I don’t know about you, but I take extra care in planning out my energy resources for long hikes. I never just carelessly throw an energy bar in my backpack (unless it’s a short hike and I really don’t think I’ll need a snack anyway). I’m usually up the night before a long hike carefully planning out my meals and snacks. I’ve learned that no meal ever tastes as good as one that is enjoyed at the summit of a mountain trail (and my meal of choice is usually a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and a can of IPA).
Long or strenuous hikes burn a sufficient amount of calories, and it’s extremely hard to keep your energy level and motivation up when your stomach is growling. Some of my favorite convenient sources of energy for long hikes include KIND bars, trail mix and Justin’s Almond Butter squeeze packs (which I usually pair with an apple). All of those options are great, but I’ve got a snack idea that’s even better: cookies! Seriously, who doesn’t love cookies?
I started creating “hiker’s cookies” to bring along on the trails to break up the monotony of my standard pre-packaged snack staples. The best thing about making hiking cookies is that they can contain any flavor combination you can dream up! Three of my favorite hiker’s cookie recipes are Cherry Almond, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip and Banana Bread cookies.
Each recipe contains plenty of healthy fats, protein and carbohydrates. The balance of these macronutrients will not only keep you feeling satisfied, but will also keep your energy levels up. These cookies can be stored in a plastic bag or sealed container for up to three days, and for up to a month in the freezer after that. (The Banana Bread cookies are best preserved when stored in the refrigerator, but will be just fine in your backpack all day.)
Cherry Almond Hiker’s Cookies
1/4 cup almond butter
2 tsp coconut oil
3 TBSP coconut sugar
1/4 cup oat flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 cup dried sweetened cherries
Pre-heat oven to 350˚. In a bowl, combine almond butter, egg, coconut oil and coconut sugar. Stir with a whisk or fork until blended. Add in oat flour, baking soda and ground cinnamon and stir to incorporate all ingredients. Mix in dried cherries and stir until all ingredients are blended well. On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or sprayed with oil, drop 2 TBSP full of batter at least 1″ apart (you should have 6 cookies total). Bake for 11-12 minutes and remove from oven to let cool. Store in a resealable container.
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Hiker’s Cookies
2 TBSP creamy peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla
2 TBSP sugar
1/4 cup peanut butter flavor protein powder (can use vanilla instead)
3 TBSP oat flour
2 TBSP chocolate chips
Pre-heat oven to 350˚. In a bowl, combine peanut butter, egg, vanilla extract and sugar. Stir with a whisk or fork until blended. Add in oat flour and protein powder and stir to incorporate all ingredients. Mix in chocolate chips and stir until all ingredients are blended well. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with nonstick spray. Scoop out a rounded tablespoon of dough,roll into a ball with your hands and place on the baking sheet. Repeat until all dough is rolled into balls (you should have 8 total). Using a fork, press down onto each dough ball in a criss-cross pattern (if batter is too sticky, dip fork into water). Bake for 9-10 minutes and remove from oven to let cool. Store in a resealable container.
Banana Bread Hiker’s Cookies
1 small, ripe banana
1 TBSP coconut sugar
1 TBSP softened butter
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
Pre-heat oven to 350˚. Place banana in a bowl and mash with a fork. Add in egg, butter and sugar and stir with a whisk or fork until blended. Add in FlapJacked mix and stir together. Mix in walnuts and stir until all ingredients are blended well (batter should be semi-thin). On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or sprayed with oil, drop 2 TBSP full of batter at least 1″ apart (you should have 8 cookies total). Bake for 9-10 minutes and remove from oven to let cool. Store in a resealable container in the refrigerator.
This post was constructed for Sierra Trading Post.