Hiking Snacks Ideas: Healthy and Delicious Options for Outdoor Adventures

Exploring the great outdoors becomes even more enjoyable when you’re fueled by the right hiking snacks, and this blog post will provide some delicious and practical ideas for your next adventure.

Embarking on a hiking adventure requires the right fuel to keep your energy levels high. From protein-packed options to hydrating fruits, the world of hiking snacks is diverse and delicious.

In this article, you’ll discover a range of snack ideas that are not only tasty but also lightweight, non-perishable, and easy to pack. Whether you’re a fan of sweet or savory, there’s something for every palate.

Read on to uncover the best snacks to pack for your next hiking expedition, with all the details you need to make the right choices for your outdoor adventure.

Trail Mix

trail mix

A hit among both seasoned hikers and weekend wanderers, trail mix offers a satisfying blend of nutrients – protein, carbohydrates, and fats – designed to provide long-lasting energy. The ideal mix usually combines nuts, dried fruits, seeds, and sweets.

1. Nuts: Packed with protein and healthy fats, almonds, peanuts, and walnuts are excellent choices. They offer a pleasant crunch and keep you feeling satisfied.

2. Dried fruits: For a hint of sweetness and a dose of fiber, dried fruits like cranberries, raisins, bananas, or apricots are great. Remember to opt for unsweetened versions to avoid unnecessary added sugars.

3. Seeds: Don’t overlook the mighty seeds! Chia, flaxseed, or sunflower seeds deliver a power punch of nutrients and add a delightful textural variety.

4. Sweets: A little treat can go a long way on a tough trail. Dark chocolate chunks or mini pretzels can make every handful exciting.

Remember, while trail mix is energy-dense and perfect for rigorous activities like mountain climbing, portion control is crucial to avoid excessive caloric intake.

Beef Jerky

beef jerky

With a plethora of flavors and textures available, jerky is a go-to choice for hiker sustenance. Its long shelf-life and lightweight characteristics make it an ideal fit in any backpack. It’s packed with protein, a vital nutrient to restore muscles after rigorous walking and climbing.

Additionally, it provides sodium, which replenishes lost electrolytes and aids in hydration. It’s handy, creates no mess, and can be consumed even on-the-go. Importantly, ensure to choose a low-sodium and low-sugar option for a healthier snack.

Energy Bars

energy bars

Serving as a quick and convenient source of nutrition, energy bars pack quite a punch. They are specifically designed for on-the-go activities, like hiking. The compact sizes make them ideal for stashing away in the backpack, particularly when space is at a premium.

These nutritional powerhouses, often made with grains, nuts, seeds, and sometimes dried fruit, are designed to deliver long-lasting energy. Many also contain additional vitamins and minerals vital for maintaining energy levels during strenuous activities.

When choosing an energy bar, opt for ones with minimal added sugars and artificial ingredients, focusing instead on wholesome, natural foods. Brands such as Cliff Bar, Kind, and Larabar offer a variety of flavors made with whole, nutritious ingredients, making them a favorite choice among hikers. As a note of caution, don’t forget to check the expiry dates before packing, as some can have shorter shelf lives.

In addition, to prevent dehydration, pair these bars with plenty of water. Energy bars are not intended to replace meals but rather serve as a supplement to a balanced diet, helping to maintain energy levels between meals or when hiking over extended periods.

Fresh Fruit

fresh fruit

A nature’s gem, packed with essential vitamins and fibre, fresh fruit is a must-have snack for hikers. Lightweight and portable, apples, bananas, and oranges stand out as ideal options. Each one serves as a source of quick energy. They’re refreshingly juicy, which can provide a momentary relief from thirst. Plus, their peels and cores are compostable, leaving no trace behind. Just remember to properly dispose of your fruit waste to maintain the pristine nature of hiking trails.

Nut Butter Sandwiches

nut butter sandwiches

One might say the appeal of nut butter sandwiches on the trail registers as much in the nostalgia as in the sustenance. The perfect blend of carbohydrates, healthy fats and proteins makes these sandwiches instrumental in replenishing energy.

They’re customizable – switch out traditional peanut butter for almond or cashew butter, each offering a unique flavor profile. Spread on whole grain or seeded bread for added nutrients and fiber.

A dollop of jam or honey provides sweetness and a quick energy bump, while a layer of bananas or avocados adds valuable potassium for muscle function.

Preparing them is simple: make, bag, and stow in your pack. Plus, they’re resilient enough to withstand the rigors of a hike.

There you have it, a humble, versatile powerhouse disguised as a childhood favorite, waiting to fuel your next adventure.

Dried Fruit

dried fruit

Known for its long shelf life and nutrition density, dried fruit provides an unrivaled sweetness on the trail. Compact and lightweight, it carries an impressive amount of vitamins, minerals, and fiber packed into each bite.

Dehydrated apples, banana chips, dried cherries, and mango strips can offer a quick energy boost during strenuous sections of a hike. Their natural sugars provide a slow-burn energy not found in sugary snacks, further making them a healthy choice.

