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Store Bought Trail Mix Disadvantages – Make Your Own

trail mix in healthy lunchbox

I never buy trail mix at the supermarket. As far as snacks go, it is a healthier option, but I don’t like store-bought trail mix because:

  1. It always tastes stale
  2. It is expensive
  3. Your options are limited
  4. Additives
  5. Excess packaging in the case of litter free lunchboxes

I looked up the ingredients on one popular brand of trail mix:

homemade trailmix

Cashew nuts, Almonds, Brazil nuts, Cranberries (Sugar, Sunflower seed oil), Sultanas (Sunflower seed oil, Citric acid, Sulphur dioxide), Papaya cubes (Sugar, Citric acid, Sulphur dioxide), Pineapple (Sugar, Citric acid, Sulphur doixide), Banana chips, Honey, Flavourings, Coconut Flakes.

I prefer to make my own trail mix. Most dried fruit has been treated with a preservative (sulphur dioxide and citric acid), so the only ways to reduce my preservative intake is to add less dried fruit, or to buy from a supplier that sells preservative free dried fruit.

I make my own trail mix because it always tastes fresher, I can purchase ingredients more in line with my budget, and my options are almost unlimited which makes it easier to cater for the different tastes (and allergies) of my family.

Here are some ideas for ingredients you can add to your own trail mixes, in no particular order:

Trail Mix Ingredient Ideas

Dried Fruit

trail mix in healthy lunchbox

  1. Dried cranberries (my favourite)
  2. Dried goji berries
  3. Raisins
  4. Sultanas
  5. Banana Chips
  6. Dried pineapple
  7. Dried apricot/peach slices
  8. Prunes
  9. Coconut flakes
  10. Dried Mango slices
  11. Dates


  1. Sunflower seeds
  2. Pumpkin seeds
  3. Pine nuts

Nuts; Ground & Tree

  1. Peanuts
  2. Cashews
  3. Almonds
  4. Brazil nuts
  5. Pecan nuts
  6. Pistachio nuts
  7. Walnuts
  8. Macadamia nuts
  9. Walnuts

Fun Things and Treats

  1. Pretzels
  2. Cereal pieces like Oatees
  3. Crackers
  4. Popcorn
  5. Salt
  6. Spices such as cinnamon (sweet), or coriander and cumin (savoury)
  7. Chocolate covered raisins
  8. Chocolate covered peanuts
  9. Chocolate chips
  10. Mini marshmallows
  11. Mebos pieces

Can you think of anything else to add to the list?

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