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Go to Late Night Snack

I'm pretty much an insomniac and have a horrible habit of eating late at night. I notice that I tend to go towards the same items and always have in some instances. Because of this, I try not to have those things around the house much. Unfortunately, then I sometimes do the worst...like twenty minutes ago, making a tomato and cheese sandwich at 4am.

When I lived with my parents, there was always some leftover chicken cutlets in the fridge. I'd usually grab one and put some mayo on it.

Nowadays it's usually:
Cheese (usually with some sliced tomato or wrapped in lettuce)
Hummus and crackers or veggies
Potato Chips (only if I'm out and on my way home)
And if I have leftover cutlets, they are still my go to LNS

What are some of your choices?

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  1. My late night snacking usually begins because I did not eat a proper dinner. Around 9 or 10 after the kids go to bed, I'll start a vicious cycle of sweet then salty, Peanut M&Ms then cheese curls. Cookies then cheese sticks. And like you said I try not to keep these things in the house. Your snack list is a lot healthier than mine!!

    1 Reply
    1. re: chocchipcookie

      "My late night snacking usually begins because I did not eat a proper dinner."

      Same here. A dissatisfying dinner inevitably results in me rummaging through the pantry and the ice box around 9:30 or so. And if I find whole milk, a good hunk of sharp cheddar, and some saltines, I'm in instant Xanadu.

    2. Curty wurty pops peaches and cream are my usual pick of poison. Also fun pops. Oreo double stuff. I am usually a savory snacker but late nights bring out the sweety beast in me. And a dissatisfying dinner never prompts my attack. Having junk around and no one to dissuade me does. :-)

        1. re: LeoLioness

          Dairy. Milk, kefir or cheese. It's adaptive, because I'm usually able to sleep after those, whereas with junk food or natural sugars from whole fruit or juice, I'd be energized and up all night afterwards.

        2. I am pretty diciplined about eating, so I hadnt had a late night snack in YEARS....but about six months ago, my neighbors were having a party so I couldnt sleep; I got out of bed and made a pot of Kraft mac and cheese...ate most if not all of it.
          That was so fun and so satisfiying!

          I managed not to make it a habit, but last night, after watching Master Chef - I was absolutely STARVING...so I broke out some cheddar cheese and saltless saltines....mmmm...then I broke out some Dominican Coconut Cream, which comes in a block like butter...when refrigerated, it has the texture of a sandier butter...Holy God is it delicious...so I munched on that ...Definitely a very naughty late light snack.!

          1. Half an English muffin (Thomas's Sourdough), toasted very crisp. Butter. Laura Scudder chunky peanut butter. Sprinkle of kosher salt. Wash it down with a big glass of milk.


            1. Cashew butter and saltines

              1. I finish dinner late so never have a late night snack, though I do have some herbal tea while reading in bed....and a Calvados every week or two. If I started eating late at night, I'd gain ten pounds easily.

                1. cereal, ice cream, or sorbet. if dinner was too little or super late, carbonara.

                    1. re: sandylc

                      Yes! Popcorn! On the stove, please, popped in coconut oil, judiciously seasoned with a mix of butter and Lawry's seasoned salt. I went through an olive oil-parmigiano-black pepper phase but I'm now back to the Lawry's, in part because it's really fantastic and in part because it's the flavor of my childhood. And it's quick -- I can make a pot of popcorn in just a hair over the time it would take to microwave a bag of the stuff and I don't end up feeling like I'm chewing on aluminum foil like I do with the microwave kind.

                    2. My habit for years has been cereal....Reese's puffs with almond milk. Or granola, some flavor of Cheerios, or frosted flakes. If I don't have a bowl of cereal right before bed, it's likely that I will wake up hungry at 3, and have to go have a bowl then.
                      I'm working on changing that habit. I don't love popcorn, but sometimes I'll have some low fat popcorn or some fruit to fill me up so I won't eat cereal.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: jmcarthur8

                        Have you ever tried popcorn in a bowl with milk? Surprisingly not bad for a cereal replacement.

                      2. I have enough weight trouble without late eating, so I just don't let myself do it.

                        1. My late night snacks are always easy to make and sometime they do not require any preparation at all.

                          I used to snack on:
                          Bacon, noodles (including instinct noodle), ice cream, cereal...

                          Nowaday I try to be healthier, so I snack on eggs, noodle (still), fruits

                          1. Depends on the time of night, really. If it's not too horribly late, and I haven't gone to bed and then woken up I just consider it an extension of dinner, and I eat everything. But for some reason, if it is very late and I've woken up, the only thing that works is some combo. of peanut butter, bananas, bread and a glass of milk.

                            1. Are you guys talking about waking up, getting out of bed and having something to eat? Is there that much time between dinner and bed that you get hungry again? This is truly not criticism just trying to understand why it would be necessary to eat again.

                              6 Replies
                              1. re: escondido123

                                Good point; I guess it depends upon what time you eat dinner and what time you go to bed!

                                1. re: sandylc

                                  Although I don't partake, I understand the "midnight" snack. But once I'm in bed......

                                  1. re: escondido123

                                    Escondido, it's a combination of an early dinner and insomnia. Sometimes we eat as early as 5 or 6, go to bed at 11ish... by three, I am empty! During the day, if I go 5 hours between meals, that's a long time. Nighttime is no different. Plus being a light sleeper, it's not that unusual to find me up in the middle of the night reading the paper or wandering around looking out at the weather. Sometimes a bowl of cereal is just the thing to calm my weary soul.

                                    1. re: jmcarthur8

                                      Glad it works for you. If I got up in the middle of the night and ate a bowl of cereal, it wouldn't be long before I'd need someone to help me get up in the middle of the night. Glad I've never been an insomniac.

