Thursday, January 17, 2013

20 High Calorie Nut-Free Snacks for Weight Gain

As a parent in America I'm supposed to be focused on cutting fat, limiting sugar, and getting our portion sizes down to a human-like level. And I am. Sometimes.
But every January the bombardment ensues. Emails with subject lines like 20 Low-Calorie Snacks and Cut Calories with 7 Simple Strategies start flooding my inbox. Magazines promise to Keep the Flavor, Lose the Fat! And that's great for many of us, myself included. But what about the failure to thrive kids like Roo who struggle to grow? What about the not so rare adult who fights to gain or maintain weight. They're out there too, you know. 

I've been fascinated (and somewhat appalled) by the way we respond to a-typical bodies of all types. Sure it's unfair that heavy people are discriminated against, belittled, and worse, but it's time to give the skinny minis a break too.

I've been told on more than one occasion that Roo (all 29 pounds of him) will come to appreciate his lightning speed metabolism one day. Really? I hope he likes his car seat because at this rate he's taking it to prom. My willowy girlfriend gets asked repeatedly why she bothers running when she's already so thin. Skinny actresses get accused of being anorexic, and I'm not saying this is never the case, but no one looks at a chubby star and comments, "Oh gross, she looks totally hypothyroid!" because that would be completely inappropriate and mean spirited, right?

Why is it acceptable in our culture to obsess over a few extra pounds then turn around and dismiss the health and body image concerns of underweight individuals? We're all after the same goal here, right? Healthy, strong, well-nourished bodies. Think about it the next time you want to punch your girlfriend in the face because her size 00 jeans are gaping at the waist. She's no less entitled to a healthy body image than the rest of us.

So, in honor of Roo and underweight kids and adults all over this great country of ours, a few suggestions for (mostly) nutritious, lower sugar, high calorie snacks that just happen to be free of nuts, because that's how we roll.
#10 Whole Wheat Blackberry and Meyer Lemon Ricotta Scones
#19 Zucchini Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Icing
 20 High Calorie Nut-Free Snacks

1. Brie cheese on a baguette with strawberry jam (also known as my favorite late night snack, but this isn't really about me)
2. Full-fat yogurt fruit smoothie (Blend 1&1/2 cups frozen fruit of your choice and 8 ounces full fat yogurt until smooth. Add half an avocado, 1/4 cup heavy cream, and ice cubes for an extra amped up version)
3. Parmesan chunks and black olives (AKA The Roo Special)
4. Graham crackers spread with SunButter, decorated with raisins or dried cherries
5. Banana Bread spread with cream cheese
6. Pumpkin or Winter Squash muffins
7. Croissants (Costco near us makes them without egg, but read your labels!) Cut it open, toast it and butter the cut sides ala Mufasa for more calories.
8. Cheese quesadillas with guacamole
9. Nut-free Granola with whole milk or half and half
10. Whole Wheat Blackberry and Meyer Lemon Ricotta Scones
11. Parmesan and Thyme "Cookies"
12. Real whipped heavy cream with fresh berries and granola (Bean's dream)
13. Mediterranean plate: cubed feta cheese, hummus, buttered pita triangles, cucumber, olives, grape tomatoes
14. Cheesy nachos with bean dip and sliced avocado
15. Cheddar cheese chunks with sliced apple, pear, or nectarine
16. Sweet potato fries dipped in easy garlic aoli (we use Veganaise in place of mayo due to the egg allergy)
17. Grilled Cheese Sandwiches with Roasted Tomato Dip
18. Buttermilk biscuits with Garlic Chive Butter
19. Zucchini Cake with optional Lemon Cream Cheese Icing
20. Roasted Pepita Honey Butter and Sliced Banana Sandwich
#18 Buttermilk Biscuits with Garlic Chive Butter
#11 Parmesan and Thyme "Cookies"


  1. I can not agree with you more. I have always been a smaller thin child and can put away enough food to feed two grown men. Thank you for posting some healthy high calorie recipes.

    1. I hear you, woman! I hope you'll be able to put some of these ideas to use.

  2. Amazing blog post. Thanks for sharing. Keep up the good work.
    Best Diet Plan