This is a for all of you out there who think that yogurt is just okay. It’s also for those of you out there who refuse to try yogurt, because you ate it one time and it was too this or that. And for those of you who already love yogurt, stick around … because who doesn’t love a new way of eating this amazing substance?
My main motivation for sharing these ideas it to help you think about your snacking situation from outside the chip bag. When I look at my grocery budget, I often see that buying pre-packaged snacks is one of the most expensive ways to blow money. Buy yogurt in a big tub with vanilla flavoring and do your own add-ins. It will be fresh, it will be cheap, and it will be a personalized experiment. Eating yogurt is one of the ways I cut down on my grocery bill each week, and it also has the health benefits that you just won’t find in fried chips.
A preface on yogurt benefits. It has all kinds of vitamins and minerals and stuff, like calcium, protein, potassium, B2 and B12, and more. Then, there’s the benefit of what turns milk into yogurt: bacteria. Not the bad kind of bacteria that wreck your intestines and leave you stuck to the toilet for a number of hours. No. The kind of bacteria that helps your digestive system by helping you break down foods. And digestive health is whole body health. Every function in your body relies on the efficiency of nutrient intake, aka digestion. Yogurt can also be an excellent source of fat in your diet. Think that’s a bad thing? Check again: your bodily functions will be disrupted without enough fat in your diet. One of the more important systems this affects is your nervous system. Read more here.
On to the fun stuff! Here are some of my favorite ways to eat yogurt that have been proven to help ease the yogurt-squeemish into at least an appreciation of it.
Yogurt with Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chips
It can take some time to get the ratio down of PB to yogurt, but it’s worth the effort. I often find myself with a glob of PB leftover at the end because my eyes were bigger than my stomach. But I’m also the kind of person who takes scoops of PB and just eats it off of the spoon. I overestimate sometimes. My partner, Evan, likes to swirl the PB into the yogurt. I find this to be incredibly risky (what if the ratio is off!?) but he walks on the wild side.
Flavored Yogurt with Ritz Crackers
My favorite version of this is to use key lime greek yogurt. Kid you not, it tastes like key lime pie. I actually like it better than key lime pie. I don’t buy flavored yogurt any longer as it isn’t offered in the big tubs at Aldi, but this is nevertheless a delicious choice with any kind. There’s just something about that crisp, buttery cracker being smeared with creamy, tart yogurt. Oh.
Pretzels with Yogurt
This was my go-to yogurty snack for a long time, until I realized there was soy in the pretzels I was buying. I’m allergic to soy. Was it a huge deal? No. But when you’re eating something that’s supposed to help your digestion and help eliminate bloating, and pairing that with something that makes you feel like you’re being pumped full of helium … not desirable. Nevertheless, this is an absolutely delicious pairing that I highly recommend. It’s also something that would go well with peanut butter or chocolate.
Banana and Yogurt
Really, any fruit, but I again like to pair this with peanut butter (seeing a trend here?), so I stick with bananas. This is one of the healthiest ways to eat yogurt. However, there is a downside to pairing something creamy with something that is also creamy. If it didn’t taste so great, I’d have a hard time getting it down because of all the texture sameness. This would be a great time to throw in some nuts! Nuts are one of those magical things that we should all be eating more of, anyway.
Homemade Granola with Yogurt
I absolutely love making homemade granola. I don’t do it nearly enough, especially considering how easy it is to make! When I unexpectedly run out of milk I will also eat my cereal with yogurt in the morning. This is probably a little more hardcore, since a lot of cereals don’t have a ton of flavoring to them. But a good granola is hard to beat. Soon I will post some of my homemade granola recipes, too, but until that time you can find several on my Pinterest board, here.
That’s all I’ve got! Those are my favorite ways to consume this magical snack called yogurt. Soon I hope to also look into making my own and my own kefir, too. How do you eat yours? Do you have any other healthy snacks that are both diverse and inexpensive?