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Healthy snacks you can take on-the-go

Question for everyone:

Do you have any ideas for portable healthy snacks?

I’ve been trying to post more lunchbox-friendly recipes lately, because kids are going back to school and therefore will have no use for messy recipes like Dark Chocolate Brownie Batter Dip.

A lot of people have been asking me for good portable snack recommendations. I thought I’d throw the question out to y’all so you can help each other out. If you have any recommendations for snacks that are good to take on-the-go, feel free to leave your suggestions!  Below are a few of my snack recipes that are easy to transport:


Chocolate-Chip Blondies

These are a big hit every time I make them for kids. The children never seem to be scared by the fact that the blondies contain oats and beans. They only care that the blondies taste good! Kids are so smart.


Homemade Chocolate Larabars

Much cheaper than store-bought Larabars, and they taste better too. Plus you can customize them. One of these days, I’m going to splurge on freeze-dried raspberries so I can make chocolate-raspberry Larabars.


Berry Crumble Bars

So soft and sweet and buttery… and so healthy you can have three!

cookie dough babies

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Babies

These are one of my favorite portable snacks. I often make them in bar form, so they’re like a homemade version of my favorite Cookie Dough Larabars.


Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Cookies

New obsession. I’m sorry; I’ll try to refrain from mentioning them again for a period of… oh, probably around two hours.


Baked Oatmeal Cake

Also known as Boatmeal. One of the most-popular recipes on my blog. This makes a really good “on the go” breakfast, and you can easily make it up the day/night before.


Rice Crispy Treat Babies

You could also make this recipe into traditional rice-crispy treat squares. Sorry, they won’t come wrapped in shiny turquoise.


Gooey PB&J Blondies

I made these for the birthday party of a friend’s daughter, and the kids went crazy for them. Just remember to include a wet napkin if you pack one of these in a lunchbox. They can be a bit sticky, thanks to the jelly.


Ultimate Fudge Brownies

Another one of my favorites. Pretty much, if a recipe has chocolate, it’s my favorite. Bonus points for “fudge” in the title.


Healthy Chocolate-Chip Cookies

I have yet to meet a person who doesn’t like chocolate-chip cookies. Truly, they must be the most beloved snack food in America. Well, maybe it’s a tie with potato chips. Everyone seems to love potato chips. But I would much rather have chocolate-chip cookies!

Question of the Day:

What are your favorite snacks to bring when you’re on-the-go?

Feel free to leave suggestions for packaged snack products as well as recipes, and leaving links is fine too. The point of this question is to help inspire others who are looking for ideas. So list as many ideas as you wish!


Published on August 26, 2011

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  1. Katie @ Peace Love and Oats says

    Lol I know this sounds lame, but my favorite snack is an apple! I slice one up and put it in a baggy every morning! It lasts longer when I eat it sliced, and it’s always so good! Besides that, definitely whatever granola bar I’m obsessed with at the moment. Right now it’s BoBo’s Oat Bars which are made in Boulder, CO! Soooo good and filling!

  2. Mary says

    I make LaraBALLS by processing approximately equal parts dates, dried apricots, walnuts, and almonds with about 1/4 cup of unsweetened shredded coconut and a splash of vanilla. I roll them in to 1 inch balls and pop them in the fridge or freezer. I’ve used dried cherries and other dried fruits and it always turns out great. You don’t have to be very precise- just process it until the dough holds together. They are much more portable in ball form.

  3. Gesche says

    I love bringing nuts, single portion sized almond butter (you can find it on, vegan soy jerky by primal spirit (i love their thai peanut flavor), I love raw revolution 100 calorie bars, mary gone crackers’ crackers, or go raw crackers like their ginger snaps, single portion hummus (by tribe hummus), dried peaches (trader joe’s has some amazing ones), fresh produce like apples (or apple chips/singel portion apple sauce), radishes, V8 mini veggie juice cans – so many yummy and healthy options! 🙂
    Btw, on a separate note, Katie was wondering if for most of your dessert recipes that call for coconut butter if you use store-bought one or if you usually just make your own? I am a HUGE fan of your blog! Have been recommending it to all my friends.

