Making your own trail mix is hands-down the best way to get excited about healthy snacking. You can add all of your favorite ingredients, and leave out the things you usually eat around (looking at you, weirdly salty trail mix raisins). The key is getting the right balance of ingredients. While you should definitely load up on nutritious morsels that are full of protein and heart-healthy fats, don鈥檛 overlook the fun stuff, whether that means some chocolate chips or a handful of pretzels.

Here鈥檚 another case for making your own trail mix: The pre-made kinds are often loaded with added sodium and sugar. And it鈥檚 honestly just boring to get the same gas station-quality blend of raisins, off-brand M&Ms, and salted peanuts all the time. Homemade trail mix is also a good excuse to raid the bulk bins at your favorite grocery store. Since you only need a little of each ingredient, it鈥檚 an affordable way to try out some of the more exotic ingredients on offer.

Ready to start blending your own trail mix? This is our preferred ratio:

  • 3 parts nuts
  • 1 part seeds
  • 1 part dried fruit
  • 1 part fun

You can decide for yourself if you prefer your nuts raw or roasted, salted or unsalted, and the 鈥渇un鈥 can be whatever gets you excited about eating your mix, whether that means chocolate chips, yogurt-covered raisins, or popcorn. If you need some help getting started, here are the recipes for three of our favorite combos.

Omega Antioxidant Mix

(Makes about 2 cups)

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup roasted walnut halves (salted optional)
  • 1/4 cup pepitas
  • 1/4 cup dried blueberries
  • 2 tablespoons dried unsweetened coconut chips
  • 2 tablespoons dark chocolate chips

Instructions:

  1. Mix all ingredients together. Keep in an airtight container.

Nut and Fruit Mix

(Makes about 2 cups)

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup roasted almonds (salted optional)
  • 1/4 cup pepitas
  • 1/4 cup chopped dried figs
  • 2 tablespoons dried mango chunks
  • 2 tablespoons dark chocolate chips

Instructions:

  1. Mix all ingredients together. Store in an airtight container.

Savory Mix

(Makes about 2 cups)

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup roasted mixed nuts (salted optional)
  • 1/4 cup pepitas
  • 1/4 cup chopped jerky (we used vegan jerky)
  • 2 tablespoons popcorn
  • 2 tablespoons mini pretzels

Instructions:

  1. Mix all ingredients together. Store in an airtight container. This mix is best eaten the day it鈥檚 made, as the residual moisture from the jerky can make the popcorn go stale faster than it would normally.

Follow us on Pinterest for more healthy snacking ideas.

(Recipes and photos via Justina Huddleston / Brit + Co)