20 Snacks (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, & Refined Sugar-Free)

So, I noticed that whenever I started eliminating foods from my diet – dairy, gluten, sugar – I felt STARVING.  It’s because I was used to curbing hunger with those things instead of with larger portions of healthy food.  So…there was an uncomfortable/craving adjustment period as I got used to changing my habits and trying to get full on healthier foods.

And one of the biggest things I can recommend to you is this….


This way you have many options at your finger tips if you are hungry or dashing out the door and don’t have time to saute some vegetables.  🙂

Today, here are (20) of my favorite gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar-free snacks….

Gluten Free Snacks
RAW, UNSWEETENED CACAO NIBS $25.73 for (2) large
This is my latest favorite snack (thanks to a reader). Even though they are super bitter, I’m LOVING them.  If I ever want chocolate, I just chew away on these and somehow they’re very satisfying and I don’t feel the need for any chocolate after.  I’d love to try adding them to recipes and nut mixes. 
Gluten Free Snacks
POPCORN. $4.10 
I usually make my own popcorn on the stovetop with coconut oil (also, I drizzle a bit more melted coconut oil on top and add some ground pepper and salt…it’s so good.)  BUT, it’s also nice to have it pre-popped from time to time.  
Gluten Free Snacks
I don’t eat them fancy like this 🙂  – but I do love, love having vegetables around that are washed, cut and ready to eat.  I’ll either dip them in hummus or actually just sprinkle them with ground pepper and Himalayan mineral salt.  Sometimes I’ll take a container of them on the go.  My favorites:  Cucumbers, Carrots (often I just eat them whole), Red/Yellow Bell Peppers, Fennel, Grape Tomatoes, Asparagus, Snap Peas, Celery. (image)
Gluten Free Snacks
Gluten Free Snacks
RAW ALMONDS.  $10.10
Gluten Free Snacks
RAW WALNUTS.  $10.55
Gluten Free Snacks
I eat raw nuts and seeds by the handful.  I find them to be so filling. 


This snack is as old as time for me.  But I still love it.  Apples last a long time.  Peanut butter never goes bad.  It’s just an easy, filling snack to always have handy. (image)

I eat loads of berries.  Every trip to the market usually includes some blueberries and I usually finish the container before the day is done.  🙂  (image)

Hummus is so good with carrots, celery, cucumbers, bell peppers, rice crackers.  Here’s an awesome recipe from 101 Cookbooks to make it at home.  Check labels if you buy it at the store as it often times has lots of sugar in it.

These rice crackers are great.  I eat them with hummus or a bit of sliced ham.  You can buy them in bulk here
Gluten Free Snacks
These are crackers made with whole food ingredients:  brown rice, flax seed, quinoa, and sesame. They’re great with salami!  Buy in bulk here.

KIND BARS.  $20.29/pack of 12
These gluten free bars are made of whole ingredients (nuts, dried fruit, coconut, etc.) and are sweetened with a bit of honey, which is better than most.  I find these to be handy for days I’m on the go.
DRIED MANGO.  $15.74 for a 10 pack.
I love these dried mango strips.  (no additional sugar added).  They really do feel like a serious treat, so I eat them sparingly.  But they’re great to have for road trips or hikes.  To me, they taste as good as your typical gummy fruit snack.
This bread is made of almond flour and coconut flour.  I just love it.   And oh man, it smells so good in the oven.  I usually eat a slice here and there throughout the day.  Though I really should make this once a week as it’s so healthy and so tasty – it’s just full of protein and fiber.  (Recipe here by Elana’s Pantry.)  You can get your coconut flour here and your almond flour here
I’m such a sucker for olives. They also are a great source of healthy fats.  I usually buy mine at Whole Foods, Fairway, Union Market or Sahadi’s.  But I also love olive tapenade.  You can get it at TJ’s or make your own with this recipe from Kris Carr.  (It’s great with rice crackers.)
These are so crunchy and yummy.  Danny loves them, too.  

GLUTEN FREE OATS.  $10.55 for two.

I add GF oats to my favorite almond flour cookie recipe.  They’re also perfect for homemade granola.

Do you remember the spiced nut & bitters recipe I shared?  These would be a great, healthy snack and a savory variation on the raw nuts. There is a bit of sugar in the recipe, but that could be omitted. (image)

One of my favorite things to eat is a halved avocado with salt, pepper and some lemon juice.  (I usually put the other half in the freezer to be used later for a green smoothie.)  (image)
Oh man, there are sooo many good snacks.  Would you like to contribute some more ideas?  You guys have seriously been inspiring me with your food ideas this last week.  

