National Food Day: 8 Budget-Friendly Winter Snacks

When it gets cold outside, we all want to curl up inside and hibernate. Usually that includes adding in some of our favorite comfort foods. January happens to have a lot of different National Food Days to celebrate. So why not curl up with some of the best winter snacks that January is celebrating, and do so without breaking the bank?

Fruits

There are a couple of different fruits that are celebrated during the month of January.  While one of them is dipped in chocolate, that’s perfectly fine, because we are in hibernation! Plus, you can still reap the benefits of the fruits you are indulging in.

January 3rd – Chocolate Covered Cherry Day

While chocolate-covered cherries might not be the healthiest of treats, they can be pretty darn delicious. And, depending upon where you purchase them, and by whom, they aren’t all created the same. You can get them dipped in milk chocolate and then covered with a cherry-flavored coating. Or, they can be covered in white chocolate, which is my least favorite.

The traditional way you will probably run across them is covered in milk or dark chocolate with a more liquid cherry center. One of my favorites is the Cella’s Dark Chocolate Covered Cherries. At least when I am eating dark chocolate, I am getting more of the nutritional benefits than with milk chocolate. Things such as fiber, flavonoids, fiber, antioxidants and magnesium.

These delicious winter snacks can range pretty wide and far in price, depending up on the type you are interested in. But, usually, I can find a good sized box for somewhere around $10 – $11.

January 9th – Apricot Day

Apricots are another great snack that doesn’t have to be too messy. There are a few different types of apricots you can partake in, but usually you will run across the dried versions in a bag. Some of them add sugar and sulfur, which are not the type I prefer. I generally track down the organic with no sugar added versions. A great one is the Made in Nature Organic apricots.

But, if you want a little more sweetness, you can try the Dark Chocolate Covered apricots. They come in many different size bags, so you can test them out first without having to buy a whole lot.

Generally, you can find a bag of dried apricots for anywhere from $3.49 upwards. So they don’t have to be a very expensive snack to indulge in.

Sweets

Now, most of us LOVE to indulge in sweets during the winter. After all, we don’t have to be in any bathing suits any time soon! Luckily for us, there are a few days in January celebrating the sweet winter snacks we love.

January 8th – English Toffee Day

English toffee is a fantastic treat all year long. But I see it more during the winter season, usually. The difference between English toffee and regular butter toffee is primarily the sugar used. English toffee uses brown sugar, whereas butter toffee uses white sugar.

I have been making toffee as holiday gifts for years now, but mine is made with organic cane sugar. So, I suppose mine doesn’t fall into either category. But I spend a lot of time making multiple batches and it continues to get rave reviews, so I must be doing something right!

If you can’t get a hold of my toffee though, here is a great English toffee that you can get for around $12. But, if you are lucky enough to live close to a Trader Joe’s, you can usually get it for a lot cheaper.

January 15th – Strawberry Ice Cream Day

I am not a huge ice cream fan, but strawberry ice cream is my absolute favorite. While it seems strange to have a national ice cream flavor day in January, who am I to question this. There may not be a whole lot of redeeming qualities to strawberry ice cream, but it is pretty darn delicious.

If you want to make it a bit healthier, you can top it with some nuts. Plus that will add a bit of texture also. But, if you just want to indulge, then make it a strawberry ice cream sundae!

January 27th – Chocolate Cake Day

Chocolate cake is a family favorite of almost all females in our family, myself excluded. Even though I am not a fan, because it is too sweet for me, there are many different variations on the standard chocolate cake. You could go for a:

  • lava cake
  • dark chocolate cake with dark chocolate frosting
  • milk chocolate cake with milk chocolate frosting
  • either of the chocolate cakes with cream cheese frosting
  • gluten free chocolate cake

No matter which chocolate cake you choose, you can find a chocolate cake mix fairly inexpensively. However, if you are more savvy in the kitchen, you can go ahead and make your own mix and save yourself some more money.

Savory

Now, my personal favorite is always going to be savory. If you have a thing for buttery, salty or just more savory foods, then these may be some of the best snack options for you.

January 19th – Popcorn Day

Popcorn is one of my all time favorite snacks. It is so diverse and is very inexpensive, especially when you make it yourself. We have an air popcorn popper that we use all the time. I prefer to use organic popping corn and season the prepared popcorn with butter and pink Himalayan sea salt. But the joy of popping your own popcorn is that you can season it however you want and change flavor profiles every time. Plus, I can usually find a bag of organic popping corn for less than $2, and it can last us months!

However, if you prefer already popped popcorn, one of our favorites is Boom Chickapop. They have a lot of different flavor options, but the Boom Chickapop kettle corn is the best!

January 21st – Granola Bar Day

Granola bars are an extremely diverse category. Of course, our children always prefer them with chocolate chips in them. But that is not what we want to give them most of the time. There are so many great choices to partake in on granola bar day, that the biggest question is where should you begin?

Some of the diverse granola bar options include:

  • Fruit filled
  • Peanut butter based
  • Oat and grain-based
  • Seed and nut-based
  • Covered in chocolate
  • Protein powder based

One of my favorite granola bar options is the Larabar, because it has so few ingredients. No matter which direction you choose, though, you can’t go wrong.

January 30th – Croissant Day

Croissants are a favorite amongst many people worldwide. So it’s great that there is a whole day to celebrate them, While half of our family can’t eat traditional croissants, due to the gluten involved, the rest of the family love them. There are a lot of different options when it comes to croissants, just like a few of the other categories. The three main options we have run across are:

  • Bakery
  • Grocery store pastry section
  • Prepackaged mix to make at home

Of course, the bakery option will be the freshest and probably the most delicious, but it will also cost the most money. A lot of times, the cheapest option can actually be at the bakery in your local grocery store. Especially if you don’t have the time to make your own at home. And we have found a few grocery stores that will even run specials for BOGO in the pastry section. So this can really save you some money when you partake in croissant day!

Best Winter Snacks to Curl Up With

Overall, there are a lot of great snacks we can curl up to during the wintertime. It all comes down to whether you prefer fruits, sweets or savory snacks. Or, if you don’t discriminate between the genres and just want to celebrate food in January, then dig in!

Some of the best food days that we are celebrating during January, in order of the date they are celebrated, are:

  • Chocolate covered cherries
  • English toffee
  • Apricots
  • Strawberry ice cream
  • Popcorn
  • Granola bars
  • Chocolate cake
  • Croissants

While you don’t have to enjoy all of these delicious winter snacks, there is something for everybody on this list. And each of these snacks can be found in different price ranges to accommodate different budgets. So find some of the best snacks on this list that fit your palette and budget and enjoy!

What are some of the best winter snacks you have found to curl up to and still keep within your budget?