The world of vegan food gets ever more diverse and exciting by the day. As well as all the naturally delicious vegan snack options, more and more companies internationally are creating amazing vegan versions of traditionally non-vegan favorites. When looking for the perfect vegan snack food to suit your mood, there are so many options for vegans to select, from heavenly healthy to insanely indulgent treats.
In this article, we take a deep dive into our ten best vegan snack foods. Throughout, we highlight options from healthy, high in protein choices through to pure comfort foods. So whether you’re looking for low calorie vegan snacks or vegan snacks for kids, we’ve got you covered.
Fruits are some of the best snacks for a vegan because they are packed with nutrients and fiber. Fruits are also low in calories and fat, making them a healthy snack choice. Additionally, fruits are easy to find and typically require no preparation. Whether you’re looking for a quick snack on the go or something to enjoy at home, fruit is a great option.
The infinite variety, incredible tastes, and nutritional benefits make fruit nature’s ultimate snack food. In the Western world, the most popular fruits tend to be bananas, apples, oranges, and grapes. If you’re lucky enough to have good access to tropical fruits, you’re probably already enjoying watermelon, mango, pineapple, and papaya. But there are so many more out there to enjoy and discover.
What about dragon fruit, rambutan, or mangosteen? Dates are a particularly great option if looking for a super-sweet snack or a natural sweetener for vegan cakes. There is literally a world of fruit to discover, each with its own nutritional superpowers.
Of course, if you can, try to make sure that the fruits you buy are organic. Not only is that better for your health, but also the absence of chemical fertilizers and pesticides makes organic food better for the environment, which is ultimately better for animals too.
Fruit can also be used to make the most delicious ice cream. Highly recommended, if you haven’t tried it before, is making your own banana ice cream, the perfect vegan ice cream alternative. Simply freeze a batch of ripe bananas for about 24 hours and then put them through a high-quality blender like a Vitamix. The result is the creamiest, tastiest vegan ice cream, which will have even your non-vegan friends queuing up for more!
Fruit smoothies are also great options for vegan snacking, especially as you can throw in other tasty and nutritious vegan ingredients, like vegetables and seeds. Hemp seed is particularly recommended for its very high levels of protein and omega-3 fatty acids and its pleasingly nutty flavor.
I’m sure most of you would just make your own vegan smoothies, but if you prefer the convenience of getting a bottled version, brands to check out include Raw Generation, Raw Blend, Pure Green, and Tohi.
Naturally high in protein and other vitamins and minerals, nuts are delicious and, sometimes, very healthy, savory vegan snacks.
Nuts are an excellent vegan snack option because they are packed with nutrients and offer a variety of health benefits. Nuts are a good source of protein, fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. They can help improve cholesterol levels, regulate blood sugar levels, and promote heart health. Additionally, nuts are relatively easy to find and transport, making them a convenient snack option for busy vegans.
Nut butter is a particularly popular way to enjoy nuts. In the past, people tended just to think of peanut butter, but you can make butter from pretty much any type of nut. Almond, cashew, and macadamia are just some of the other popular nut butter options out there.
Each nut has its own nutritional profile. Almonds, for example, are particularly high in calcium (and almond butter is obviously better than almond milk, which typically contains a very low percentage of nuts). To make sure that you are getting the healthiest nuts and nut butter, avoid those that are more heavily processed and which contain extras you don’t want, like sugar, salt, and oil.
There are also a couple of issues to watch out for from a vegan perspective when selecting nut butter concerning the oil and the sugars that they use. Some types of nut butter use palm oil. Many ethical vegans have concerns about the links between palm oil plantations and the destruction of the tropical rainforest habitat of numerous endangered species. If you are trying to avoid palm oil, look for nut butters with other oils – or, better still, no added oil at all.
Vegans should also consider avoiding nut butter with sugar. Regular readers of this blog will know that sugar is a concern for vegans because of the way it is processed. That is because some cane sugar is passed through a filter made from “bone char” (which means the charred bones of animals, normally pigs or cows). Unless you know the sugar is organic or from beets, or you have checked with the company that it has not been through bone char processing, then it’s best to avoid nut butter with sugar.
