Originally published by Sophie Pettit. Last updated by Catharina Cheung.
Taking care of your body and watching what you eat isn’t always easy—especially when you catch a whiff of a cheeky treat. Thankfully, Hong Kong is home to a growing range of health-conscious snacks, which means you no longer have to feel naughty when giving in to a moment of indulgence. Eating clean has never tasted so good with these delicious cheats! If anyone gives you stick for snacking, tell them, “It’s healthy, so I’m guilt-free. Move along.”
Instead of furtively digging into the peanut butter jar now and again, here’s a healthy twist of the classic pairing of PB&J: Coconut-Raspberry Peanut Butter Swirl ($78)! There is no palm oil, salt, dairy, or sugar involved in this pink vegan confectionery, and it is also free from gluten, dairy, and refined sugar. Only four things make up the ingredient list: peanuts, coconut flakes, freeze-dried raspberries, and stevia. In the words of the makers themselves, they’ve kept all the fun in the jar, just without the junk.
These babies may smell and taste like regular crisps, but nothing could be further from the truth. Uncle Saba’s Barbecue Poppadoms ($30) are made out of lentils, which are high in protein and low in carbohydrates, making these a healthy alternative for snackers. Ready to eat and Halal, these snacks are gluten-free, trans-fat-free, cholesterol-free, vegan, high in fibre, and MSG-free, seasoned with cumin, carom, onion, garlic, and dusted with paprika and capsicum. It’s so hard saying no to these knowing how delicious and healthy they are! You can find these online at The Bottle Shop or in-store at Feather & Bone.
We hereby declare that energy bars are a relic of the past; it’s all energy balls rolling forwards! Hop onboard with Spicebox Organics’ Cacao Ladoos ($88), handcrafted with organic ingredients like chickpea flour, coconut sugar, various nuts, and cardamom. They’re also gluten-free, and make for a perfect pre- or post-workout snack, or simply to tide you through the work afternoon when your energy levels dip.
We always order edamame as a side to drinks, so it only makes sense that we also love Eda-zen’s freeze-dried Edamame Snack ($22.9). Made with non-GMO, 100 percent natural ingredients, these beans contain an optimal balance of plant-based protein, carbs, fibre, mono-unsaturated fats, and powerful anti-oxidants. More to the point, they taste great as well; we particularly like the jalapeño flavour but they also have four others to choose from.
We’ve all had that late-night crisp craving, but now you can actually indulge without being wracked with guilt the next morning. These BBQ Kimchi Coconut Crisps ($48) are made from raw coconut instead of your bog-standard potatoes and are cold-processed to retain the flavours and nutrients. The natural healthy fats in coconut help boost metabolism and keep your hunger pangs at bay. If you can’t take spicy, they’ve also got a French Onion ($48) flavour which sounds equally delicious.
You know the drill with protein bars as a general rule—they either taste a bit rubbish or aren't actually that healthy—but Oomph!’s Trail Bars ($250 to $330 for 11 bars) are total game-changers. Not only are they genuinely delicious (we've polished off several boxes in the office), the ingredients are also painstakingly sourced, all-natural, and ridiculously good for you. To give you an idea of what we’re talking about, these California-inspired beauties, which come in Plant Protein and Extra Fibre varieties, have six or more superfood ingredients, no trans fats, no preservatives, and no additives to name a few of the benefits. And like we said, the most shocking thing of all is that these actually taste pretty darn good!
Kick-off your morning with part of your five-a-day at heath hub Bear’s Lab. Their delicious, freshly-made smoothie bowls are packed with vitamins and the zestiest natural ingredients available. There are three to choose from, and the Detox Bowl ($96)—filled to the brim with acai, avocado, banana, spinach, agave syrup, and sprinkled with chia seeds—is to die for. With no added sugar or preservatives, you can rest assured that you are only eating the good stuff. They also serve four types of smoothies and six types of vegan lattés, which are equally delicious in flavour. We love the Acai Classic ($62), an antioxidant-filled smoothie made from a blend of acai berries, coconut water, pears, and blueberries. Drooling yet? We are.
Bear’s Lab, Shop F, G/F, World Trust Tower, 50 Stanley Street, Central | (+852) 2702 0802
We’ve hit the jackpot with this bite-sized, guilt-free, organic Coconut Supaball ($28) from funky Sheung Wan eatery, Supafood. Combining oat flakes, peanut butter, coconut chips, golden flaxseed, raw cacao nibs, and honey chia seeds to soothe your aching sweet tooth, this tasty treat also gives you a burst of energy without going overboard on sugar. They also offer an organic Carrot Cake Supaball ($18) which contains cinnamon and ginger for that extra kick. If you’re feeling parched, The Berry Happy Smoothie ($68) is a winner.
Supafood, 1 Jervois Street, Sheung Wan | (+852) 2812 6088
Whipping up guilt-free cupcakes and simultaneously answering our prayers, boutique bakery The Cakery offers a ‘Guilt-Free Series’ which is just too good not to try. The quaint, summer-inspired, reduced-fat Sunflower Cupcake ($20 for bite-sized; $40 for regular) caught our eye straight away. Packing a double pumpkin punch with the flavoursome sponge and pumpkin purée buttercream frosting, this photogenic treat is definitely one to gobble down. It’s also low in calories and contains Vitamin A!
If a smoothie bowl simply won’t do, then why not push the ‘boat’ out with this Instagrammable delight? The Virgin Pina Colada Pineapple Smoothie Boat ($59 for an individual cup; $89 for a two-person pineapple bowl) at Flamingo Bloom is part of the tea salon’s superfood edition and is quite literally a pineapple packed with fresh fruit and a splash of almond milk, goji berries, raw rolled oats, black chia seeds, and mulberries. With no added sugar or preservatives, this gorgeous tropical snack is perfect for sharing with friends and will definitely keep you full until lunchtime or dinner.
Flamingo Bloom, Shop 207, 2/F, Stanley Plaza, 23 Carmel Road, Stanley | (+852) 5943 5070