  4. Jennifer JCD says

    We’re always looking for variety. Fudge babies and boatmeals make their way into lunches frequently, as do 100% fruit bars, homemade granola bars, trail mix/energy cookies, regular cookies, fresh fruit and veggies, muffins (mmm… banana chocolate chip!), little squares of dark chocolate, Medjool dates stuffed with soy butter and/or dipped in chocolate, homemade coconut bars (shredded coconut + brown rice syrup), baked chickpeas, beet chips, and even seasoned tofu cubes. Bag lunches are always interesting around here.

  5. Desiree says

    As a mom packing lunches gets difficult, you have to switch it up often so they don’t get bored and hope they eat what you pack. I have found that anything cut into fun shapes go over well. Also sprinkles, put sprinkles on anything and the kids will eat it up! My rule at home is “you get what you get and you don’t throw a fit,” but that is really hard to enforce at school, so you must be creative. Still, I know that whatever I pack in their lunch is going to be better for them than what they are serving at school. I am always looking for new ideas to switch it up.

    I know it’s not food, but I’ve been looking at these lunch boxes and I might just buy a couple. What I really like is that there is no lead, BPA, phthalates or PVC and recycled/recyclable. Their website also has a bunch of recipes too!

      • Desiree says

        No, I can’t imagine cuter… well actually if they had Hello Kitty one’s I would bust out the credit card ASAP. (Entering in Google search now).

        • Chocolate-Covered Katie says

          Yes! They do! And the little sectioned compartments are in the shape of hello kitty too! I even had Hello Kitty napkins :). LOL I probably still have them somewhere… I’m going to go look now. I know I still have the napkins!

          • Desiree says

            I found a bunch of them online! As if I couldn’t adore you more, you add Hello Kitty to the mix! Ohh Em Gee!

  6. Barb says

    I seriously thing that your boatmeal bars are my favorite portable snack. I make a whole bunch of them in mini-loaf pans (so I can make different flavors) and keep them in my freezer. They seem to give me the perfect amount of energy (especially if I load them with berries and seeds).

    Otherwise, I am a huge fan of the new FiberOne brownies.

  7. Qi Ting @ Misadventures of Fat free Baking says

    Hee. I usually just bring buns with fillings for snacks like my sweet vegan wholewheat buns ( and NUTS!!! Nuts make a good portable and feeling snack 😀 These are my staples! And I’ve been meaning to try your larabars too!! ‘Meaning’ because I haven’t got down to buying the ingredients yet 🙁 I wishhhhh we have vitatops 🙁 There’s really NOTHING better than a healthy, chocolaty giant muffin top… 😀

  8. Danielle says

    This is one of my FAVORITE snack ideas. They taste wonderful and chocolaty, but have some peanut butter for protein:

    1 cup melted dark chocolate (I use vegan chocolate chips)
    1/4 cup peanut butter (I like the sweetened type)
    Then add puffed rice cereal until the there’s no runny liquid in the bottom of the pan, spoon onto a cookie sheet and freeze for about an hour.
    I also like to add some other fun things in there, like dried cranberries, raisins, pistachios, walnuts, whatever is lying around!!

    P.S. I made the peanut butter cookies. SO ADDICTIVE.

  9. Nikita says

    The simplest snack I take is trailmix- usually a mixture of almonds, dried cherries or cranberries, and a sprinlking of dark chocolate chips for good measure! I also bring homemade granola bars, larabars, and healthy muffins on the go. I used to be obsessed with Luna bars, but they can get expensive and I’m kinda over that now that I found how easy it is to make homemade healthy snacks!

  10. Megan says

    Hmmm…I love snacks 🙂 Usually I bring nuts, prunes, trail mix, Mojo or Lara bars, Clif Crunch bars are fabulous, various fruits, or an occasional smoothie. I just bought some hemp protein powder so I can see that in my future with some frozen banana, vanilla soy milk, and chocolate peanut butter! Snacks are so awesome…I don’t know why people want to just eat three main meals when they could have a much bigger variety of foods! (and more occasions for chocolate)

  11. Sarah-Mae @ Eat, Run, Knit says

    I know this sounds horrible, but I’ve never understood what an UNPORTABLE food is. Given the right containers, isn’t everything technically portable? I’ve packed a little container of hummus to go alongside some crackers and veggies, or even gone so far as to seperate all my sandwich ingredients in order to have a nice non-soggy sammy for lunch. In fact, this morning I made oatmeal, threw it into a container and then reheated it on the stovetop at work (although you could easily use a microwave) and smothered it in peanut butter I brought in another little container…

    I think ALL of your food (except for ice cream perhaps…) is pretty dang deliciously portable given time, effort and the proper tools!

