh or freeze-dried fruit, vegan chocolate chips, nuts, etc.
#3: Air-Popped Popcorn
One of the best high-volume low-calorie snacks that is also essentially a fat-free snack is air-popped popcorn.
You can have 3 cups of air-popped popcorn with some sea salt or sprinkled spices (skip the butter or oil) for under 100 calories while still getting some fiber to help keep you full.
#4: Cottage Cheese With Cantaloupe
The benefit of having cottage cheese with cantaloupe or other fruit is that you will get the satiating effects of protein while still having a fat-free snack.
For example, there are 13 grams of protein in a half-cup of fat-free cottage cheese with only 70 calories.
Adding a fruit like cantaloupe will give you a little bit of vitamin C and fiber while still being a non-fat snack and a low calorie snack at that.
You can add almost a quarter of the melon to stay under 100 calories, or bulk up the serving size of the cottage cheese—or switch to low-fat cottage cheese—to add more protein or a more filling low fat snack.
A medium-sized celery stalk has only about 5 calories and zero grams of fat.
There are about 35 calories in one tablespoon of hummus, and although there’s a little bit of healthy fat, you can either look for a low-fat hummus or make your own hummus with less oil and tahini, and you will get some fiber, protein, and vitamins and minerals from the garbanzo beans.
You can add other veggies like carrots, broccoli, bell pepper strips, cucumber, cauliflower, or zucchini strips to dip into the hummus for a very nutritious and filling low-fat snack for weight loss.
#6: Baked Apples
If you want a low-fat dessert or a fat-free dessert snack, you can make a baked apple with some rolled oats, a drizzle of honey, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
If you don’t mind having a little bit of fat, add some slivered almonds or walnuts.
#7: Air Fryer Veggies
Using an air fryer is a great way to impart some texture and crunch to vegetables without adding oil or butter.
A great low fat healthy snack is air fryer broccoli or cauliflower bites.
A full cup of chopped broccoli has only 30 cal, 0 g of fat, 2.5 g of fiber, 2.5 g of protein, and essential vitamins and minerals.
You can season air fryer veggies with buffalo spices, salt and pepper, or other spices that you enjoy without adding fat or calories.
#8: Greek Yogurt Parfait
One of the best low-calorie snacks for weight loss that is low in fat is Greek yogurt.
Plain Greek yogurt provides 23 grams of protein and only 133 calories in one cup (8 ounces or 227 grams).
You can turn the Greek yogurt into a more satisfying parfait by adding a sprinkle of flaxseeds or Chia seeds, cinnamon, and sugar fruits such as strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries for a dash of natural sweetness while still keeping your snack low in fat and calories.
#9: Lean Protein Shake
If you are on the go, you can make a protein shake for a quick low fat, high-protein snack.
Add unsweetened almond milk, a handful of berries, and some baby spinach, and you have a nutritious low-calorie snack for weight loss.
#10: Tuna Fish Salad
One 3-ounce can of light tuna in water has only 1 gram of fat, 90 calories, and a whopping 20 grams of protein.
Add mustard if you want to make a tuna salad, and then dip in veggies or whole-grain crackers, whole wheat bread, or a whole-wheat pita for a low-fat high-protein weight loss snack.
#11: Low-Fat Soup
If you want a savory low-fat snack, try a low-sodium soup like tomato soup, chicken soup, lentil soup, or split pea soup. Just make sure to get a broth-based, low-sodium soup not one with cream.
The fluid content of soup helps fill you up and control your appetite.
#12: Veggies and Salsa or Cottage Cheese
If you don’t like plain veggies yet don’t want to add the fat or calories from hummus or nut butter, you can dip veggies in fresh salsa or fat-free or low-fat cottage cheese seasoned with chives, onions, or just plain.
If you are working hard on your diet, check out our guide to what “clean eating“ looks like here.