Remember, consuming them in moderation is key as they are high in calories and sugar content, which can be a concern for those monitoring their calorie intake.

Stay well-hydrated too, as dried fruits may absorb water in your stomach, making you feel thirsty.

Cheese Sticks

cheese sticks

As rich sources of protein and calcium, cheese sticks are an excellent choice to fuel your outdoor adventures. Compact and individually wrapped, they are easy to pack and store without the risk of spoilage. Plus, in addition to their ample nutritional benefits, they offer a variety of flavors to choose from, including cheddar, mozzarella, or pepper jack. For those who maintain a low-carb or keto diet, cheese sticks perfectly meet these dietary needs, adding a satisfying, energetic bite to your hiking snack selection. So, next time before hitting the trails, consider slipping a couple of these into your backpack!

Boiled Eggs

boiled eggs

Boiling eggs are a protein-packed snack that’s ideal for a long hike. They are easy to prepare ahead of the trip and aren’t messy to eat, making them a valuable addition to your hiking food list.

A medium egg provides you with approximately 6g of high-quality protein, which will help to maintain your muscle mass and keep you feeling satiated during your outdoor adventure. Just ensure to store the eggs at a safe temperature to preserve their freshness while you hike.

It’s also recommended to peel them in advance to save time and reduce waste on the trail. Moreover, their shell offers a natural packaging which provides convenience for hikers – no additional containers to carry!



Crisp and light, with an aptitude for marrying flavors, crackers will never let you down. They are marvelously convenient – no preparation required. Their pocket-friendly size and weight make them perfect for carrying in a backpack, and they pack substantial healthy carbs for a quick energy boost.

For an upgrade, consider whole grain or seeded crackers. They are incredibly versatile – team them with cheese, hummus, or even peanut butter for added protein.

For a quick, no-nonsense choice, just grab a sleeve and go; they provide a satisfying crunch when you need to fuel up mid-trail.

Tuna Pouches

tuna pouches

Packed with high-quality protein and rich in omega-3 fatty acids, tuna pouches are energy-dense and equally essential for muscle repair after an intense hike.

Lightweight and portable, these pouches don’t require a can opener, making them quick and easy trail food.

Some brands offer a range of flavors, like lemon pepper or hickory smoked, to keep your taste buds interested.

Combine it with whole grain crackers for a dose of healthy carbs to replenish energy levels.

Remember, most packets are single-serving size, but sharing is an option if you’re hiking with others.

Also, stick to the low sodium variants for a healthier choice.

Granola Bars

granola bars

Often positioned as a top pick for hiking snacks, granola bars are brimming with various nutrients. These compact powerhouses combine whole grains, nuts, seeds, fruit, and sweeteners. They offer both complex and simple carbohydrates, providing a sustained energy release that’s ideal for strenuous hikes.

An array of types and flavors exists, catering to different palates and dietary restrictions. For instance, some bars boast added protein or are entirely vegan.

Always check the nutritional content when purchasing. Aim for bars with a short, recognizable ingredient list and low sugar content. For an even healthier option, consider whipping up a batch of homemade granola bars before heading for the hills. Packed with your favorite flavors, they can offer a much-anticipated boost on the trail.

Remember, even though granola bars are portable and convenient, they must be stored carefully. Keep them in a cool, dry place to prevent them from becoming squashed or melted.

Dark Chocolate

dark chocolate

Packed with antioxidants, dark chocolate not only satisfies a sweet craving but also has considerable health benefits. Compared to other forms of chocolate, it contains less sugar and more beneficial compounds such as flavanols and theobromine.

These elements aid in improving heart health and cognitive function. Moreover, it’s energy-dense, rendering it a great source of quick energy for long hikes. Opt for those with higher cocoa content, as they typically contain less sugar and more of the beneficial compounds.

It’s advised, however, to consume dark chocolate in moderation, considering its high-calorie content. An ideal option would be individually wrapped squares, which prevent overheating and manage consumption amount. So, next time you hit the trail, tuck a few pieces of dark chocolate in your backpack.

Rice Cakes

rice cakes

Ideal for their portability and long shelf-life, rice cakes offer a simple yet nutritious snack for hikers. Consisting largely of carbohydrates, they provide the much-needed energy for your outdoor adventure.

Vary your flavours by choosing those infused with fruits, nuts or added salt for an extra taste kick. For a more balanced snack, spread a layer of high-protein almond or peanut butter, or top them with slices of avocado.

Consider packing them in a hard container to prevent crumbling in your backpack. Ultimately, rice cakes deliver a light and satisfying on-the-go snack that’s versatile and always ready to complement your energetic hikes.

Roasted Chickpeas

roasted chickpeas

A viable source of plant-based protein, fiber, and healthy fats, roasted chickpeas boast a crispy texture perfect for snacking. They can be seasoned with a myriad of spices to suit various taste preferences. For instance, a dash of cayenne pepper adds a bit of heat, while a sprinkle of cinnamon can lend a sweet touch.

