Stop Being Sweet

10 Sugar Free Snacks to Help Wean Yourself Off Sugar

Stop Being Sweet

Yes some are carb-heavy. No you won’t eat like this forever. I’m not a doctor or a nutritionist. However, I did manage to get off “hard” sugars by eating these foods as I weaned myself off the candy and cookies. If you are diabetic please consult a professional. I am not affiliated with any of these companies. If you’re looking for less carbs, see this post. Otherwise, here they are, in order of recommendation:

1. Apples and Peanut Butter

Adams PB

While on vacation years ago, my friend Steve sliced up an apple and dipped it into some weird-looking peanut butter. I was curious and tried some. It was delicious! Turned out it was natural PB. I had never heard of it before. It’s a bit of a shift since you have to stir it when you first get it. I recommend Adams brand natural PB combined with your favorite type of apple. There are different kinds of apples so try a few (I used to think there were only red apples) and see which one suits your taste. I don’t know what I would do without this combination. It’s a staple in my diet. Thanks Steve!

2. Larabars


Larabars are all natural treats. At about $1.50 each they aren’t much more than a “regular” candy bar and they’re pretty delicious. They’re gluten free, dairy free, soy free, non-gmo and kosher. They’ll satisfy your chocolate cravings. Keep in mind that they’ll be a bit of a departure from your usual candy bar in the flavor department but once you’re off sugar these things are a little slice of heaven. 

3. Pop Corn

Did you know you can pour some oil in a pot and pop some corn? It’s true, you don’t need a special gizmo. All you need is oil and corn. However, in this day and age microwave popcorn will probably be the choice of many. Read the label and get the one with the least amount of added junk. Pop corn fills you up and leaves you pretty satisfied.

4. Cheese and Crackers

Cut up some real cheese (not cheese spread) and eat it with crackers. Crackers are baked with sugar, yes, but it was Ritz crackers that helped me get off sugar when I first started. Try different kinds of crackers. I still eat crackers to this day, but I don’t buy them. Eating crackers makes attending house parties doable.

5. Pretzels

My favorite kind of pretzels are chocolate covered pretzels but they’re one of my trigger foods and so I avoid them. Pretzel sticks make a nice snack as the salt prevents you from just chomping them all down.

6. Potatoes

If you make potato salad, be careful that the mayonnaise you use isn’t laced with High Fructose Corn Syrup. Use natural ingredients and this snack will give you that satisfied feeling. Hot potatoes are nice when it’s cold and potato salad is a nice summer snack.

7. Pasta

I love good pasta. Try wheat pasta if you can eat it. Beware that the frozen stuffed pasta often contains sweetened cheese. Most jarred pasta sauce has sugar in it. Most varieties of Classico brand sauce do not. Check the labels. 

8. Sandwiches

I eat Vitabee bread. Sometimes I’ll eat artisan bread from the local bakery, but Vitabee is where it’s at. You can buy it at Fred Meyer stores in the Pacific North West. Everyone else will have to find your own local brand. Check to make sure there’s not HFCS in it. Look at the sugar per slice and go for the lowest. Then stick veggie slices, cheese, lettuce, etc. inside two pieces and you’ve got yourself a sandwich! Beware: Sandwich meats are often laced with sugar! Read the labels.

9. Cheerios


Can Cheerios get any more innocent? Avoid any variety but the plain ones in the yellow box. Honey nut roasted whatever flavor basically means coated in sugar. If you don’t or can’t drink milk try rice milk with natural sugars.

10. Cheez-Its

Totally nuts, I know, but it’s a good last resort. These crappy crackers helped me when I was at my weakest. The habit of eating junk food took years to develop and it doesn’t disappear overnight. When you’re down and in trouble and you need a helping hand, Cheez-Its are better than a bag of candy. What’s more, you just can’t eat that many of these without feeling sick.

↜Next / Previous↝

Comments 37



I want to put honey and olive oil on my popcorn, cheerios have some sugar- cheese&crackers;-I will eat the block of cheese & portion control is tuff - Apples w/ cheese or p.butter (no sugar) are good-however-I like apples w/ honey!!! help!!:)



Portion control IS a problem. I used to think that pasta, bagels, and orange juice were sugar-free health foods. In a way they were compared to the raw Pillsbury cookie dough I was eating for days at a time. This weening process is explained in the Stop Being Sweet ebook. In a way it’s exchanging one evil for another, slightly lesser evil. Portion control is part of the process of learning to flex your “unsweeting” muscle. Eating well is a practice. After some time you’ll reach a place where you feel more balanced and then you can start to cut out the stuff that throws you off. Better to do this with Larabars and OJ than Snickers and Redbull!



