Wine is definitely a drink to consume with food. Most of us pour a glass with our evening meals. Yet would you agree that these days we are too busy, too tired, too stressed or simply don’t have time to cook a simple meal? Isn’t it quite strange that we strive for a better living and work really hard for that, but we pay for it with our health?
More and more people opt for a quick snack and a glass of wine. We definitely don’t encourage you to buy a quick takeaway as most of them use very cheap ingredients and refined trans fats to cook. Instead, what about mastering an art of healthy snacks?
In our previous articles about healthy fats and paleo diet, I have been trying to get some initial thoughts on healthier organic produce. This time we expand on it and introduce even more easy to make recipes for healthy snacks. Naturally, there would be some organic wine pairings suggested too. Ready to explore?
We’ve browsed through some popular healthy snacks recipes to select a few that are not only super easy to make, but will nourish your body too. In addition to nutritional value, we would also want to cater for our waistline, so all of these heathy snacks contain less than 200 calories a portion with at least 10 grams of protein and 5 grams of fibre.
Protein and some physical activity (remember to walk for at least 10000 steps a day!) help to grow lean muscle mass. The latter will boost your metabolism and help you to burn fat. Fibre significantly improves your digestion and keeps you stay away from unnecessary sugars. Your healthy snacks and a glass of organic wine would be even healthier without a sweet treat!
Here are 20 amazing healthy snacks that you can prep very quickly and pair with a glass of organic wine. They are grouped by fish, chicken, meat and veggie heathy snacks:
Fresh fish and seafood scream for a glass of medium bodied white wine (especially for a richer prawn cocktail) or a lightly chilled juicy red wine that hasn't seen any oak ageing. We will recommend light Pinot Grigio with no sulphites added or La Biancara Masieri, an unfiltered white wine from just outside of Venice; or chilled Pinot Noir (choose from New Zealand Petit Clos award winning Pinot to a very light and elegant Pinot Noir from Alsace).
Flavoursome chicken snacks need fuller bodied white wines like this signature Soave wine that is full of ripe pear flavours; if you want to add even more richness to your white wine, choose Gavi 'Spinola' - it will finish with that delicate touch of biscuit and almonds. Both of these natural white wines are made without added sulphites. You have much more options in terms of organic red wines too: juicy, light and smooth Cotes du Rhone 'Les Romanins' would be a good option, a more vibrant but also fresh Petit Bernat Oller from a tiny Spanish appellation just outside of Barcelona will add that little spark of life to your dish. Our top choice is a very fresh yet more complex Sartiu by Sedilesu family that makes this gorgeous red wine in Sardinia. It has been one of our bestselling wines since we've started this business and Jamie Oliver agrees with us too - he has featured this wine in his Super Food programme where he was talking about Sardinia and their Cannonau wines that are so rich in antioxidants.
A lot of nutritionists scream in unison how we should avoid red meats and limit our consumption to a bare minimum. Yet lean meat contains a lot of good quality protein, so do not stress out by eating a good healthy snack made of red meat. Lean meats are also great to pair with red wines that are higher in tannins as the latter bind with animal proteins and create that truly delicious round mouthfeel. Treat yourself to an award-winning Cotes du Rhone Village called 'Plan du Dieu' as it is truly heaven sent! if you like more pronounced and strongly flavoured wines, opt for Primitivo made by one of the oldest organic producers in Puglia - Fatalone, it has a very rich flavour of balsamic strawberries and a rich mouthfeel. If, on contrary, you do not want anything too alive and kicking and prefer a smoother and milder red wine, choose our bestselling Tragolargo made by true artisan Rafa Bernabe in Alicante, great value sulphite free wine made of Monastrell grapes.
Best option: red peppers with guacamole.
Why: Red peppers are nutritious, high in antioxidants (beta carotene) and rich in vitamin C. It is proven that you need to seek natural sources of vitamin C rather than rely on the supplements. Pair it with just under 100 grams of guacamole and this healthy snack will add some necessary fibre, healthy fats and all under 200 calories.
Not too keen on peppers? Try cucumber with houmous.
Why: cucumbers contain cucurbitacin E, which is linked to anti-cancer effects. Houmous that is made of organic chickpeas, garlic and olive oil reduces inflammation and contributes greatly to your heart’s health. Slice one large cucumber and serve with 100 grams of organic houmous, it will be delicious and under 180 calories.
Not too keen on cucumbers too? Try tomato with mozzarella.
Why: tomatoes are great for you, they are rich in vitamin C, potassium and lycopene. The latter is an antioxidant that may reduce your risk of cancer and heart disease. Mozzarella cheese is high in protein, calcium and vitamin B12. It is linked to a decrease in heart disease risk as it raises your levels of good HDL cholesterol. Serve a handful of good quality cherry tomatoes with 60 grams of mozzarella to keep it all well under 200 calories.
Other veggie healthy snacks options:
Veggie dishes are probably the most versatile to match with organic wines yet they do not have that much protein, so take good care when choosing your reds: too high in tannin and it will taste just ever so slightly bitter. Medium bodied Rioja Joven (red, unaged and very young) called Vina Illusion would be a good choice, whilst Ottavio Rube Rosso made of Barbera will provide that juicy kick of sour cherries that will go really well with spicier veggie dishes. If you want to spend a bit more, try one of our organic stars - Le Roc des Anges from Roussillon, it is made of a rich blend of Grenache and Mourvedre but in a very light style, so you will taste the complexity of this fantastic red wine without it being too heavy. The above mentioned unfiltered white La Biancara is our popular choice for white wine to match with vegetarian and vegan dishes and would be great for healthy snacks too. Something that is more off beaten track is sulphite free rose wine - it does come with a price tag, but it is so much worth it: try Musikanto rose wine for fresh strawberry flavours and mild refreshing taste.
Treat yourself better with our healthy snacks ideas and organic wine suggestions. We hope you will enjoy it. Please let us know how you get on!
Here is a full list of recommended organic wines: