Sunday, November 23, 2014

Make your own trail mix bars for next day hike

You can make your own trail mix bars to match your tastes.
You don’t have to spend money on expensive trail mix bars for your day hike. You can make far more bars at a lower cost per ounce, all in the comfort of your own kitchen, than you can purchase ready-made. In addition, you can cut the bars to match the size you prefer. One more benefit: You can change the ingredients to match your tastes rather than be limited to what someone else has determined will be the widest selling flavor.

Consider having your children help you make the bars. Depending on their age, they can pour, stir and help select the ingredients. They’ll appreciate the bars more when on a hike if they make them by their own hand.

You’ll need the follow ingredients:
g Cooking spray
g Crispy rice cereal, like Rice Krispies (2-1/2 cups)
g Toasted oat cereal rings, like Cherrios (2-1/2 cups)
g Sunflower seeds, raw and unsalted (1-1/2 cups)
g Raisins (1 cup)
g Chocolate chips (3/4 cup)
g Honey (1 cup)
g Brown sugar (3/4 cup)
g Peanut butter (2 cups)
g Vanilla extract (1 teaspoon)

g Spray 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
g Mix crispy rice cereal, oat cereal rings, sunflower seeds, raisins and chocolate chips in a large bowl; you can cut sunflower seeds, raisins and chocolate chips and replace each with other items (such as almonds, chopped peanuts, dried cranberries, M&Ms, etc.) as per your preference.
g Stir honey and brown sugar in saucepan, bring to boil over high heat. Stir and boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter and vanilla extract until smooth and blended.
g Pour mixture from saucepan over dry ingredients in large bowl then stir until all dry ingredients are moist.
g Spon and press mixture into baking dish, making layers even.
g Cool on counter for 45 minutes then cut into bars to match size you prefer.

When taking bars on the trail, place bar in plastic wrap or a plastic sandwich bag.

Learn about trail guidebooks available in the Hittin’ the Trail series.