Trail mix takes me back. Waaaay back…
…to the early 90’s, when my friends and I would slump-huddled around the front porch, discussing our fifth-grade concerns while shoveling handfuls of the stuff into our mouths.
Back then, the extra salty, super sugary combo of glazed peanuts, sweet raisins and brightly colored M&M’s was the perfect snack to mindlessly munch on as we stewed over our pint-sized problems.
Fast forward a few decades, I still love trail mix.
But as a health-conscious adult, I couldn’t let that old school combo of not-so-good-for-you ingredients (like processed hydrogenated oil, excess salt and refined sugar) put a damper on my trail mix game.
So, I did like I do and gave the ol’ snack an upgrade.
Making your own crunchy, chewy trail-mix-y concoction means that you get to control the ingredients and keep things uber healthy.
I loaded this particular batch with protein-packed cashews, heart-healthy pumpkin seeds, coconut flakes, nutrient-dense apricots and fiber-rich popcorn.
From sweet to savory, there are as many variations of trail mix as there are drops in the ocean.
Simply mix together your favorite:
- raw or roasted, unsweetened nuts (my faves are: cashews, pistachios, walnuts, hazelnuts, pecans and macadamia nuts)
- seeds (like: pumpkin, sunflower, flax, hemp, chia or sesame)
- unsweetened dried or dehydrated fruit (think: cranberries, apricots, dried apples, cherries, goji berries, figs, pineapple, dates, banana chips, blueberries and strawberries)
- fun add in’s (such as: popcorn, coconut, dark chocolate chips or chocolate covered coffee beans, pretzels, rice crackers, cacao nibs, wasabi peas and spices)
And that’s it!
Tropical Popcorn Trail Mix
- 1 ½ cups popcorn (you can pop your own popcorn or use your favorite brand)
- 1 cup roasted cashews
- ½ cup raw pumpkin seeds
- ¼ cup dried apricots, chopped
- 2 tablespoons shredded unsweetened coconut
- Add all ingredients to a large bowl and toss to combine.
OPTIONAL TOPPING: For an extra punch of protein, top with chia and/or hemp seeds.
MAKE IT A GRAB-N-GO SNACK: To make this snack portable, simply divide the trail mix evenly into pint-sized mason jars. Seal em’ up and have them ready to go as you head out the door.
Then, after you’ve mixed up a batch, let me know…
1// What you thought.
2// What ingredient combo you went with.
3// How it turned out.
Or feel free to reminisce about your favorite old-school snack in the comments below! 😉