Protein chips might just be the best thing since, well, chips. They’re a great snack option for whenever you’re on the go, in between meals, or headed to an afternoon bbq. These 7 healthy protein chip alternatives aren’t as bad as you may think and as time goes on, companies are coming up with more and more ways to season and improve their chips so that you don’t feel like your compromising or settling for less than your favorite bag of carb-loaded, unhealthy chips. Let’s dive headfirst into this healthy swap that you can make to feed your protein goals.
What Is Good About Protein Chips?
Could there be anything bad about protein chips? We’ll see, but first, we’re going to focus on what is good about protein chips.
Healthy Protein Chip Alternatives Help With Cravings
Everyone gets cravings. Whether you’re following a nutrition plan, have specific physical or performance goals, or you’re just looking to live a healthier lifestyle, cravings can be one of the biggest threats to your success. Sure, we all know chips aren’t that great for you, however, does that stop us from consuming these carb-laden goal slashing triangular pieces of yumminess? Nah, it doesn’t. This is where healthy protein chip alternatives come into play - you can have your chip and eat it too! They contain all the crunch and ability to make your taste buds dance without the extra calories or empty carbohydrates that leave you unsatisfied and unfulfilled.
Protein Chips Are Portable
And by portable, we mean you take a bag of protein chips just about anywhere for a little crunch crunch all up in your mouth. Whether you’re on a plane, at the office, headed to school, or stuck in traffic, you don’t have to get in a pinch and find yourself without food. They’re a nice pre-packaged protein source that isn’t protein powder (like Swolverine’s Whey Isolate for example), protein drink, or a traditional protein bar. The only problem? Healthy protein chip alternatives are tasty and you might want more than one bag.
Healthy Protein Chips Help Hit Your Macros
Protein is notoriously the hardest macronutrient to hit — take it from me, I’m a tried and true nutrition and lifestyle coach for The Swole Kitchen. If you have trouble hitting your macro target on a daily basis, then protein chips might be a new and exciting way for you to hit your goal. Healthy protein chips aren’t exactly the least processed option, however, they’re better than getting stranded with nothing. Pop a bag into your glovebox or bag until you can get home and crush some of the real things. Plus, bringing a bag of protein chips on the boat or over to a friend's house ranks a lot lower on the unwanted attention scale than a 4oz chicken breast, just saying.
What Is Bad About Protein Chips?
Could there even be anything bad!? I mean, come on, they’re crunchy, tasty, and packed with protein with pretty low carb totals, contributing to a nice low-calorie snack. What could be bad about that? Well, maybe a couple of things. Let’s check them out, eh?
Protein Chips Are Still A Processed Food
Ideally, you want to try and minimize processed foods as much as possible and get your nutrients from food, first. While this isn’t the worst thing, we definitely don’t recommend relying on healthy protein chip alternatives as your only source of protein. Seems silly to say, but you’d be surprised what people do.
Protein Chips Might Not Teach You Healthy Habits
If you’re looking to make a change and to add more healthful foods into your daily diet, then making the swap for protein chips from regular chips is a great starting point. However, if you’re not going to focus on the other meals and snacks during the day, what good is it? We suggest using protein chips as a starter towards strengthening your willpower over other unhealthy foods in your diet and working towards more macro-friendly adjustments. Adding in fruits and veggies and other lean meats as quality sources of protein, for example.If you need help with creating a nutritional lifestyle that is maintainable and supports your health goals, sign up for a free nutrition consultation with the pro’s over at The Swole Kitchen. Click here to schedule.
7 Healthy Protein Chip Alternatives
Quest Protein Chips
Our favorite go-to healthy protein chip alternative is the Quest Nutrition Protein Chips. They come in a wide variety of flavors and pack in about 18g of protein with only 4g net carbs, putting a single bag at only 140 calories. Dang Gina! They do use milk and whey protein isolate as well as high oleic sunflower oil. These little crispy bites of heaven are a much less unhealthy option as compared to the chips you get at the gas station and provide the greatest protein to carb ratio.
