Four Snacks to Keep You Focused at Work

I once agreed to lead a weekly seminar at work for people in the community. To encourage attendance, my boss printed flyers advertising free snacks. Due to unforeseen circumstances, we ended up revamping the seminar and changing the location. Long story short – we were no longer in charge of snacks.

(Un)fortunately, the change in location happened after my supervisor bought a bunch of bags of mini Oreos and Cheez-Its and told me to store them in my office. No longer accountable to make sure the snacks made it to the seminar in one piece, I ate more than just a couple bags over the next few weeks.

It’s inevitable to start feeling peckish around 3 pm. Lunch is long behind you but you still have a few hours left in the work day to stay alert. Having a snack is an obvious way to get through the post-lunch slump, but Cheez-Its and Oreos, while delicious, are probably not the best choice if you want to avoid feeling sluggish a few minutes later. 

snacks to stay focused at work

Instead, try these nutritious snacks to stay focused at work.

Protein bars

I love protein bars because you can’t beat them when it comes to convenience. Need something but only have five minutes between meetings? No problem. Heading to happy hour after work and don’t want to be stuck with Tupperware from all of your snacks? Don’t worry. Stepping out of the office a lot during your work day? They’re portable.

But not all protein/granola bars are created equal. Some options might taste great but won’t leave you any better off than that bag of mini Oreos. Check the macros and look for options that are high in protein and low in sugar to keep you energized all day.

Or if you want to be sure of exactly what’s in your bar, make your own with recipes like this one from Half Baked Harvest that’s full of superfoods, ready in ten minutes, no bake, and totally delicious – I can vouch.

Fruits and veggies + dip

You’ve heard it since preschool – eat your fruits and vegetables. They’re high in micronutrients and fiber, low in calories, and generally have a lot to offer. Pair fruits and veggies with some type of dip that’s high in protein and you’ll stay full until dinner. Mix and match some of these combinations to brighten up your afternoon.

  • Apples + peanut butter
  • Carrots + hummus
  • Celery + almond butter
  • Jicama + black bean dip
  • Bell peppers + Greek yogurt + herbs

Mixed nuts

Looking for something crunchy that will mimic the feeling of breaking open a bag of chips? Mixed nuts are your answer.

Nuts are great because, like protein bars, they’re compact, highly portable and create little mess. They’re also a great source of healthy fats, protein, and micronutrients. While the exact nutrient breakdown varies from nut to nut, they’re all nutritional powerhouses.

Mixed nuts come in so many combinations and flavors you’re sure to find an option you’ll like. Whether you’re looking for raw, roasted, salted, unsalted, or Thai lime and chili, there’s a mixed nut out there to get you through your afternoon slump.

Chickpea-based snacks

Chickpeas have been one of the major food trends of the last few years and for good reason. They’re high in plant-based protein and fiber, super filling, and they taste amazing. From chickpea pasta to aquafaba as a vegan egg substitute, there’s no shortage of creative ways people are using chickpeas.

For snacking at work, try these chickpea-based snacks to finish your day strong.

  • The Good Bean crispy chickpeas as a crunchy alternative to chips that’s also nut-free for those who are allergic.
  • Hippeas chickpea puffs which are a great replacement for Cheetos and free of all big 8 allergens.
  • DIY roasted chickpeas which you can add into your weekly meal prep and personalize to your tastes.

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About Kira Schreiber

Kira grew up in the Chicago suburbs and is passionate about mental health, healthy eating, and sustainability. After spending the first part of her career working for a non profit mental health agency in Southern California, she transitioned to pursue a career in her passion for cooking. Now back in Chicago, Kira spends her days developing healthy recipes for a food tech start up. When not in the kitchen or on her laptop she loves spending time outdoors, hitting up a spin class, or watching home decor DIYs on YouTube.