Monday, December 21, 2009

Trail Mix on the Cheap

The Loveless Cafe gift shop is not the place to shop for trail mix. Still, as a visitor there, I willingly forked over $5 for a Lilliputian bag of mix just the other night. Circumstances were such that, had I not shelled out the cash, my five-year-old was going to erupt into hunger meltdown. If you're a parent, you know it was money well spent.

I will say, however, that the mix was a good one. It consisted of dried raspberries, raisins, white chocolate chips, pecans, cashews, and almonds. It was a nice blend of sweet and salty/savory. After munching on some of the mix with C, I decided I needed to experiment with my own recipes.

Just so happens that we hit Dollar Tree today. In case you've been out of the country for a decade or were lucky enough to enter the world with a silver spoon dangling from your lips, the Dollar Tree is a retail outlet where every item is a dollar or less. Being an ever-alert shopper, I quickly discovered that the store offered trail mix supplies aplenty, and for $7 plus tax, I picked up the following:

      • 2 bags of salted cashews
      • 1 jar of peanuts
      • 1 bag of banana chips
      • 1 bag of sunflower seeds
      • 1 bag of yogurt covered raisins
      • 1 bag of Tropical trail mix (with pineapple, raisins, dates, bananas, papaya, coconut)
Since Kroger was just next door, I ducked in for a few more items. These additional ingredients were decidedly pricier, but I felt like they really added some nice flavors to the mix.
      • Sliced almonds @ $1.80 a bag
      • White chocolate chips @ $2.50 a bag
      • Ocean Spray dried cranberries (both regular and cherry flavored) @ $2.50 a bag
At home, I mixed everything up in a giant bowl, tossing in a few more raisins from our supplies, and voilĂ ! A tasty result if I do say so myself. The whole concoction came in under $18 with tax and made up enough mix to stuff a gallon-sized Ziploc. At the Loveless, we would have needed to sell our second child to afford that much trail mix. The lesson here? If you need a nice, healthy snack on your next hike, the dollar store is definitely your friend.


1 comment:

Jimmy said...

Good post, Jason. Are bags of "Wildwoodstream" trail mix soon to appear on the co-op's shelves for $25? I think Rob Noxious knows a buyer for REI...we could work through him.