Your recommended foods, #s 3, 6 & 7, seem to contradict the assertions of James A. Surrell, M.D. in his 2009 book, “Stop Only Sugar Diet” (Bean Books). Do you know whom the science supports & how I can check that out? Thanks for your help.



Talk to a doctor or a nutritionist to find out what they think. Or try the foods for yourself (if you’re not diabetic) and see how your body reacts. Conduct your own science experiment, draw your own conclusions, and figure out what works for you. Everyone is different.

Most people can’t or won’t go directly from their sugar-laden diet to eating a raw food diet.  As for the suggestions I posted, they are what I call “borderline replacement foods.” When I first got off refined sugars I still ate things that most people would agree contain sugar or turn into sugar in the body.

You must eat something as you transition from a sweet diet to a more healthy diet. Slowly improving the foods you eat (while reducing or changing the types of sugars) increases your chances of actually staying sugar-free.



Hi David;

Just wanted to give you a head sup on the Cheerios (they were my favorites- years ago) before I found out that Cheerios contain trisodium-phosphate. Check the Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) on this and you will find that TSP is currently used as a wall-paper stripper, and WAS an industrial floor scrub until the EPA and OSHA deemed it too toxic for employees to breathe. Trader Joe’s brand is the same (they buy it from Cheerios.) The good news is that Barbara’s Organic Breakfast O’s does not contain TSP and is fruit juice sweetened with only a handful of ingredients all whole foods no crap—and they’re tasty. Enjoy!



Oh, one more tip. . .trade your Cheezits for Annie’s cheddar bunnies- same great taste not tbhq- a preservative derived from petroleum.



Thanks for the info Vanessa!

Kirin Bir


LOL @ Cheezits! Those are my go-to sugarless snack when i want to eat some junk food!
But i will try Vanessa’s tip! Thanks!

P.S. Organic Almond butter got me through my sugar cravings the first few months



Interesting list, David. I noticed most of the foods are salty. Salt is another silent killer. It is so toxic to our cells that our body retains water so as to dilute this white poison - therefore, salt causes water retention. Rub some salt into fresh wound and see how much it hurts. Inorganic salt (i.e table salt/rock salt, or any sodium that doesn’t come from a plant) is a foreign substance that our body does not need and will reject. It’s just as bad as sugar!

And sorry, but cheese is just as bad as sugar, in my opinion! Cheese is from cow’s milk which contains antibiotics and growth hormones (injected by farmers to increase volume of milk produced by lactating cows). In addition, dairy contains addictive substances which makes us want to consume more. But still, it’s interesting that you used these to quit the sugar habit. I guess your willpower is really strong. smile Kudos to you.



I agree with you, Cassandra, about salt and animal-based foods. If you have any snack suggestions that don’t have salt or sugar, please post them!



Many of mainstream crackers and cereals (like Cheerios) are processed at such high heats they are not nutritionally very healthy after all is said and done.

Most people don’t talk about SPROUTED grains either, like Ezekial bread & related products (Trader Joes has a generic bread that’s similar) - sprouting the grains we eat changes their makeup to be higher in protein, lower in carbs and easier to digest (less irritating to the body). Check them out for yourself!

I like raw cheese on Ezekial bread toast with some mustard.

Another sweetener I’m not sure you talk about on this site is Stevia, it takes some getting used to. I use it in smoothies, coffee/tea and in cooking where I may have used sugar or honey. It doesn’t cause insulin resistance, it’s low calorie and has NO sugar of any kind.

For a snack (or part of breakfast) I enjoy stevia-sweetened plain yogurt with a touch of vanilla extract and some frozen berries stirred in. Berries have a low-Glycemic index and lots of antioxidants.

A typical breakfast for me includes a smoothie with oatmeal in it! Oatmeal can be surprisingly versatile.



MORE sweet & savory treats without sugar

Unsweetened Greek yogurt with vanilla, stevia mixed together - topped with your favorite fresh fruit (berries are a good choice) and some sliced almonds.
Sometimes I mix cottage cheese in, too.

In wintertime I warm the berries up on the stove and make a thick syrupy sort of thing with berries, stevia, vanilla and cinnamon - and pour that over the yogurt.
If I want to make this for breakfast I might mix in old fashioned oats with the fruit, too.

Pureed Sweet Potatoes with Cinnamon

Savory snack:
Tuna Salad on stone ground crackers is good. For me, I avoid wheat (other than sprouted grain stuff) so I don’t do crackers. I make little rice-bowls though, so sometimes I have tuna-salad over rice!

