Heard of the paleo diet but wondering what in the world does it mean? Well, the paleo comes from the Paleolithic era, aka when man was still a hunter-gatherer – what the early man ate, is basically what constitutes the paleo diet, also called the caveman diet, primal diet, Stone Age diet, and hunter-gatherer diet, for apt reasons.
The Difference between Paleo Diet And Ordinary Diet
Think back to the early times of man – other than needing to run away from predators and dying of things as simple as the common cold, the paleo man (and woman, for that matter) didn’t have access to grains, salt, processed foods, colas, junk food, chocolates, tea or coffee. What he did have access to, or hunted and foraged for were fruits, vegetable (free range) meat, poultry and eggs, sea food and as well as nuts and seeds.
Wild cereals were sometimes foraged for, but a find was few and far between so cereal was also not a big part of the Paleolithic diet at all. Recent evidence proves that wine, however was, for some time in the Paleolithic era, man learnt to ferment grape juice in animal skin pouches. 
The Benefits of Following Paleo Diet
At first glance, the paleo diet seems pretty doable – it’s a clean diet that emphasizes eating fresh, from the source and without any additional additives, preservatives or chemicals and it does help you stay fuller for longer as well as lose weight because of limited food choices. This diet also raises your iron levels and helps you get plenty more phytonutrients from all the plant-based foods you consume.
The downside of the paleo diet is that the absence of grains and cereal can lower your energy levels and it is also a tad expensive. If you are on a paleo diet, you also have to maintain a certain amount of physical activity; which ironically becomes difficult to do simply because you are off carbs and may be low on energy in the first place!
The Secret to Paleo Diet’s “Healthy” Label
The paleo diet philosophy is basically designed to improve a person’s health and athletic performance by taking in lean protein and high GI carbs via fruits and vegetables – the die does not lack in nutrients and can in fact raise your vitamin and mineral levels to an optimum amounts, plus give you plenty antioxidants and phytonutrients as well. Paleo snacks comprise of lean meats or protein, healthy amounts of dairy, healthy fats in the form of nuts and seeds and as many fruits and veggies you can eat! Healthy, tasty, filling and low in calories – paleo snacks make for great tidbits, even if you are not on a paleo diet! 
Five Savory Paleo Snacks
Crispy Brussel Sprout Chips
A vitamin rich snack that’s nutritious, tasty and filling, Crispy Brussels Sprouts  will please your palate and stomach in just about 50 calories.
You need: 10 Brussels sprouts, 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
To make it:
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- With a paring knife, cut off the bottom tip of each sprout. The outer leaves will fall off.
- Trim a tiny bit more off the bottom so more leaves fall off. Continue until you’ve removed all the leaves.
- Toss the leaves with the oil, and lay them in one layer on a rimmed baking sheet.
- Sprinkle with salt.
- Roast seven to 10 minutes, until leaves are lightly browned and crisp.
Jalapeno Pumpkin Seeds
Who says snacks have to be bland? Healthy pumpkin seeds  with real jalapenos with olive oil and seasonings are as healthy as they are delicious.
You need: 1 1/2 cups pumpkin seeds, cleaned & dried; 3 jalapeño peppers, sliced; 3 tablespoons olive oil and sea salt and paprika, to taste
To make it:
- Remove the seeds from the pumpkin and sort the guts out.
- Rinse the seeds pat dry and transfer to a rimmed baking sheet to dry overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and add olive oil and sea salt.
- Stir pumpkin seeds with your hands to combine.
- Lay slices of jalapeño peppers on top of seeds.
- Sprinkle paprika over the top of everything, generously.
- Bake for 10 minutes.
- Use a spatula to move the seeds and peppers around and bake for another 5 minutes.
- Move mixture around some more and bake for a final 5 minutes.
- Remove tray from oven and let everything rest for 15-30 minutes to let the jalapeño-ness soak into the seeds.
- Store in an airtight container, if you don’t finish them all in one sitting.
Have a craving for chips? Can do on a paleo diet with this crunchy, chip alternative  to Doritos, that uses no flour.
