August 28 2020

Celebrate National Trail Mix Day with our favorite sweet and salty recipe

One of the most important things to pack with you on an outdoor adventure is good fuel for your body. To celebrate National Trail Mix Day on Sunday, Aug, 31, we asked outdoor recreation coordinator Angie Sheldon to share her favorite recipe.

Before you put on your chef’s hat and grab your hiking shoes, here are some other additional things to remember while planning a hike:

  • Choose a route that fits your schedule and ability. If you are new to hiking, consider a shorter excursion. Many MetroParks feature a variety of loops that intersect, allowing you to customize your hiking experience.

One of the best ways to plan your trip is with help from MetroParks mobile app powered by OuterSpatial. The app is free and allows you to access trail maps, locate park amenities and much more. Download the app.

  • Dress in layers so you can be comfortable throughout your adventure, whether hiking up that hill or taking a break in the breeze. Don’t forget your rain jacket and sturdy.
  • Remember to follow Leave No Trace while in MetroParks. This helps keep our natural spaces beautiful for future visitors to enjoy.
  • Fuel your body. Eat a good breakfast to give you energy for the hike and bring along some protein-packed snacks to keep you going. Don’t forget your water bottle to stay hydrated. Because MetroParks’ water fountains are closed, consider packing extra water.

Maple Glazed Chickpea Trail Mix

Many people, including Sheldon, whip up a basic a trail mix – raisins, nuts and chocolate – when heading out on the trails. When Sheldon has extra time to plan ahead, she makes a large batch of her favorite Maple Glazed Chickpea Trail Mix. The perfect combination of sweet and salty, this recipe is loaded with protein – a great way to stay energized on the trails. This recipe also has the approval of Sheldon’s three kids, making this concoction a great option for the entire family.

MetroParks Tip: Want to take the kids with you on a family hike? Check out some of our top kid-friendly trails.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup raw almonds
  • ½ cup raw pecan halves
  • ½ cup chickpeas (rinsed and dried)
  • ¼ cup pepitas
  • ¼ cup unsweetened coconut chips
  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ cup chocolate chips
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the almonds, pecans, chickpeas, coconut chips, pepitas, maple syrup, and salt. Stir to evenly coat.
  3. Spread the mixture on baking sheet lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes, stirring halfway. Remove from the oven and let cool completely for the glaze to set.
  5. Transfer to a bowl and combine with the chocolate chips and cranberries.
  6. Store in an airtight container for 3-4 days or up to a week in the refrigerator.
  7. Enjoy!

For more fun tips, how-tos and activities that help you get outside, visit www.metroparks.org/natureisopen.

Five Rivers MetroParks visitors should always follow the CDC’s recommendations, particularly for social distancing and wearing face coverings, while spending time outdoors. For the most current information on MetroParks’ COVID-19 response and related closures, visit metroparks.org/covid-19 and follow Five Rivers MetroParks on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

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