Have you ever tried to clean the backseat of the car after picking up the kids from school? You have probably found so many ingredients to put a trail mix together of your own.

Store-bought trail mix can be really, really convenient. However, a lot of times these trail mixes have lots of added salt or sugar in them and they can also be really expensive. We thought, why not make our own? Plus, yo can customize it to each of your kids’ likes and needs.

Trail mix provides you with quick energy, it’s an easy on-the-go snack, and it’s highly nutritious. Make a batch of your favorite healthy trail mix recipe, and you’re all set for a day of fun adventures!

The Anatomy of the Healthy Trail Mix

Nuts

The core ingredient in trail mix is usually nuts. So go with your favorite! Almonds, hazelnuts, pecans, walnuts, peanuts, and pistachios all make great options. A serving of nuts (about a handful) provides you with healthy fats, fiber, and energy. Pick out roasted nuts or roast them yourself to bring out the extra flavor. Also, make sure you pick unsalted nuts to avoid the excess sodium.

Seeds

If you or someone in the house has a nut allergy, seeds are the way to go. Pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds are great additions to any trail mix.

Dried fruit

Dried fruit is a great way to a little bit of sugar to your trail mix. The combination of protein and fat in the nuts and seeds with a dried fruit makes this a great recovery snack after exercising. Opt for unsweetened dried fruit to avoid too much sugar.

Fun food!

There is always room for a fun food! Pick up some popcorn, pretzels, gold fish, or chocolate chips, and add those into your trail mix. You can even have your kids pick out their favorite fun food for their own trail mix. They’ll love it!

trail mix

Healthy Trail Mix Recipe, 3 Ways

Each of these recipes makes about 2 cups of trail mix. You can also double or triple the recipe if you’re looking to make a big batch and store if for later.

Tropical Trail Mix

  • 1/2 cup cashews, roasted, unsalted
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, roasted, unsalted
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots, chopped
  • 3/4 cup banana chips, unsweetened

Apple Hazelnut Trail Mix

  • 1/4 cup almonds, whole, roasted, unsalted
  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts, whole, roasted, unsalted
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, roasted, unsalted
  • 1/2 cup freeze dried apples, unsweetened
  • 1 cup pop corn, unsalted

Chocolate Pecan Trail Mix

  • 1/2 cup pecans, roasted, unsalted
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds, roasted, unsalted
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries, unsweetened
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips

Check out our step-by-step video making these trail mix recipes here.

For more inspiration, check out this Puppy Chow Trail Mix recipe on the blog.

How To Store Trail Mix

Trail mix will keep up to one month if stored properly. Store each one of these recipes in an airtight container, a ziploc bag, or Stasher bags, preferably in an environment with little humidity.

trail mix

Why Make My Own Trail Mix?

Making your own trail mix at home…

  1. Gives you full control of the ingredients!
  2. Allows you to customize the recipe to your likes, wants, and needs.
  3. Buying in bulk makes it more cost-effective.

Snacking can be a part of a healthy diet. When the decisions you make when snacking are both physically and mentally satisfying to you, you are more likely to stick to healthy habits!

Jennifer McDaniel

Jennifer McDaniel is a Registered Dietitian, Media Spokesperson, and co-author of Prevention's Mediterranean Table Cookbook. She and her team of Registered Dietitians aim to help their clients go further, make change last, and unlock their potential. She lives in St. Louis, MO with her husband, and three young sons. If you are interested in working with Jennifer, please visit our contact page.