Calories in Food: Off the Trail

Trail mixes are hot. You’d think we were a nation of hikers and bikers who need to gulp down a lot of calories in just a few bites.


No doubt, some people grab a bag of Emerald Tropical Blend Trail Mix and hit the road (though most likely in their car). After all, the “delicious blend of fruit, nuts & chunks of granola” has just 130 calories, according to the Nutrition Facts panel.

Except that those Facts apply to a one-ounce serving—a little less than half the non-resealable bag. Eat the whole bag (it holds just half a cup) and you’re up to 300 calories.

And the mix isn’t even mostly fruit (plus added sugar) and nuts. The first ingredient is “granola clusters” (label-speak for oats, sugars, oil, flour, etc.). Want trail mix? Make your own.

Make you own healthy trail mix by combining:

-4 cups Kashi Go Lean or other 100% whole grain cereal – look for cereal with fewer than 250 calories and at least 3g fiber per serving
-1 cup unsalted, roasted nuts and/or seeds – almonds, walnuts, cashews, pecans, peanuts, sunflower, or pumpkin or a combination of these
-1 cups dried fruit – raisins, cherries, apricots, apple pear, cranberries – chop the larger pieces

Nutritional info for 1/2 cup: 170 calories; 8g fat (1g sat fat); 8g protein; 24g carbs; 6g fiber; 40mg sodium.


Other relevant links:

9 Replies to “Calories in Food: Off the Trail”

  1. Yet Emerald can and does better. Their “Natural Walnuts & Almonds” 100-Calorie Pack lists ingredients as “Walnuts and Almonds”! The 0.56 oz pack nutrition facts are not bad at all, though I wish they would list poly/mono fats on the package.

  2. So eay to make your own trail mix. Mix your favorite nuts (raw are best), a little dried fruit for sweetness (Goji Berries are a good superfood), and maybe some cacao nibs and you have a great mix. Just avoid a lot of dried fruits since they have a lot of sugar, and do not put in M&M’s or you defeat the purpose of making your own. Good advice.

  3. A trail mix is whatever you decide to put in it. No recipe needed except this newsletter implies it is there. Decide what level of protein etc. that you are looking for, which nutrients to include and you have a custom made trail mix, no need to purchase or recipe which could include too much of anything. To measure portions, use a plastic bag of what you need for your lifestyle and weight, level of activity. Look up calorie/nutrients of ingredients.

  4. How about Walnuts, Almonds and Pecans chopped up into small bite sizes. Cranberry’s, Banana Chips and Pineapple. At times I replace the Banana with Apple.
    Don’t forget your chocolate fix and put in a few of the
    smallest chocolate bits you can buy. I do not make large
    amounts of this mix, because I live alone and I don’t
    want temptation to get me. I freeze all remaining items until I am ready to indulge, then I mix a new batch. Try it, you might like it.

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