                                      1. re: jmcarthur8

                                        sorry you're battling insomnia; it is horrific; mine mostly under control - treating with amino acid supplements - check out book the diet cure by julia ross which might give you some ideas on diet that might help;
                                        my current go to is apples pan fried in coconut oil; out of this world, best

                                        1. re: thesunflower

                                          Hey, I really need to check into this. Thanks for sharing the tip!! And the panfried apples sound pretty phenomenal. Wonder how those would translate as a par-cooked apple pie filling?

                                2. ...i am, in general, serially wedded to the same late-night snack...unsalted, roasted peanuts mixed with raisins...

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: cbjones1943

                                    And unbeknownst to you (likely), this same snack is a favorite of rapper Jay-Z.

                                  2. uber-bad for me, but i do warm brownie with crunchy peanut butter. yum.

                                    1. I tend to snack when I'm up late, and my go-to snack then is a bowl of cereal. I'm not a breakfast fan, so this is basically the only time I eat it.

                                      When I'm on an observing run for work [working from before dusk until dawn at a remote site] we usually get provided a night lunch of a sandwich, cookies, fruit and drink, plus I pack potato chips or other salty snack for munching on in slow bits. That, plus a minimum of 1/2 L of plain water per hour for the whole night.

                                      1. lately its been the following:

                                        Strawberries dipped in cream cheese

                                        provolone with a dab of mayo and slices of tomatoes rolled up and eaten

                                        Hummus with Pita bread

                                        french bread pizza made with left over sauce and cheese.

                                        1. a handful of roasted almonds, semisweet 60% choc chips, Craisins or white choc chips. munch, munch, munch...

                                          1. My favorite late niter is a glass of Malbec (or if I'm in the mood, a glass of good barleywine or 'old ale') and some cheese. Usually a little bit of several kinds depending on what's in the fridge. Edam, Leiderkranz, Gorgonzola, Morbier, aged Gouda. Or sometimes, just some good Ementhaler. A half of a Matzoh or a small hunk of baguette to go with it, and I'm happy.

                                            1. I have/had 90 lbs of green chiles in the freezer. Snack is usually green chile and cheese wrapped in a burrito and "nuked" for a a minute or two.

                                              1. If I'm up late watching a movie, popcorn works for me. Or a glass of chocolate malted milk. Otherwise, a nice bowl of Cheerios with a little brown sugar does it. But if I'm feeling especially decadent I'll indulge myself with pretzel sticks dipped in Nutella.

                                                What I've found is that if I eat a big salad in the afternoon I'm far less likely to crave sweets at night. Now that the hot weather is here I'm eating a lot more salad and fresh veggies, and have been snacking much less. But if I don't get those greens the craving is back right away.

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: eclecticsynergy

                                                  I'm similar in that if I'm up late watching a movie I have popcorn, but either a glass of Baileys or Milk/Kahlua. And for awhile it was a bowl of honey nut Cheerios. Now it's cashew butter w/saltines or pretzel stick. But I'm the opposite in that if tI eat a salad and I immediately crave ice cream.

                                                  1. re: viperlush

                                                    I am a fat person, so I don't want to come off as a health conscious person at all, but ....

                                                    I like to cut the tops off of mini peppers, and eat like 6 or 7 of them while I check my late night emails, texts, and FB messages.

                                                2. Really hard-frozen grapes.

                                                  Or icy cold sour pickles.

                                                  Or popsicles.

                                                  And if I really want to suffer by morning, some kimchi and bison jerky...

                                                  7 Replies
                                                  1. re: silence9

                                                    "And if I really want to suffer by morning, some kimchi and bison jerky..."

                                                    Take solace in the fact that those around you are suffering even more...

                                                    1. re: silence9

                                                      I do have to say...pickles are the best snack. Oddly they seem to be a hydration method, a hangover cure, a pregnancy crave and a great late night snack

                                                      1. re: jhopp217

                                                        Agree re: hydration method. I'm a clergyman, and some weekends if I've been genuflecting and kneeling alot, I have massive leg/calf cramps in the middle of the night. I'll hobble out of bed to the refrigerator, eat half a jar of crunchy sour or garlic pickles, and the cramps will recede withing the hour. Works faster than bananas or Gatorade, and tastes better too.

                                                        1. re: silence9

                                                          Tonic water's supposed to be good for nighttime leg cramps as well. Which is why I drink so many G&Ts, or at least that's my story and I'm stickin' to it!

                                                            1. re: LauraGrace

                                                              Yep, it's the quinine in tonic water that does it. Quinine tablets are available at some health food stores too. And probably at pharmacies that cater to naturopaths.

                                                              Myself, I like a nice rum & tonic in the hot weather, with a twist of lime.

                                                      2. No question, popcorn! The problem is that the way I make it, no one else will eat it. To keep it slightly healthy, I use an air popper, then a very small amount of butter or margarine, and no salt. If I feel frisky, I'll sprinkle a bit of garlic powder on it.


                                                        3 Replies
                                                        1. re: Burghfeeder

                                                          Don't you find that popcorn eaten late at night constipates you, since one is probably not washing it down with alot of liquid refreshment. And even more so in your case, as you employ very little butter (to sluice the track, so to speak)?

                                                          1. re: silence9

                                                            I'm a big popcorn eater at night! No problem with liquid for me; I take a ton of vitamins before bed as well and they require a lot of water.

                                                            You're right, anyone eating a lot of fiber should really make sure they get enough water!

                                                          2. re: Burghfeeder

                                                            My favorite thing with popcorn is a few shakes of Louisiana sauce in the melted butter. Not enough to make it hot- just a bit for the wonderful savory aroma. Also delectable on plain tiny pasta like alphabets or pastina or couscous, or on potatoes. Or rice. Or greens. Butter with a couple splashes of Maggi is mighty good too.