Today, it’s not uncommon to snack (or even eat entire meals) on the go. But sometimes it’s tough to find healthy, tasty snacks that aren’t super expensive. And if you’ve ever had Indian food, you might not immediately associate the cuisine as snack-friendly.
But Indian food doesn’t always have to take hours to prepare and eat. And you’d be surprised at how light in taste and budget-friendly Indian-inspired snack fare can be.
Whether you’re doing meal prep for the week or packing for a fabulous picnic in the park, you can whip up any of these quick Indian fusion snacks for a truly happy hour of nibbling and drinking.
1. ‘Acai’ yogurt bowl with mango, turmeric, and pomegranate
Acai bowls are all the craze lately. Believe it or not, however, by the time you add a smoothie or chocolate base, load it with sugary fruits, and add peanut butter or chocolate sauce, healthy is out the window. Fortunately, this Indian fusion alternative is good for you and such an easy make. Take 3 to 4 tablespoons of plain yogurt (dahi), mix in salt and pepper to taste, and top it off with half a mango, a pinch of turmeric, and half a cup of pomegranate seeds or any other fruits you like for the perfect finish.
2. Kati roll
Kati rolls have evolved into the perfect late-night food, to an anytime snack item, and even a full meal. The problem is, however, that kati rolls wrapped in parathas end up being extremely carb-heavy. Instead, take a thin, light roti and add in onions and peppers (sauteed with any spices you like, such as chili powder, chaat masala, or coriander powder), paneer or your protein of choice such as chicken or lamb, and a hint of coriander chutney. This is also a quick fix — preparing this meal would take 15 minutes maximum with previously prepared proteins. It’s healthy, delicious, and filling.
3. Lassi shake (mango or other flavors)
Shakes and smoothies are the perfect refreshers. But more often than not, getting a smoothie from your favorite local joint results in high amounts of added syrups and sugars. Instead, make an Indian-inspired lassi shake at home. You can use chopped mango or any other fruit, add in a cup of milk (your choice of dairy or non-dairy), a cup of low-fat plain yogurt, a pinch of honey, and cardamom. Blend together. Best served chilled.
4. Nimbu pani (lemonade)
As summer approaches and you’re craving a taste of India but the usual hot Indian foods don’t sound appealing, nimbu pani is the perfect refresher for you. This drink, also called shikanjvi, is essentially lemon water with some additional ingredients. It’s amazingly refreshing to have on hot summer days. Squeeze a full lemon into a jar of water, add some black salt, sugar, and whatever else you fancy to it! Running out the door? Enjoy this in your thermos or other preferred to-go cup — easy, peasy!
5. Indian fruit salad
Fruit salad is a delicious light snack and tastes even better with Indian spicy, sweet, and sour flavors added to it. Chop up your favorite fruits — I usually do watermelon, apples, plums and peaches — and add in salt, pepper, chaat masala, lemon, and whatever other flavors you like. Find the perfect blend for you and surprise your palate!
It’s possible to enjoy the delights of Indian food in a healthy and quick way. It just takes some creativity and experimentation! Try these out, and leave us a comment with what you loved and other ideas for Indian fusion snacks.
This article was originally published on Brown Girl Magazine.
Karishma is a Bollywood dance fitness instructor based in Minneapolis, MN. Her biggest hobby, her passion, and her dedication are all to fitness. She’s also a dancer and is passionate about spreading her culture to those who may not be familiar. She aspires to keep her love of fitness alive each day, in everything she does!