Flock Chicken Chips
Light as air and full of flavor, Flock Chicken Chips come in a close second as they’ve got us breaking up with traditional chip options. They’re not exactly low in calories as they have 170 calories per 2-ounce bag, but they deliver 12g of protein and just 2g net carbs. What does this mean? You can chow down on a couple of bags without the guilt because they’re flockin’ scrumptious. We give two bock bocks for these rotisserie chicken chips!
The Safe And Fair Pea Protein Chips
Safe and Fair offers some pretty tasty pea protein chips. They’re free from five of the top eight allergies and are made with pea protein and lentil flour. There are 9-10g of protein per serving, are baked not fried, and are certified gluten-free, non-GMO, kosher, cholesterol-free, and vegetarian. If you really care about what goes into your chips, then these puppies are probably right for you. However, if you do look for all your products to be extremely clean, chances are you don’t eat chips anyways. Think of these as a nice re-introduction to the chip world, your style, your way.
Wholesome Provisions Muscle Chips
Compared to regular chips, the Wholesome Provisions Muscle Chips definitely have more protein. As compared to their healthy protein chip alternative counterparts? We recommend snagging some! Nutritionally, they end up netting about 14g protein, 5g fiber, and around 5g of carbs per serving. They’re also vegan friendly however they do contain gluten. Lastly, they’re baked, not fried. These chippies make a great starting point for migrating your way to a healthier lifestyle, both in and out of the gym.
Popcorners Flex Protein Crisps
Popcorners make great chips as it is, let alone their Flex chips. They’re a low-calorie healthy protein chip alternative. Crisp and crunchy, you can eat about 24 crisps with 10g of protein, 8g net carbs, and only 90 calories. Tell me the last time you ate 24 chips for 90 calories. I’ll wait. Always, the Popcorners Flex Protein chips are light, balanced, and make a great addition to an egg salad, tuna, or guac.
Peatos Fiery Mix
If you enjoy spicy crunchy snacks, like Takis or Hot Cheetos, then these little spicy numbers are right up your alley. Peatos came to market in 2017 and immediately made waves. Instead of using corn, like most chips here in the Western world, the idea came from using peas and lentils (you can read more about the brand and story here). The snack is 100% vegan. While they’re low on the protein scale, at 4g per serving, they do have 3g of fiber per serving and are non-GMO, gluten-free, and do not include any synthetic colors. If you find yourself regularly eating the formerly mentioned snacks (Takis or Hot Cheetos) these are a great step towards creating a healthier lifestyle and smaller waistline.
Protes Vegan Baked Protein Chips
Not to be confused with ‘proats’ (the common name for protein oats), Protes is actually relatively well known in the healthy protein chip alternative world. These little triangular babies are made with pea protein isolate in order to boost the potato flavor. Boating 15g of protein and 4g net carbs, these vegan-friendly and low carb protein chips are a nice go-to as a cheat day item or guacamole dipping alternative.
Honorable Mention: Twin Peaks Protein Puffs
While these aren’t technically chips, we included the Twin Peaks Ingredients Protein Puffs on the list because they boast a big ol serving of 42g protein with 4g of carbs per bag (daaang!). These little tiny puffs of happiness are reminiscent of Cheetos, which, if you eat chips often, you might find yourself elbow deep in a bag of Cheetos, and lord knows those aren’t good for you. Talk about game changers! If you find yourself chowing down more bags than one, maybe consider opting for their jugs of protein puffs for your ultimate snacking needs.
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Our best recommendation for getting more protein into your diet is definitely getting your macronutrients (protein, fat, and carbs) from real, whole food sources, first. Then, from high-quality supplements like Whey Protein Isolate and PLANTPRO5 from Swolverine. Lastly, incorporating things like bars, drinks, and chips as healthy snack alternatives. We hope you enjoyed some of our favorite healthy protein chip alternatives, and if we missed anything, be sure to leave us a comment about your experiences and favorites!
Looking for a simple, great-tasting Whey Protein Isolate to add into your daily routine? Swolverine offers three creamy flavors (chocolate, vanilla, honey cinnamon peanut butter) for all your protein needs!
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