Thu. Jun 20th, 2024

Target is now a one-stop shop for almost everything you need, including groceries. Whether you stock your entire kitchen from Target or just pick up a few snacks while shopping, the superstore has many great options.

Snacks sometimes get a bad rep, but they can be an opportunity to improve your overall diet quality and keep you full and satisfied between meals (1).

Eating snacks may also improve cognition and mental health (2).

With multiple snack aisles at Target, it may feel overwhelming to decipher the healthy options from the less-nutritious choices, especially with so many marketing claims and front-of-package labels.

Some marketing claims may be helpful, such as those that let you know if products meet certain dietary needs like dairy-free, vegan, gluten-free, or nut-free. However, that doesn’t always mean they are healthier.

Others — such as low carb, sugar-free, keto-friendly, or “contains vegetables” — tell you very little about the healthfulness of a snack.

The most nutrient-dense options will be whole foods or snacks made from whole foods. It’s been shown that ultra-processed foods can contribute to poor health (3, 4).

But you may also want to look at the nutrition facts panel, as we describe below.

This article covers 21 healthy snacks you can buy at Target, including savory, sweet, and vegan options, as well as to-go snacks and snacks to keep in the refrigerator at home or work.

We first looked at ingredients and prioritized whole foods and whole-food-based snacks.

These include snacks made from fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans and legumes, nuts and seeds, and dairy.

We then considered how much of the following nutrients each snack offers:

  • Protein, aiming for at least 3g per serving
  • Fiber, aiming for at least 2g per serving
  • Sodium, aiming for less than 250 mg per serving
  • Added sugar, aiming for less than 5g per serving
  • Saturated fat, aiming for less than 3g per serving

Not all snacks on this last fit the above specifications exactly, but they provide good guidelines.

Lastly, we did not include snacks that contained artificial sweeteners or refined grains as the primary grain.

When choosing sweet snacks, pay attention to the added sugar content, listed on the nutrition facts panel.

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends limiting added sugar intake to no more than 10% of your total daily calories, which is about 12 teaspoons (48g) for a 2,000-calorie diet (5).

The American Heart Association recommends even less, at 5% of total calories — about 25g for women and 36g for men (6).

It’s important to know that this limit only pertains to added sugar, not sugar naturally occurring in fruits, vegetables, and dairy foods.

1. Bananas, oranges, apples, pears, and other fresh fruit

If your Target has a produce aisle, consider stocking up on fresh fruit. Snacking on fruit helps you meet the recommended daily consumption of 5–9 servings of fruits and vegetables, which most Americans don’t meet (5, 7).

Fruit contributes vitamins, minerals, and fiber to your diet. Fiber-rich snacks like fruit may help keep you full in between meals, since fiber can slow digestion and improve satiety (8).

For a more filling snack, pair your fruit with a handful of nuts or one to two tablespoons of nut butter, which contains healthy fat and protein. Protein and fat also slow digestion and increase satiety (9).

2. Good and Gather Honey Roasted Cashews

Cashews are a good source of phosphorus, copper, magnesium, and manganese, and they contribute some iron, selenium, and thiamine to your diet (10).

They are also a good source of unsaturated fats, which are linked to lower risk of heart disease (11).

With 6g of protein, 1g of fiber, and only 3g of added sugar in a 1-ounce serving, these honey-roasted cashews make a satisfying snack that will keep you full.

3. Skinny Dipped Almonds Super Dark + Sea Salt

If you’re craving chocolate, reach for these almonds. A 1-ounce serving provides 5g of protein, 3g of fiber, and only 3g of sugar.

Almonds are one of the best food sources of vitamin E, with nearly 50% of your daily needs in just 1 ounce (12).

Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that may reduce risk of heart disease and cancer (13, 14).

Almonds also contain iron, manganese, magnesium, B vitamins, and other antioxidants. Like cashews, almonds are also a good source of unsaturated fats (15, 16, 17).

The dark chocolate in these Skinny Dipped Almonds may also add some nutritional benefits, including iron and antioxidants (18, 19).

4. Purely Elizabeth Pumpkin Cinnamon Granola

Granola can make for a delicious and satisfying snack on its own, paired with milk, or sprinkled on top of plain Greek yogurt for an even more filling option. But many granolas are loaded with added sugar.

The Purely Elizabeth Pumpkin Cinnamon Granola is an exception, with only 5g of added sugar in 1/3 cup. It also contains 2g of fiber and 3g of protein.

It’s made from gluten-free oats, seeds, and whole grains, all of which contribute some vitamins and minerals to your diet.

When choosing savory snacks, you may want to watch out for sodium and saturated fat.

Consuming too much sodium may increase blood pressure and negatively affect your kidneys, heart, and brain (20, 21).

It’s long been recommended to limit saturated fat in an effort to reduce risk of heart disease and stroke, but recently, that recommendation has been called into question (22).

However, research still supports replacing saturated fat with unsaturated fat, and that continues to be the recommendation from the American Heart Association (23).

