The 25 Best Plant-Based Snacks

These plant-based snacks are perfect for when you need something to tide you over until your next meal. Find sweet, salty, and savory ideas.

A close up of three small bowls filled with nuts and dried dates

Did you know that a quarter of Americans snack multiple times per day?

The International Food Information Council surveyed Americans in 2020 and found that not only are 25 percent of Americans snacking throughout the day, close to 4 in 10 Americans replace at least one meal per day with a snack.

If this sounds familiar––and you’re following a plant-based diet––then you don’t want to miss these plant-based snack ideas that I’ve put together for you.

Learn how to make plant-based snacks part of your diet and how to do so in a way that increases the variety of nutrients that you take in––all while contributing to a healthy, plant-based diet.

A woman carrying a cart shopping at a grocery store

How to shop for plant-based snacks

Shopping for plant-based snacks doesn’t need to be complicated, but it’s a good idea to pay attention to the nutrients of the snacks that make their way into your grocery cart.

Starting with the basics, a plant-based snack that includes a combination of complex carbohydrates, fat, and/or protein is more likely to be both satisfying and filling.

This combination can also help with improving the flavor profile of your snack while increasing the variety of nutrients you get––think a larger variety of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants–in your diet.

While you don’t need to include all three of these nutrients in every snack, it’s a good idea to pair two or more together.

Next, check the labels of your snack choice to see how the added sugar, fiber, and saturated fat stack up to daily value recommendations. These nutrients are important to consider when filling your cart with healthy, plant-based snacks.

Added sugar in plant-based snacks

Added sugar is the sugar added to foods during processing. To identify the amount of added sugar in a product, check the Nutrition Facts Panel and the food’s ingredient list.

Choose snacks with the lowest amount of added sugar to avoid exceeding the recommended total daily added sugar intake. The daily value for added sugar is 50 grams, so aim to consume less than this amount in one day.

Added sugars include not only cane sugar but also maple syrup, agave, and molasses.

Plant-based snacks that are most likely to have higher amounts of added sugar include granola, sweetened dried fruit, fruit or granola bars, cereals, and plant-based frozen desserts.

Don’t dismiss these snacks altogether but do be aware that you may need to spend a little extra time scrutinizing labels when choosing plant-based snacks from these categories.

Fiber in plant-based snacks

Fiber plays an important role in gut health while also helping to increase the satisfaction of a snack or meal.

Snacks are a great way to add more fiber to your diet, but this doesn’t mean you need to fill up on foods that contain extra fiber added to the food.

Such foods will often contain inulin or chicory root in the ingredients list. Instead, focus on foods naturally high in fiber like fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and whole grains.

Saturated fat in plant-based snacks

You may not consider saturated fat to be a nutrient of concern, since it’s predominantly an animal-based fat.

However, plant-based eaters still need to keep an eye on this nutrient, as plant-based sources of saturated fat like palm and coconut oil are found in a variety of packaged snacks.

Limit plant-based snacks and desserts to ones that contain more than 20 to 30 percent of the daily value for saturated fat, and opt for snacks lower in saturated fat.

Store-bought plant-based snacks

The most obvious place to look for plant-based snacks is in the produce aisle, however plant-based snacks can be found throughout the grocery store. Some snacks require more prep, while others are great to throw in your bag for eating on-the-go.

Trail mix, nuts, seeds, and dried fruit

Trail mix is a standby for snacking on the go–and most mixes are naturally plant based.

Choosing a packaged trail mix can be a convenient way to add a plant-based snack to your cart.

However, doing so may require extra label reading as many trail mixes are high in added sugar from sugar-sweetened fruit, candy, or chocolate-coated pieces that are thrown into the mix.

One alternative is to buy a few of your favorite (unsalted and unsweetened) nuts, seeds, and dried fruit so you can make your own mix at home. This makes for endless combinations while also helping to cut back on added sugar and sodium.

Roasted chickpeas, broad beans, and/or peas

Roasted chickpeas, broad beans, and peas are excellent plant-based snack options, as they deliver both protein and fiber.