Carrot & Celery sticks with homemade “Thousand Island” (you can mix up a tasty dip from sugar-free ketchup & mayo, and some lemon=juice). Play with the dip, add chopped pickles, etc.

Hummus & Carrots (Hummus doesn’t typically have any sugar in it)

sooo I’m just starting to quit sugar; but I’ve been doing the healthy-food thing for my whole life (thanks mom). i suspect that I’m a sugarholic though! so I am grateful for websites like yours that have such helpful info. keep it up!



Vanessa, thanks for the suggestions!



How many Vanessa’s do you know? lol I’m gonna have to go by Nix on here now. wink FYI- Those last couple posts weren’t from me.



I know. smile



& what about the glycemic index in food- I personally believe in eating as fresh & organic as possible- aside from sugar which is my downfall- I embrace most other foods like complex carbs& lean meat.  I believe everyone has a plan that works for them-

each snowflake is different- namaste&have; a nice day!



If you’re looking to eliminate or go easy on the grains you might want to try hemp seed. Don’t worry it’s legal! You can usually find it in the raw section of the health food store. Hemp seed will stand in for rice and it has lots of fiber, protein, and omega 3’s. It’s already soft so you don’t have to cook it and it has a light nutty flavor. I really like it and it’s helped me go the next level of cutting down on the grains. It’s been a lifesaver because I’m a diabetic with a serous sugar addiction and grains will get me if not the sweets.



if atkins weren’t so dangerous & boring &if; I didn’t love sweet veggies, I would go on that- I love hemp in all forms. I use dreamfields lo carb pasta- I refuse to give up pizza! Unfortunately I have been eating sugar the past few nights after a month’s hiatus- A friend is dying of cancer& I am injured -As a fitness trainer, I am really bummed at not working w/ my people- I am able to go on the recumbent bike- Ihope thatyou all are working out is some manner- It only takes 8 min. to get your heart rate up, then 12 min. after that! using the large muscle groups (legs) will burn more calories. Oneof my clients recently brought me a lovely plate filled w/ fancy cookies- I put them in the freezer thinking I could serve them to friends-You guessed, after eating everything in the house w/out sugar I ate the entire plate. Many don’t understand sugar addiction-“just have 1 piece”- yeah, right- God /Goddess bless all of you! thank you David, for this forum!



Good to see comments from folks who “speak my language!” ie.  eating a half a roll of cookie dough with 12 oz of m&m’s AND ice cream.  There is no “off” switch for me just to have “a serving.”  My serving IS the whole darn bag or close to it!  Years ago St. Augustine said, “To many, total abstinence is easier than perfect moderation.”  I agree with that on “Day 1!”  It’s another thing altogether as the days begin to grow long.  I am glad to have a chance, however, to begin anew today.



hey y’all- no sugar binges since I have been taking 400 mcg’s of chromium picolinate& xtra b vitamins- I have ingested a tiny amt of sugar and no binge! I do eat dried fruit &Lara; /Odwalla Bars when needed.
I love hummus as someone mentioned above- A perfect food- Add fresh red pepper for Vit. A &C. Gr8 for the skin. I drink plenty of water& love black coffee. Please let meknow if any of you have fitness questions. I am a certified trainer. I would be happy to advise - namaste xox



My current approach is to avoid refined grains and added sugars Monday through Friday and then eat what I want on the weekends…it’s not so easy to find good meals and snacks that are not sweet, not too salty, and not too high in calories…

Some good ones for me:

Cottage cheese with fruit (apple slices used like chips, canned pears in juice, or canned pineapple in juice)

Plain Greek yogurt with good strawberries

Plain yogurt with chopped apple and toasted sliced almonds

A piece of whole grain toast (I like Dave’s Killer Bread) with butter

Homemade guacamole with thin diagonal carrot slices as the chips

Belgian endive leaves with Trader Joe’s Blue Cheese Pecan dip (yeah, not so healthy…but really good!)

Amy and Brian’s Coconut Water with pulp

Carrots and hummus

Ants on a Log (celery, peanut butter, and raisins)

Banana with peanut butter

I would love to hear more easy, quick snack ideas!



