By Danielle Shulman
It’s hike day! You are ready to get up and get going. You probably have your favorite go-to snacks that are easy to eat. But, have you given much thought as to why you chose those snacks? If you are going for convenience vs nutrition, you may want to think again. Some bars and trail mix may be “easy to eat” but also full of sugar and other things that can slow you down. Next time you hit the trails, try some of these great snacks instead!
Nuts are packed with healthy fats, protein, and calories that are needed for energy. Because they are low in natural sugar, you won’t get the jittery rush from a processed sugary snack or that lagging feeling after.
Some of our favorite nuts include almonds, walnuts, pistachios, and pecans. You can prepare them in different ways to satisfy your salty or sweet tooth. Try brushing them in egg whites then slow roasting them in the oven and adding either salt, honey, or a low-calorie sweetener like stevia.
Jerky, beef or turkey, is an incredible snack for energy. Loaded with lots of protein, good for energy and post-workout recovery. While it can be a salty treat higher in sodium, that actually can benefit you by replenishing your electrolytes. You will drink lots of water on your hike which can throw off your body’s natural sodium and electrolyte levels which is why it is important to consume something that will help balance it out. Check the label and choose a package that has a moderate amount of sodium.
Some of our favorite flavors include:
- Sweet and Hot
- Texas BBQ
Granola bars are one of the most popular trailblazing snacks there is. They are convenient to eat, come in a wide variety of flavors, and tasty. Keep in mind is, just because they are marketed as “healthy” doesn’t mean they all are. Some granola bars can be loaded with sugar, especially those chocolatey ones. Consuming sugar increases your blood sugar levels which can lead to dehydration. It is a serious problem on its own, let alone when you are hiking. Read the labels carefully before you grab a box. Choose an option with lower to moderate all-natural sugars.
You also can make your own. There are so many recipes out there for healthy homemade granola bars. Give it a try!
The name says it all. Energy bites are a fun, no-bake treat that is easy to make and delicious to eat. They are made of simple ingredients and pack lots of protein, healthy carbs, fats, and calories (which you need when hiking). They are also are completely customizable, which makes them that much more enjoyable.
Typical energy bite ingredients include oats, nuts, dried fruits, honey, protein powder, peanut butter, nut butter, seeds, chocolate (yes, you read that right), and caramel.
Try this super easy recipe for easy no-bake Chocolate Oat Energy Balls
- 2/3 cup creamy peanut butter or nut butter
- 1 cup old fashioned oats
- 1/2 cup ground flax seeds
- 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 2 tablespoons honey
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl. Stir. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes so they are easier to roll.
Roll into balls.
Before your next hike, think about what you are packing. You can get creative while packing nourishing food that will keep you energized for a day of hitting the trails!