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Many of us have a love/hate relationship with sugar. As hard as we try to avoid it, when a craving strikes, it’s hard to say no. Because let’s face it: Sugar is delicious!
But too much added sugar in your diet contributes to a long list of health problems including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, obesity, dental issues, and more.
The good news is there are many delicious (and nutritious!) low-sugar options available out there. Here are the top expert approved low-sugar meals, snacks, and desserts to consider adding to your diet.
Low-sugar breakfast foods
1. Bob’s Red Mill Oatmeal Packets
Oatmeal is filled with satiating fiber and health-promoting nutrients, making it a great choice to add to your morning routine.
“Unfortunately, many store-bought oatmeal packets are loaded with processed ingredients and unnecessary added sugars,” says Mackenzie Burgess, RDN, registered dietitian nutritionist and recipe developer at Cheerful Choices. “Instead, I love to choose Bob’s Red Mill Instant Oatmeal Packets. They take only a minute to make and contain little to no added sugars, making them a healthy breakfast choice for a busy schedule.”
Nutrition facts per serving: 140 calories, 3.5g fat (0.5 saturated fat, 0g trans fat), 105 mg sodium, 0g sugar, 23g carbs, 4g protein
2. Protein shake
Blending up a satisfying smoothie is always a great way to start the morning.
“If you are trying to limit your sugars, skip the sweeteners and choose a protein powder with less than 3 grams of sugar,” Burgess explains. “I like to blend together ½ frozen banana, a handful of spinach, 1 tablespoon nut butter, 1 ½ cups unsweetened almond milk, and 1 scoop of Naked Nutrition protein powder. These protein powders contain real ingredients you can pronounce and pack in over 20 grams of protein per serving.”
Plus, they come in various options such as whey, pea, and brown rice protein powders to fit various dietary preferences.
Nutrition facts per serving: 120 calories, 2g fat (0.5g saturated fat), 45 mg sodium, 2g sugar, 3g carbs, 25g protein.
3. Bob’s Red Mill Buckwheat Hot Cereal
Kick this buckwheat up a notch with pumpkin seeds and strawberries!
Barbara Sobel, MS, CNS, LDN recommends mixing together Bob’s Red Mill buckwheat groats with a few spoonfuls of chia seeds and water. Bring to a boil, cover the pan and simmer with a covered pan until water is absorbed. Serve in a bowl and top with pumpkin seeds, strawberry slices, and Califia Farms Unsweetened Almond Milk.
Nutrition facts per serving: 160 calories, 1g fat (0g saturated fat), 0mg sodium, 0g sugar, 33g carbs, 6g protein
4. Bob’s Red Mill, Coconut Spice Granola
With only 5 grams of sugar, this coconut spice granola will leave you satiated without adding to your waistline.
“Bob’s Red Mill as a brand contains many alternative flours and sugars for the beginner and novice consumer, baker and cook,” says Jennifer Jolorte Doro, clinical nutritionist and chef. “This granola is gluten-free, full of healthy fats and natural sugars like maple syrup.”
Nutrition facts per serving: 150 calories, 8g fat (6g saturated fat, 0g trans fat), 75 mg sodium, 5g sugar, 17g carbs, 3g protein
5. Veggies Made Great
If you love eggs and veggies in the morning, Jamie Rinaldi, Registered Dietitian, recommends Veggies Made Great. All but one Veggies Made Great frittatas have 1g of sugars and no added sugars. And the frittatas come in a ton of tasty flavors! They include Spinach Egg White, Mushroom & 3 Cheese, Veggie Bacon & Potato, Sausage Egg and Cheese made with Beyond Meat, Sausage and Pepper made with Beyond Meat and Broccoli Cheddar
Nutrition facts per serving: 70 calories, 4g fat (1g saturated fat, 0g trans fat), 200mg sodium, 1g sugar, 5g carbs, 5g protein
6. Kellogg’s Frosted Mini-Wheats
Cereal is probably the last thing that comes to mind when you think of low-sugar breakfast foods, but Kellogg’s Frosted Mini-Wheats makes the USDA’s list.
“Kellogg’s Frosted Mini-Wheats is actually considered a ‘low-sugar’ cereal by the USDA because the proportion of added sugar to the relatively large whole grain biscuit is actually low compared to typical flake cereals,” Stacey Krawczyk, MS, RD, President of FoodWell Strategies, explains. “This cereal is made with 100% whole grain wheat, with a serving providing 40 grams of whole grains and over 20% of your daily fiber recommendation. That is a lot of nutrition packed into a delicious little biscuit!”
Nutrition facts per serving: 210 calories, 1.5g fat (0g saturated fat, 0g trans fat), 10mg sodium, 12g sugar, 51g carbs, 5g protein
7. Siggi’s Coconut Yogurt Strawberry Blend
This yogurt only contains 7 grams of sugar, and blends well with Bob’s Red Mill Granola.“It contains pea protein and macadamia nuts which provides a rich creamy texture similar to regular yogurt,” Jolorte Doro explains. “Up to 10g of protein per serving makes it an ideal choice for vegans and vegetarians alike.”
Nutrition facts per serving: 180 calories, 10g fat (7g saturated fat, 0g trans fat), 5 mg sodium, 7g sugar, 11g carbs, 10g protein
8. Thomas’ English Muffin
A breakfast staple for many of us, nothing beats a golden-brown toasted Thomas’ English Muffin topped with nut butter and sliced bananas in the morning. There are numerous flavors to choose from – Original, Sourdough, Whole Grain, Whole Wheat, or Multi-Grain.
“You get delicious natural sweetness from the banana to balance the protein of the nut butter for the first, and the familiar taste of a McMuffin for the second – plus, whatever you top it with, the famous crunch of the English Muffin!” says Krawczyk.
Nutrition facts per serving: 150 calories, 1g fat (0g saturated fat, 0g trans fat), 240mg sodium, <1g sugar, 28g carbs, 5g protein
“Dark Cocoa and Vanilla Cinnamon are delicious new cereals for those looking for a gluten and grain free breakfast,” says Courtney Placinta, MPH, RD, Nutritionist at Kellogg’s. “With only 1 gram of total sugar per serving, they also provide 12 grams of plant-based protein.”9. Kashi GO keto-friendly cereals
If you’re looking to support a brand that gives back, try Kashi! Kashi has teamed up with 1% for The Planet to further its sustainability efforts. 1% of all sales are donated to non-profit organizations that are working to create a better world.
Nutrition facts per serving: 150 calories, 6g fat (0.5g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 1g polyunsaturated fat, 4.5g monounsaturated fat), 135mg sodium, 1g sugar, 19g carbs, 12g protein
10.Unsweetened overnight oats
If you like to meal prep and want a quick grab-and-go breakfast, you’ll enjoy unsweetened overnight oats.
“This recipe contains satisfying oats and protein-filled chia seeds and nut butter,” says Poon. “It’s simple to make, nutritious option for a low sugar breakfast.”