  12. judy says

    funny thing is i havent eaten a bar or any type of granola type bar in over 2 years. i just do not like them that much. my favourite snack is definitly cheerios! or any type of cereals. its something i can munch on for a while, not like a bar or cookie, its gone in a minute (or 2 seconds with those delicious cookie dough balls!) and i eat a million more.

  13. bassitos says

    Nhum nhum nhum *-* love these recipes

    btw, i am always eating something high protein like: 200g Cottage cheese + 35g Natural Peanut Butter + 10g Sugar Free/Fat Free Instant Pudding Mix
    I blend it, after blending add some fruits, like strawberries, raspberries or blueberries(the best) and freeze it for 2 hours….omg heaven!

  14. Annie @ Naturally Sweet Recipes says

    I live off of raw carrots, raisins and nuts. It’s the easiest and fastest thing for me to grab. Of course, I love simply lite chocolate bars during the day too! Or a yummy treat I’ve made the day before. 🙂 And I can’t go anywhere without a water bottle. All your snacks look perfect (and super delicious) for on the go. And I love you have a lot of protein in all of them, which is harder for me to eat when I’m out and about. Thanks!

  15. Lauren B. says

    I just met the first person that I have ever known to not like chocolate! She was making chocolate chip cookies without the chips, and when I asked her about it, she replied, “I don’t like chocolate.” Excuse me, WHAT?! It didn’t compute with me. At all. I mean, who doesn’t like chocolate?! Weirdo… 🙂

    • Amber K says

      I actually don’t like chocolate either. Well, to be fair, I don’t like plain chocolate. I like it in cookies or if it is together with peanut butter or caramel. But just chocolate or chocolate-flavored things (chocolate cake, chocolate frosting, chocolate ice cream) no thanks!

  16. Lilly says

    yumm, all of these are prefect for on the go snacks! Wash them all down with those cute little almond milk or coconut milk boxes that are the size of juice boxes, adorable. I have even been known to bring along pancakes, but I am a little obsessed 🙂 Roasted chickpea “poppers” are pretty portable. And tortilla wraps cut into “pin wheel” bite sized rounds/ pieces are fun and can be made with sweet (fruit, nut butters, etc) ingredients or savory (veggies, hummus, guac)

  17. Emily @ Glitz Glam Granola says

    Ohhh this was like a slideshow of yummy things that I wish I had in front of me right now!! All of your recipes are amazing and this was a great reminder of some that I have been wanting to make again (boatmeal!) and some that I want to try for the first time (chocolate larabar!) Thanks for all the great on-the-go picks!!

  18. Lindsay says

    Mine’s pretty boring, but my favorite is to combine some mixed nuts with some dried fruit (mostly raisins). Essentially trail mix, but most store-bought trail mix has a lot of additives that the dried fruit and nuts don’t have, so I just mix ’em up myself.

  19. Anna @ Food Fitness and Frolicking says

    I’m so glad you wrote this post! I’ve been wondering the same thing lately! Usually though, I’ll take along..
    1. Almonds and chocolate chips mixed together
    2. Banana and portable peanut butter
    3. Sliced carrots and apples
    4. Cheese and crackers
    5. Pb and jelly sandwiches
    6. Homemade muffins, granola bars, etc.

    And of coures..all of your delicious desserts!

  20. Amber K says

    I really don’t like potato chips although chocolate chip cookie are definitely the best! Yum! I actually have a huge problem finding portable snacks, because I really like things at a certain temperature. Most of the things people list (fruit, string cheese, homemade larabars) etc. all need to be refrigerated and COLD for me to like them.

  21. Jess from Midwest Vegan says

    I often bring a protein bar (like an Odwalla or Luna bar), a piece of non-messy, non-perishable fruit (like an apple or banana ), or dried fruit and nuts. I also like making my own trail mixes. A favorite is a mix of dried apricots, toasted pepitas, dried cherries, pistachios, and dark chocolate chips.

    Oh, and there’s the dry-roasted edamame, chickpea crunchies, or pretzels. I’m in class all day long, so I gotta have some snacks on me!