You need: 3/4 cup almond flour, 1/4 cup coconut flour, 1/4 cup flax seeds, 1/4 cup of butter (or ghee), 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 1/2 teaspoon chili, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon paprika powder, 1 egg and 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
To make it:
- Melt the butter and basically mix up all the ingredients together, and knead it into a ball.
- Take two sheets of baking paper, lay the ball on one, the other sheet on top and then flatten it out with a roller.
- Cut triangles with a knife.
- Heat the oven to about 180C (350F) and bake for about 10 minutes. Keep an eye on them so they don’t burn.
- Turn the oven off and let them harden for about another 15 minutes.
- Serve with salsa…
Rosemary Salty Sweet Potato Chips
Sweet potato is a high GI food – meaning your body has to work to break it down and the energy release is slow and steady. These chips  are crunchy and very satisfying indeed, and as healthy as healthy can be.
You need: 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled; 1tablespoon coconut oil, melted, 1teaspoon sea salt and 2teaspoon dried rosemary
To make it:
- Heat oven to 375°F and slice sweet potatoes 1/8 inch thick.
- Grind sea salt and rosemary with a mortar and pestle.
- Toss sweet potatoes in a bowl with coconut oil and salt-seasoning mixture.
- Place on a non-stick baking sheet (or a regular pan greased with coconut oil) and place into the oven.
- After 10 minutes, take the pan out and flip the chips. Place chips back in for another 10 minutes.
- Pull the pan out and place any chips that are starting to brown on a cooling rack.
- Place the chips back in for 3-5 minutes. Every oven is different so keep a close eye on the chips so they don’t burn.
- Cool and eat…
Fire Roasted Red Pepper Poppers
Red peppers, bacon, chicken and fire – can’t get more paleo than this, or healthier, or yummier than this either in this recipe everyone can enjoy  .
You need: 2 red bell peppers, 6 strips of bacon, 1 small cooked chicken breast, red pepper flakes and salt and pepper
To make it:
- Pre-heat oven to 375°F.
- Light your grill if you plan on roasting the peppers before baking. It’s not really necessary but adds flavor.
- Chop red bell pepper into large chunks about 1” thick boats.
- Drizzle the peppers with olive oil and add a dash of salt and pepper.
- Lay pepper pieces on the grill and close the lid. Cook until slightly charred, about 8 minutes. (You can skip this step and just pop them in the oven raw if you want, they will just take longer).
- Break your cooked chicken breast into 12 bite sized pieces.
- Separate each bacon slice lengthwise into two pieces.
- When your peppers are done place the piece of chicken in the pepper boat and sprinkle with red pepper flakes.
- Wrap the strip of bacon around to hold it all together.
- Repeat and place in a baking dish. Bake for approx 25 minutes or until the bacon is cooked. If your peppers were not pre-cooked it may take longer.
5 Sweet Paleo Snacks
Raw Hemp Algae Bars
A no-bake recipe  with healthy raw ingredients like pistachios, coconut, spirulina and hemp – this one is an easy to make, healthy and yummy snack.
You need: 1/2 cup pistachios and pumpkin seeds each, 3/4 cup shredded coconut, 1/4 cup orange juice, 1/4 cup hemp hearts, 1/4 cup coconut oil, 1/2 teaspoon spirulina powder and 3/4 cup dates, chopped
To make it:
- In a food processor, pulse the ingredients until the mixture is crumbly but beginning to come together.
- Press into an 8-inch square cake pan or glass dish.
- Chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour.
- Slice and serve.
Flourless Blueberry Espresso Brownies
Sometimes, you just need to have a brownie! But doesn’t mean you have to cheat on your paleo diet – try these flourless brownies with a coffee zing  !
You need: 1 cup coconut cream, 3 eggs, 1/2 cup honey, 1/4 cup cocoa powder, 1 tablespoon cinnamon, 1 tablespoon coffee, 2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon sea salt, 1 cup blueberries
To make it:
- Preheat your oven to 325°F.
- Place coconut cream concentrate (coconut butter), eggs, honey, cocoa powder, cinnamon, coffee, vanilla, baking soda, and sea salt together in a mixing bowl.
- Use your hand mixer or stand mixer to mix all your ingredients until well blended.
- Once ready, fold in your blueberries by hand so you don’t crush them all.
