"Snacking" and "dieting" don't usually go together, which can make it tough to stick with a weight-loss plan. But sticking to the best snacks on Weight Watchers (now called WW) can allow you to graze all day and lose weight too — as long as you keep to your allotted points.
Here's how WW's SmartPoints work, how to choose a snack that fits with your goals and 10 of the best Weight Watchers snacks to buy or make at home.
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How Do WW SmartPoints Work?
Instead of having you track calories, WW's SmartPoints system calculates a daily points allowance for you based on your height, weight, age, sex and weight-loss goal, per the WW website.
For instance, a short person who doesn't do much activity might get 23 SmartPoints per day, whereas someone taller or more active may have more points.
Each food item is then assigned a specific points value based on its calories, protein, saturated fat and sugar.
A cup of whole-wheat penne pasta is 9 SmartPoints, for example, while strawberries are 0 points.
High point values don't mean a food is "bad" — because there is no such thing as "good" or "bad" foods, per the website. Instead, it just means you'll balance out that snack with lower-point options.
How to Choose the Best Weight Watchers Snack
You're given a certain number of points per day, and how you use them is up to you, according to the website. Ideally, you should carve out some of the points to be used for snacks throughout the day.
For example, if your plan gives you 23 points, you could plan your day like this:
- Breakfast: 5 points
- Lunch: 5 points
- Dinner: 7 points
- Snacks: 6 points
This six-point snack budget should be plenty when you consider how many zero-point foods you can munch on (and keep in mind that you can roll over up to 4 points for another day in the week).
According to WW, here are some zero-point foods (though note that zero-point options can vary based on your plan):
- Fruit (not including dried, sweetened or canned fruits)
- Most vegetables
- Low-fat or fat-free yogurt and cottage cheese
- Brown rice and whole grains
- Fish and shellfish
- Oats and oatmeal
- Whole-wheat pasta and noodles
- Tofu and tempeh
- Corn and popcorn
- Beans, peas, and lentils
When choosing the best snacks on Weight Watchers (and snacks in general, for that matter), you want something that will keep you full, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Foods rich in fiber, protein or, ideally, both — like the aforementioned zero-point avocados, yogurt, cottage cheese, popcorn and eggs — fill this criteria.
How Much Fiber and Protein Should You Eat?
Here's how much fiber adults should eat per day, according to the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans:
- People assigned female at birth (AFAB): 22 to 28 g
- People assigned male at birth (AMAB): 28 to 34 g
And here's how much protein adults should get every day:
- People AFAB: 46 g
- People AMAB: 59 g
5 Weight Watchers Snacks to Buy
But sometimes you want to have something that's not on your zero-point list. That's where WW's branded snacks come in: Each snack already has the points value on the packaging, so the guesswork is done for you.
To help, here are those Weight Watchers snacks to buy:
1. Salt and Vinegar Potato Crisps (2 SmartPoints)
Chips hit the spot, which is why you may be wondering what the best chips to eat on Weight Watchers are.
Enter their salt and vinegar potato crisps: Prepackaged for portion control, this Weight Watchers-approved snack is going to give you 4 grams of dietary fiber to help you reach the Dietary Guidelines for Americans-recommended daily serving.
2. Chocolate Peanut Butter Mini Bar (2 SmartPoints)
The chocolate peanut butter bar is the perfect combo of sweet and salty. There are 12 mini bars in the package and each has 3 grams of protein and 2 grams of fiber.
Pair with a non-fat plain Greek yogurt to add more protein to your snack time with zero points.
3. Nacho Tortilla Chips (2 SmartPoints)
These tortilla chips, which are also among the best chips to eat on Weight Watchers, would be perfect paired with pico de gallo, an all-vegetable condiment that's zero points.
Indeed, it is possible to eat the best chips for WW and pair them with nutritious additional foods.
There's no need to cut out chocolate on WW. Even better, there are 4 grams of protein and 2 grams of fiber in each of these mini bars.