    Last but not least, I bring my reusable water bottle and coffee mug with me! 🙂

  22. Emma (Sweet Tooth Runner) says

    I have an expensive bar addiction! Seriously, I have a whole box full of Clif Bars, Larabars and basically every bar in Whole Foods! 😛

    But I LOVE the idea of boatmeal as a snack!! I am SO doing that!! 😀

  23. Maya (Dessert is in a Different Pocket) says

    Perfect timing. I was just feeling bad about how much butter I feed my husband, and wanting to pack him healthier snacks for work. Definitely going to try out some of these next week.

  24. Girl In the pink says

    Your desserts are so creative!!

    I always pack leftovers for my husbands lunch with fruit, hummus and veggies. I almost always have a treat on hand so I’ll throw that in their too!

  25. Alex@Spoonful of Sugar Free says

    Any kind of fresh chopped veggie or fruit is good. ANy kind of nut-date Homemade larabar thing-pb chocolate, pecan pie, blueberry cream, coconut….

    Any kind of nuts, trail mixes, homemade granola bars (in customizable flavors!), my high protein cookie recipe, Smacaroons. I also love making big batches of pancakes or waffles and making them into sandwiches!

  26. Lenna says

    All your snack ideas sound so good! I like making sandwiches, oatmeal cookies or fruit salads and bring them to school as a nice snack.

  27. Lenna says

    All your snack ideas sound so good! My fave things to bring to school are fruit salads, sandwiches, oatmeal cookies, or a simple apple 🙂

  28. Moni'sMeals says

    sure I have healthy snacks for on-the-go BUT looking at all of your ideas just now, I will stick with them! OH MY!

    I do always stick with a homemade bar or cookie and fruit and nuts though. 🙂

  29. Jen says

    Larabars are usually my staple to-go snack. Aside from that, I love trail mix because it’s simple. I just throw some nuts, dried fruit, and maybe some dark chocolate chips in a small baggie and shake it up. Super easy.

  30. Dawn @ Blonde on a Mission says

    My favourite portable snack is currently vitatops, but I am definitely going to make up a batch of homemade larabars for school when I don’t have time for a meal. Plus, it’ll save me money! Can’t wait to see if there are any yummy new recipes coming! 😀

  31. kaila @ healthy helper! says

    I love larabars, crackers with pb, dried fruit, homemade scuffins, go raw flax bars, whole wheat pretzels, and dr. krackers for snacks!!!

  32. Leanna says

    I love nuts, Clif bars, fruit, and certain types of crackers. I think something that could be interesting for you to make your own version of would be along the lines of those fruit-and-nut clusters – little one inch by one inch cubes of usually almonds, berries, sesame or poppy seeds, honey, flax, and something to keep them hard, crunchy, and unified.

  33. Tessa Simpson says

    Katie…I have been compiling a notebook of lunchbox friendly recipes, and although I can certainly cut and paste, I was thinking a “Printer Friendly” button for your recipes would be fabulous and convenient! Favorite on-the go items in our house: any variety of homemade larabars, granola bars, “babies”, muffins, nuts & berries, fruit and peanut butter dip, crackers and ‘cheez’ dip, fruit kabobs, etc.

  34. Jenn says

    The images in your post are just beautiful! And leave me feeling very hungry 🙂

    My go-to on-the-go snacks are Homemade Trailmix (easily improvised, but I use mixed nuts, dried fruit, pretzels, and M&Ms), Fruit, granola and yogurt ( has a good, low-fat kind) and Luna granola bars!

  35. Namaste Gurl says

    Carrots and apple with PB or other nut butter; homemade trail mix; nuts and dried fruit; homemade muffins or healthy cookies…. in need of more ideas as I start school monday! 🙂

  36. Lorin says

    I got the chia seeds today!!!! I’m making overnight oats for tommorow morning because I need a quick breakfast before I go to dog training :). Yayy. Btw, what’s your favorite use for coconut butter? I bought the little packets of the coconut butter that is probably 2 tbsp. I’m trying to think of what I can use for it, thanks!

  37. Jessica @ Jess Go Bananas says

    I have a possibility for you to create – cookie dough lollipops!
    My fav snacks to bring on the go are larabars, apples, or a handful of almonds! 🙂

  38. Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga says

    Wow, drooling! thanks for compiling some of your faves! These snacks would never actually make it out the door for me…why? They’d all be eaten before we even left the house 🙂

    I do love bringing homemade snacks with though! Usually it’s fresh fruit and veggies cut up, raisins, dried fruit, homemade energy balls/bites/bars..stuff that’s easy and plant based and holds up decently well and doesn’t look “too good” so that within 4 mins of being out the door someone is saying, mommy im hungry i need a snack..just b/c she knows I have fudge brownies in my purse or something 🙂

  39. Ryan @ Aloha Appetite says

    I like making different variations of chunky granola, usually including peanut butter. Also, especially when I’m hiking, Clif Mojo Mountain Mix bars are yummy and sustaining!

