Guys! Operation: Eat Healthier Snacks (subtitle: Put Down the Chex Mix) is going strong three weeks into 2015. Meet these Trail Mix Bites. Impossibly easy and so, so good.
When B and I trekked from California to Tennessee, we stocked the car with some serious snacks. We had protein in the form of beef jerky (ugh, taste aversion due to jerky blow out is still going strong), we had caffeine, and we had guilty pleasure carbs (coooookies ♥). We also had a huge container of trail mix. HUGE. Of which we ate multiple handfuls and then thought about chucking the container out the window somewhere in Mississippi because we were so over trail mix.
Don’t worry there wasn’t any littering, though that container of trail mix has been hogging up valuable cabinet space in our teeny tiny kitchen for months now. Since I’ve been making an effort to eat more nutritious afternoon snacks to stave off hangriness, I knew it was time for a trail mix shake up. Enter these trail mix bites! All of the protein and fiber of trail mix in a new, simple, and fab variation.
These trail mix bites only contain five ingredients – peanuts, almonds, raisins, dark chocolate chips, and vanilla extract. That’s it! After twenty to thirty seconds in the food processor, the nuts and chocolate are ground finely and the raisins are pulverized to act as the glue holding it all together. Using a tablespoon, I scooped the mixture, rolled each portion into a ball, and refrigerated them so they firmed up a bit. Five minutes of work = a week’s worth of healthy, nutrient-packed snacks.
To make things even easier, I used a cup of our
never-ending trail mix, which was comprised of approximately 50% peanuts, and equal parts almonds and raisins. Once upon a time our mix also contained M&Ms and dried cherries, but (real talk) we ate those long ago. Because one of the best parts of trail mix is the chocolate component, I added dark chocolate chips to the nuts and raisins, adding a satisfying touch of sweetness to these bites. Feel free to use a premade trail mix for these bites to suit your preferences, keeping in mind the raisins are important as a binding ingredient.
And one of the best things about them? While I keep these bites in the refrigerator at home, they’re able to be kept at room temperature for at least a few hours and still retain their shape and consistency. Healthy work snacks that’ll actually make it through the work day? Perfection.
Trail Mix Bites are impossibly easy snacks! Great to use up what you have on hand.
- 1/2 cup peanuts (approx.)
- 1/4 cup almonds (approx.)
- 1/4 cup raisins (approx.)
- 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
In the bowl of a food processor, add all ingredients and process for 20-30 seconds, or until mixture resembles a cohesive, formable dough (see picture in post for the consistency you're going for). Let mixture cool off for a few minutes if it's warm.
Roll approximately 1 tbsp of dough into a ball and place on parchment paper. Repeat for the rest of the dough. Refrigerate bites for at least 20 minutes before serving, or until firm.
You can use premade trail mix containing nuts, dried fruit, and chocolate in place of the peanuts/almonds/raisins/dark chocolate, keeping in mind the general ratio of nuts, dried fruit, and chocolate.
These bites are best kept in the refrigerator, though they can withstand at least a few hours at room temperature and still retain their shape and consistency.
The nutritional info is an estimate for using roasted, unsalted peanuts and almonds. The values will vary depending on the types you use.
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