Healthy and hassle-free beach snacks
Toss this fresh and healthy hummus with crunchy sweet potato chips and refreshing ginger-mint lemonade into your beach bag for a day out on the water.
Some things you never outgrow. Like building sand castles. I love the beach, and every time I go — whether it's with my niece and nephew or not — I have to make one. Whether you're building sand castles, running, swimming or sun bathing, an appetite is sure to be worked up after awhile.
Long before you hit the beach, you need to have a beach bag filled up with snacks. (And, speaking of a bag, you need something insulated to keep food and drinks cold. This pop-up bag is my favorite — it holds a fridge full of food, then collapses when it's empty. To keep things cold but not wet, try these reusable wrap sheets.)
Nothing says easy like finger foods. The night before your beach trip, why not whip up my garlic curry hummus with sweet potato chips. The hummus doesn't have to be served cold, but the chill of the cooler will make it really refreshing. Package the chips in an air-tight container, not a bag, so they're not smashed in transit.
Kabobs are also a great idea because you don't have to touch the fruit with sandy, dirty hands. Load up wooden skewers with fruit, cheese or even veggies. A great kid-friendly option is watermelon, pineapple and oranges, while cheese, olives and tomatoes is sure to keep the adults happy. If you're at the beach for the Fourth of July, make patriotic skewers with blueberries, strawberries and bananas. If you have the time, use star-shaped cookie cutters. They'll be that much more festive.
You can never have too much water. So pack both chilled and frozen bottles to help keep everything cool. Later in the day, when those thaw, you'll be grateful for a cool drink. If you have time to make something in advance, my ginger-mint lemonade is great for the whole family. Pre-fill empty water bottles or to-go cups so you're not lugging a heavy pitcher.
Garlic curry hummus & sweet potato chips
- 2 (19 ounce) cans garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup tahini paste
- 1/2 cup lemon juice
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 2 tablespoons water
Sweet potato chips
- 3 sweet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- To prepare the hummus, add all the ingredients to a food processor and purée until smooth.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and lightly spray with cooking spray.
- Place the sweet potatoes in a single layer on the cookie sheet. Spray the potatoes with cooking spray, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake until crisp, about 10 minutes. Serve immediately with the hummus.
Ginger-mint lemonade recipe
- 2 cups water
- 1-1/2 cups sugar
- 3 tablespoons fresh ginger, chopped
- 26 fresh mint leaves
- 4 cups club soda
- 1 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice
- 6 cups ice
- 1 lemon, thinly sliced
- Combine the water, sugar, and ginger in a medium saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat and simmer until the sugar has melted.
- Remove the pan from the heat, add 16 mint leaves, cover, and let the leaves steep for 10 minutes. Using a fine strainer, strain the mixture into a glass container and refrigerate until well-chilled.
- Add the ice, sugar mixture, lemon juice, remaining mint leaves, and lemon slices into a large pitcher.