- Pour your batter into a greased 9×13 baking dish (grease with coconut oil) or into greased individual mini muffin pans.
- Place in the oven and bake for approximately 30 minutes.
- At about 25 minutes, do the toothpick test and judge how much longer you need.
- Remove from oven, let cool.
- Once cool, use some melted coconut cream and drizzle all over your brownies.
- Cut and Enjoy.
No Bake Raspberry Chocolate Bars
What’s better than chocolate? Paleo chocolate, and a snack/dessert (PaleoLeap: No-Bake Almond-Raspberry Chocolate Bars)) that doesn’t need baking!
You need: 3/4 cup coconut oil, melted; 1/2 cup coconut butter, 1/2 cup maple syrup or raw honey, 1/2 cup dark cocoa powder, 1/2 cup fresh raspberries, 1/4 cup dark chocolate, thinly chopped and 1/4 cup roasted almonds, chopped
To make it:
- Combine the coconut oil, coconut butter, maple syrup, and cocoa powder over a double boiler, and whisk until blended and smooth.
- Add in the dark chocolate bits, chopped almonds, and the raspberries, gently stir.
- Line a 9×9 baking pan with parchment paper and pour the chocolate in evenly.
- Place in the freezer and freeze 15 to 20 minutes.
- Slice while the mixture is still cold, and serve at room temperature.
Gluten Free Cashew Glazed Donuts
Craving those donuts? Again, no need to cheat on your diet – here’s a really cool gluten-free recipe  that uses the best of ingredients to make you a snack that is so worth all the effort.
You need: 2 cups almond meal, 3/4 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted; 3 tablespoons honey, melted; 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 3 teaspoons apple cider vinegar and 3 eggs
To make it:
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Melt coconut oil and honey in a small microwave safe bowl.
- Mix all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.
- Divide batter evenly between 12 molds in a donut pan (each one should be a little less than halfway full of batter).
- Bake for 15 minutes and allow to cool before removing from the pan…
To make the Cashew Cinnamon Glaze: 2 tablespoons cashew butter (or smooth peanut butter if you prefer!), 1 tablespoon honey, 1 tablespoon coconut oil, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon… Melt all ingredients together in a microwave-safe bowl. When everything is melted, whisk until its super smooth. When donuts are completely cooled, dip them in halfway into the glaze. Dig in…
Dried Fruits Bars
A simple and easy to make snack, dried fruit bars  are great to munch on, and are bursting with nature’s goodness as well!
You need: 1 cup dried dates, pitted; 1 cup raw almonds and 1 cup dried cranberries
To make it:
- Preheat your oven to 400°F.
- Place the almonds on a baking dish and bake for 8 to 10 minutes.
- Let cool before using.
- In a food processor, combine all the ingredients and pulse until the ingredients start forming a ball, scraping the edges of the bowl to prevent the mixture from sticking.
- Line a baking pan with parchment paper.
- Spread the mixture out into the pan, and shape into a large rectangle.
- Top with another piece of parchment paper, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
- Cut into evenly shaped bars.
We hope you enjoy these paleo snacks – for they are healthy, tasty and filling – even if a paleo diet is not up your alley…
Featured photo credit: Eat Drink Paleo via eatdrinkpaleo.com.au
|||^||Health: Paleo Diet|
|||^||UPMC: The Pros & Cons of Paleo Diet|
|||^||Pop Sugar: Paleo Snack Ideas|
|||^||PopSugar: Transform Brussels Sprouts Into Crispy, Good-For-You Chips|
|||^||PaleoPorn: Jalapeño Paleo Pumpkin Seeds|
|||^||PlaidPaleo: Rosemary and Sea Salt Sweet Potato Chips|
|||^||PencilsAndPancakes: Paleo Game Day Eats: Fire Roasted Red pepper Poppers|
|||^||FreshPlanetFlavor: Raw Hemp Algae Bars|
|||^||CivilizedCavemanCooking: Blueberry Espresso Brownies|
|||^||OddBake: Healthy Donuts with Cashew Cinnamon Glaze (SCD, Paleo, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free)|
|||^||PaleoLeap: Dried Fruit Bars|