6 Standout Snacks to Pack on Your Next Hike
There’s nothing worse than a growling stomach when you’re on mile five of a 10-mile trail. On your next hike, ditch the sugar-laden trail mix and try one of these energy-boosting snacks ideal for packing ahead.
- Trail mix your way: While many store-bought trail mixes are loaded with extra sugar, you can make your own protein-packed snack. Go to a bulk nut store and buy a variety of nuts seeds, and dried fruit to make a substantial trail mix minus the chocolate candies.
- Protein Balls: Make your own protein balls by blending oats, nut butter and dates in a blender. Roll them into balls then dust them with coconut, cinnamon or cocoa powder. The dates and the nut butter helps hold the ball form while the coconut, cinnamon or cocoa powder coating keeps them from being sticky. This pocket-sized, protein-rich snack is great for eating on the go.
- Jerky: Easy-to-pack beef, turkey or pork jerky is a great hiking snack because it is high in protein. In fact, it is one of the snacks the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends for hiking. If you’re feeling adventuresome pre-hike, you can even try making it yourself.
- Tuna on Whole Wheat Crackers: Another USDA recommendation: tuna, chicken, ham and salmon in a can or plastic pouch. They don’t have to be refrigerated and won’t add too much weight to your pack. The meat will provide protein while the crackers will provide complex carbohydrates for energy on the trail.
- Roasted Chickpeas: Roasted chickpeas are an excellent meat-free protein option on the trail. While they are available in different flavors at most food stores, you can also make them yourself. Take canned chickpeas and dry them on paper towels. Coat chickpeas in olive oil and any other seasonings (like Sriracha if you’re feeling extra adventurous) you like and bake them in the oven at 400 degrees until they are golden brown.
- Dried fruit: Dried fruit is a great alternative to fresh fruit when you’re on the trail— it won’t spoil and it is much lighter to carry. When buying dried fruit, look for options that have no added sugar. You can also buy fruit leather that comes in strips that pack easily.
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