ACES Publications

Author: Barbara Struempler
PubID: HE-0820
Title: Smart Snacks
Pages: 4     Balance: 0
HE-0820 Smart Snacks

Smart Snacks

HE-0820 New March 2004. Barbara Struempler, Extension Nutritionist, Professor, Nutrition and Food Science, Auburn University

Snacks are an important part of eating. They provide nutrients and food energy to go, grow, and learn. Following these suggestions will help you make smart snack and drink choices. Read Nutrition Facts and use the % Daily Values on product labels to guide your snack selections. Remember, the amount counts!

Our definition of a smart snack is one that contains at least 6% Daily Value of one or more vitamins, minerals, or dietary fiber, less than 10% Daily Value of Total Fat and Total Carbohydrate, and no more than 360 milligrams (mg) sodium. The following snack foods and drinks meet our Smart Snack guidelines.

How do your snack choices stack up?


Aim for at least 5 Fruits and Vegetables a Day

Fresh Fruits Dry Fruits Fresh Vegetables
1 piece or ½ cup
Pineapple slices/chunks
¼ cup
Raisins (about 2 tablespoons)
Broccoli florets
Baby carrots
Celery sticks
Cherry tomatoes
Grape tomatoes
Corn on the cob
Cucumber chips
Sweet potato wedges
Zucchini sticks

Fruit Containers

Fruits in single serving cans or in cups are handy and healthy.
Del Monte Lite Pack—diced peaches and mixed fruit
Dole Fruit Gel Bowls
Dole Fruit Bowls
Mott's Applesauce

Bread and crackers made of whole wheat, rolled oats, or other whole grains are smartest. Check first ingredient on the label.


Sandwich bread (1 slice)
Pita bread (1.2)
Flour tortillas (1)
Bagels (l.2)
Great Value Cheese and Bacon Baked Crisp Snacks (18 crackers)
Great Value Cheese Baked Crisp Snacks (18 crackers)
Great Value Double Cross Baked Crisp Snacks (7 crackers)
Great Value Reduced Fat Wheat Baked Crisp Snacks (16 crackers)
Great Value Vegetable Baked Crisp Snacks (18 crackers)
Great Value White Cheddar Baked Crisp Snacks (18 crackers)
Nabisco Reduced Fat Cheese Nips (31 pieces)
Nabisco Reduced Fat Triscuits (7 crackers)
Nabisco Reduced Fat Wheat Thins (l6 crackers)
Southern Home Snack Crackers (5 crackers)


Great Value (12 pieces), Kellogg’s, and Nabisco Animal Crackers (24 pieces)
Nabisco Fig Newtons, reduced fat and regular (2 bars)
Great Value, Kellogg's, Nabisco, and Southern Homes Graham Crackers, regular and low fat (2 cracker sheets)
Murray Ginger Snaps (15 cookies)
Great Value Oatmeal cookies (2 cookies)
Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Treats Original (1 square)
Nabisco Teddy Grahams (24 pieces)
Bud’s Best Reduced Fat Vanilla Wafers (11 wafers)
Great Value Vanilla Wafers (7 wafers)

Running late? On the go? Keep individual snack packages on hand. Look for ones that contain protein and are fortified with nutrients.

Breakfast Bars and Cereal Mix

(1- to 11.4-ounce bars)

General Mills Chex Morning Mix
General Mills Milk 'n Cereal Bars—Cheerios, Cocoa Puffs
Kellogg's Special K Bar
Kellogg's Nutri Grain Cereal Bars—all varieties
Kellogg's Nutri Grain Twists—Apple Cobbler, Cappuccino & Cream
Quaker Oats Fruit and Oatmeal Bars—all varieties
General Mills Nature Valley Chewy Trail Mix Bars—Fruit and Nut Apple Cinnamon
General Mills Nature Valley Crunchy Granola Bars—all varieties
Keebler Journey Bars151;Apple Cinnamon, Peanut Butter Fudge
Quaker Oats Chewy Granola Bars—all varieties

Chips, Pretzels, and Rice Cakes

(1-ounce servings)

Frito Lay—Baked Potato, Baked BBQ, and Baked Sour Cream & Onion Potato Crisps
Frito Lay—Baked Cooler Ranch and Baked Nacho Cheesier Doritos
Ruffles Baked Potato and Baked Cheddar and Sour Cream Potato Crisps
Southern Home Mini Twist Pretzels, Fat Free (IS)
Snyder's Pretzels and Sour Dough Pretzels
Quaker Oats Rice Snacks, mini (7 cakes)



Dasani water
Aquafina water
Fruit20 Plus

Milk (8 ounces)

1% or skim milk, white
1% or skim milk, flavored
Soy milk

Fruit and Vegetable Juices (6 to 12 ounces)

Dole Juice Boxes—Orange, Strawberry Banana, Pine-orange Banana
Minute Maid Juices to Go—Orange, Orange Blend, Apple, White Grapefruit
Minute Made Juice Boxes—all varieties
Mott’s Juice—Orange, Apple
Treetop Juice—Apple, Grape
Dole Juice—Pineapple
Juicy Juice—All varieties
Tropicana Juice—Orange, Apple, Grape, Grapefruit
Welch’s Juice—Grape
Very Fine 100% Juices—Apple, Orange, Grape, Grapefruit, Tomato Juice
V8 Juice

Sports Drinks (12 ounces or less)

Nuts and Seeds

Nuts are Smart Snacks because they are good for the heart. They are high in fat so only eat a handful (1 ounce).

Cracker Jacks Nothing But Nuts—Original and Toffee Peanuts >Frito Lay Honey Roasted, Hot Roasted, Salted Roasted Peanuts
Frito Lay Regular and BBQ Sunflower Seeds, Sunflower Seed Kernels
Frito Lay Smoke Flavored Almonds
Lance Cashews
Lance Honey Toasted and Salted Peanuts
Lance Pistachios
Lance Sunflower Seeds

Low-Fat Dairy Foods

(1 slice/1 serving)
Reduced fat varieties: American, Cheddar, Monterey Jack, mozzarella, string, Swiss
Hershey (1 tube) Portable Pudding, all flavors
Kozy Shack (4-ounce cup) No sugar added
Winky Pudding Pals (4-ounce cup) all flavors
Yogurt can be high in sugar. Check the Nutrition Facts on the label.
Breyers (8-ounce cup) Light Fat Free, all flavors
Breyers (4-ounce cup) Smooth and Creamy, all flavors
Colombo (8-ounce cup) Light, all flavors
Dannon (4-ounce cup) Fruit Blend and Light N Fit, all flavors
Dannon (6-ounce cup) Light Fit, all flavors
Dannon (7-ounces) Light and Fit Smoothie
Great Value (6-ounce cup) Light low fat, all flavors
Penn Maid (8-ounce cup) Light, all flavors
Winn Dixie (8-ounce cup) Fat Free, all flavors
Yoplait (6-ounce cup) Light, all flavors
Yoplait (4-ounce cup) Custard Style; Yumsters, all flavors; original, all flavors; Trix, all flavors
Frozen Yogurt (½ cup)

For more information, contact your county Extension office. Visit or look in your telephone directory under your county's name to find contact information.

Published by the Alabama Cooperative Extension System (Alabama A&M University and Auburn University), an equal opportunity educator and employer.

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