The 15 Best Running Snacks: Fuel Your Body for Longer Runs

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Best Healthy Snacks | Best Keto Snacks | Best Gluten-Free Snacks | Best Healthy Snacks to Buy | Best Running Snacks | Best Low-Calorie Snacks | Best High-Protein Snacks | Best Low-Carb Snacks | Best Vegan Snacks | Best Calorie Counter Apps

Snacks aren't just a part of life, they're a way of life. Snacks can give us energy boosts throughout the day and can also beat back the dreaded feeling of hanger. However, when you're eating up miles on the road, you need to take a closer look at your choices to make sure what you're reaching for is providing the right fuel for running.

Unsure where to start? We put together this list of the 15 best running snacks to make fueling on the go a breeze. Not to mention, the right post-run snacks make recovery as tasty as it is beneficial.

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Best Running Snacks - Our Top Picks

What to Look for When Shopping for Running Snacks

When it comes to running, the type of snack you should pick is largely determined by when you're eating. When you're looking to give yourself a boost before heading out (or during) a run, you'll want an easily-digestible, carb-heavy munchie—like pasta. To avoid stomach aches, you'll also want to stay away from foods rich in protein, fat and fiber. Why? These nutrients tend to slow digestion down which can lead to a bothered belly mid-run.

On the flipside, after you've finished your grind, you'll want a pro-protein nibble: Protein helps with muscle recovery and repair. If your digestive system is feeling a little unsettled after your run, we recommend avoiding the belly-busting duo of fat and fiber until your digestive system has time to settle back down.

The Benefits of Running Snacks

If you've ever hit the dreaded running wall, you know that a jolt from a carb-laden snack is often all you need to finish your route. However, consuming the right snacks before a run is also beneficial because you may be able to hold off the drag that can be experienced as the miles start to rack up. Additionally, post-run snacks are a great tool to help your muscles rejuvenate.

Here are some of our favorite running snacks:

Bananas

bananas

Bananas are the OG of running snacks. That's because they come packed with a ton of healthy carbs that are easily digestible. In fact, bananas can be as effective as carb-laden sports drinks when it comes to your blood sugar, performance, and oxidative stress. Bananas are also a great source of potassium and magnesium which helps ward off cramping.

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365 Whole Foods Market Hummus

365 Whole Foods Market Hummus

Made from a base of chickpeas and tahini, hummus is chock full of carbs, good fats, and protein fiber. This makes hummus a post-run gold medalist because it satiates you and recharges your muscles. Plus, you can pair this hummus with veggies such as celery, carrots and cucumbers for additional vitamins and nutrients.

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Sun-Maid Natural Raisins

Sun-Maid Natural Raisins

Grabbing a box of raisins is not only nostalgic, but it's also a great way to get a jolt of carbs before heading out for a run. Considering that they also contain iron, a nutrient helpful for endurance, you may want to reach for raisins before or during a long run.

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Hanover Pretzels Variety Pack

Hanover Pretzels Variety Pack

Don't get it twisted, pretzels are a winning snack for runners for a reason. The majority of calories in pretzels are provided by the kind of carbs that you can digest in a snap. Pretzels also give you a quick energy boost and the salt on them provides sodium which is lost when you sweat. An intake of sodium can help prevent cramps and boost stamina.

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Haribo Goldbears Gummy Candy

Haribo Goldbears Gummy Candy

Gummy bears may seem like an odd choice for a running snack, and although snacks with more nutritional value may be a better selection in general, gummy bears can provide a quick—and delicious—sugar boost to fuel you through a grueling training session. This is because they are high in sugar but contain no fat. The high sugar, low fat combo also makes them easy on your stomach.

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The Only Bean Edamame Beans

The Only Bean Edamame Beans

Running can be hard on your bones. But, edamame is packed with isoflavones that support heart and bone health. Additionally, these green soybeans are loaded down with iron, vitamin B, and protein that can help you recover. If you add salt to this snack, the sodium can also help keep your muscles from cramping.

