5 low-sugar snacks to keep you powered up

Natural fruit sugars equal a great energy kick

When those sugar cravings hit, it can be hard to resist the call of cake, chocolate and other sweet treats. It's also tricky to avoid processed sugar when it comes to mid-ride energy boosts as many pre-prepared options are choc full of the stuff. Happily, we've got a selection of easy-to-make treats that are just the ticket. Tasty, simple, and full of natural sweetness to keep you powered up. 

We've partnered with Olive magazine (also published by Immediate Media) to bring you the very best recipes for cyclists. All the recipes are easy to follow and take you through step-by-step how to create everything from homemade nutrition products to tasty and hearty post-ride meals. 

1. Energy balls

Perfect pocket-sized treats to keep your sugar levels up on long rides
Perfect pocket-sized treats to keep your sugar levels up on long rides

These are so incredibly easy to make and once you have the recipe dialled it's easy to start playing with ingredients to make different flavours. These three are a great place to start and combine elements like dried fruit, dates or coconut for a natural sugar hit, plus nuts and oats which provide protein, carbohydrate and slow release energy. They also fit perfectly into pockets and bags, and are great for a pre- or mid-ride energy boost. 

Energy ball recipe at Olive Magazine

2. Blueberry muffins

The indulgence of muffins without the huge calorie hit!
The indulgence of muffins without the huge calorie hit!

While shop-bought muffins really pile in the calories and sugar, this version keeps it down to under 200 per portion without losing that indulgent, satisfying taste and light spongy texture. The sweetness comes courtesy of dried apricots and blueberries so there is no added refined sugar, and they'll still give you an energy boost. Plus, they taste great with a cup of tea or coffee for a post-ride treat. 

Blueberry muffins recipe at Olive Magazine

3. Muesli with apple and blueberries

Start the day with some homemade muesli, with a fraction of the sugar of shop-bought equivalents
Start the day with some homemade muesli, with a fraction of the sugar of shop-bought equivalents

While breakfast is the most important meal of the day (so they say) for those of us who are pressed for time, it's easy to opt for time-saving cereal in the morning. However, many cereals and mueslis are horrifically high in sugar.

Making your own is actually really easy, and throwing in some grated apple and a handful of blueberries boosts the nutritional value of this tasty dish. 

Muesli with apple and blueberries recipe at Olive Magazine

4. Fruity toots

The dried fruit packed into these bite-sized balls of deliciousness provides natural sugars for a power-up mid ride
The dried fruit packed into these bite-sized balls of deliciousness provides natural sugars for a power-up mid ride

These delicious morsels are a fruit-based version of the popular energy balls listed above. Made from dried apricots, dates, raisins and cranberries, they provide loads of natural sugars that are perfect for a mid-ride energy boost, plus stash easily in your pocket.

Make up a load of them in advance then you've got them to hand whenever the sugar cravings hit!

Fruity toots recipe at Olive Magazine

5. Muesli loaf

Tuck in to a cinnamon-spiced slice of this delicious muesli loaf
Tuck in to a cinnamon-spiced slice of this delicious muesli loaf

There are few things as comforting as a slice of toasted fruit loaf and a hot drink. Packed full of oats, dried fruit and nuts, this muesli loaf is perfect for a mid-afternoon snack. The natural sugars will give your energy levels a boost, so you're perky enough to get through an afternoon of work then your ride home. 

Muesli loaf recipe at Olive Magazine

Check out our other delicious recipe collections: 

Aoife Glass

BikeRadar Women Contributor, UK
A mountain biker at heart, also drawn to the open road. Likes big long adventures in the mountains. Usually to be found in the Mendip Hills or the Somerset Levels in the UK. Passionate about women's cycling at all levels.
  • Discipline: Mountain, road
  • Preferred Terrain: Rocky, rough and a long way from anywhere.
  • Current Bikes: Liv Avail Advanced Pro 2015, Juliana Furtado 2013, Canyon Roadlite AL
  • Dream Bike: Juliana Roubion, Liv Avail Advanced SL
  • Beer of Choice: Red wine for the win!
  • Location: Weston Super Mare, Somerset, UK

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