5 Healthy Hiking Snacks- Kid Friendly!
With the nice weather comes lots of time spent outdoors (hopefully playing in dirt!), on trails and generally working up an appetite! Not only do you need snacks to keep you fueled and energized but you also need to pack light. Which is why these healthy hiking snacks are portable and easily consumed.
Getting the family out for a hike is an easy way to stay active and get some fresh air (and a fun way to help kids learn). However, with activity comes hunger. Reaching into your hiking bag only to find empty candy wrappers is sure to leave your kids wanting to turn around (with rumbling tummies).
When it comes to the best healthy hiking snacks you’re looking at a couple of key points:
- easy to make
There is nothing worse than grabbing a normally very delicious, soft or gooey muffin (like these chocolate steel cut oats ones) and having is smushed and squished in your bag. You reach in only to come out with sticky fingers or a pile of mush. Not awesome.
Which fun fact: I love the chocolate gooey muffins but they make a terrible hiking snack haha
While there are some healthy store bought snack options, Instead of packing the usual candy bars and chips, aim to give your kids lots of fuel to keep them both satisfied and full of energy.
Another key element of healthy hiking snacks is of course… fuel! A snack out on the trail isn’t any good if it just provides the kids with a big sugar crash and grumbling stomach.
Instead opt for a tasty but nutrient dense option for hitting the outdoors. And below are easily the best healthy hiking snacks you can find.. well, make 😉
Healthy Hiking Snack #1 Homemade Granola Bars
By bringing homemade ones on your hike, you can guarantee they’re full of healthy nutrients and fuel.
Most store-bought granola bars end up pretty high in added sugars. When making your own, ease off on the sugar and instead opt for a healthy balance of nuts, seeds and dried fruit. Using maple syrup or honey to bind them gives them enough sugar without causing a crash.
Snack #2 Fruit & Nuts
This is pretty much the simplest hiking snack you can grab!
Fruit is an ideal snack for kids because it gives a bit of an energy rush without the processed sugar. Pair it with some nuts to slow the energy rush and you’ve got the perfect snack.
Make sure you’re wise about your fruit choice though; apples and pears are great choices whereas bananas and berries- while tasty- can get bruised and mashed in a bag.
And it is NOT fun carrying around a zillion glass containers on a hike (uphill of course) to protect your fruit. *said from experience*
Snack #3 Homemade, No Bake Energy Balls
When it comes to hiking snack ideas… or any snack in general, I am an energy ball fiend! Most energy balls normally have a base of dates and nuts which provides a nice sugar boost but a stable one. These little bites are simple to make, require no actual cooking and you can customize to your kid’s preferences (check out how and why to make them here)
And while energy balls may seem sticky, they’re small enough that you can just pop them in your mouth- so no major mess!
Try sweeter flavors like peanut butter & chocolate, chocolate coconut or cranberry walnut. Keep in mind that these little balls travel best in a small container because they are soft, which makes them perfect. Here’s a recipe for cherry vanilla ones but I also love these banana oatmeal ones if you want to avoid dates. But definitely place them at the top of your bag!
Snack #4 Trail Mix Cookies
Every kids loves cookies, right? Trail mix cookies make great healthy hiking snacks because they’re portable but full of nutrients. Plus, the nuts and seeds in them make them pretty calorie dense which helps with fuel and to keep tummies full.
Use a recipe with banana or apple sauce as the base to keep them moist (no one likes a dry cookie while hiking!) and sweet.
From there make sure the cookies are full of nuts, seeds, oatmeal and dried fruit. All of which will keep your little ones full while giving them enough energy to make it through the hike.
Snack #5 Roasted Chickpeas
This is easily my favorite snack of the bunch when it comes to hiking (and the salt and vinegar ones are the most addictive)!
Chickpeas are full of fiber and when roasted deliciously tasty. Because of the fiber they’re pretty filling and thus you don’t need a lot of them.
They’re an easy snack to make and perfect for hiking. Customize them to your likes (sea salt and paprika is tasty) and bring a bag for each kid. They can nibble and crunch while they snack!
Don’t forget to pin these healthy hiking snacks- kid approved!
Along with water, having healthy, portable and tasty snacks in your arsenal is pretty crucial to a good trip. Keep your kids fueled and ready to go by giving them great nutrients with the best healthy hiking snacks.