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Simple, Healthy Summer Snacks

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/EINPresswire.com/ -- MISSION, KS--(Marketwired - May 8, 2017) - (Family Features) As temperatures climb and summer sets in, a slight change in diet can help maintain energy without overfilling on hot days.

Vegan and vegetarian diets are becoming a popular trend, but many people are also opting to be semi-vegetarians, also known as the flexitarian diet. A flexitarian diet means you don't have to eliminate meat from your diet but can still reap the health benefits associated with plant-based diets.

Plant-based proteins like beans, peas, nuts, seeds, soy and lentils are chock-full of nutritional benefits from disease-fighting phytonutrients to cholesterol-lowering fiber. They're also an excellent way to add low-sodium and low-cholesterol protein to your diet that can leave you feeling satisfied but not stuffed.

Light finger foods and dips are ideal summer snacks. Hummus, made from chickpeas and tahini (ground sesame seeds), makes for a quick and easy treat by itself or paired with health-conscious options like air-popped chips, whole-grain crackers or veggie sticks. You can also create simple summer snacks using hummus as an ingredient.

These vegan Cucumber Cups are the perfect refreshing pick-me-up on a hot afternoon, and they're stylish enough to serve to guests at an upscale cookout. For a cool and creamy summer appetizer, try these vegetarian Southwestern Snack Bites made with hummus, guacamole and Greek yogurt.

Find more healthy ideas to help you snack your way through summer at sabra.com.

Southwestern Hummus Bites
Yield: 30 pieces

1 package (7 ounces) whole-grain bagel chips
1 container (10 ounces) Sabra Hummus
2 cups pico de gallo
1 cup guacamole
1 cup plain, low-fat Greek yogurt
4 green onions, sliced (optional)

Top each bagel chip with 1 tablespoon hummus, small spoonful of pico de gallo, guacamole and small dollop of yogurt. 

Garnish with slices of green onion, if desired.

Cucumber Cups
Yield: 16 pieces

2 English cucumbers
1 container (10 ounces) Sabra Hummus
1 teaspoon paprika
1 bunch parsley, finely chopped

Peel cucumbers and slice lengthwise into 1 1/4-inch pieces. Using melon baller, carve out seeds to create vessel, making sure to leave bottom intact.

Using piping bag or small spoon, fill each cucumber with hummus (about 1 teaspoon each). Sprinkle with paprika and finely chopped parsley.

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