What makes a perfect hiking snack? Portability? Convenience? The amount of protein in each bite? The number of times it makes you go “mmm…”? Some healthy treats for the trail pack all these goodies and more. And you don't have to pack the whole fridge to make sure you have enough for a multi-day trail. To find out what are the 7 best hiking snacks everyone's having today, keep scrolling down.
The Golden Rules of Nutritious Hiking Snacks
Follow these golden rules when packing your hiking bag with snacks for the trail. Because if it's in a list, it must be true (No, but really. Do these steps).
- Pack light and you'll walk right: bye bye canned beans, hello air-popped lentil snacks and delicious droewors.
- Say "boo" to the bulk: make sure you pack food and snacks that don't take up too much space and choose ones that can easily be resealed. Or repackage them in space-saving containers and zip-locs.
- Pack only the best: opt for smaller super-foods and healthy hiking snacks that pack a punch so you maintain a high nutrient intake and increased energy levels. Try to include something from each food group so you still get a balanced diet on the go.
- Climate change is real: think ahead to the weather and climate differences on a hike. You want to store food in a way that they won't spoil when the outside temperatures change. Insulated packs or airtight containers could help keep perishable food fresh for longer.
- Make it preppy: and by "preppy" we really mean keep it easy to prepare. Unless you carry a mini gas stove with you (which can be excess weight), try and prepare snacks that won't require much prep work. Pre-cut your veggies and cheeses into sticks, and get rid of any useless packaging so rubbish doesn't clutter up your backpack.
And with these suggestions, here are 7 of the most nutritious hiking snacks.
7 Nutritious Hiking Snacks
1. Beef Jerky
Get this - beef jerky packs 60g of protein and 1345KJ of energy per 100g! This satisfying snack means you’ll stick to a good pace while staying energised for longer. Change up the meat game at each snack time by packing similar meats like droewors and beef biltong. And if you're someone who wonders "is protein necessary after a workout?", head over to the blog to read about how protein rich snack like beef jerky can boost your workouts and long hikes.
2. Freeze-dried/ dried fruit
Without water, dried or freeze-dried fruit can stay fresh for much, much longer. They also become much lighter, meaning you can carry more of them without overloading your backpack. Freeze-drying fruit is also a great way to retain many nutrients so you can snack healthier on the trail. Just be mindful not to overeat as fruit still has a high sugar content. And of course, you can bring along fresh fruit that won’t go off easily.
3. Trail mix
Packing some trail mix is an easy way to get a load of nutrients and healthy fats in one snack. You could even bake them into a few trail mix bars to make them an even more convenient hiking snack.
4. Energy balls
These little balls of fun can be made using almost anything in your pantry. Make them smooth, chocolate-y or make them crunchy, you can customise the recipe to suit your fitness needs and taste.
These super lightweight snacks aren’t just for the movies. Did you know that popcorn is a great source of fibre and protein? You can make your own at home before heading out on a hike so you can customise the ingredients.
Some people swear by having dried cheese on a hike, while others like to pack fridge-free cheeses like Parmesan, mozzarella, and brie to pair with some fruit and crackers.
7. Savoury chips
While this may be the least healthy and more processed food in this list, you still need to replenish the salt that you lost through perspiration when doing strenuous walking. You can buy veggie chips from the shops or make your own in the oven. Salted food and electrolyte drinks can help your body retain more water, so keep them on hand. You can also have another piece of beef jerky if you need to quickly add salt back into your body’s system.
Shop The Best Hiking Snacks Online At The Jerky Co.
So there you have it. 7 of the best nutritious hiking snacks that you can easily throw into your backpack and call it a day. Just remember to pack enough for the number of days you’ll be out on the trail, and a little extra for snack emergencies.And as always, peep the delicious range of air-dried meats at The Jerky Co., you'll be glad you did.