Exam season sucks. It seems like the ultimate irony that students have faced throughout time, that as soon as the sun comes out, we are stuck behind our desks, forced to revise and write exam papers until our brains no longer function and our fingers become numb from the endless keyboard tapping, an incredibly irritating sound which seems to echo incessantly around the library, haunting my nightmares as I try to sleep after a long day of studying.
Now yes, I admit this is a bit of a dramatic take on what is essentially a minor inconvenience, but, sadly for my friends and family, I am not one for keeping it in perspective. If, like me, you are just concluding another library breakdown and feel in need of a pick me up, then fear not; I’ve got your back. I’m about to share with you my top five recipes for healthy study snacks, which will feed your mind and body, giving you the energy to get through this undoubtedly difficult period.
These chickpeas are a delicious, quick-to-make snack for when you’re in the mood for a crunchy treat. In this simple recipe, the chickpeas are flavoured with paprika, cumin and coriander, the holy trinity of spicy goodness. So, my friend, when you feel the urge to reach towards the packet of spicy crisps, reach instead for a tin of chickpeas and get ready for a taste explosion that will save your wallet and your waistline. This recipe is not only healthy but also gluten-free and vegan, so suitable for various dietary needs. Keep them in an airtight container and eat them within two or three days to get them at their premium crunch level.
Have you ever carefully followed a recipe, mixed up the perfect cookie batter, innocently licked the spoon, and after getting a taste of this morish delicacy, found yourself intoxicated by the irresistible combination of fat and sugar and eaten the entire bowl? Don’t be ashamed; we’ve all been there. The thing about raw cookie dough is that, before tucking in, you have to weigh up whether eating the bowl of sugary goodness is worth the potential for food poisoning, which, I must admit, has never stopped me before, but it does take the joy out of the experience somewhat. This is where no-bake cookies come in. The next time you crave cookie dough, forget the oven and whip up a batch of these bad boys. They’re made primarily with peanut butter and oats, so they are healthy and remove any risk of food poisoning, making them the perfect mid-exam treat.
I think eating fruit winders was a universal experience for primary school children in the early 2000s. In my school, anyway, you truly weren’t anybody if you weren’t tucking into either a fruit winder or a packet of midget gems at break time. Now when thinking about study snacks, I thought I should stick to what I know, and if it worked for me at primary school (when I would argue, I reached my academic peak), then why wouldn’t it work now? This recipe is vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free, and pretty simple to make, only taking four ingredients, all of which are different fruits. Pears, blueberries, a banana, and an orange flavour this particular recipe, but I’m sure you could go rogue and use your favourite fruits or whatever’s going off in the bottom of your fruit bowl for your winders.
Usually, I must admit, granola bars do not appeal to me. I’ve had too many dry, flavourless, depressing creations to hold out much hope for these flapjack impersonators. However, when Mary Berry gets involved, my scepticism melts into enthusiasm as, in my opinion, any recipe from the Queen of baking herself is a guaranteed success. Mary has chosen to flavour her granola bars with pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, cranberries, and sultanas, but she says you can use any seeds or dried fruits to fill your bars; she’s so generous like that. So give them a go with whatever you’ve got in the cupboard; maybe you’ll create a new delicious combination and give Mary Berry herself a run for her money (I doubt it, though).
I thought I’d finish with the perfect summer exam season snack, the frozen yoghurt bark. Not only is this recipe easy to make, but it is also healthy, delicious, and, most importantly, cool and refreshing for these hot summer days in stuffy exam halls. In this recipe, the vanilla yoghurt is topped with strawberries, blueberries, and granola but feel free to mix it up and add whatever toppings your heart desires or even switch up the flavour of the yoghurt; the combinations are truly endless! Once you have cut up your bark, store it in an airtight container in the freezer and keep it for up to three months before tucking in.