**I was so happy to have this post sponsored by Vine.com!  They have a HUGE gluten free section on their website.  They also have the best “lightening fast 1-2 day delivery” and free returns 1-year after purchase.**

Get The About Love Experience


  1. Maura King July 31, 2013 at 9:40 am - Reply

    THis was helpful. I also find when trying to lessen my dependence on sugar that I am starving– timing was perfect.


  2. Caitlyn July 31, 2013 at 12:55 pm - Reply

    Mmm I love that Popcorn you pictured! I also usually make my own, but it is so nice to have some ready to go if I am feeling lazy!
    I am going to have to try the Cocoa Nibs now!

  3. Anonymous July 31, 2013 at 1:08 pm - Reply

    Where do you get your cacoa nibs

  4. Glessie Sue July 31, 2013 at 1:33 pm - Reply

    I'm doing it! I'm committing today-no more gluten, no more refined sugar! I've been on the fence for a while, but know the effect that it can have as far as increased energy, spirituality, mental function. A couple of weeks ago, I began to eat only fruits and vegetables for just a couple days and it was incredible how quickly the positive effects will kick in. I feel like what holds me back the most is public gatherings–how have you overcome this? How do you handle when you're offered something that you typically will not eat? Thank you so much for posting so many helpful tips! Also, you mentioned blogs that you follow with gluten-free/sugar-free recipes–could you share some of those too? Thanks!

  5. TheSpectrum July 31, 2013 at 2:21 pm - Reply

    As far as nut butters go, love these individual packages! Almond butter is the best but their PB is good too!



    • mara July 31, 2013 at 6:57 pm - Reply

      oh yes – – my friend has been telling me about these forever. I seriously need to try them. thanks for the reminder!

  6. Kate Sheleg July 31, 2013 at 2:38 pm - Reply

    With my gluten and dairy allergies, my palette has really changed over the last five years. I like the brand "Go Raw" which makes super cookies and chips. My favorite favors are spirulina, pumpkin, and masala chai. Easy to pack on a plane ride. I also love to make little macaroons in my food processor. They are made of raw coconut flakes (unsweetened), a few mejdool dates, and a bit of raw cacao. Finally, homemade kale chips are also easy and satisfying.

    • mara July 31, 2013 at 6:58 pm - Reply

      Thanks so much for the suggestions! I'd love to try the Go Raw stuff – and your macaroons sound amazing!

  7. Malissa B. Moench July 31, 2013 at 2:45 pm - Reply

    Love this post!! I'm a big snacker. Those Kind bars are one of my favorites, too! I also love whipping up simple homemade trail mixes (pistachios, almonds, walnuts, craisins, cacao chips — our favorites are by Ghirardelli). The cacao chips seem bitter at first, but you'll never want to go back after a while! Milk chocolate seems so thin after delicious cacao.
    FYI, my husband writes a clean-eating blog here: munchingmoenches.blogspot.com
    He hasn't posted for a few months, but I'm encouraging him to pick it up again. We love sharing our recipes! You should check out the chocolate mousse there.

  8. leslie burket. July 31, 2013 at 3:08 pm - Reply

    Hi Mara! (& Danny) my kiddos and I make the same food choices are favorites that are missing from your list are: frozen blueberries with rice milk, Lara bars, ants on a log, green juices, and vega smoothies. We also love eggs, eggs are a great snack (especially because my hubs makes them!!!) xoxo

  9. chinkara July 31, 2013 at 3:20 pm - Reply

    thank you, mara! you've inspired me to really cut back on gluten. i'm in it for 4 weeks now. I don't have allergies and don't see any kind of change other than dropping a few lbs, but I'm going to keep doing it! this post is wonderful. and i can't wait to see what your dear readers will post about their recipes.

  10. Natalie July 31, 2013 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    Thank you for this post! After recently cutting gluten and dairy out of my diet I find that I go hungry a lot and don't know where to turn for good snacks so I've been really looking forward to this post. One thing that I do like is brown rice and quinoa salad with a can of chickpeas, red and yellow bell peppers, celery, carrots, and green onions with an olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette which is 1/2 c olive oil, 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, 1tsp oregano, 2 1/2 tsp basil, 2tsp parsley, 1/2 tsp salt and dash of pepper. You can play around with that though. I usually make a big bowl at the beginning of the week and keep it in my fridge when I need a good snack. I've also wanted to ask you what your ideas are for dinner? Especially quick and easy dinners because that's also been a struggle.

