Weekly Eats - Time for Trail Mix!

Okay…I’m totally going to date myself here and ask a question: Who remembers when trail mix was known as GORP? You know GORP – good, ol’ raisins and peanuts?

Yes, I’m that old. For me, trail mix is GORP.

I even asked my children if they’d ever heard of GORP. They hadn’t. One of them turned around and asked me if it was some new video game. No…no, it isn’t.

But, when I was growing up and was a proud member of Troop 65, we used to make GORP in Girl Scouts. You didn’t go to the supermarket to buy it prepackaged. You mixed together some raisins and peanuts and M &M’s (which, of course, were the best part), and then our troop leader would usually bring some Cheerios or popcorn, and we had our very own trail mix.

I now have children who love trail mix, but we run into some serious problems when it comes to buying the ready-made version because I have a son with a peanut allergy. And, I know there are lots of you out there that have children with all sorts of allergies – and many of you probably run into the same problem.

So why are we even bothering to buy ready-made trail mix? We can easily make it ourselves – or even have our kids help – and customize it to fit our needs. If you’re ready to jump on the homemade trail mix with me – here are some ideas that can easily be mixed and matched:






Sunflower seeds

Pumpkin seeds




Banana chips

Dried cranberries

Dried apricots

Dried apples

Candied orange peel

Dried blueberries

Dried cherries

Chocolate chips

White chocolate chips


Reese’s Pieces

Sweetened coconut

Peanut butter chips

Butterscotch chips






Wasabi peas

If your family can have nuts in their trail mix, you might gently toast them for some additional flavor. (You could also toast the sweetened coconut! Yum!) Additionally, you may want to add some spices to your trail mix such as cinnamon or garlic salt – depending on whether you’re going the sweet or savory route. (Or skip the spices all together – because it’s delicious without them!)

About every two weeks, we now make a batch of trail mix in my house. My sole job is to make sure there is a favorable balance of the healthy things versus the sweet treats when my son prepares it. (Otherwise it’s very heavy on the chocolate chips!)

For my son with the peanut allergy, it usually consists of dried cranberries, coconut flakes, pistachios, sunflower seeds, and chocolate chips. This is his “custom blend” as he likes to call it! He packs it in his lunch. He uses it as a yogurt topping. He grabs some before a soccer game for a quick snack. It’s quick and healthy – and I don’t have to worry about peanuts.

How about you? Do you make your own trail mix at home? What do you like to put in it? Would love to hear what you add to your “custom blend” trail mix!

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