Preparation-wise, they’re relatively simple: after rinsing canned chickpeas, pat them dry, toss with olive oil and your selected spices, then roast until crunchy. Due to their compact size, they can be easily stored in resealable bags or containers for an on-the-go snack.

Roasted chickpeas also have the advantage of being a more sustainable and environmentally friendly snack compared to options such as beef jerky.



Almonds are a potent blend of essential nutrients and energy, which hikers require. Each small handful provides a good source of protein and healthy fats.

They’re high in vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant that helps protect the body against damage from free radicals. The presence of dietary fiber means you’ll feel full for longer, assisting in controlling appetite during long trails.

A bonus is their portable, non-perishable nature, which allows easy packing and carrying without any spoilage worries. Just remember: while tasty and nutritious, almonds are also high in calories, so moderate your intake to avoid overeating.

Protein Balls

protein balls

Packed with energy and easy to prepare, these little spheres are a hiking snack favorite. With a base of oats and your choice of protein powder, they offer sustained energy and muscle-fueling protein.

Classic add-ins include nut butter for healthy fats, honey for a touch of sweetness, and mix-ins like coconut, chocolate chips, or dried fruits for variety and extra nutrients.

Always remember to keep them cool during your hike, as some ingredients might make them prone to melting.

Besides their nutritious profiles, protein balls are customizable to a person’s flavor palette, and can be made in advance, making them an ideal hiking snack.

Veggie Sticks

veggie sticks

Packed with essential nutrients, veggie sticks make an excellent option for those preferring the fresh crunch to their snacks. Ideally, choose hardy vegetables like carrots, bell peppers, cucumber, or celery that won’t wilt or spoil with heat.

To keep them fresh, store in a cool backpack pocket or thermal container. Pair these vibrant sticks with individually packed hummus or guacamole for a satisfying and nourishing protein-rich snack. Plus, they hydrate your body and keep those energy levels high on the trail.

Adapt to taste preferences or dietary restrictions by incorporating radishes, cherry tomatoes, or snap peas for variety. Remember, a snack that is not only tasty but also provides essential sustenance for the physical exertion, is a winning choice for hiking, and with veggie sticks, you get just that.

Banana Chips

banana chips

Light, crispy, and packed with a natural sweetness, these delightful snacks make an excellent choice for the trail. Bananas are a great source of potassium, an essential mineral for maintaining proper heart and muscle function, which can be particularly beneficial during strenuous hikes.

Moreover, when made into chips, they become more portable and less susceptible to spoilage compared to fresh bananas.

To prepare, the bananas are thinly sliced and then either fried, baked, or dehydrated until they reach the desired crispness. This makes them easy to package and bring along on your outdoor excursion.

Keep in mind that preparation methods can greatly affect the nutritional values. For instance, banana chips can be high in calories and fats if they’re fried in oil and coated with sugar. Seek out brands that use minimal added sugars and oils, or consider making your own at home to control what goes into them.

For those with dietary concerns, banana chips are often gluten-free and vegan, making them a suitable option for a broad range of dietary needs.

For longer hikes, pairing banana chips with a source of protein, such as nuts or jerky, can help balance your energy levels and keep you feeling full and focused throughout your trek.

Hummus and Pita

hummus and pita

Savoring the distinct flavor of hummus meshed with fluffy pita bread provides both a hearty nutrient boost and instant energy replenishment.

Hummus, rich in protein, fibre and healthy fats, teaming up with complex carbohydrates in the pita, works wonders to hiker’s stamina and endurance levels.

Relatively light and easy to pack, hummus and pita can be a great addition to your hiking snacks.

Want a flavor variety? Consider including roasted red pepper or beet hummus options.

Also, combining hummus with whole grain pita aids in slow and steady energy release, an ideal provision if your trail proves to be long.

Do remember, if you’re carrying pre-packaged hummus, look for those without preservatives for the healthiest choice.

Mini Pretzels

mini pretzels

Among the vast selection of portable snacks, mini pretzels often stand out for their unique edge. First, their small size makes them convenient to pack and carry around. You can toss a handful in a container or a zip-lock bag, and they remain fresh and crunchy.

Secondly, the one thing hikers fear is getting dehydrated. Mini pretzels are a popular choice due to their salty nature which helps to stimulate thirst. Regular sips of water between a serving of these twisted snacks can ensure good hydration levels on your hiking journey.

Nutritionally, mini pretzels are rich in carbohydrates, providing the much-needed energy while hiking. This makes them a snack that not only tastes good but also delivers a performance boost on the trail.

One additional advantage is the versatility of mini pretzels. They can be eaten plain or they can be combined with trail mix, dipped into peanut butter or hummus on the go, adding a variety to the hiking dietary routine.

Lastly, their hardy nature ensures they won’t crumble and create a mess in your backpack. All these factors have made mini pretzels a true hiker’s friend, always ready to satisfy mid-hike cravings with a bit of a salty kick.