5. Boom Chicka Pop Sea Salt Popcorn

To satisfy a salty crunch craving, Boom Chicka Pop Sea Salt Popcorn is a good choice. It contains only three ingredients — popcorn, sunflower oil, and salt — and can add important nutrients to your diet.

Popcorn is a whole grain that contributes fiber (about 1g per cup or 4g per serving) to your diet (24).

Fiber is linked to digestive health and reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer, yet most Americans don’t eat nearly enough (25).

A 4-cup serving of popcorn also contributes 3g of protein and 6g of unsaturated fats, both of which may help make it a filling snack (9).

6. Off the Eaten Path Chickpea Veggie Crisps

Made with grains, beans, and dried peas, these crisps are a more nutritious alternative to chips for dipping in hummus or yogurt-based dips. They contain 3g of protein, 4g of fiber, and only 150mg of sodium.

Beans and dried peas (known as pulses) contribute vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients to your diet, are linked to lower blood pressure and blood sugar, and may reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease (26, 27, 28).

7. Wonderful Chili Roasted Pistachios

If you like a little heat, Wonderful Chili Roasted Pistachios pack spice and nutrition into every bite. Pistachios are one of the best sources of vitamin B6 and contain thiamine, copper, manganese, and potassium (29).

One ounce of these pistachios contains 7g of protein, 3g of fiber, and 11.5g of unsaturated fat — a perfect trifecta for feeling satisfied.

Many flavored nuts are high in sugar and sodium, but these contain less than 1g of added sugar and 250mg of sodium per serving.

Protein promotes satiety by slowing down digestion, which stabilizes blood sugar, as well as by signaling the release of fullness hormones. Therefore, protein is often promoted as a helpful tool for weight management (30, 31).

For this reason, high protein foods have become incredibly popular, and that has translated to many snacks that are promoted as high protein. But many — especially protein bars — come with a lot of added sugar.

When choosing a high protein snack, look for ones that use whole food as the protein source rather than added protein in the form of protein isolates, since whole food based protein will come along with other nutritional benefits.

Snacks provide a great opportunity to increase the amount of plant-based protein in your diet, which may reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease (32).

8. Seapoint Farms Dry Roasted Edamame Sea Salt

Edamame, or soybeans, are incredibly nutrient-packed. Not only are they a high protein snack with 14g per serving, they also contain 6g fiber, and 4.5g unsaturated fat.

One ounce of Seapoint Farms Dry Roasted Edamame gives you 10% of your potassium needs and 15% of your daily iron needs (33).

Plus, they are an excellent way to boost your intake of plant-based protein, which may improve cholesterol, blood pressure, and other metabolic indicators of health (34).

9. Good and Gather Organic Salted Roasted Shelled Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are little nutrient powerhouses. They are a good source of vitamin K, phosphorus, manganese, magnesium, iron, zinc, and copper (35).

They are also packed with antioxidants that may reduce inflammation and oxidative stress (35, 36).

One ounce of these salted roasted pumpkin seeds gives you 8g of plant-based protein and 2g of fiber, and only 120mg of sodium, for a filling snack that will satisfy your salty craving without overdoing it on the salt.

10. Parm Crisps Original Cheese Crackers

If you love the umami flavor of Parmesan cheese, Parm Crisps are for you. With 13g of protein per 160-calorie serving, they are a filling snack that can keep your blood sugar stable between meals (31).

They also contain 380mg, or 24% of the daily value (DV), of calcium.

It’s important to note that they do have 370mg of sodium per serving, so you’ll want to consider how that fits into your total sodium intake for the day. The USDA recommends limiting sodium intake to 2,300mg per day (5).

Whether you’re traveling, running errands, or just out of the house most of the day, it can be helpful to have healthy snacks on hand when hunger strikes.

The best on-the-go snacks don’t require refrigeration and come individually wrapped, so you can keep them in your bag, car, or desk at work.

But don’t be fooled by marketing claims like 100-calorie packs. “Low calorie” does not mean “healthy.” In fact, low calorie snacks often lack enough protein, fiber, and fat to fill you up, and you’ll end up looking for more snacks soon after.

11. Larabar Apple Pie Bars

Shelf-stable bars make a great on-the-go snack since they are compact and can be stored for a long time. (However, it’s best to avoid bars that contain chocolate, especially if you’ll be in warmer weather, since it melts easily.)

These Larabars are so reminiscent of apple pie, you might not believe that they only contain six simple, whole-food ingredients: dates, almonds, apples, walnuts, raisins, and cinnamon.

With 4g of protein, 4g of fiber, 8g of unsaturated fat, and no added sugar, they are one of the healthiest bars available at Target (along with many other Larabar flavors).

12. Good and Gather Organic Unsweetened Dried Kiwi

Kiwis are very nutritious, and dried kiwi can be an easy way to reap some of the benefits. Kiwis are an excellent source of vitamin C and provide antioxidants that support health (38).

Kiwis also support healthy digestion, which may be due to the fiber content (39, 40).

One ounce of Good and Gather Unsweetened Dried Kiwi contains 10% of the DV for calcium and 15% of the DV for potassium. They also add 3g of protein and 4g fiber to your day (38).

Importantly, these dried kiwi don’t contain any added sugar.

