Trail mix is a fantastic snack for fitness or travel. It contains a good mix of protein, carbs, vitamins and healthy fats that will energise you pre-workout or during an active vacation. Unfortunately, there are usually three problems with pre-packaged mix: 1) lots of sodium 2) lots of refined sugar or 3) usually one ingredient isn't your fave. (Granted, this last problem isn't huge but why should you settle?)
This recipe is intended to inspire you; use it as a base and get as creative as you want with any mix of nuts, seeds, dried fruit and sweet bits. I will admit that it took me several tries to get the salted caramel nibs right. Making salted caramel without refined sugar is no joke. It's an art. I'm pretty stubborn though and after three tries, I refined the method for you should you choose to give it a go!
Makes 4-6 servings
Start with your ingredients prep. Be sure that your dried mango is chopped into bite-size pieces. Melt your chocolate bar (this is the best way.) Remove pit from all dates (if needed.)
Now, blend 1/3 cup of pumpkin seeds with dates and maple syrup in blender or food processor. You want to get a pasty, nutty mixture that rolls easily in the hands. See image below for reference. After you're satisfied with your mixture's consistency, place in a bowl and add peanut butter. Use just a spoon to blend in the peanut butter. (You can try the food processor/blender but the mixture may become too gooey.)
Next, make tiny ball shapes; these are your nibs and they should be bite-size or smaller. Roll each nib individually in your melted chocolate until covered. Be careful not to smash them. (I had a bit of attrition the first round making these because I couldn't wait to get them done and eat them. Use a gentle touch or they won't make it!) Once you've rolled all the nibs, place them on a plate and pop into the freezer to solidify. This will take about 20 to 30 minutes.
Now, the part you've been waiting for! Combine the rest of your pumpkin seeds, chopped mango and nibs in a container to eat now or save for later. You can jazz this up with pecans, cranberries, etc. whatever suits you!