I absolutely love trail mix, but I was getting frustrated w/ the price tag, so I decided to make my own. You’ll be shocked to learn how easy it is to make this at home!
As some of you might have noticed, I’m a huge trail mix fan. It takes about 5 seconds to throw together if you have all the ingredients ready & combines all of my favorite things: nuts, seeds, chocolate, coconut & fruit. While I was at it, I dried my own herbs (well…. herb. I didn’t want to go too crazy so I started w/ only mint). I thought this would be a huge undertaking but it was actually super simple, so I wanted to share the recipe/how-to with you!
First things first: I don’t have a dehydrator. While I’d love to add another kitchen appliance on the list, it’s not a necessity for me. We actually borrowed one from a friend for a month and it went unused, sitting on our countertop, until we saw them again. I realized the oven would work just fine for my drying needs.
I also don’t have a mandolin slicer (but it’s at the top of my wish list!). If you have one, you’ll save SO much time and energy when slicing the apples, but again not a necessity. I just channeled my inner Food Network star and used a sharp chef’s knife to thinly slice the apples (careful!) and it worked totally fine.
So, let’s get to it.
1 green apple
1 small handful mint leaves, fresh or frozen
2 tbsp raw almonds
2 tbsp raisins
2 tsp raw coconut flakes
2 tbsp dark chocolate chips
1. Preheat oven to 225F.
2. While it’s pre-heating, slice your apples as thinly as possible. When I was using a knife, I got them to about 1/4 of an inch, but it’s really to the best of your ability. Lay the apple slices out on a baking sheet, making sure to not overlap them. Put the handful of mint leaves on a corner of the tray, and place both the apples and mint in the oven together.
3. After about 20-30 mins, the mint leaves should be done. Keep a close eye on these. You’ll know when they’re ready when you can crumble them between your fingers. When you take the mint leaves off (just put them into a small bowl), also flip the apple slices.
4. Place the apple slices back in the oven and cook for about 15-30 mins more. You’ll want to take them out of the oven when the sides are starting to squish up and the apple looks wrinkle-y. Mine took about an hour total. While it’s cooking, crumble the mint leaves into a small bowl.
5. When the apple slices are done, carefully place them onto a cooling rack (without the baking sheet) and sprinkle with the crumbled mint when it’s still warm. This will allow the apple to absorb the mint flavor.
6. Let cool completely.
7. Place apple slices, almonds, raisins, coconut flakes & chocolate chips into a bowl or plastic bag (if on the go) and enjoy!
*Note this also works for red apples too. I actually made some at the same time and the green apples took a bit longer to cook… not sure why, but about 10 mins longer. I sprinkled my red apple chips w/ cinnamon before baking and they were delicious! Just keep an eye on them when they’re in the oven.
You could also do this w/ any dried fruit — mangos, pineapples, oranges, bananas, but you’d have to play w/ the cooking time. This is a great trick to have on hand though to save some money but still stay healthy!
As for the herbs, I love the little twist they add to a classic trail mix. I used mint this time around because I had a lot of it in my freezer from a few weeks ago when I accidentally bought WAY more than I needed (which is why the color is darker than fresh mint). However, you could totally do this w/ any herb you want — just keep a close eye on these guys, as you really don’t want to burn them. I’m thinking basil, parsley, thyme, sage & rosemary would all be delicious.
Also – don’t think you have to stick to this recipe 100%. You can add seriously anything you want to your trail mix and it (should) be good; this is just my classic combo. I have a whole cabinet of goodies that would work — chia seeds, date crumbles, cacao nibs, goji berries, etc. The key is to have a mix of crunchy, salty, fruity, & chewy w/ a healthy fat. Take a stroll through your store’s bulk bins and see what they have available — it’s an easy, inexpensive way to build a heathy trail mix. Experiment w/ your favorite items & see what works best for you!
What’s your favorite trail mix add-in? Mine is chocolate chips… YUM!