When I think of “trail mix,” I think of camping with my parents when I was eleven. My family often drove a fair distance to get to whatever campground my dad decided was worth inspecting. My sisters were either too old or too cool to come along, so I got the whole back seat to myself. Before taking off, I would make a nest of blankets, pillows, stuffed animals, Archie comics, Mad magazines, and my SonyWalkman in the back seat. My father would roll his eyes, acquiesce, and off we would go lugging our tent trailer behind.
I strongly believe in quality “road snacks.” It is part of the road trip experience – sitting in the back of the car, watching the scenery go by, listening to family favorites, and munching on delicious treats. In fact, one of the most stellar things about camping is the “road snacks.”
camping + road trip + camping + themed food = AWESOME TRAIL MIX
I grew up enamored with trail mix. This pre-packaged “crap” would come with all sorts of additives and preservatives. The almonds were rubbery and few, the peanuts too many, but it was trail mix!! Trail mix was “special occasion” food; “just for camping,” my mother would warn. This meant I absolutely loved it.
Trail mix connoisseurs know that this nutty cornucopia is all about ratios; one peanut to two almonds and one chocolate chip, or, if you prefer, one almond, one dried fruit thingy and three peanuts. I am sure you have your own beloved trail mix “go to” ratio. If you can accurately nail it: Flavor Tsunami.
This summer my husband and I hiked Half Dome in Yosemite National Park. I thought to myself, “National Park = People Camp in National Parks (not us necessarily, but people do camp there), which means…TRAIL MIX!!”
Instead of buying the “junky,” pre-packaged, trail mix with a shelf-life of military rations, I decided to make my own. I knew I wanted to be conscious of the ingredients because Brent and I would need specific fuel to sustain the seventeen-mile Half Dome trek.
I developed the Seventeen Mile Mix – my favorite trail mix “ratios” to-date, complete with nutrient-rich ingredients! Best trail mix ever! I hope you love it as much as we did during our hiking trip!!
1-cup Organic Walnuts
1-cup Macarena Almonds
2/3-cups Organic Pumpkin Seeds
1-cup Macadamia Nuts
1-cup Dried Organic Blueberries
1-cup Coconut Flakes
Alternate options: Dried fruits (i.e. fruits that are organic, and pesticide free. Beware non-organic fruits have the pesticides concentrate during the drying process), nuts (i.e. stay away from peanuts because they contain “bad” fats, and they are low in nutrients), and carob chips.
Also, remember trail mix should be enjoyed in moderation, unless, of course, you are doing a seventeen-mile hike!!
WHY THESE INGREDIENTS?
WALNUTS: Walnuts are not only high in phytonutrients, antioxidants, anti-inflammatory properties, melatonin and omega 3; they also are excellent for cardiovascular (heart) health. In addition, these healthy nuts also contain anti-cancer benefits.
ALMONDS: Almonds not only have the ability to lower your risk of heart disease, they are also rich in vitamin E, magnesium, and potassium. These energy-boosting nuts protect your body against diabetes, weight gain, and gallstones.
PUMPKIN SEEDS: Pumpkin seeds are loaded with minerals, and antioxidants. They also provide important anti-fungal and anti-viral benefits. Moreover, they may reduce your risk of cancer.
BLUEBERRIES: Blueberries are not only an excellent source of antioxidants; they also have a low glycemic index. In addition, these delicious fruits can improve your memory.
MACADAMIA NUTS: Did you know that macadamia nuts are considered the highest energy source amongst nuts? Well, they are! In addition, they are an excellent source of phytoesterols, and fiber. These tasty nuts are chocked full of and minerals and vitamins like: manganese and selium, B vitamins, and antioxidants.
COCONUTS: These healthy tropical fruits are high in fiber and vitamins. They also have the ability to reduce your risk of obesity, strengthen your immune system, and improve your heart, and digestion.
Please share your favorite Seventeen Mile Mix “ratio” below.
Let me know what delicious “additions” you have added to make your own “seventeen mile” version!