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Horizon Organic Chocolate Milk

Horizon Organic Chocolate Milk

Chocolate milk is my favorite running snack. Not only is it a happy-dance-inducing treat, it provides a load of calcium to help fortify your bones against the jarring effects that running can have on them. The sugar revs up your energy as you'll be gulping down energy-boosting carbohydrates that will keep you going mile after mile.

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365 Whole Foods Market String Cheese

365 Whole Foods Market String Cheese

String cheese blows the whole don't-play-with-your-food argument out the window. However, not only is it satisfying to peel down, string cheese also makes a great post-run munchie because it contains around 20 percent of your recommended dose of calcium. Calcium is important for strengthening both your muscles and bones, which is key for avid runners.

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Kodiak Cake Protein Balls

Kodiak Cake Protein Balls

These snacks come in like a protein-powered wrecking ball. Kodiak Cakes' Power Mix contains 30 grams of carbs but only three grams of sugar, making it an energizing avenger of a run snack. It will keep you going as you crush miles, and you won't have to worry about the crash that sugar-heavy snacks can sometimes cause.

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LesserEvil Organic Popcorn

LesserEvil Himalayan Popcorn

If you haven't tried LesserEvil Himalayan Popcorn yet, I suggest your next run be to a store that sells it in bulk. Popcorn, in general, is a carbohydrate-saturated snack that is great for runners. And, the LesserEvil variety is made with coconut oil and topped with Himalayan salt to give it a unique sweet and salty taste.

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Honey Stinger Organic Honey Waffle

Honey Stinger Organic Honey Waffle

Don't get stung by hunger during your runs. Honey Stinger Organic Honey Waffles provide you with 160 calories and 40 grams of carbs to ensure that you have the energy to buzz through your runs. Additionally, these waffles have close to 70 percent of the recommended dose of vitamin C.

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Dave's Killer Bread Everything Bagels

Dave's Killer Bread Everything Bagels

For a killer run, check out Dave's Killer Bread Everything Bagels. They're loaded up with carbs that are crucial for runs, but they also have 13 grams of protein and 26 grams of whole grains. The onion and garlic give it a crave-worthy savory flavor.

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Vita Coco Coconut Water

Vita Coco Coconut Water

Coconut water is refreshing and contains carbs that are easily digestible and energy-boosting. Even during long runs, coconut water can give you sustainable energy levels and muscular endurance even during lengthy running workouts. Additionally, it has potassium and magnesium to combat cramps.

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Vermont Smoke and Cure Mini Jerky

Vermont Smoke and Cure Mini Jerky

Protein-rich jerky is a solid way to recover after a run. It can also help replace the sodium that’s lost through sweating. Considering that it's cured and doesn't require refrigeration, it also makes a great snack to pack for your longer treks.

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Trail Butter Lil' Squeeze

Trail Butter Lil' Squeeze

Trail Butter Lil' Squeeze packets are a handy way to get in 200 calories and 5 grams of protein before or after a run. Trail Butter is a great plant-based nutrition that provides a hit of fat, protein, vitamins, and minerals that you'll want as you add miles to your running shoes.

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Other Running Snacks to Consider

FAQs About Running Snacks


What should runners eat for snacks?

Runners benefit from snacks that are easily digestible and heavy on carbs before their runs. This allows them to run with a settled stomach and provides plenty of energy. After a run is complete, snacks high in protein and sodium, such as beef jerky, help recovery and prevent cramps.

What foods give you instant energy for running?

Foods that are high in carbohydrates provide a great energy boost. It's best to try to eat complex carbs which can be found in fruits and vegetables. Long runs can benefit from healthy fats before or after, and the kind of quick sugar hit that's found in gummy bears, may be needed during runs lasting longer than 90 minutes.

What should I eat during long runs?

Long runs require a mix of carbohydrates, good fat, and proteins. Also, make sure to prioritize foods that replenish your sodium and other electrolytes to prevent muscle cramping.

Best Healthy Snacks | Best Keto Snacks | Best Gluten-Free Snacks | Best Healthy Snacks to Buy | Best Running Snacks | Best Low-Calorie Snacks | Best High-Protein Snacks | Best Low-Carb Snacks | Best Vegan Snacks | Best Calorie Counter Apps

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