Trail mix is the perfect healthy snack that will hold you over in between meals. Unfortunately, many packaged trail mixes that you can find at the grocery store contain added salt and a lot of calories for a small serving. Luckily, this is a fun snack that can easily be made at home and allows you to incorporate a variety of ingredients!
Nuts are the most popular ingredient in all trail mixes and are a good source of hunger-fighting fiber and healthy fats. Choose from peanuts, almonds, walnuts, cashews, macadamia nuts, pecans or pistachios. Nuts can often be expensive, so it’s more affordable to buy them in bulk in wholesale warehouses like Costco or BJ’s.
Dried fruit is another great item to add to your trail mix and will count as a daily serving of fruit. Dates, raisins, dried bananas, mangos, cherries, apricots, cranberries, pears, pineapples or blueberries are all fun choices. Adding fruit into the mix will give you natural sweetness, fiber and vitamins.
Give your trail mix a crunch by adding a low fat granola, whole grain cereal, toasted soy beans, air popped popcorn, or mini pretzels. Crunchy foods will give you a satisfying feeling when you’re snacking which is perfect to help overcome that afternoon slump.
Other delicious ingredients to add to your mix are dark chocolate chips, seeds such as pumpkin, sesame or flax, low fat granola or some Cajun seasoning if you are in the mood for a more savory treat.
Choose from any of these fun ingredients and place them in a large zip lock bag. Shake it up so it mixes together and you will have the perfect homemade trial mix that trumps any store bought brand! But remember, although trail mix can be a healthy, filling and a satisfying snack, it can be very high in calories and fat (even if it is healthy fat). All you need is a half cup serving to hold you over and keep you going throughout the day!
Your turn to take action: What are your favorite homemade trail mix combinations?