Luckily, many companies are manufacturing interesting flavors of these roasted bean and legume snacks–which makes for a fun way to boost your intake of nutrients like protein and fiber.

Check product labels for added sugar, as many of the roasted snacks may be more than lightly sweetened.

plant-based chips on a wooden board

Veggie chips

It’s easy to be fooled into thinking that veggie chips are the healthier alternative to potato chips. But this is only sometimes the case, which is why it’s important to look at a product’s nutrition label.

Keep an eye on the ingredient list and opt for picks made with whole vegetables like peas or sweet potatoes, versus ones made with vegetable starches, powders, or other ingredients like refined grains.

Next, check the sodium content to be sure you’re choosing a chip with a lower amount of added salt.

Granola bars, grain-based bars, and protein bars

Bars are a convenient plant-based snack to throw into a bag or backpack for eating on-the-go. Each type of bar provides a different nutrient profile, depending on what you’re looking to buy.

Some are high in protein, while others are a great source of heart-healthy, unsaturated fats. Still others are a higher in fiber.

Knowing what you’re looking for can help with deciding which bar is best for you.

For example, a protein bar may be the best pick if you’re planning to eat it as a stand-alone snack, while a higher-fiber bar might be a better option when paired with a plant-based source of protein like roasted chickpeas or edamame.

No matter which bar you choose, check the label for added sugar and skip bars with more than 10 grams of added sugar.

assorted green vegetables on a grocery shelf

Fresh fruits and vegetables

The produce aisle shouldn’t be missed when it comes to picking up healthy, plant-based snacks. Fruits and vegetables in their own “package” of an inedible rind–like bananas–make for a great on-the-go snacking, since you can peel away the outer layer.

Plus, they’re heartier than many fruits and vegetables that may become mushy when packed away in a bag. The produce aisle is also where you can pick up convenient snacks like pre-chopped fruits and vegetables to make at-home prep easier.

Chocolate energy balls covered in shredded coconut arranged on a wooden board

Easy, at-home plant-based snacks

Preparing plant-based snacks at home takes a little extra time, but doing so can save you a lot of money versus buying store-bought snacks.

Bonus: All the recipes listed here are dietitian-approved, so you can be sure they offer plenty of nutrients to keep your snack time satisfying and healthy.

Energy balls

Energy balls travel well for snacking on the go, plus they’re incredibly versatile when it comes to mixing up the flavor profile with a variety of ingredients.

Try one of these homemade energy balls the next time you’re looking for a healthy snack.

Chocolate Almond Butter Protein Balls
from my own kitchen
Check out this recipe
Almond and Chocolate protein balls on a plate
Strawberry Shortcake Bliss Balls 
from Elise Harlow, RD, owner of the Flourished Table
Check out this recipe
strawberry shortcake bliss balls close up
Pumpkin Cookie Dough Bites 
from Julie Andrews, MS, RD, author of The 28-Day DASH Diet Weight Loss Program
Check out this recipe
pumpkin energy bites on a plate
Figgy Almond Coconut Energy Pops
from Sarah Pflugradt, MS, RDN, author of Live to Eat Well Weight-Loss Plan
Check out this recipe
top down view of figgy energy balls on a plate
3 Ingredient Peanut Butter Oatmeal Balls
from KeyVion Miller, RD, owner of KeyVion Miller Nutrition
Check out this recipe
woman holding a green smoothie with a straw


It’s hard to go wrong with a smoothie, especially when it’s made with good-for-you, satisfying ingredients.

Smoothies are an excellent way to sneak in extra vegetables and can be the perfect vehicle for heart-healthy fats like avocado or plant-based proteins like tofu and beans.

Check out these smoothie recipes created by registered dietitians.

