Recipes for Sweet and Salty Trail Mix

Trail mix is a satiating snack packed with flavor and healthy fats, but the ingredient list for a packaged mix will quickly tell you not all store-bought trail mixes are all that nutritious. Many have hidden, unpronounceable ingredients and others have added sugar, salt, or fat to make them that much more tasty. If you want to know exactly what’s going into the snack you enjoy by the handful, make your own trail mix at home. Here are six recipes for sweet and salty trail mixes to get you started. With these flavor combos, we promise you’ll never go back to packaged trail mix again.

1. Tropical Trail Mix

Bowl of banana chips

Banana chips are delicious in this tropical mix | iStock.com

This tropical trail mix from Ambitious Kitchen is the perfect summer snack that tastes like a vacation, regardless of where you enjoy it. It’s made with banana chips, oat cereal, almonds, coconut, and mango, giving you the perfect balance of sweet, salty, and tropical flavors. This recipe makes 8 servings and each one has 160 calories, 3 grams of fiber, and 3 grams of protein. Those snack stats are hard to beat, so pack this tropical snack for work as a mid-afternoon pick-me-up.

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup banana chips (or plantain chips)
  • 2 cups toasted oat cereal
  • ½ cup whole, natural almonds
  • ½ cup flaked coconut
  • 1 cup freeze-dried mango

Directions: Combine ingredients and enjoy in a zip-top bag or plastic food storage container. Eat and enjoy.

2. Healthy Popcorn Trail Mix

bowl full of popcorn trail mix

This trail mix has a surprising twist | iStock.com

To take your trail mix up a notch, add your other favorite snacks to the mix. This popcorn trail mix from Delicious Meets Healthy has your typical trail mix suspects as well as the added fun (and fiber!) of popcorn. The combination of the movie snack, nuts, and dried fruit gives you a dose of fiber and healthy fats so you can actually feel satisfied after a serving. No need to go back for seconds.

Ingredients:

  • 8 cups popcorn
  • 1 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup roasted cashews
  • ½ cup roasted sunflower seeds

Directions:  Add nuts, seeds, and dried fruits over the popcorn in a large bowl, and stir to mix.

3. Classic Trail Mix

bowl overflowing with homemade trail mix made with nuts, seeds, and dried fruit

Homemade trail mix with nuts and raisins | iStock.com

Even if you are a fan of the tried-and-true classic trail mix, there’s no reason you need to buy it from the store. Make your own with this formula from Tammy’s Recipes. It feeds a crowd, yielding about 15 cups. With nuts, candies, raisins, and dried fruit making appearances, this sweet and salty snack has it all. All you need to do is combine the ingredients in a container.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup dried mango or pineapple chunks
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 2 cups regular raisins
  • 1 cup chocolate yogurt-covered raisins
  • 1 cup chocolate-covered raisins
  • 1 cup candy-coated milk chocolate candies
  • 1 cup candy-coated milk chocolate candies with peanuts
  • 3 cups mixed nuts
  • 3 cups peanuts

Directions: Mix all ingredients well to combine. Store in an airtight container or heavy zip-top bag.

4. Nutty Berry Trail Mix

cranberries and various nuts

Cranberries and various nuts are in this trail mix | iStock.com

Here’s another take on trail mix from Taste of Home, which stars mixed nuts, chocolate chips, raisins, cranberries, and sunflower kernels. The recipe makes 30 servings, so you’ll have snacks for days. One serving boasts 4 grams of fiber and 5 grams of protein, which will help keep you full until your next meal.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can mixed nuts
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 package raisins
  • 1 package chopped dried pineapple
  • 1 jar sunflower kernels
  • 1 package dried cranberries

Directions: Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Store in an airtight container.

5. Spanish Trail Mix

Cutting cured chorizo on a cutting board

This trail mix contains chorizo and cheese | iStock.com

This Spanish trail mix from Bon Appétit is best served as a pre-dinner snack or appetizer since it contains cured chorizo and cheese. That being said, it can also be stored in the refrigerator for a few days. After toasting your almonds for about 10 minutes, this sophisticated take on trail mix will come together in just minutes. Not bad for something that seems so fancy.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups whole natural almonds
  •  teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated orange peel
  • 1 cup-inch cubes dried apricots
  • 1 cup-inch cubes pitted dates
  • ½ cup-inch cubes smoked Spanish chorizo (about 3 ounces)
  • ½ cup-inch cubes manchego cheese

Directions: Toast almonds in large, dry skillet over medium heat, 10 to 12 minutes, or until fragrant. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and add smoked paprika and orange peel. Toss to combine and remove from heat. Transfer almonds to bowl and allow to cool. Toss with apricots, dates, chorizo, and cheese. Serve at room temperature.

6. Trail Mix With Chia Seeds, Almonds, and Cranberries

roasted almonds and cashews

This trail mix adds chia seeds for extra crunch | iStock.com

Our last recipe comes from Feed Me Phoebe and, while the formula requires more prep work than the others on our list, it’s worth the extra bit of effort. The nuts and seeds are brushed with honey and coconut oil before broiling in the oven for a few minutes. Once cooled, mix them with the berries and chocolate chips. This is an irresistible snack that’s borderline addictive.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups raw unsalted almonds
  • ½ cup raw unsalted pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon unrefined extra virgin coconut oil, melted
  • 2 tablespoons raw honey
  • ½ teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ⅓ cup dried cranberries
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips

Directions: Preheat the broiler.

In a medium bowl, add almonds, pumpkin and chia seeds, coconut oil, honey, salt, and cinnamon. Combine all ingredients and stir until the nuts are coated in the honey and oil.

Arrange the nut mixture on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Toast under the broiler, about 1 to 2 minutes, or until the nuts are toasted and fragrant. Mix the nuts around on the paper and return to the broiler for another minute, just until toasted again. Cool on the sheet until the honey has begun to set, 5 minutes. Stir once to make sure all the honey sticks to the nuts, and cool completely.

Toss nut mixture with the cranberries and chocolate chips. Serve and store leftovers in an airtight container for up to a month.

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