If you’ve eating plant-based foods before, you are probably starting to realize that most of the foods can be soft, soggy and chewy – especially if they are overcooked. It doesn’t quite hit the crunch spot like a chip would. By the way, am I the only one who gets the same sort of satisfaction from eating crunchy foods as I do when stepping on a dried, falling leaf in the middle of autumn?
No? It’s just me? Okay.
The trick to eating crunchy foods on a plant-based diet is to keep the foods as is. A good example is celery. Raw veggies are a good place to start, but there are some items that you can cook that’ll give you a nice bite.
You can also use an air fryer for a healthier way of frying things up without all of the oil.
My personal favorite? Homemade kale chips.
Homemade Kale Chips
Here are some food ideas that have a really nice plant-based crunch to it.
I am not talking about the store-bought kale chips. If you want this to be right, you really have to invest in the effort of making it yourself. Plus, they are also really easy to make. To make you cooking life easier, just get pre-cut kale. Trader Joe’s sells a bag of the stuff for under 2 bucks.
Making it: Grab a bunch of kale, toss in about a tablespoon of of olive oil, lightly sprinkle some salt. Throw it in the oven on a baking sheet. Cook at 350F for about 10-15 minutes, or until crunchy.
Homemade Potato Chips
It’s easy to just grab a bag of chips from the front of the supermarket, but if you really want to make it fresh, homemade, and more plant-based compliant, you’ll definitely want to make them at home.
These take some effort, since you have to slice them thinly. But it’s definitely worth it. If you have a held slicing machine, that’ll make the slicing step much easier. You’ll want to slice them as thin a possible, about ⅛ of an inch. Once sliced, toss them in lightly with olive oil. Place them on a baking sheet. Make sure they’re not overlapping. Cook at 375F degrees for about 15-20 minutes.
This is just a no-brainer. If you want to opt for a healthier alternative, grab a bag that is butter-free and salt-free. If you don’t care for the healthier alternative, then do whatever you want. Just have popcorn. 🙂
No need to cook these bad boys. Let them be as they are. You can dip them into hummus, peanut butter, salad dressing, or soup.
My favorite way to have raw carrots is with hummus. It’s refreshing and earthy. Just like celery, carrots can be dipped into anything. Or, you can just eat them without the dip. They have a nice undertone of sweetness and flavor on its own anyway.
Nothing fancy to do here. Just find a solid bell pepper at your local grocery store or farmer’s market. Feel the peppers out and avoid the soft ones. We don’t want those. Slice them however you want and eat them as a snack. They can be red, yellow, green – whatever you like. They all taste a little different. I personally love green bell peppers, since I like my peppers less sweet. By the way, red peppers are the sweetest, if that’s what you’re going for. You can dip into any sauce you want, but I love them on their own. You can also add them to a salad or sandwich. No cooking necessary.
Romaine lettuce is the perfect snack if you’re craving something with the crunch and a very subtle flavor. You can use them as an alternative to a wrap, eating them in a salad, or just eat them straight from their ribs.
Salted, plain, however you like ‘em, just eat ‘em. They’re the perfect low-calorie, plant-based crunchy snack that you can find at very good price at any store. They should be at about $0.50 to $1.00, depending on where you’re buying them. Sunflower seeds not only satisfies that crunch craving, but they’re a really great source of vitamin E, which helps with immunity, healthy skin, and eyes.
Sauteed Green Beans
When I want something filling, yet low in calories, sauteed green beans is the perfect way of getting that. It has a really nice crunch and is full of flavor. Keeping it simple here: I just toss them in olive oil and saute them in a pan for a few minutes. To keep them crunch and to prevent them from getting soggy, I cook them only until they’ve brown a bit on the outside. It shouldn’t take you longer than 2 minutes to get there.
Rice cakes are incredibly versatile and can really cure a the hunger pang. You can top them with peanut butter, avocado, tempeh, tomatoes, or whatever you want. They pair very well with whole-food, plant-based fatty foods.
Sugar Snap Peas
Yes, you can eat them raw! Nothing to do here, just eat them whole. They are a bit sweet (probably where their name came from). Just like most raw vegetables or fruits, you can take them anywhere. This is what plant-based, fast-food looks like, folks.
Fresh or frozen, it doesn’t really matter. The trick is not to overcook them if you do decide to cook them. Did you know that you can eat corn on the cob completely raw? Try it out!
These magical things are really easy to make. All you need is a can of chickpeas (or garbanzo beans), olive oil, and some salt. You can add other seasonings if you want like garlic or chili powder.
Making it: Preheat the oven to 450F degrees. Drain and dry off the chickpeas with paper towels. In a bowl, toss + coat them with a bit of olive oil. Add a pinch of salt. Spread them on a baking sheet and bake for about 30-40 minutes, or until they are perfectly crunch and golden.
Can you think of any other fruit that is a crunchy as apples? Cut them up, eat them whole, or even sprinkle a big of cinnamon on them.
All Types Of Nuts
Peanuts, cashews, almonds – they are all nice to have for a nice, fatty, plant-based crunchy treat.
What are some of your favorite plant-based foods that satisfies that crunch craving? If it’s not on this list, definitely add to the comments!