Orange Strawberry Smoothie
from my own kitchen
Check out this recipe
layered strawberry orange smoothie
Banana Nut Smoothie 
from Christie Gagnon, RD, owner of Hoorah to Health
Check out this recipe
top down view of banana nut smoothie with a straw
Strawberry Peanut Butter Smoothie 
from Kristi Ruth, RD, nutrition blogger at Carrots & Cookies
Check out this recipe
Healthy Blueberry Smoothie with Almond Butter 
from nutrition blogger Melissa Traub, RD
Check out this recipe
blueberry peanut butter smoothie
Healthy Avocado Smoothie with Grape Juice 
from my own kitchen
Check out this recipe
healthy avocado grape smoothie

Hummus and vegetables

Hummus is a great plant-based snack that’s provides both fiber and protein. Plus, it’s versatile–you can eat as a dip for vegetables or spread it on crackers or toast.

These homemade hummus recipes are easy to prepare, are packed with flavor, and are sure to have you rethinking the need to buy the pre-made version.

Spiced Carrot Hummus 
from Sarah Koszyk, MA, RDN, author of 365 Snacks for Every Day of the Year
Check out this recipe
Oil-Free Beetroot Hummus 
from Dixya Bhattarai, MS, RD, owner of Food, Pleasure & Health
Check out this recipe
beetroot hummus in a bowl surrounded by assorted veggie sticks
Olive Hummus 
from Julie Andrews
Check out this recipe
Smoky Butternut Squash Hummus 
from Ashley Petrie, RDN, owner of Everyday Nutrition & Wellness
Check out this recipe
butternut squash hummus in a bowl with a side of vegetables
Food Scrap Hummus Garden
from Jackie Newgent, RD, author of The With or Without Meat Cookbook
Check out this recipe
top down view of hummus in a rectangular dish topped with various chopped veggies
Hummus Toast with Everything Bagel Seasoning
from my own kitchen
Check out this recipe
Hummus Toast with Everything Bagel Seasoning

Nut- and seed-based snacks

Nuts and seeds are terrific plant-based sources of unsaturated fats, protein, and fiber. Each type of seed and nut provides a slightly different nutrient profile, so aim for a variety.

These dietitian-approved recipes are made with a combination of nuts and/or seeds, plus sweet and savory flavor additions.

Pumpkin Seed Granola 
from Allison Herries, MS, RDN, owner of Bite Out of Life Nutrition
Check out this recipe
pumpkin seed granola spread out on a white surface
Honey Nut Granola 
from Julie Andrews
Check out this recipe
top down view of honey nut granola in a bowl
Sweet and Hot Pecans 
from Jennifer Hanes, MS, RDN, a dietitian in Texas
Check out this recipe
close up of sweet and hot pecans
Coconut Seed Cluster 
from Judy Barbe, RD, author of Your 6-Week Guide to LiveBest
Check out this recipe
coconut clusters
No-Bake Healthy Energy Bars with Prunes
from my own kitchen
Check out this recipe
A close up of a no bake healthy energy bar

Almost dessert plant-based snacks

These plant-based snack recipes are so good you’ll think you’re eating dessert instead of a healthy snack!

They’re made from ingredients like apples, chickpeas, and dark chocolate and are a great way to increase your plant intake while also enjoy a little bit of sweetness.

Wild Blueberry Lemon Nice Cream
from my own kitchen
Check out this recipe
Wild Blueberry Lemon Nice Cream with Edible Flowers
Vegan Chickpea Cookie Dough
from Nicole Stevens, MSc, RD, owner of Lettuce Veg Out
Check out this recipe
top down view of edible chickpea cookie dough in a bowl with spoon
Grilled Pineapple 
from Gagnon
Check out this recipe
grilled pineapple
Loaded Apple Nachos 
from Cara Harbstreet, MS, RD, author of The Pescatarian Cookbook
Check out this recipe
loaded apple nachos
Chocolate Banana Nice Cream 
from my own kitchen
Check out this recipe
Chocolate Banana Nice Cream

Final thoughts

Whether you’re one of the 4 in 10 Americans who replace a meal with a snack or you’re one to rarely add snacks to your day, you now have so many options for making plant-based snacking a part of your healthy diet.

Have plant-based snacks work for you by choosing nutrient-dense, satisfying, and delicious options every time you snack.


These plant-based snacks are perfect for when you need something to tide you over until your next meal. Find sweet, salty, and savory ideas.
Plant-Based Eating |

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