Fueling outdoor adventures with calories is usually a bland task occasionally punctuated with a minimal spice kit and your choice of hot sauce. Nothing is more of a staple in outdoor adventures than a bag of trail mix. In 16 years of outdoor excursions, I have tasted many types of mixes that were all pretty much the same; nuts, M&M’s, and the occasional dried fruit. Earlier this summer, I was able to try several new mixes by SunRidge Farms. They pride themselves on environmental sustainability, variety of flavors and quality, but are not widely distributed.
SunRidge Farms takes sustainability seriously. Their products are non-GMO, both USDA and International Quality Assurance certified organic, kosher, fair trade certified and come in reusable packaging. Even their distribution center is run on the energy of 2500 solar panels. This is clean eating for the conscience. I tried three of their regular mixes and two custom mixes on a variety of outings such as long distance cycling, rock climbing and hiking. The regular mixes were well balanced with dried fruit, nuts and seeds. Seeds are a great source of nutrition and not found in many mixes. Their trail mixes often include roasted and seasoned nuts and seeds to spice things up such as tamari roasted almonds. However, the real story lies in their seasoning options.
When you customize a mix, that is where things can get really interesting. I tried a number of exotic spicy and sweet flavors from New Mexico Chimayo Red Chile Lime Cashews, which were actually spicy, to Dark Chocolate Sea Salt and Turbinado Sugar Almonds. The best things I tried was a Pomegranate Coconut Chew. Think of a cube twice the size of a sugar cube made out of coconut with pomegranate seeds in the middle. I would serve that at a dinner party for dessert.
The catch is that SunRidge products are not widely available. They are only available at Whole Foods Markets and Simply Bulk. There is a wide array of products available online, but they are also only sold in bulk. The verdict: it is worth finding a Whole Foods to check out simply because of the range of flavors you can get in a trail mix and the sustainable way in which it is produced. For someone that ventures out regularly the online bulk option is appealing and what I plan on doing since I have already eaten all of my samples.