Festive Trail Mix
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festive trail mix header

One of the nicer things to happen this year is that my friend Sydney, whom I’ve known since high school, has relocated to the DC area. I love meeting new people, but there’s something so unique about a friendship that has stood the test of time–all the shared memories, the kind of intimacy that comes with having known someone through multiple stages of her life, and so on. Syd and I aren’t phone people, so it’s often been the case that we go huge periods of time without speaking. But, true to form, the moment we were in the same place again, it was as if no time at all had passed.

Two weekends ago, we decided to make a trip to Old Rag mountain in Shenandoah National Park. This is one of the area’s most beautiful outdoor attractions, and it’s also a nice, challenging hike (readers of Anne‘s blog might know it as the spot where she and Matt got engaged!). Syd said she would handle the driving and all of the hike navigation. I said I’d handle the snacks, and handle them I did.

photo 1

A mix of snack bars from Vega and 22Days, apples, trail mix, kale chips, some of my raw brownie bites, and two PB&J sandwiches on Ezekiel cinnamon raisin toast. Perfect food for a scenic day:

photo 3I don’t usually get too excited about trail mix, but for whatever reason this batch was exceptionally good. It reminded me a little of my trail mix with roasted chickpeas (aka my favorite snack). When it comes to trail mix, I find that a legume/nut/fruit mix keeps me the most satisfied–a combination of protein, fat, and a little bit of sugar. This time around, I used roasted soynuts (available in bulk bins at health food stores everywhere, or online) in place of homemade roast chickpeas, since I didn’t have any on hand.

Soynuts add a lot of protein punch to trail mix (12 grams per serving), and they’re also quite tasty and easy to store.

soy nuts roasted

I’m calling this trail mix “festive” because it has touches of red and green, and also because I’m a sucker for the holidays and already feel geared up for Christmas. But I might also have called it “antioxidant rich,” since the pistachios and goji berries provide a lot of them, or “super satisfying trail mix” for the reasons described above.

festive trail mix1

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Festive Trail Mix

Author - Gena Hamshaw


  • 1 cup almonds raw or roasted
  • 1 cup soynuts roasted
  • 1/2 cup pistachios shelled
  • 1/2 cup goji berries
  • Optional add-ins: cacao nibs raisins, hemp seeds, etc.


  • Mix all ingredients together. Store in snack sized bags or in mason jars for up to a few weeks.
  • Makes 3 cups.

festive trail mix 3

As with all trail mix, customization will only make this better. Add ingredients to suit your taste, and enjoy!


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Categories: Recipes, Snacks
Dietary Preferences: Gluten Free, No Oil, Soy Free, Vegan
Recipe Features: Meal Prep

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  1. Looks like a fabulous picnic for a lovely trip. I adore this simple and festive trail mix, particularly because it’s not too sweet. The goji berries and a few cacao nibs sound perfect to me. And I’ve never thought to use soynuts! Can’t wait to dig into a batch of this. Happy trails! 🙂

  2. I’m a soy nut fan too and this is such a simple and delicious recipe, thanks! Gorgeous pics!

  3. That looks yummy! And I love the red and green. I think it could use a little chocolate though…

  4. I lived in Virginia for a year, in the Shenandoah mountains, nonetheless, & I still often think of that place. (One of my fave songs is “Oh Shenandoah”..). It is soo beautiful, especially in the fall with the colors changing.

    What an awesome thing to have a time-tested friend now in the same place with you.

    Love the trail mix–I forget about making my own, but as I’m towards the end of this pregnancy, I’ve been craving higher protein foods (& really, just food in general 🙂 ) so this would be perfect for my peckish cravings.


  5. Wonderful reconnection and definitely a festive trail mix! Love the color and ingredient mix.

    Even though you say you’re not a phone person, I have enjoyed our many phone conversations 😀

  6. What a fun, festive recipe Gena! I love trailmix and think goji’s are so pretty included in it! I love being out in nature. It’s so calming, healing and relaxing. Great post and recipe!

  7. So nice that you got to reconnect with an old friend =)
    The trail mix sounds awesome btw!

  8. That photograph of the mountains is incredible, and the hike sounds great! It is wonderful that you have reconnected with your friend – where did you both go to high school?

  9. Pistachios are my favorite nuts! I like to combine them with currants and chickpeas roasted with cinnamon and cayenne for a Middle Eastern-inpsired snack. The mix you shared here, though, would be great to give during the holidays!

  10. Yum! I’m mixing up trail mix this weekend for our Thanksgiving camping trip–you’ve given me some great ideas for add-ins 🙂

  11. I’m surprised you say you aren’t a phone person! You communicate so well through writing, I would never guess that you didn’t prefer phone talks too. Also, don’t you do you counseling over the phone?? I’m sure you are so much more natural than you think!!

    I’m gonna make this to bring with me biking this weekend!

    • You are exceedingly kind to say that about my written communication, Elizabeth!

      I do counsel over the phone, and for some reason I don’t mind it at all for work (same with conference calls, etc.). But for pleasure? I’m an email/text person all the way. I practically only talk to my mom on the phone these days 🙂

  12. I love trail mix, as well as anything remotely Christmasy (spell check didn’t underline this…is it actually a word?!) so it’s pretty much by default that I would be partial to this combination. I know I’ve tried soynuts in the past, but I can’t say I remember when. I might have to make (if you can really call it making) some of this for the holiday season! So pretty.

  13. I am a trail mix lover and this one looks delicious. Love the addition of pistachios — such festive colors. 🙂

  14. Oh yum – pistachios add such a lovely color variation to the mix! Wonderful packed picnic, even lovely for a day out at the park!

  15. I love soynuts too. I’ve only had them in pre-made trail mix though and haven’t seen them in bulk here unfortunately.
    Looked like a beautiful hike from the pics I saw on your Ig account.

  16. So wish I’d been able to join you two for that hike! Glad you had a great time. 🙂

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