Get your kids invested in their next trailside snack with a trail mix buffet! Let them create their own custom mix and make re-fueling fun.
Trail mix is a staple in many packing lists — and so it should be! It’s a great energizing snack, bringing you a combination of protein, fat, and easily digestible carbs, balancing quick and lasting energy.
But sometimes GORP (Good Ol’ Raisins and Peanuts) needs a little shake-up, needs to be re-energized itself. So let’s think outside the standard ingredients and make it more interesting! Many stores offer a variety of creative combinations, but tend to be somewhat expensive. Save yourself some money and add some fun by making your own!
You can prepare your trail mix extraordinaire ahead of time, or you can get your kids involved by creating a custom Trail Mix Buffet. Giving your kids choices can help them feel invested and give them a sense of ownership and pride in their creations, increasing the chance they’ll actually eat them when the time is right.
Decide how healthy you want your mix to be, and how much control you’d like to have over their combinations. Feel free to set your own guidelines: (at least 2 nuts, 2 fruits, one “fun” ingredient), or let them go wild and see what they come up with.
Lay out the options in different bowls on your counter, give each member of your family a snack bag or snack container, and let the fun begin!
Here are some possible ingredients to choose from:
- almonds (roasted or raw)
- cashews (roasted or raw)
- brazil nuts
- pumpkin seeds / pepitas
- sunflower seeds
- mango (dried or freeze-dried)
- cranberries (dried or freeze-dried)
- blueberries (dried or freeze-dried)
- strawberries (dried or freeze-dried)
- apple chips
- banana chips
- coconut chips
- dried apricots
- dried cherries
- candied orange peel
- chocolate chips (dark, milk, white, peanut butter)
- chocolate / peanut butter candies
- cocoa nibs
- chocolate covered nuts, fruit
- chocolate chunks
- corn nuts
If you want to get even fancier, check out some trail mix recipes online.
For more kid-friendly ideas to help fuel your family’s adventures, check out our ideas for healthy and fun trailside snacks, as well as our favorite granola bar recipe.