  11. Alison Rae July 31, 2013 at 4:14 pm - Reply

    Great snack ideas! Thanks for the post!

  12. Aubrey July 31, 2013 at 4:17 pm - Reply

    Thank you for this. There is a great ice cream alternative, So-delicious, chocolate and peanut butter is my personal favorite. It's carried in most super markets. Here's a link to their website. It's made with coconut milk.If you don't like the taste of coconut, you only taste it a little with the first bite, after that – honestly I think it's better than ice cream and there is 6-7 grams of fiber per serving.


    • mara July 31, 2013 at 7:03 pm - Reply

      Oh yes….we know about So Delicious and it's amazing. If we ever do have a sweet treat, this is basically it. We also agree that it's better than icecream. Though I didn't realize it had so much fiber. That's awesome.

    • Becky R July 31, 2013 at 7:46 pm - Reply

      If you like So Delicious you should try Coconut Bliss. Amazingly delicious and uses more natural ingredients than So Delicious.

    • Anonymous June 24, 2014 at 2:00 pm - Reply

      SO delicious is really, well, delicious. But be aware that their products use carrageenan as a thickening agent, in fact most almond and coconut milk contains it as an additive. People sensitive to MSG have reported problems with it, as well as some people sensitive to glutin. It has been shown to cause an inflammatory response in digestive tracts, and more processed versions of the chemical (all versions are labelled as the same thing) has been shown in some studies to cause ulcers and cancerous tumors. Just be careful and check the labels on your products.

  13. Marilyn July 31, 2013 at 4:31 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much for this list!! One year ago I removed dairy from my diet and four weeks ago, I removed gluten. It's hard to explain entirely how amazing I feel! I want to shout from the rooftops what a difference "no gluten" has made in my life. I no longer have frequent, severe headaches, no more bloating, no more heart burn, no more sleepless nights. I feel more energetic (like x1000!), less sluggish, and the "brain fog" that I felt before is gone leaving me feeling very clear minded and ALIVE!

    I am on a journey right now to become a healthier version of me. I have lost 14 pounds and 9" over the last 5 weeks and have implemented daily exercise. I honestly feel that removing the gluten is going to be the key to help me reach my goals (I still have 55 lbs to lose). I didn't have the energy necessary before to do it, but now I feel unstoppable. I have replaced the gluten with lots of fruits and veggies, lean proteins, and I no longer have cravings. NONE!

    I would love to share a recent experience I had with you. On Saturday night, my husband and I went with friends out to dinner to celebrate our 19th wedding anniversary. I reasoned with myself that since it was our anniversary, I would order what sounded best to me from the menu and not feel guilty. It was to be my "free meal." I was amazed that as I looked over the menu, the thing that sounded most delicious to me was a halibut dish with summer vegetables. It was gluten/dairy free and I was pleased that I wouldn't feel the need to compromise my diet. It was absolutely delicious and I felt great. Then dessert time came and we ordered a dairy free strawberry-rhubarb sorbet, but a chocolate crepe with fresh berries really looked amazing as well and so we ordered that too. It was delicious, but within one hour I had a headache, within 3 hours I felt bloated and had a tummy ache, and when I tried to sleep that night I didn't fall asleep until 2:30am and had heart burn all night. The next morning I woke up feeling so foggy headed and sluggish and just plain miserable. Let me tell you… those 5 bites of crepe were NOT WORTH IT! If I had just stuck with the sorbet, I would have felt great, been satisfied and not suffered for the next 24 hours.

    This was the cement I needed to commit to no gluten forever. My body just doesn't like the gluten and without it, I feel so amazing and I no longer have a desire to compromise this awesome feeling. I apologize for such a long comment, but I really wanted to share my experience with this.

    I have found some great dairy free/gluten free recipes that I would love to share with you! Again, thank you for this list, I'm excited to explore a few new products.

    P.S. This is [hands down!] my favorite blog on the internet. Love you both and the positivity you are spreading.

    • mara July 31, 2013 at 7:03 pm - Reply

      Wow. wow. wow. I just love this comment so much. THANK YOU!!!