As a person of extreme sugar/carb sensitivity, here is my list of treats:
1-organic berries (sometimes with heavy cream)
2-Trader Joe’s dry roasted pecan bits (or walnuts), maple flavoring, in Artisana coconut butter-mix, refrigerate, cut in 2” squares. Like candy.
3-Chocolate Mousse: Whip heavy cream, add chipped or melted Valrhona 85% or Lindt Excellence 99% dark chocolate. there are lots of mousse variations.
4-Roasted skinless almonds with chili lime seasoning.
5-Marcona almonds
6-Homemade grassfed beef or salmon jerky
7-Coconut pudding
8-Coconut &/or almond flour crackers: lots of variations, cheese, garlic-onion, etc.
9-Cheese-Trader Joe’s Blueberry Vanilla Chevre, 1oz, is my almost daily lunch treat.
10-Ice Cream, homemade, maple or honey sweetened. (A rare treat)



but i prfere to organic. less msg and salt



I dont eat any sugar anymore. Except natural sugars… But I would eat sugar all day every day and now i have switched to fruits and sugar free yogurt. I just get small baggies of grapes, strawberries, grape tomatoes, any kind of berry, pretty much any fruit put small amounts in a bag then take one bag of whatever when i get a craving for sugar. Its natural sugar but in small amounts it can be perfectly healthy and good for your body. Way better than salty snacks. I’ve been doing it for a month now and i have stopped craving sugar all together even when its in my house for my kids i dont eat any. Now i still do the bags of fruit just as snacks.



Kenna, has doing that influenced your kids yet?



Well luckily my kids arent huge fans of candys and sugar things too much they like a few sugar items once in a while so we don’t end up buying those kinds of treats as often as I was before. But its definiteoy helped them to make better decisions as far as snacks go. Instead of salty and fatty foods or the few sugar foods they eat they choose fruit bags over them more often now.



Thanks for your reply. It’s good to know that kids will learn from seeing model behavior.



I have been overweight for about 10-15 yrs.  Never was overweight until some stresses hit during /after college.  I’ve lost weight here and there but now 38 and approaching 39. I want to feel hot and healthy again! Sugar is my comfort food I think. Caffeine a bit too b/c I don’t eat a lot or well that often so I got to high sugar or carbs.  So low energy long term and then the cycle starts all over again.  I am not one who is well read in the health food dept but just need easy and basic.  These are all great suggestions… Can anyone speak to the HOW you emotionally did this and what the process was like? I agree with David, you need to ease the transition or you might risk binging or going back on the sugars.  I want to learn more about the process by which you all came to have your success of getting healthy and off sweet/sugar dependency.  Suggestions…



Hi Jennie, join our forum! There’s so much to talk about in that regard. Also check the archive for related posts. Start small and build from there. I’m working on version 2 of my book and it will address more of the emotional stuff in there.



Good bread is good for you (you should make your own whole grain sourdough).

We have raised our kids without sugar (seven kids and not one cavity, the oldest is sixteen, and it’s not inherited - husband’s teeth and mine are lousy) -

our kids like to eat walnuts together with raisins. Also peanuts or sunflower seeds with raisins. Usually cures a craving for sweetness.

If you need the energy there are great recipes for peanut butter and raisin balls. They can be sweetened with apple juice concentrate, throw in some coconut or other nuts. Cinnamon or carob powders optional. We like to eat them frozen.

Homemade granolas and power bars - we soak or ferment the grains first and sweeten with apple juice concentrate - no sugar.

milk with carob or cinnamon often hits the spot.

baked apples.

dry your own banana chips - they turn brown and are usually leathery but nice and sweet. Slice about 1/8 inch thick and dry in the oven on parchment paper nice and slow all day. (lowest heat you can manage) Good use for overripe bananas.

juice popsicles - how easy is plain orange juice with banana slices floating in them? yum

smoothies sweetened with bananas or apple juice concentrate (I always go light with the apple juice concentrate, too since concentrate isn’t naturally occuring and might affect your blood sugar levels)

The book “Nourishing Traditions” has a good recipe for banana bread.

Make a little french toast with butter and fruit or unsweetened apple sauce.

I’m sure there’s more, but out of time smile



Great suggestions. Thanks KG!



hey my girl freind is taking herbs for her breasts and she wants to avoid sugar are cheeze its the solution to her problem, will the herbs be affected at all



Ask her doctor.



thanks for this webpage.using it for my school inquiry



Hi David, thanks for the ideas will definitely need to check out apple with peanut butter - I can’t say I’ve ever tried that one!

Also agree with Kenna on natural sugars i found juicing (fresh fruits with low fat yogurt) to be a really good substitute to help stop sugar cravings.



Love your website and am learning from the comments.  Trying to get off sugar is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Thinking of the benefits with my stomach issues keeps me going! On day 4 and think I’d kill for a Reese’s PB cup.



Hi Darcy, thanks for reading. I hope going off sugar eases your stomach issues. Have you tried making your own peanut butter cups? There are many ways to make them. Here’s a low-sugar peanut butter cup recipe. Obviously it still has sugar in it but making your own snacks can be a great way to avoid eating processed junk food.

Add a Reply !