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Plant-Based Eating on the Hiking Trail

Sharon Palmer

If you love hiking as much as I do, then you’ll really love this roundup of 6 tips + recipes from dietitians for plant-based eating on the hiking trail. Endurance exercise, such as hiking, requires a good source of carbohydrates, as well as proteins, healthy fats, antioxidant-compounds, and fluids! These are all easily obtained in plant-powered foods and beverages. Learn more about powering your journey along the hiking trail with plants from these top dietitians.

Happy Trails!


6 Plant-Based Tips + Recipes to Fuel Your Hike

Plant-Based Eating on the Hiking Trail
Rosemary Roasted Pistachios

1. Tote Healthy Snacks. It’s priority one to pack along some nutrient-dense, slow-burning carb dense foods for snacking during a hike. “In addition to eating healthy snacks to maintain energy while hiking, bring plenty of water. I suggest at least 32 ounces for a hike that lasts a few hours,” says Lisa Andrews, RDN, of Sound Bites Nutrition.

Plant-Based Eating on the Hiking Trail
BEST Classic Hummus

2. Hummus so Good. Hummus is the perfect, plant-powered snack to tote along, and you can really get creative by trying different types of hummus, too. “Take your energy bars to the next level by trying this Cake Batter Hummus! Hummus is a nutritious snack that is easy to prepare at home and even easier to prepare in the backcountry,” says Aaron Mayhew, RDN of Backcountry Foodie.

3. Make Healthy Eating Portable. Find some convenient, healthy, portable snacks that you can really rely on. “All 5 of these snacks make great additions to your hiking pack because they are portable, shelf-stable, and light! Don’t leave home without these easy delicious snacks!” says Megan Byrd, RDN, The Oregon Dietitian.

Plant-Based Eating on the Hiking Trail
Bliss Berry Energy Balls

4. Bring Lots of Water + Your Own Energy Bites. “ALWAYS pack twice as much water as you think you’re going to need. I also enjoy packing my Healthy Energy Bites with Dates, Apricots, and Cashews for whenever I go hiking. They’re small, portable, and provide quick energy from the apricots and dates, but also have a small amount of fiber and healthy fats to help keep you full,” says EA Stewart, RDN, The Spicy RD.

5. Go Light and  Nutritious. “My tip is to make sure you are adequately hydrated and pack snacks that are light, yet nutritious. My Carob Walnut Energy Balls are ideal because they are very portable and can be carried in a Ziploc bag while hiking,” says Dixya Bhattarai, MS, RDN, Food, Pleasure, and Health.

Dark Chocolate and Cherry Energy Mix

6. Whip Up Your Own Custom Trail Mix. “Who needs store-bought versions of trail mix when you can make up your own? I love my Dark Chocolate and Cherry Energy Mix, which can be packaged up in a sealable bag (make it earth-friendly with a cloth food bag) for easy, powerful munching,” says Sharon Palmer, MSFS, RD, The Plant-Powered Dietitian. Check out the video on how to make Dark Chocolate and Cherry Energy Mix here.

Written by Sharon Palmer, MSFS, RDN

For other tips for healthy, active living, check out:

5 Plant-Based, Nutrient-Rich Carbs to Fuel Runners
Plant-Based Eating to Fuel Cycling
5 Dietitian Tips for Fueling Fitness with Plants

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