Making your own nut butter is easy enough with a good-quality food processor. But if you’re looking to buy a nut butter, some good vegan (palm-oil and cane sugar free) options include Adam’s Natural, CB’s Nuts, Yum Butter, Spread the Love Organic, Crazy Richard’s, and 365 by Whole Foods Organic.
Dips are a great vegan snack option because they are versatile and can be enjoyed with a variety of different foods. Most dips are made with plants, so they are packed with nutrients and fiber. Dips can be enjoyed with crackers, chips, vegetables, or even just on their own. With so many delicious vegan dip options available, you’re sure to find one that you love.
There are an incredible variety of naturally vegan dips to be enjoyed from world cuisine. Take the great staple of the Middle East, hummus, which is typically made from chickpeas, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, and tahini (a paste of crushed sesame seeds). The delicious flavors make hummus a particularly moreish food, while the chickpeas and the tahini provide the nutritional punch, being high in protein and, in the case of tahini, calcium.
Or what about guacamole? The Mexican dip made with avocado, lime juice, onion, cilantro, and salt that has become an international favorite. Simple to prepare and equally easy to devour in one sitting, the avocado makes this delicious option nutritious, packed as it is with heart-healthy monounsaturated fats.
When looking for something to enjoy the dips with, why not try some vegan bread (Middle Eastern pita bread is a great choice for hummus), rice cakes, a pack of tortilla chips, or simply some chopped up raw vegetables (carrots, celery, and cucumber being particularly popular options)?
Creating your own dips is nice and easy if you’re looking for ideas of vegan savory snacks to make, but if you prefer the convenience of picking them up at the store, some great brands offering vegan dips include Good Karma, Warfare Dips, This Dip is Nuts, and Trader Joe’s (try the Vegan Kale, Cashew & Basil Pesto).
4. Vegetable chips
Some people love snacking on raw vegetables. But if you prefer to make your vegetables that bit more enticing as a snack, you might prefer to make them into vegetable chips by thinly slicing them and either baking them at a low temperature or dehydrating them. Dehydrated kale chips work great and are often a favorite snack for vegan children who might otherwise be reluctant to eat the super-nutritious leafy green.
If you’re not making your own, then the following brands are offering some of the tastiest and healthiest vegetable chips on the market, Brad’s Plant Based Organic Kale Veggie Chips, Terra Sweets & Beets Vegetable Chips, Rhythm Superfoods Kale Chips, Forager Organic Vegetable Chips, Lesser Evil Himalayan Pink Salt Veggie Sticks, and Bare Snacks Sea Salt Baked Beet Chips.
Vegetable chips are a great vegan snack option as they are made from healthy ingredients. Many brands of vegetable chips are also vegan-friendly, making them a convenient and delicious snack option for vegans on the go. Plus, with so many different flavors available, there’s sure to be a vegetable chip that everyone will enjoy.
5. Energy balls
Energy balls are a great snack option for vegans because they are packed with nutrients and offer sustained energy. They are easy to make and can be customized to suit your taste. Energy balls are the perfect snack to keep you going throughout the day.
Sometimes referred to as bliss balls or protein balls, energy balls are, as their name suggests, little round snacks packed full of nutritional goodies to send your energy levels soaring. Typical ingredients in energy balls include nuts, seeds, oats, dried fruit, dates, and sometimes chocolate or cacao. Not all energy balls are vegan, but many are. It’s also easy to make your own at home.
If you’re not making your own, then the following brands have got vegan options, Bounce (the V Life range), Boostball, GoodFullStop, Deliciously Ella, and Frooze Balls.
Simply dried corn kernels that have been heated up to make them pop. Is popcorn okay on a plant-based diet? Yes, popcorn is generally considered to be vegan. Although not all the popcorn sold is vegan, it’s easy to find brands that are or to make your own vegan popcorn that doesn’t use butter. Making it in an air popper removes the requirement for oil, making it an even healthier option. Various vegan toppings can be added to make the snack even more tasty and nutritious. What about a sprinkling of nutritional yeast, which adds protein and B vitamins alongside a cheesy flavor?
If you’re not making your own popcorn, then the following brands have got vegan options, Angie’s Vegan Salted Caramel Popcorn, Pop Art (Thai Coconut Curry), Bob’s Red Mill Yellow Popcorn, 365 Everyday Value Organic Salted Popcorn, and Amish Country Popcorn.