13. Good and Gather Omega-3 Trail Mix Pouches

Pre-made trail mixes are often sugar-laden, but this one actually packs in the nutrition. It’s made with nuts, seeds, and dried cranberries, and it only has 5g of added sugar.

The nut and seed mix contributes healthy fats, including a-linolenic acid (ALA), an omega-3 fatty acid that may support heart and brain health (41).

It also contributes copper, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, and manganese to your diet, as well as 4g of protein and 2g of fiber.

The refrigerated section contains many nutritious snacks, including yogurts, bars, and dips. Some may contain high amounts of added sugar, though — especially in yogurts, yogurt drinks, and bars — as well as sodium, especially in dips and hummus.

14. Chobani Monterey Strawberry Lowfat Blended Greek Yogurt

Most flavored yogurts contain more than half a day’s worth of added sugar, but Chobani’s low sugar Greek yogurts only contain 5g of added sugar and don’t sacrifice flavor one bit.

As important, they contain 12g of belly-filling protein for only 120 calories.

For an even more filling snack, you can top it with berries and 1–2 tablespoons of chopped nuts for additional fiber and healthy fats.

15. Good and Gather Roasted Artichoke and Spinach Hummus

One review suggests that eating hummus may help regular blood sugar and appetite and improve overall diet quality when replacing other, less nutritious condiments and dips (42).

Good and Gather’s Roasted Artichoke and Spinach Hummus is made from chickpeas, vegetables, tahini, herbs, and spices. Two tablespoons contribute 2g of protein and over 5g of healthy fat.

I recommend pairing it with fresh-cut vegetables like baby carrots, sliced bell pepper, or raw broccoli for additional fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

For an even more filling option, you could pair it with bean-based crisps like Off the Eaten Path Chickpea Veggie Chips.

16. Core Bar Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip

These plant-based bars are reminiscent of dessert but give you 7g each of protein and fiber with no added sugar or artificial sweeteners.

Instead, they get their sweetness from dates, which contribute fiber and potassium to the bar (43).

They also contain probiotics and prebiotics, which can support a healthy gut (44, 45).

Probiotics may even offer more health benefits beyond digestion, including blood sugar management, reduced risk of eczema, and improved cholesterol levels, but more research is needed in this area (46).

These bars do need to be stored in the refrigerator, but they can be kept at room temperature for up to a week, making them a good on-the-go snack as well.

17. Perfect Bar Dark Snack Size Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Protein Bar

The name says it all. These bars could pass for a peanut butter cookie but are packed with nutritious ingredients, including peanut butter, egg powder, vegetable powders, flaxseed oil, and pumpkin seed oil, contributing many vitamins and minerals.

The snack-sized version of this bar contains 6g protein, which is a good amount for a bar that has only 130 calories. It also provides 5g of monounsaturated fats, which may help lower your cholesterol (47).

They do contain 5g of added sugar, so take that into account when considering how these bars fit into your day.

Whether you follow a vegan diet or just want to increase the amount of plants you eat, look for vegan snacks that are made from plant foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts seeds, beans, and whole grains.

Many ultra-processed snacks that happen to be vegan contain few nutritious ingredients, like Oreo cookies. Plus, like other categories, vegan snacks can also be high in sodium and sugar, and you may want to be mindful about those nutrients.

18. Hippeas Vegan White Cheddar Organic Chickpea Puffs

Reminiscent of cheese puffs, these plant-powered snacks are made from chickpea flour and rice flour and get their cheesy flavor from herbs and spices.

They contain 4g of plant-based protein, 3g of fiber, and only 210mg of sodium per 1-ounce serving.

In addition to being vegan, they’re gluten-free, nut-free, and organic, so meet a variety of dietary requirements.

19. RXBar Plant Peanut Butter

For a high protein vegan snack, RXBar Plant is a great option. The 10g of plant protein comes from peas and almonds, which is paired with oats and dates for a filling, nutritious snack.

They also contain 4g of fiber and more than 7g of unsaturated fats, with no added sugars or alternative sweeteners.

20. Rhythm Cauliflower Bites with Cheddar Flavor

Cauliflower is getting a lot of time in the spotlight for its nutritional benefits and neutral flavor. It’s an excellent source of vitamins C and K and contains a number of other vitamins and minerals (48).

Cauliflower also contains antioxidants called glucosinolates, which may reduce inflammation and protect against some cancers (49).

Snacking on these cauliflower bites, which are dehydrated cauliflower with herbs and spices, may provide you with some of these benefits.

Plus, for a vegetable-based snack, they are filling from the protein and fiber as well as delicious.

When choosing healthy snacks at Target, look for ones made from whole foods as an opportunity to boost your vitamin and mineral intake in between meals.

Aim for snacks that contain a mix of protein, fiber, and healthy fat to help fill you up, keep your blood sugar stable, and give you energy.

And watch out for snacks that are high in sodium, added sugar, and saturated fat.

Packaging claims can be misleading, so don’t forget to read ingredients and review nutrition facts labels if you’re looking for the healthiest options.


By Alan

Leave a Reply