  14. Brittany Woodham July 31, 2013 at 4:39 pm - Reply

    I'm gluten, dairy, pretty much everything free because of allergies. One of my favorite snacks is corn tortilla chips and salsa when I want something salty (fortunately I'm not allergic to corn!) and Mara Natha almond butter, particularly the maple when I want something sweet. I could eat it by the spoonful! Yum! Thanks for sharing other ideas!

  15. Anna July 31, 2013 at 5:11 pm - Reply

    great ideas! crio bru also has dark chocolate covered cocoa beans that are a good treat and pretty healthy. I think they sell the cocoa nibs too.

  16. RCardon July 31, 2013 at 5:13 pm - Reply

    Thanks for the suggestions! I just discovered Kind bars and they are a fun treat!

  17. Tanya July 31, 2013 at 5:15 pm - Reply

    Thought you might like this like; she has such great food ideas!


  18. EllaY July 31, 2013 at 5:57 pm - Reply

    Yum, Mara! Some of my own favorites are on this list, too! I've also moved to sunbutter since PB can be hard on my stomach (mold). I will be sharing this list for sure!

  19. leslie burket. July 31, 2013 at 6:16 pm - Reply

    Does hot tea count as a snack? We like to have tea together after school.
    Our favorite summer snack (we do live in Florida!)
    Is frozen lemonade!
    We blend sparkling lemon water with organic lemon juice ice and some agave, it's frothy, frozen, and fantastic!!!

  20. Lauren {Stylized Existence} July 31, 2013 at 6:36 pm - Reply

    i absolutely love Hail Merry macaroons and tarts when I want a treat. They have very low sugar and it only comes from maple syrup! Chocolate and vanilla are my two favorites, though the strawberry is good too! http://www.hailmerry.com/macaroons/case-of-chocolate-macaroons.html

  21. Lisa Riley July 31, 2013 at 9:25 pm - Reply

    I was JUST researching GF, Dairy Free, Sugar free snacks on the internet and BOOM, here is YOUR list of 20 snacks. You really are amazing, Mara! 🙂

  22. Emma July 31, 2013 at 9:30 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much for this! I've been wanting to cut gluten out for a while to see if it helps with my digestive issues, but finding replacement lunch and snack ideas has been surprisingly difficult! This list gives me a few good ideas to start with so I feel like I can give it a proper go now, thank you!

  23. Allison July 31, 2013 at 9:59 pm - Reply

    great ideas! i would eat this kind of stuff all day if it wasn't so expensive. i definitely think it is worth the money, but it's hard justifying paying for it when you have student loans and babies and other things. have you read this article?

    i don't totally agree, i can make healthy and inexpensive meals for my family, but it's hard.

  24. Anonymous July 31, 2013 at 10:18 pm - Reply

    my favorite snack is hummus with the Food Should Taste Good multigrain tortilla chips. they are gluten free and vegan and so good. i almost like them better than corn tortilla chips. they are so yummy with salsa. they are made with brown rice flour though, so if you're paleo, they don't qualify.

  25. SarahN @ livetolist July 31, 2013 at 11:06 pm - Reply

    Thank you for this post – a lot of the branded stuff isn't available in Australia, but thankfully there's some universal suggestions in there.

  26. Ginna July 31, 2013 at 11:33 pm - Reply

    This is great! I have been quite hungry between meals since cutting out gluten and dairy and I think I'll try to stock up on a few more of these to have on hand, especially when I'm tempted to reach for something less healthy. I've also been finding that I'm having to reprogram myself somewhat, and I think it's because I'm so used to addressing issues with food. Feeling anxious? Grab some cheese. Feeling sad? Toast will fix that right up. Now when I feel hungry I analyze it a bit more. If I know intellectually that I had enough to eat, decent portions and good healthy food, then I tell myself I have given my body everything it needs and go doing something else for a while. Usually it goes away pretty fast. Of course if I'm starving then I'll have some more food, but I'm surprised at how often that "hunger pain" vanishes. It makes me wonder if I have gotten really bad at being able to read my own body cues, and am having to relearn as I go now.

  27. Erin August 1, 2013 at 12:19 am - Reply

    So many great snack ideas, I'm seriously hungry now. Thanks for all the tips on healthy snacks!


  28. Amber August 1, 2013 at 2:01 am - Reply

    Great ideas!! I love every one.

