Almond Joy

 

Journeying my way toward better health for my family and myself…  part of that is expanding our diets to include a wider variety of nuts.

Let’s face it, everyone’s favorite nut is the cashew.  It’s salty.  It’s crunchy.  It’s almost sweet like candy.  If adding nuts to our diets meant “eat lots of cashews”, Americans would be all over it!  They are just so gooooood!

But, cashews are NOT what nutrition experts are referring to when they encourage us to add varieties of nuts into our diets.

I dipped my toe into the water with nuts when I was pregnant with Bubba.  I read in all those zillions of baby books about how almonds were a great thing to snack on while nursing a baby.  So I kept a little container of almonds and a bottle of water next to the spot where I most often nursed Bubba, and so began my love affair with almonds.  Who knew I would end up liking what is, really, one of the most boring of all nuts!  But I did.  I liked them.  I think it’s the crunch… I’ve always liked crunchy foods.

We eat a lot of almonds over here.  I keep a little canister of them in the car for times when someone gets hungry and I haven’t brought any other snacks along.  They’re great.  That little canister of almonds has saved a hungry person in my car a number of times!

Here’s Birdie munching on some almonds while watching a show.

I buy the healthiest I can.  PLAIN almonds.  No salt.  No seasoning.  No coating.  No processing.  I generally get mine from Trader Joe’s because I can find organic ones there, but sometimes not.

The problem with PLAIN almonds is that I just can’t get Babe on board with them.  The kids… no problem.  The husband… not so much.

So I came up with this solution.

Babe is a “chip” guy.  And not just any chip like a plain old potato chip.  No, no, no.  The more weird seasoning and off-the-wall flavors, the better for him.  So we got a bunch of seasoned almonds for Babe to try.  (Okay, okay, I’ll admit it… they ARE way more delicious than the plain almonds the kids and I eat – but not as healthy – which I’ll get to in a minute.)

There are SO many flavors:

  • Lime & Chili  (both the Blue Diamond & the Trader Joe’s ones are good!)
  • Smokehouse (kind of like barbeque)
  • Jalapeno Smokehouse
  • Cinnamon
  • Salt & Vinegar
  • Wasabi & Soy Sauce
  • Buffalo Wing
But like I mentioned earlier, adding all that seasoning takes away some of the health benefits of eating almonds in the first place.  Talk about sodium!
So here’s my simple solution.  I buy a batch of seasoned almonds and a batch of plain almonds and mix them together!  It’s the same solution as what I did in this previous post with the pasta sauce.

Look inside.  Look at the difference between the plain and the seasoned.  I mean really, nobody needs THAT much seasoning on anything anyway.  It’s WAY overdone.

Here’s Birdie “helping” me make some snack bags of mixed almonds.  And by “helping” what I really mean is stealing some snacks for herself.  😉

Here’s one snack bag.  An official serving size of almonds is about 28.  So I put in 14 plain almonds and 14 seasoned ones.  Yes, I am that lame that I count them out.

So there’s my trick for helping my husband make some changes in his eating.  A little comprise goes a long way.  Tossing one of each of those almonds into your mouth at the same time… you’d never know there were any plain ones in there because there’s so much seasoning on the flavored ones.  The kids and I are sticking with the plain ones, but this is a great solution for Babe.  And hopefully, as time goes on, a few more plains will sneak into the mix and a few less seasoned ones will make their way in.  If ya know what I mean.  😉

What do you think?  Is this something that might work for you?  Are you a seasoning lover? Or would this trick work for someone in your family?

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