6 Snacks That'll Wake You Up as Much as Coffee

Yes, chocolate is involved

Come 3 p.m., we’re typically in need of a little mid-afternoon energy boost, which usually means a cup of stale coffee leftover from the morning. Gross. Instead, recharge with something yummy, like these energizing snacks that actually have the same effect as coffee but with the added joy of being, you know, food.

energy snacks popcorn
The Art of Comfort Baking

Popcorn With Dark Chocolate Drizzle

Well, this was a pleasant surprise. We typically think of popcorn as a treat, since it’s so often served drenched in butter at the movie theater. As long as you’re smart about toppings, it’s actually a great, energy-packed option, since it’s so high in fiber and low in calories. This recipe also calls for heart-healthy coconut oil and dark chocolate, which, in moderation, contains caffeine that will give you a no-crash boost.

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energy snacks smoothie
Catching Seeds

Mint Chocolate Chip Green Smoothie

Leafy greens in general are great, but spinach in particular is an awesome choice for an energy boost. It’s packed with iron, which promotes red-blood-cell circulation, making you feel alert and able to concentrate. Also, this smoothie tastes like a mint-chocolate-chip milkshake, which is never a bad thing.

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energy snacks granola
Cooking and Beer

Coconut Almond Granola With Dark Chocolate Chunks

Oatmeal is a terrific breakfast, but oats shouldn’t be reserved for the morning. Whole grains are absorbed slowly, making for a prolonged energy release. They also contain B vitamins like niacin and folate, which help your body metabolize energy. For their part, almonds are packed with vitamin E and magnesium, which help you sustain energy throughout the day. Serve this sweet-but-virtuous treat over Greek yogurt, another source of energy.

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energy snacks chia
Baking Ginger

Vanilla-blueberry Chia Pudding

Chia seeds have tons of fiber, the same amount of protein as an egg and more omega-3s than a piece of salmon. Add to all that the antioxidant superheroes that are blueberries (which have also been proven to boost cognitive function and mental agility) and you’ve got a pretty perfect midday snack.

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energy snacks chickpeas

Honey Roasted Chickpeas

Chickpeas have protein, carbs and fat. The carbs boost energy, while the fat and protein stabilize blood sugar by releasing those carbs steadily. Hummus is a great option, but we’re partial to these crispy little treats that taste shockingly similar to Cinnamon Toast Crunch.

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energy snacks bites
Gimme Some Oven

Pumpkin No-bake Energy Bites

We’ve already talked about how great oats are for providing sustained energy, but these portable bites also have pepitas (pumpkin seeds), which have more protein per ounce than almonds, as well as a ton of iron and magnesium. These are also customizable, so yes, you can totally add some dark chocolate.

Get the recipe.

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Lindsay Champion

Freelance Editor

From 2015-2020 Lindsay Champion held the role of Food and Wellness Director. She continues to write for PureWow as a Freelance Editor.
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