  29. Anonymous August 1, 2013 at 7:44 am - Reply

    Hi Mara, Have you seen this blog? There is a Sexy Sugar Free Vegan Cookbook for download there. It is soooooooo gooood with beautiful pictures. I think you will like it as will the readers of your blog. Enjoy. Debs http://www.wolfandwillowblog.com/

  30. Karmin August 1, 2013 at 2:43 pm - Reply

    I really like this list! We already stock some of those in the house for snacks (veggies, raw nuts, sunflower seeds, apples, dried organic mango, avocado), but the paleo bread recipe will be really nice and I didn't know about olive tapenade (don't even know what it is!). I'm inspired to make my own popcorn now…we never eat it since the microwave kind is gross but I'll have to see if I can find a popcorn popper at a thrift store. We're about to make up our grocery list so this list will be really handy! Oh, and I've been doing a food diary for several days now and it has been good for me – definitely motivates me to not count cheese and crackers as a meal and put more thought into everything I consider eating. : )

    • JJ October 1, 2013 at 8:17 pm - Reply

      You don't need a popcorn popper…all you need is a saucepan with a lid. Put some oil in the pan, put it on medium high heat with the corn, put the lid on and wait until it starts popping…. when it slows down take it off the heat and add whatever flavoring you desire.
      It's great because you can easily make a portion for one or for as many as you want.

  31. City Chick August 1, 2013 at 6:37 pm - Reply

    Love all these ideas! I eat lots of them already, but I really want to try those apple chips and I have been meaning to make the Paleo bread for forever! I have made Elana's Flax bread or her "rye" bread and it is SUPER tasty.

    My favorite current snack is a spoonful of almond butter or peanut butter dipped in roasted flax seeds. It is so good and holds me over until my next meal.

  32. brooke field August 1, 2013 at 8:30 pm - Reply

    this week i chose to buy trail mix (instead of a chocolate bar) and snacked on celery (instead of a sugary granola bar)! thanks mara!

  33. Clare August 3, 2013 at 12:51 am - Reply

    This is a great list! Kind bars are so yummy. I can't wait to make Paleo bread. I keep putting it off:]

  34. Jack Sims September 26, 2013 at 5:37 pm - Reply

    Great list and may we suggest that it should be a list of 21 so that Tiger Nuts could be included.
    OK, what are Tiger Nuts, well they are not actually nuts, but a tuber, but they are gluten free, organic, high in fiber, high in nutrition, low in fats, lactose free, nut free, ac as an appetite suppressant and taste great too.

    You can find them at http://www.tigernutsusa.com

  35. Raghav October 3, 2013 at 4:19 pm - Reply

    Wow, you've stimulated my taste buds, I am rushing off to eat some of them.
    Great blog.

  36. Becca Grafsgaard October 19, 2013 at 7:53 pm - Reply

    In 2011 i got diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis… since being hospitalized 4 times in 1 year I have finally decided to switch up my diet and see if it helps…I am currently only eating Gluten Free, Dairy free, and nut free products. It is the hardest most frustrating thing i think i have ever done for myself. But i no longer have stomach aches and my stools are becoming more normal. I am used to going to the bathroom after every little thing i ate. I know that gluten free, dairy free, and nut free is starting to change my life… I am now able to do things i havent been able to do, because i have always had to be close to the bathroom. If anyone has anymore food suggestions for me i will gladly take them 🙂

  37. peter kenneth December 1, 2013 at 8:52 am - Reply

    Thank you for always inspiring your readers. Thumbs up for this post too! http://www.canieathere.com/

  38. zinnat March 3, 2014 at 12:46 am - Reply

    Our chocolates are made with simple, pure ingredients, healthy, delicious. We blend superior raw, organic ingredients and never contain gluten, dairy, soy or processed sugar. Our chocolates are all handcrafted in small batches in Bend, Oregon.

  39. zinnat March 5, 2014 at 1:14 am - Reply

    Our chocolates are made with simple, pure ingredients, healthy, delicious. We blend superior raw, organic ingredients and never contain gluten, dairy, soy or processed sugar. Our chocolates are all handcrafted in small batches in Bend, Oregon.

  40. Wholesale Nuts March 7, 2014 at 7:34 am - Reply

    Philippine pili nuts from the Bicol region in the Philippines is a great Filipino or Philippines food orsnack. Pili nuts are very healthy and nutritious indeed, being a source of energy, potassium and iron.They also have protein, dietary fiber / fibre, and calcium as well as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.  I know they have no cholesterol, no trans fat, and the unsalted ones have no sodium. What is great about the pili nut snack or treat is that they are so crisp, rich, and delicious.

Leave A Comment