I’m a card-carrying (ahem, Tupperware-carrying) meal planner. But as many hours as I dedicate to prepping chopped salads for lunch, I’m always ravenous once the 3 p.m. snack urge hits.
The snack spectrum at Well+Good HQ includes tons of healthy faves like grapes, apples, and avocados—and also sweet-and-salty kettle corn, pretzel crisps, and chocolate-chip chia bars. I’m all about that #balanced life, but too often the balance tips more in the pretzels’ favor.
So was there a way to pack more nutrition into my snack break? The answer came just as I started scouring Pinterest for ideas (btw, broccoli tots are a thing): Muuna® cottage cheese.
Every serving is packed with between 14 and 19 grams of protein, contains gut-healthy probiotics, and is a good source of calcium. Plus, the flavored versions feature real fruit on the bottom and just nine grams of sugar (varieties include black cherry, raspberry, and mango). No, it’s not your average cottage cheese—more like a ridiculously creamy health hack.
To give my snack situation an overhaul, I committed to a cottage-cheese swap every day for a week, meaning I’d forego handfuls of trail mix for the creamy life.
Keep reading to see what happened during my week-long snack swap.
1. It *definitely* didn’t get boring
At first, I was hesitant to give up my full snack menu because my cravings are all over the place: sweet, savory, spicy, you name it. But I quickly found out Muuna® is incredibly versatile.
Bringing home a tub of the low-fat plain flavor taught me that cottage cheese is a BFF to a whole host of healthy ingredients. Scooping a half cup of plain Muuna® over farmer’s market strawberries in the a.m., for example, easily added 14 grams of protein and total satisfaction to my day. Here’s why: The casein protein in Muuna® is slowly absorbed, meaning I felt full for longer.
As a certified fan of all things savory, I was happy to discover it also pairs absurdly well with salty toppings. For breakfast, I tricked out a plain cup of Muuna® with everything bagel seasoning and a hard-boiled egg (inspired by an Instagram post, obvi). Another ah-mazing morning combo? Cottage cheese, avocado, and tomato with a dash of sea salt. (Thank me later.)
2. It’s a healthy stand-in for tons of recipes
Over my self-designated CC week, I was able to sub out mayo, sour cream, and cheese in essentially every recipe that called for creamy texture to give the meal a delicious protein boost.
I added Muuna® on black-bean tacos. I scooped a dollop onto basil-tomato soup. I mixed it into egg salad. I basically became a cottage cheese master—and can testify it works across the board.
3. I felt more satisfied (and energized) all week
Turns out, my secret to increased productivity is cottage cheese (who knew?). When I started my day with my new fave toast topping combo of Muuna®, avocado, and strawberries, I powered through a surge of writing and brainstorms without a visit to the snack pantry once. Skipping sugary protein bars or yogurt was a game-changer.
When I opted to nosh on cottage cheese later in the afternoon, I felt completely satiated until dinner time, which is huge because I prefer to work out at night. Digging into a cup of mango Muuna®, I was set to tackle a four-mile run before heading home to cook. Meanwhile, I was filling up on protein plus gut-friendly probiotics and skipping the sugar crash. Consider me converted.
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