  40. Carrie says

    Katie–hello! I am a longtime reader (and lover of all things CCK), have not commented much. But I’m from Dallas and I went to dinner last night at Sol’s Nieto Mexican Grill on Mockingbird. They have vegan cheese and soy chorizo to sub in their dishes 🙂 I tried their vegan cheese quesadillas and they were great! Just wondered if you have ever been there. Do you know of any other vegan friendly restaurants in Dallas?

    • Chocolate-Covered Katie says

      Hi Carrie!!!! Oh my goodness, how did I not know about that place?? I don’t think I’ve had Mexican food in… five years? Maybe more? I never liked it much, because restaurants in the US make it so meat-centered. But I am definitely definitely looking up the restaurant now. Ooh I’m excited!

      I don’t eat out often, but when I do, some of my favorite places include: Clay Pit (separate vegetarian section), Bliss Raw Cafe (warning: not for non-adventurous omnivore friends!), Genghis Grill (love them!), and Pei Wei. What about you? Have you found any other good places? LOL judging by your comment, you seem to know more about this than me!

      • Megan says

        I am from around Dallas and I read up on a few other places too that I want to try! One is the pizza lounge and they have vegan pizzas with Daiya cheeze or if you want mexican, there is a restaurant called “Bee” where you can build your own enchiladas. Some of the filling options are a vegan special or a quinoa & tofu filling. Spiral Diner is a classic vegan restaurant too!

  41. Kaitlyn@TheTieDyeFIles says

    Mmmm that just made me hungry! I just bought some Larabars to bring to the bf’s for the weekend so I can be prepared in case I get stuck with another iceberg salad! But for school I like roasted chickpeas, fruit, sweet tater chips, figs/prunes and almond butter, and anything chocolatey of course.

  42. Robin says

    Such good ideas for school! I have been struggling to find yummy snacks, that actually stay yummy in a back too heavily loaded with books. Frozen muffins work really well (just pop them out of the freezer the morning of consumption, and they thaw perfectly before morning break), and I llike to take things like trail mix, nuts and chocolate, and such.

  43. Marianne says

    Hey now – you could totally take dip as a snack. I know I would. Just need a little container with a good seal, and you have instantly made your lunch just that much more fun!

  44. ashley says

    Wow I wish my mom had packed stuff like that in my lunch at school!! Now i love hummus and pita chips, turkey and cottage cheese or any fruit really. I love gummy candy too. Some stuff (like watermelon, grapes) are hard to take as a snack for me because I only like them really cold! This is an awesome list though and I love everybody elses suggestions!! People are going to be so jealous of my snackage now 🙂

  45. Karen @ She Flies With Her Own Wings says

    Great ideas! I’m about to start school again and I’m always on the lookout for great portable snacks… Is it acceptable to sneakily eat snacks under the table in grad school? Anything that doesn’t make noise is good, I’ve definitely disrupted a quiet class with a crinkly Luna bar wrapper before.

  46. Stephanie says

    I mix my own trail mix with cashews, sliced almonds, dried cranberries, pumpkin seeds and dried apricots and keep a mason jar of it at my desk at work, along with a mason jar of raw almonds. But as for “making” a portable snack, one of my absolute favourites is called “marathon chunks” from the a blog, “neverhomemaker”. She’s a runner who eats really healthy and I fell in love with her marathon chunks the first time I tried them – sunflower seeds, cashews, peanut butter, dried apricots, maple syrup – how can you go wrong? You can’t! No cooking required, just press into a pan, let it set in the fridge or freezer then cut into chunks. Nummy!

  47. Just passing by! says

    I take Nak’d bars (England only thing I think, I think they are like larabars for England?? I don’t know, I’m a nomad like yourself CCK). I also make a dip using chocolate powder+avocado+peanut butter+banana (ripe) and use it to dip fruit or coat homemade muffins (like a frosting, but would that make it a cupcake?).

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