What do you eat when it’s late at night, but you’re still hungry after an early dinner? Serving another full meal sounds too heavy to digest right before going to bed, but it’s late at night and your stomach is empty.
Whatever the reason, there are a bunch of snacks that can be eaten late night. Be mindful to select lower calorie foods with sleep promoting minerals and easily digestible fibers.
What to eat for a late-night snack? Snack ideas are not the same when it comes to late night before bedtime due to weight gain and an increased BMI. Keep in mind to choose late-night snacks that are easy to digest and promote sleep.
When hunger sets in right before going to bed, consider tart cherries, slices of banana with almond butter, kiwis, pistachios to promote better sleep, protein smoothie, goji berries, crackers and string cheese, hot cereal, yogurt, and pumpkin seeds.
It’s not healthy to eat too much before going to bed, but snacking late at night may provide the much needed calories that you burn off during the day. If you have a busy schedule during the day, it’s easy to overlook daytime hunger.
The snacks listed below will help you get a good night sleep. Answered below are frequently asked questions about snacks to eat late at night.
What can I snack on at night?
Snacking at night is ok, but figuring out what to eat that is quick, tasty, and does not lead to additional pounds. It is crucial to note that late-night snacking can make weight control very difficult, therefore finding healthy snacks is important and will provide better sleep as well.
Some late night snack ideas include:
- Tart cherries: Cherries, especially tart ones have small amount of melatonin that is a sleep promoting hormone. Tart cherries can be consumed as a late night juice option or even as fresh fruit. Avoid sweetened tart cherry juice and drink no more than 8 ounces, or no more than ⅓ cup of dried tart cherries for around 140 calories.
- Banana with almond butter: This combination is delicious and healthy at the same time. Eating a banana help to increase sleep hormone levels and almond butter has magnesium that also promotes good sleep.
- Kiwis: It is a nutritious sweet-tart fruit that is loaded with vitamin C. The fruit is low in calories and a natural source of serotonin that helps to relax in the evening.
- Pistachios: Have higher levels of sleep-promoting melatonin that most other nuts.
- Protein smoothie: A protein-rich snack that includes avocado and apple at night can help with muscle repair and aid in supporting age-related muscle loss.
- Goji berries: Rich supply of antioxidants, including carotenoids that may aid good sleep. Prevent over snacking by portioning ¼ cup of dried goji berries that is equivalent to 150 calories.
- Crackers and cheese: For a balance of carbs and proteins, maybe an entire charcuterie board is a bit too much. However, consider trying whole-grain crackers and reduced fat cheddar cheese for a lower calorie option.
- Hot cereal: Not only for breakfast, but can be enjoyed at night due to easy digestibility. For instance, oatmeal is a good source of fiber and support sleep when combined with milk.
- Yogurt: It is an excellent source of calcium that aids in keeping the bones stronger but also linked to better sleep. Stick with 6 ounce containers of plain nonfat yogurt, and add a small amount of fruit and granola to make it a wholesome snack.
- Pumpkin seeds: Directly linked to the provision of magnesium that may equate to better sleep. Try roasted pumpkin seeds with raisins or fresh fruit to encourage better sleep.
What flavor goes well for a late-night snack?
Salt makes everything tastier, but try a splash of vinegar or lemon juice in addition to grabbing a salt shaker to enhance the flavor of the snacks. Like with salt, this adds bitter flavor and acidity to the snacks, and be sure to add pepper for that extra spicy punch.
Sugar, honey, butter, cream, and maple syrup add a sweet twist to any snack. Also, try hearty herbs such as rosemary, thyme, sage, marjoram, and oregano to improve the flavor, texture, and mouthfeel.
Here are classic flavor combination to try for late-night snacks:
- hummus + grain crackers + celery sticks
- oatmeal + maple syrup + pumpkin seeds + chia seeds
- greek yogurt + blackberries + coconut flakes + pineapple + pistachios
- cottage cheese + raspberries + almonds + cinnamon
- ritz crackers + honey + ricotta cheese + bacon
Late Night Snack Ideas: Conclusion
Do not hesitate to snack or quench your hunger if you are starving at night. However, eating a late night snack that has less than 200 calories is the best option to go for.
Whole and minimally processed foods can be helpful in quenching hunger cravings, keeping the body healthy and promoting good sleep. Stick with natural and easy to prepare healthy snack ideas instead of packaged sweet bars or salty chips.
When looking for snack ideas for late night, try dried or tart cherry juice, banana with almond butter, kiwis, pistachios, protein smoothie, goji berries, crackers and cheddar cheese, oatmeal, plain nonfat yogurt with toppings, and pumpkin seeds.
Most healthy snacks have sleep-supportive compounds such as serotonin, melatonin, magnesium, calcium, and tryptophan. That said, it’s okay to snack when you feel hungry at night for better sleep, but it shouldn’t be done on a regular basis.
There are various ways to fulfill late-night hunger. Burgers and fries are not the only solution, nor is starving yourself till the next day. Use this guide full of flavor combinations and snack ideas to fulfill your late night hunger.