It's probably best to stick with one per day, though, because there's some added sugar in these (3 grams per serving). That said, it's less than a teaspoon and still well below these American Heart Association-recommended (AHA) upper limits for added sugar per day:
- People AFAB: 6 tsp.
- People AMAB: 9 tsp.
5. Turkey Pepperoni Snack Sticks (2 SmartPoints)
If you're struggling to get enough protein in your snacks, these might be a good option for you. One serving is two sticks, which gives you 9 grams of protein.
These do have 470 milligrams of sodium, though, so if you're watching your sodium, just be aware and eat them in moderation.
Pair these with a fruit that has a good amount of potassium to help flush some of that sodium out of your body.
Why? Per the AHA, potassium-rich foods like melon, spinach and oranges can help control your blood pressure by getting rid of excess sodium in the body. And the good news is most high-potassium fruits and veggies are zero points on WW.
Buy it: WeightWatchers.com; Price: $7.99 for 8 sticks
5 Homemade Snacks for 1 Point or Less
If buying the best WW snacks is not in the budget or you just don't have them on hand, no problem. Try making one of these WW-friendly snacks at home, each 1 SmartPoint or less.
1. Fruit and Cheddar Cheese (1 SmartPoint)
One ounce of cheddar cheese is typically 1 SmartPoint, which is the size of a pair of dice, per the website.
Pair this with a zero-point apple and cup of sliced cucumbers, and you've got yourself a lot of food and 7 grams of protein for 1 point.
2. Carrot Sticks and Yogurt Ranch (0 SmartPoints)
Try this recipe from the WW website for a perfect midday snack:
- Cut up two small whole carrots into half-inch sticks or measure out 1 cup of baby carrots.
- In a small bowl, mix 1/2 cup of plain fat-free Greek yogurt with 1 tablespoon ranch seasoning, 1 teaspoon of chives, 1 cup of red pepper and a pinch of black pepper.
Carrots, yogurt, chives, red pepper and spices are all typically zero points, so feel free to play around with the spices to mix up the flavors in this dip.
3. Zucchini Chips With Pico de Gallo (0 SmartPoints)
Chop up a small zucchini into thin slices, then dip the "chips" into homemade or store-bought pico de gallo. Voila — you've got yourself a zero-point, all-vegetable dish, one of the best snacks to eat on Weight Watchers.
4. Banana 'Ice Cream' (0 SmartPoints)
If you've never had banana "ice cream," it may become your favorite zero-point snack. Here's how to make it, according to the WW website:
- Cut a banana into slices and freeze until solid.
- Place the frozen bananas in a food processor and blend until smooth.
- Scoop out into a bowl and enjoy.
The texture is smooth and creamy, just like ice cream. You can also add frozen fruit for more flavor combos without adding any points.
5. Chicken Breast Cubes With Salsa Verde (0 SmartPoints)
This might sound more like a meal, but if you need a quick dish that's a little more substantial or want a protein-packed post-workout snack, try this one out.
Cube a 1/2 cup's worth of leftover chicken breast and dip it in salsa verde (which is just roasted tomatillos, onions, jalapeños, cilantro and lime) — all zero points and about 22 grams of protein, according to My Food Data.
Talk to your doctor before starting any weight-loss program to make sure it's the right one for you, per the Mayo Clinic.
- WW: "Complete List of Foods for ZeroPoints for My WWBlue"
- American Heart Association: "How Potassium Can Help Control High Blood Pressure"
- American Heart Association: "Added Sugars"
- U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: "2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans"
- Mayo Clinic: "Weight loss: Choosing a diet that's right for you"
- WW: "SmartPoints make healthy eating simpler"
- Mayo Clinic: "Snacks: How they fit into your weight-loss plan"
- WW: "Greek Yogurt Ranch Dip"
- WW: "Basic 0 Points Banana Ice Cream + Five Flavours"
- My Food Data: "Roasted Chicken Breast"