Going on a hike? Don't forget to pack your hiking snacks! Here is a list of easy and healthy snacks to bring on your hiking or camping trip.
It's important to take care of your nutrition all the time, but especially when you go hiking! If you're going to be gone for more than 3 hours, you'll want to consider bringing some hiking snacks. Your body needs to refuel from the exertion so some hiking snacks can fix that!
When packing your hiking snacks, consider factors like the nutrition, packability, weight, and perishability. Not every snack needs to have all of these factors, but if you're going to be gone for a while, these might be your best best!
I like to bring several high-protein snacks when I go hiking. Since nutrition is so important to fuel outdoor activities, I recommend bringing snacks with a balance of protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats that will give you the fuel you need for your hike!
There are certain snacks you can consume before, during, or after a hike, and it all depends on the intensity of your activity. Make sure to have a plan and pack your snacks accordingly.
What kind of snacks to pack?
Once your figure out what kind of nutrients you will need on your hike, you'll want to consider which snacks will hold up in your hiking backpack.
Having snacks that are non-perishable will be helpful, as you'll likely be in unstable temperatures. If you're hiking in super cold temps, you might be able to get away with snacks out of the fridge, but likely non-perishables will be your best option.
You'll also want to bring packable and lightweight snacks. Avoid bags of chips, cans, and bottles that will take up extra space. Snacks that are pre-packaged in individual wrappers are awesome as they help with portions and pack well.
Remember to pack out your trash and don't leave it for someone else to find! Bonus points if you pick up any trash you might find on your hike.
A few pieces of jerky can be a great source of protein on a hike. It's really lightweight, non-perishable, and does well in all temperatures. It comes in several flavors, meats, and packages.
My favorite kind of jerky is Trader Joe's Turkey Jerky, Baka Jerky, and Chomp's Jerky Sticks. If you're feeling ambitious, you can even make your own jerky!
Traditional trail mix is typically a combination of nuts, seeds, and chocolate. However, there are so many kinds of trail mix with different flavors, ingredients, and nutrients, that you will be able to pick one perfect for you.
People often question if trail mix is good for you, and while it will vary for each person, trail mix is definitely a great source of protein and healthy fats. You can purchase trail mix in bulk, in individual pre-packaged bags, or make your own.
My favorite recipes for trail mix are my Protein Trail Mix, Copy Cat Trader Joe's Tempting Trail Mix and S'mores Trail Mix.
Often found in trail mix, nuts can also be eaten on their own. Nuts are higher in fat, and a source of protein and fiber. Each kind of nut provides varying health benefits so you can pick which kind you like the best!
Consider an option with salt because you usually lose sodium as you're exerting energy on a hike. Here's a great option for single serving packages of nuts.
It's rewarding to have a juicy, fresh piece of fruit to enjoy when you get to your hiking destination! Whole fruits like apples, oranges, and pears are great to bring on hikes because they can hold up well in a wide range of temperatures and can take a beating in your backpack!
Be weary of fruits like bananas and grapes that might get smashed in your backpack while you're hiking. If you do bring a piece of fruit and have leftovers from the core or peel, don't just throw them on the ground, but pack it out in your backpack to keep the hiking trails clean!
If you're not interested in packing out a peel or core, consider packing dried fruit. Dried fruit generally contains a lot of fiber and antioxidants. It also has a long shelf-life, is lightweight, and tastes like candy! These dried mangos are my favorite.
I know there are a lot of tuna haters out there, but I bring tuna packers on every single backpacking trip! Tuna packets are a great source of protein and omega-3 fats. Instead of hassling with a can on your hike, you can eat this straight out of the package.
There are so many flavors of tuna packets as well. My favorite is the hot buffalo flavor with some crackers!
Packing a few salty snacks like pretzels, crispy chickpeas, cheese crackers or crackers with salt might be a good idea! Because of the extra salt on these snacks, there is more sodium than compared to other foods, which can help replace the sodium you lose as you're exerting energy on a hike.
If I'm going to pack on snack for a hike, it's a protein bar. Most protein bars are a great source of protein and carbohydrates to help fuel your activity.
There are so many debates about the best protein bars, but it truly just depends on what you like best.
My favorite protein bars are G2GBARS (code JORDO for a discount), RXBAR, ONE Bars, Luna Protein Bars, Clif Bars, and Quest Bars. Let me be honest: I'm a protein bar snob. I will pay more money for bars that have quality ingredients, taste really good, and pack well.
Nut butter packets
Having nut butter as a snack is so good! Because carrying a jar of nut butter might be a little extreme for a day hike (though I do this on multi-day backpacking trips), bringing nut butter packets are a great hiking snack option.
Spread some nut butter on a piece of fruit, crackers, pretzels, or enjoy it straight out of the package! It's delicious, high in healthy fats & protein, and so good any way. My favorite nut butter packets are the RX Nut Butter packets and Justin's Almond Butter packets because the flavors are amazing.
Whether you call them energy bites, protein balls, energy balls, or some other name, you’re talking about a delicious, bite-sized snack packed with nutrients. You can customize the ingredients, nutrients, and flavors with all of the amazing recipes out there.
Regardless of what kind you make, these are a great option for a day hike snack to keep you fueled. Here’s a list of some of my all-time favorite recipes for healthy energy bites!
These crispy chickpeas are a plant-based protein and gluten-free snack. They're crispy, salty, pack well, and delicious!
Water & electrolytes
Bring water on your hike! Even if you think you won't need water, bring it anyway! It can be helpful to bring electrolytes to help with hydration as well.
Electrolytes are important because they help balance the amount of water in your body and move nutrients to your cells. Most electrolytes can come in a tablet that dissolves in water or even a little packet.
My favorite electrolytes are the Nuun Sport: Electrolyte Drink Tablets because they are packable, dissolvable, and taste amazing.
List of hiking snacks
- Trail Mix
- Nuts & Seeds
- Tuna Packets
- Protein Bars
- Nut Butter Packets
- Salty Snacks
- Energy Bites or Protein Balls
- Water & Electrolytes
Favorite hiking snacks
Whether you're going hiking for a few hours or all day, make sure to pack some hiking snacks! I hope this list is a helpful place to get you started to prepare and give you energy for your hike. Happy hiking!
Looking for more snack ideas? Here's a list of some roundups:
This is not a paid review and opinions and experiences expressed in this post are all mine. This post does contain Amazon affiliate links. Jordo’s World is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. If you purchase an item through the link I will get a small percentage of the sale which goes toward the development I do for this site.