My late-night snacking probably isn't one of my BEST characteristics, but I swear everything tastes better after 9 pm.
To all you intermittent fasters out there: it is completely off the table for me due to what I like to call "my nighttime snack bowl". I kid you not my brother saw me with my bowl the other night and goes "what's in there tonight?"
My weakness: sweet n' salty snacks. I think this is partially due to the fact that when I was dieting/into my eating disorder, I didn't "allow" snacks. They were a big red stop sign, a dangerous hole to fall into. To me, they were additional calories to my day that were unnecessary. Since then, I have learned through recovery, and listening to various dieticians/nutritionists, that a healthy dosage of snacks each day is totally OK!
I typically have one snack in the afternoon between lunch and dinner, and then another around 9 pm. However, every day is a bit different - some days I swear I'm snacking every single hour and others I don't snack at all. It depends on my activity level, what my other meals were, how busy I am, hormones, and so forth. I try not to get myself into a strict routine, because I know I'll become obsessed about following it.
Listen to your body and don't be afraid to snack if you're hungry! Snacking can also prevent you from overeating at your next meal, and keep your metabolism going throughout the day. Research has also shown that snacking between meals does not have much effect at all on weight! So my biggest suggestion: don't BAN snacks from your life, they most likely won't have much of an effect on you at all.
If snacking still seems like something you are trying to avoid due to anxiety about weight gain/calorie intake, etc., then maybe start out with healthy snacks! Carrots sticks, veggies, homemade dips, and fruit can all be delicious (and health-conscious) choices to make between meals.
What I've done is broken down my must-have snacks into two categories:
Items from generic grocery stores
Items from Trader Joe's
**The items from these lists vary from super-healthy and low-cal, to the other end of the spectrum. If you're interested in how I started to allow all these foods back into my diet then I can definitely do a post on that. OR if you're interested in just a healthy snacks post, I'll gladly do that as well.
Items At Your Local Grocery: (most in this list are pretty healthy!)
Skinny Pop Popcorn
Boom Chicka Pop - Light Kettle Corn (one of my all-time favorites)
Honey Graham Crackers (add a piece of dark chocolate for added sweetness)
Ritz Crackers + a bit of cheese (recently its been gruyere, but I mix it up!)
Cheez-It Sweet n Salty Snack Mix (ok maybe this one doesn't scream health, but it's just SO snackable! The perfect mix of sweet and salty)
Stacy's Pita Thins
Celery + Tzatziki Dip
Lantana Cauliflower Hummus
Blue Diamond flavored almonds (if you're a peanut person try out The Carolina Nut Co flavored peanuts - also delicious!)
Lightly Salted Pistachios
good culture Cottage cheese + berries (I've been doing blackberries + blueberries)
34 Degrees Crispbread - Rosemary flavor (these are so thin and the perfect light crunch of a cracker. They go well with cheese/jam/spreads)
Chobani Greek Yogurt + melted nut butter (your choice) swirled in!
Snyder's Butter Snaps
Fruit! (any fresh fruit and whatever is in season! Right now I'm loving strawberries, watermelon, peaches)
Trader Joes: https://www.traderjoes.com/
Dunkers (ok these are pretty much just cookies but SO good dipped in coffee/milk! The oatmeal cranberry ones are my favorite.)
Everything but the Bagel Nut Duo (almonds + cashews)
Mac n Cheese bites (frozen aisle, and also not healthy but SO good.)
Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels (they come salted and unsalted, I prefer salted LOL)
World's Puffiest White Cheddar Corn Puffs (beware - these are addicting)
Organic unsweetened Coconut chips (eat them alone or add them to yogurt, with pretzels, dark chocolate, etc. the possibilities are endless)
Oven-baked Cheese Bites (I've been adding these to my salads, but can also just be snacked on solo)
Corn, Pea, Bean and Quinoa Crisps (wasn't sure how I was going to feel about these the first time I got them - but trust me, they're good)
Honey Mustard + Onion Pretzel Pieces
Blue Corn Tortilla Chips
Tomato Basil Hummus Dip
Crispy Crunchy Chocolate Chip Cookies (they're mini!)
Savory Banana and Nuts Mix
Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cups
Corn Rolled Chili-Lime Chips
Homemade: (message me if you're interested in any of the recipes!)
Coconut almond granola/banana nut granola
4-ingredient knock-off Samoas
Banana walnut bread
Baked oatmeal (with dark chocolate chips)
Baked Cinnamon apples
Everything but the bagel greek yogurt dip
Oatmeal protein cookies
+ I've got plenty of suggestions for what you can mix in your "nighttime snack bowls"!
Happy snacking! And don't forget to leave your favorite snacks in the comments.