11 Healthy Snacks for Your Outdoor Hike or Picnic
Wondering what healthy snacks to bring on your next hike or picnic? Look no further! We’ve got some great ideas for easy, healthy snacks that will leave you feeling satisfied and energized when you’re out exploring San Diego with your friends and family!
1. Trail mix with unsalted nuts & seeds
Trail mix is a fantastic option for snacking while you hike. But not all trail mix is created equal. Choose a high-quality mix of unsalted seeds and nuts, as added sodium can contribute to dehydration. Also look for choices that include dried fruit instead of candy.
2. Nut butter & jelly whole-grain sandwiches
Swipe your favorite unprocessed nut butter onto whole or sprouted grain bread, and add natural jam or jelly. This “upgraded” PB&J sandwich is a simple, healthy way to stay energized and alert on your hike without feeling weighed down.
3. Whole, fresh fruit
You can never go wrong with snacking on whole, fresh fruit. Apples, oranges, bananas and pears are loaded with fiber, complex carbohydrates and lots of essential nutrients. Plus, they’re naturally portable!
4. Pita sandwiches
Pita pockets keep your all your sandwich toppings and condiments tucked in with no drips or spills – exactly what you need when you’re outdoors. Make a whole-wheat pita pocket with lean protein and fresh veggies, and top it off with a good-quality spread like smashed avocado, hummus or goat cheese.
5. Fruit leathers
Homemade fruit leathers are a healthy alternative to commercial brands that are loaded with added sugar. By making these at home overnight, you’ll have a nutrient-loaded snack for any hike or outdoor picnic the next day!
6. “Lightened up” egg, chicken, or tuna salad
Subbing plain Greek yogurt or mashed avocado for mayonnaise in your favorite egg, chicken or tuna salad adds healthy fat and protein for a lighter version of the traditional recipes. Divvy up single-serving portions in a cooler pack for a filling snack on the go.
7. Hard-boiled eggs
Whole eggs are loaded with important nutrients. They’re high in good fat and protein, making them very filling too. Snacking on a hard-boiled egg while hiking will tame your hunger and give you plenty of energy to keep going. Just make sure to store them in a cooler pack.
Jerky is a hiking favorite. It’s tasty, packed with protein and is non-perishable. But keep in mind that most jerky is also high in sodium, which can be dehydrating. Keep your jerky servings small, and you’ll be fine.
9. Tomato & cucumber salad
This simple, refreshing salad is the perfect choice for a light picnic snack. Chop several ripe tomatoes into chunks, dice an English cucumber, and mix together in a bowl with olive oil, red vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste. Add some crumbled feta cheese and torn fresh basil for more flavor.
10. Roasted chickpeas
Roasting chickpeas turns them into a delicious, crunchy, protein-packed snack that’s perfect for hiking. The night before your hike, turn your oven to 425ºF and roast cooked chickpeas with salt, pepper, olive oil and chili powder for 15-20 minutes.
11. Caprese fruit skewers
Use a melon baller to make cantaloupe or honeydew balls. Then thread them onto wooden skewers along with fresh mozzarella balls and red grapes for a delicious, healthy snack. For extra protein, add ham or prosciutto. Drizzle with balsamic glaze for an extra kick.
For more great healthy eating tips, be sure to read through all of Scripps Affiliated Medical Groups’ articles.