Sweet and Salty Primal Trail Mix

Sweet and salty. Few combinations of words can simultaneously strike both fear and pleasure. On one hand, a sweet/salty combination can result in amazing flavor, like a savory Apple Stuffed Chicken or Pork Loin with Mango Salsa. On the other hand, the food industry caught on long ago that sweet and salty was an addictive combination and proceeded to load snack foods with obscene amounts of salt and sugar.

The great thing about making your own snack food at home is that you control what goes into it. You can have a little sweet and a little salty together without any fear of sending your healthy diet into a nosedive. Sara Hatch adds a teaspoon of sea salt and 1/4 cup of raw honey to her Sweet and Salty Primal Trail Mix (Primal Blueprint Reader-Created Cookbook contest submission) to give it tons of flavor and a sticky, clumpy texture similar to granola. When you make this recipe in your own kitchen, tailor it to your own sweet/salty preference. Add a little more or less salt and cut back on the honey if you like, or, for that matter don’t add any – the dried fruit will add plenty of sweetness for some. However you make it, this trail mix is still a fresher, healthier option than most store-bought versions.

The combination of nuts and seeds brings plenty of healthy protein and fat to this snack mix. You can toss the nuts and seeds together raw, but Sara’s touch of baking them briefly in the oven give the nuts a rich, toasted flavor and slight crunch that’s hard to beat. This is a perfect non-perishable snack to take hiking or camping (it is, after all, trail mix) or, keep an airtight container of Sara’s trail mix in your car or at work for snacking during the day.

Sweet and Salty Primal Trail Mix


  • 1/2 cup each raw walnuts, almonds, and pecans
  • 1/2 cup each raw pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 cup or less raw honey
  • 1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries (sweetened with apple juice)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Roughly chop nuts and mix with seeds, coconut oil, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. Spread on a cookie sheet or rimmed baking pan lined with parchment paper, and sprinkle with half of the salt.

Toast in the oven for 2-5 minutes, stirring occasionally to be sure the nuts and seeds are merely toasted, not burned (keep a watchful eye).

Take pan out of the oven and let cool, then add the remaining salt and drizzle the honey over the top. Toast in oven for another 5 minutes, stirring often (I keep my oven cracked for this). Remove from oven, mix thoroughly with apricots and cranberries and let cool.  It will be clumpy and sticky like granola when done. You should end up with 12- 14 quarter-cup servings (approximately).

About the Author

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

44 thoughts on “Sweet and Salty Primal Trail Mix”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Sounds good!

    I do a similar one with almonds, walnuts, roasted pine nuts, acorn squash seeds, sunflower seeds, cranberries, chocolate chips and fig pieces. mmmmmmm….

  2. my favourite is a combo of macadamia nuts, almonds, dried blueberries, dried apples, freeze dried strawberries, pumpkin seeds, and some random dried fruit i found at trader joes one time. On the other hand, i have not made this yet and will do so soon and judge. boy this looks good

  3. ZOMG, I could not have that in the house. Even if I skipped the honey (and I would), I would definitely over eat that.

    1. I wouldn’t even get to the final product; I’d eat everything while cooking xD

    2. .I agree,,,,,,,,,I couldn’t have that stuff in the house either………….:)

    1. Without a doubt, processed foods generally contain too much salt (as well as high fructose corn syrup, other modern sugars and numerous substances that pose as food) However, REAL SALT, and by that I mean Celtic Sea Salt, Himalyan Salt and other salts that show some color: pinks, greys, tangerines, are a good source of MINERALS…and, minerals are co-factors in assimilation- they make things happen in the body. As well, chloride (as in: sodium chloride) is necessary for the body to manufacture HydroChloric Acid, which is responsible for converting Pepsin into Pepsinogen,which breaks proteins into smaller peptide chains, so that we can utilize our proteins. PURE WHITE sea salt is a processed food…

    2. Salt also regulates bowel movement. If you regularly eat a whole foods based diet, your probably not getting enough salt. The RDA is waaaaay too low for those that eat healthy. Dr. Phinney along with Dr. Jeff Volek recommend up to 5,000 mg per day.

  4. Can anybody tell me if this mix would be safe for someone who is sensitive to gluten? If not, what ingredients could be left out?

  5. Jim–

    Generally speaking the recipe should be gluten free if you got your nuts, seeds, and dried fruit from a gluten free source–there is no gluten in any of the ingredients, but cross contamination can occur if the company you get your nuts and seeds from uses the equipment to process grains. If you read the labels carefully you should be fine.

