Ideas for healthy, mailable snacks/goodies

When my friends are having problems, I like to send them cookies or other goodies to cheer them up. However, I know that most of them are trying to eat healthy, and that particularly when they’re stressed they have to work really hard to avoid overeating. So chocolate chip cookies, while a nice gesture, aren’t the best gift.

What can I send them (most are old college friends who live around the country so I need non-perishable items that can be mailed) that will be healthy but still a nice pick-me-up kind of goody?

Some kind of trail mix would be my choice. Nuts, dried fruit, chocolate chips…yum.

Do they follow an eating plan, like low-carb, low-fat, Superfoods, or anything else? this can help guide you in what you choose. “Healthy” is actually kind of an ambiguous concept. For example, meringues are a great treat for someone who holds to low-fat, and terrible choice for someone who holds to low carb.

Some kind of trail mix would be my choice. Nuts, dried fruit, chocolate chips…yum.

Granola bars, instant soup, dried fruit, fancy nuts, small amounts of REALLY GOOD dark chocolate . . . I like to make up “gourmet” baskets of fancy stuff that people might not ordinarily buy – fancy pasta sauces, mustards, jams, that sort of thing. Coffee/tea if they drink it.

Also nonedibles like little toys, books, funky pencils, that sort of thing.

And of course a personal note telling them that you’re thinking of them is always a nice touch.

Hmm… good question. I don’t think any of them are on any specific diet. They’re just trying to avoid junk food and probably things like the cookies that I have sent in the past. Meringues would probably be great; as far as I know, no one’s doing low carb. Any good meringue recipe suggestions?

The other suggestions are great. Thanks everyone.

Well for “generalized heathy” cookies, you can choose ones that are naturally higher in fiber (like oatmeal) use part whole wheat flour and add anti-oxidant rich foods like dried berries or dark chocolate. (psst: cranberry chocolate chunk… and send me some!)

You could also make your own whole wheat or multigrain pretzels.

Homemade pretzels?? How do I do that?

I love the idea of healthier cookies too. Thanks.

Just for example:
http://fooddownunder.com/cgi-bin/recipe.cgi?r=204535
If you prefer soft pretzels (they don’t keep as well as hard pretzels) there are lots of recipes on www.allrecipes.com.

Oh! another thing that is kinda healthy and ships well is pumpkin or squash bread. You can also use part whole wheat flour (about 1/3) in these recipes, and add nuts and fruit if you like.

I used to ship dried fruits, veggies, and meats across the country and internationally. My sisiter was um…transient…for a while and often lived out of a backpack on a bus. If you have any interest in really good dried fruits and veggies (and herbs and meats) get a food dehydrator and make treats from fresh produce. The stuff you buy is more expensive, has more preservatives, and less flavor. If you make the stuff, you can send jerky to an Atkins dieter, fruit to a low-fater, etc. Some things are too good in the dehydrator…applesauce is to die for. Think all the fun of a Fruit Roll Up with the addition of flavor and texture and the subtraction of blue and fake froot flavor.
Some things that are easy/fun to dry: applesauce, applesauce with another fruit flavor, pineapple, mango, banana, apple slices, pumpkin puree (with pumpkin pie spices), kiwi, frozen veggies, cranberry jelly.

BTW, you usually ship by weight, so dehydrated ships cheaper too.

Making and canning homeade applesauce is really easy. My brother made some last fall with seven different varieties of apples. It was amazing. Mine only had three, but was still good. Also, once you get the hang of canning, homemade jellies and jams are really cool and people love them, particularly if you strain the seeds out. And mailing glass jars isn’t that hard. Plus, canned stuff keeps forever, so you can make a ton at once and save for special occasions and/or care packages.

Bake them some of those sugar-free low-fat Atkins cookies. Should work for any diet.

Send your friends flowers instead of food. We’ve got a vase of a dozen roses on our kitchen table right now. Dang, they look lovely!

I spent 15 months sending my husband goodie boxes in Afghanistan. A little creative shopping or cooking, you should be able to find “healthier” alternatives to cookies. There are a lot of pre-packaged meals (ie spaghetti) that are good to travel as well.

The most popular stuff, though, was toys. I also sent a ton of goofy toys like those small plastic squirt guns, slinky, etc. that were very popular.

One of the more expensive things I sent was a “Picnic in a Box”. I included all of the normal picnic stuff like a disposable grill, sand umbrella, little folding table, red/white checkered table cloth, etc. He was extremely pleased. :wink:

Enjoy!