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When you’re not sure what to snack on…try Trail Mix! This healthy homemade recipe is easy to make and endlessly customizable.

Trail Mix

Need a quick, portable and energy boosting snack? Try homemade Trail Mix! It’s easy to find at the grocery, but we always make our own. Why? It’s fun, simple, and endlessly customizable to your tastes. Mix up your favorite blend of fruit, nuts, seeds and mix-ins, and it’s a quick dose of energy for an afternoon slump or a portable snack for traveling. Our son is a huge fan of this recipe (of course, he loves to pick out the chocolate chips…go figure!).

Trail mix ratio

Trail mix might seem like a modern invention, but it actually dates back to the 1910’s! It was developed as a portable snack for hikers, and became popular when travel writer Horace Kephart recommended it in a camping guide. Trail mix doesn’t really require a recipe: all you need is the golden ratio of ingredients! Here’s our ideal ratio:

  • 1 cup dried fruit: raisins, dried cherries, cranberries or blueberries, banana chips
  • ½ cup roasted salted nuts: peanuts, almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts. We prefer roasted salted as they add a bit more crunch and flavor.
  • ½ cup seeds: pepitas or sunflower seeds, or use more nuts.
  • ¾ cup cereal: like Cheerios, puffed rice cereal, or other healthy cereal. This filler ingredient is lower in calories than nuts and seeds, and helps make this a healthy mix.
  • ¼ cup candies: like chocolate chips, M&Ms, or other chocolate bits (optional)
Trail Mix

Creative mix-in ideas

The fun part about trail mix is all the fun mix-ins! We’ve given some standard ideas above for what we like to use on a daily basis for our trail mix. But here some other fun ideas that might not be top of mind:

  • Dried pineapple, apricots, apples, peaches, or mango
  • Coconut flakes
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Freeze dried strawberries or raspberries (though these can tend to fall apart during transport)
  • Small pretzels
  • Chunky granola pieces
  • Candy coated sunflower seeds
  • White chocolate chips, peanut butter chips or butterscotch chips

Is trail mix healthy?

Trail mix can be healthy, but it depends on the ingredients. While it’s high in protein and healthy fats, it’s also a high calorie food. Here are a few tips for for making a healthy trail mix:

  • Limit your portion size to ¼ cup. It’s easy to mindlessly munch on, but it’s high in calories so keep the portion size in mind.
  • Consider omitting the added sugar. Remove the chocolate or sweets component to make a healthy mix.
  • Avoid purchased mixes with added sugars and sodium or low quality ingredients. Make a homemade trail mix recipe instead!
Trail Mix

Homemade trail mix storage

How long does homemade trail mix last? Make up a mixture and you should be able to store it for 1 month in a sealed jar. Depending on the cereal you use, it may start to get stale after a few weeks. Avoid using ingredients like popcorn that can get stale quickly.

More healthy snack recipes

Love healthy homemade snacks? Here are a few more ideas for filling, delicious snack recipes:

This trail mix recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free.

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Trail Mix

Trail Mix

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 3 cups 1x


When you’re not sure what to snack on…try Trail Mix! This healthy homemade recipe is easy to make and endlessly customizable.


  • 1 cup dried fruit (raisins, cherries, banana chips)
  • ½ cup roasted salted nuts (peanuts, almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts)
  • ½ cup seeds (pepitas or sunflower seeds, or more nuts)
  • ¾ cup Cheerios, cereal or pretzels
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips or chocolate candies (optional)


  1. Mix all ingredients together. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 month.
  • Category: Snack

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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  1. I absolutely love the idea of customizing to your own tastes and I made up a batch using peanuts, raisins, dried fruit, chocolate chips, Honey Nut Cheerios and Teddy Grahams. It was delicious until the next when the cereal and teddy grahams got soggy and soft. Do you have any idea why and how to prevent this from happening? Thank you so much!