7. Seaweed chips
Seaweed chips are a great vegan snack idea because they are healthy and delicious. Seaweed is a nutrient-rich food that is packed with vitamins and minerals, making it a great option for vegans looking for a nutritious snack. Additionally, seaweed chips are usually low in calories and fat, making them a healthier alternative to other vegan snacks.
Made from baked sheets of seaweed, seaweed crisps can be a delicious vegan snack. They are also packed with vitamins and iodine, a vital nutrient. Seaweed crisps generally contain oil and salt. Some brands also contain lots of extra flavorings and preservatives, best avoided if you are looking for healthy options.
The following brands have got good vegan seaweed chips options: SeaSnax, Nora, and Ocean’s Halo.
8. Granola bars
Granola bars are a great snack idea for vegans because they’re easy to find and normally made with vegan ingredients. Many granola bars are also organic, gluten-free, and full of healthy nuts and fruits. Plus, they’re a convenient option for on-the-go snacking. With so many delicious options available, vegans can enjoy a healthy snack anytime, anywhere.
Originally invented in New York in the late 19th century, granola is a health food option that mixes rolled oats, nuts, dried fruits, and other sweeteners. The use of products like honey means that granola is not always suitable for vegans, but vegan versions of granola are easy to find. Normally enjoyed as a breakfast item, granola bars make the food even easier to enjoy as a snack on the go.
If you’re not making your own, then there are lots of good vegan granola bar options out there, including some of the offerings from the following brands: Annie’s (the peanut butter chocolate chip and oatmeal raisin flavors), LӒRABAR (original fruit and nut bars), GoMacro MacroBar (all vegan, organic, and gluten-free), PROBAR Meal, and most of the options in the Clif Bars range. Always check the packaging to make sure that your preferred granola bar brand does not contain any animal products (and be wary of any added sugars or palm oil, as explained above).
There are plenty of delicious vegan cracker options available, whether you’re looking for something healthy or indulgent. Crackers are a great vegan snack because they are easy to find and many are dairy-free. With so many options available, you’re sure to find the perfect vegan cracker to suit your taste.
Crackers make a great, versatile vegan snacking option. Some crackers contain milk as an emulsifier or other dairy products. But, nevertheless, lots of the big cracker brands on the market are vegan. So, there is no reason why you can’t find a vegan cracker option to go with your vegan cheese (and vegan wine, if that’s your thing).
Here are some of the big-name cracker brands that don’t contain any animal products: Nabisco (Graham Originals), Ritz (Original), Wheat Thins (Big, Cracked Pepper & Olive Oil, Hint of Salt, Multigrain, Original, Reduced Fat, Sundried Tomato & Basil), Triscuit (Balsamic Vinegar & Basil, Fire Roasted Tomato, Hint of Salt, Original, Reduced Fat, Roasted Garlic, Rosemary & Olive Oil), and Back to Nature (all of their 21 varieties).
It’s worth remembering, of course, that lots of regular snacks are suitable for vegans. And chips are probably the ultimate in accidentally vegan snacks! Chips are a good snack for vegans because they are usually made with just potatoes or corn, oil, and salt. This means that many chips on the market are vegan-friendly. Plus, chips are a convenient and easy snack option that can be enjoyed on the go. Some chips do contain dairy products, but that will normally be marked clearly on the packaging.
Here are some of the regular chips that you can just as easily enjoy as a vegan snack option (not healthy though): Lay’s Classic Potato Chips, Kettle Brand Potato Chips, Pringles Original Potato Crisps, Garden of Eatin’ Blue Corn Chips, and Forager Project Cheezy Greens (worth highlighting because they are cheese-flavored but still vegan…)
Our top 10 vegan snack ideas – Summary
There are plenty of delicious vegan snack options available, whether you’re looking for something healthy or indulgent. Seaweed chips, granola bars, crackers, and chips are all great vegan snacks that are easy to find. With so many options available, you’re sure to find the perfect vegan snack to suit your taste.
As the list above shows, the range of vegan snacking options is incredible, so there’s no reason vegans can’t enjoy amazing, delicious, and nutritious snacks. There is so much out there that you can enjoy. And even the guilty pleasures don’t have to be so guilty when you know they are free from animal products and cruelty. We hope you’ve found this list helpful. Please feel free to share with us your favorite vegan snack options and brands in the comments below.