I love to eat, but what I may love more is to cook. Some of the things I cook often are Red Beans & Rice (I am from New Orleans after all, where red beans & rice is a Monday dinner tradition) and Chicken Piccata, but I have a bookmark folder full of things to make and things to try,
When I was a teenager my grandmother used to tease me saying I didn’t eat three meals a day, I ate one. It started when I got up and it ended when I went to bed at night. I still love grazing but with me being in my 50’s I try to eat better, even when I graze. One of the things I love to nosh on is trail mix, but not just any trail mix. I have my own trail mix that I like to make.I used to love getting the Gold Emblem Fruit & Nut Trail Mix from CVS, but I decided I wasn’t completely thrilled with it. It had too many raisins, and while I liked the banana chips and pineapple chunks I didn’t care for the apricots at all.
One day I was looking at the dried fruit in the next aisle and I saw something I had never considered: the Gold Emblem Dried Tropical Fruit Blend. It has the banana chips and pineapple chunks that I love, plus it has papaya and mango. But there was something else that immediately made me want to try it: coconut. I love coconut so I had to buy a bag to try.
When I opened the bag I was surprised. It didn’t have the shredded coconut like I found on my grocery shelves, but they evidently slice the coconut. Some slices are thin, but some are nice and thick. I was sold, but it left em with a problem. I wanted to keep buying trail mix, but I wanted coconut in it, so eventually I decided to make my own blend of trail mix. This way I could put in what I like, like peanuts, and not put in what I don’t like, like the apricots After telling a number of people about it and getting asked often about what I put in it, I decided to put together a recipe so others can try it.
- One bag Gold Emblem Tropical Fruit Blend
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup banana chips
- 1/2 cup dry roasted peanuts
- 1 cup deluxe mixed nuts (no peanuts)
You can also add a small box of dried raisins, but I forgot to buy some more when I was at the store so this batch doesn’t have them. You’ll notice that everything I used is from CVS except for the peanuts. Part of this is because it’s easy to get as much from CVS since I like their products, and there’s a bonus because the more I spend at CVS the more Extra Bucks I’ll earn. I tried a few different mixed nuts blends and settled on the CVS Deluxe Mixed Nuts without peanuts. I love the cashews and brazil nuts, and the pecans have just the right amount of salt to really bring out the flavor without make me cringe at the amount of sodium in it. If you have another kind of mixed nuts you’re welcome to use it. I also added some extra banana chips because I love them so much. I’ve tried adding more pineapple chunks, but it ended up being too much pineapple on the mix.
The lone exception in the all-CVS ingredient list is the peanuts. Of all the dry roasted nuts I’ve tried, I find that the ones from Stop & Shop are my favorite.
Mix all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl, using your hands to make sure everything is well blended. You can eat it right out of the bowl, but I like to measure out in a small bowl so I don’t end up eating half of it in one setting. If there’s anything left put it in an air-tight container and store it in a cool, dry place.
I’m afraid I don’t have any nutrition information for you, but when I was telling one of the pharmacists about it, she made a face and commented on how much sugar was in it. Needless to say, moderation is a good thing, if for no other reason than the fact that otherwise you can run out of it really quickly. and that could make you cry because it really is that good.