  6. Ummm…I just made this and can’t stop eating it hot straight from the oven. This is definitely a treat. I will have to have some severe self control with this one…or just let my husband eat as much as he wants! Great recipe.

  7. My wife just made this with coconut flakes and dried currants added. It is so delicious. We nixed the salt and put in more nuts than fruit, but it is definitely a to-go snack that is at the top of my list!

  8. I really respect the work both Mark and Worker Bee do, but this snack seems fairly high in sugar.

      1. I see what you mean, but I think there should be a disclaimer for newbies. I know when I was starting out, I would have used any excuse to keep sugar in my daily diet.

        1. To keep mine at a lower sugar level, I took 3 or 4 dried pieces of fruit (of choice) blended it up with about three tablespoons of water and the prescribed vanilla & spices (nixed the salt). Then I added the wet mixture in after the initial five minutes of roasting. I made a granola mixture and put it in the oven for a few more minutes to evaporate most of the water. Voila- granola with a little bit less sugar (and most of it from the small bits of dried fruit).

          Granted, not totally sugar-free, but for those watching the sugar intake, it can definitely get you over your on-the-go moments of weakness!

  9. Sara, where did you find dried cranberries sweetened with apple juice?

  10. Has anyone calculated the nutrition information for a serving of this?

  11. I was under the impression set by CW that heating nuts/seeds destroys the yummy fatty acids in them. Can someone clarify this for me, please and thank you?

  12. I couldn’t either have this in my house. This is far to yummy for me. I would also overeat it and even though it’s a very healthy food, it contains to much calories.
    I’d rather stick to my 150 calories Sweet & Salty bar even if it may contain a bit more sugar. It seems less “tricky” to me

  13. I’ll make this when I start going hiking again in spring, I wouldn’t keep it at home, but if you’re going all day, the extra sugar is no big deal.

  14. I made and brought this trail mix to a potluck at work… it was a big hit and very tasty. But as Mark said, enjoy in moderation, especially if you include the full prescribed amount of vanilla/honey/fruit.

  15. We have made this recipe (in bulk) a couple of times and love it. We decreased the amount of honey by at least half. We added unsweetened dried apples, unsweetened coconut and unsweetened dried apricots. But it is so good that it is hard to show any restraint.

  16. I’m curious that nobody has mentioned the possibility of adding bits of bacon to trail mix…I would think it would be an amazing salty smoky counterpoint to some fruits. This would be really good using homemade bacon which can be cut into small cubes…

  17. Just made this for myself and the kids. It was a big hit. I cut back on the honey and added 1/4 cup toasted, unsweetened coconut. I ate about 1/4 cup of it and it filled me up. I mean my stomach felt FULL for over 2 hours. Great stuff! I think next time I’ll try it without honey and cut back to 1 tsp coconut oil, just enough to make the spices stick to the nuts. It was a bit too wet for my liking.

  18. My wonderful, health-conscious neighbor left a sample of this Delicious snack on my doorstep…only I ate it all before my husband even knew about it! Oops. Now will have to make some more for him for our next trip! Thank you Roger Long!

  19. Would dehydrating be more healthy (keep more nutrients) or maybe 2 to 5 minutes at 350 does not do any damage anyway (too short time)?
    I believe that the max temp is 115 or so? I just do not want to be buying expensive, good quality raw nuts to have them “cooked”.
    What do you think?
    Thank you.

  20. I did a rough calculation on Calories per ounce by adding up all the servings in each container of nuts and dried fruit I added, I made 4 pounds and with the oil, honey on top of that, 4 pounds is about 8500 calories. 16 ounces in a pound means about 64 ounces, which translates to.

    132 calories per ounce
    about 2 brimming Tablesoons per ounce

    This kind of helps my family and I moderate intake. I had about a day when I overate this stuff and woke up a pound heavier! Serious cohonas on this mix, but in moderation it is the best snack

  21. This looks amazing. I will have to make it (with some alterations, since I can’t get all the seeds, etc. here) soon! The trail mix I made currently it too sweet for my tastes…

  22. I agree with several of the comments that this is more like a dessert than a snack! I also thought it turned out pretty wet, and would probably make it again and just not add the honey, and perhaps less coconut oil. I like all the ingredients though and especially the spices. Yum!

  23. After dropping an entire bowl of the nut/seed mixture onto the floor before putting it into the oven and having to start over; accomplished and YUM!

  24. I’m a bit confused. I’m on the 21 reset keto. You say get rid of all sugars and sweeteners. So why does this trail mix have dried cranberries and honey. So can I eat dried cranberries and other sweeteners?