Spring is here, and for many people, warmer days bring a welcome return to outdoor activities after the dark days of winter. While COVID-19 still casts a long shadow over most aspects of daily life, getting outside and spending time in nature remains one of the best ways to stay safe—and healthy. Whether you’re hiking, cycling, or just enjoying time in your favorite park, a cannabis-infused trail mix is a tasty bring-along treat. If working out is part of your routine, recent research shows that cannabis provides a long list of benefits, including athletic recovery.
Cannabis: Your New Workout Partner?
The various compounds and terpenes in strains of the cannabis plant create numerous benefits for both the body and brain. Our bodies are home to a wide-ranging network of cell receptors called the endocannabinoid system, or ECS. The ECS responds to natural cannabinoids we internally produce and those found in cannabis, such as CBD (cannabidiol), and THC (delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol). The ECS is a relatively recent discovery, and researchers are still working to understand its many functions. But numerous studies have shown that the ECS plays a crucial role in regulating pain, moderating mood, boosting immune functioning, and much more. Because ECS receptors throughout the body respond to CBD, THC, and other cannabis compounds, consuming cannabis in its many forms can help to relieve pain, boost mood and reduce the symptoms of many health conditions. And for the same reasons, it can make workouts and other physical activities more productive and less painful.
Whether you’re an elite athlete, a serious trainer, or simply someone who wants to stay fit, research reveals that cannabis, especially the non-psychoactive CBD, can offer multiple benefits that include:
- Relieving post-workout pain and soreness.
- Promoting relaxation and better sleep
- Reducing inflammation and muscle spasms
- Supporting cardiovascular health
Some studies also suggest that CBD also has anti-catabolic properties, so that it can help to reduce the breakdown of muscle tissue and boost muscle mass. The benefits of cannabis may come from smoking, vaping, and even topical applications in creams, tinctures, and lotions. But cannabis edibles combine the power of the plant with the nutritional benefits of foods—and cannabis-infused trail mix blends your favorite cannabis strains with protein, fiber, and healthy carbs in a quick and healthy snack for your next outdoor adventure.
Making a Cannabis Infused Trail Mix
Also known as gorp or scroggin, trail mix is a handy, nutritious blend of nuts, seeds, dried fruits, and even a bit of chocolate. Some trail mix recipes require simply mixing all ingredients, while others involve baking them. In general, though, an essential trail mix blend should include:
Nuts: peanuts, almonds, pistachios, cashews or a mix of any other nuts, roasted, salted or raw
Seeds: sunflower, pumpkin or other seeds for fiber, minerals and vitamins
Dried fruits: raisins, berries such as cranberries and blueberries, and other dried fruits such as apples or bananas
Spices to taste: a sweet trail mix might include cinnamon or cardamom. For a spicier one, add pepper, chile powder or cumin.
Some trail mix recipes also include some form of chocolate, such as chocolate, cacao nibs or powder, carob chips, or M&Ms. The recipe options are virtually endless, with variations including things like crunchy cereals or pretzel sticks. Trail mixes are customized to your taste. Combine them in the proportions you like best and the quantity you need, whether it’s a small bag for one or a large bowl for a group of friends.
Adding Cannabis to Basic Trail Mix
The simplest way to make cannabis-infused trail mix is to include a cannabis edible in your ingredients list. Cannabis chocolates or gummies make it easy to add various cannabis strains to any basic trail mix recipe. Mix a few cannabis-infused chocolates with other sweets to get precisely the cannabis effects you want. Another way to add the effects of any cannabis strain you like is by coating trail mix ingredients with a cannabis-infused oil or butter.
Drizzle cannabis oil or melted cannabutter over a bowlful of your favorite trail mix ingredients and stir thoroughly to coat them evenly. For baked recipes, spread trail mix ingredients on a cookie sheet and cover them with a light coating of cannabis-infused oil or butter before baking.
Our Favorite DIY Cannabis Trail Mix
This is as simple as can be. Take all of the ingredients, mix them together, and "Oila!", you have your trail mix to-go.
- 1 cup unsalted cashews
- 1/2 cup salted peanuts
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes (Bob's Red Mills)
- 1/2 cup blueberry granola
- 2 cups rice Chex cereal mix
- 1 low dose cannabis chocolate bar between 5-10 mg of THC
We like to keep our trail mix low dose, when it comes to THC, but this is a matter of preference. Your chocolate bar could also be a mix of CBD and THC. With a large knife, chop the chocolate bar into small chunks. Mix all of the ingredients together and there you have our favorite cannabis-infused trail mix.
Cannabis-infused trail mix can be made with all kinds of cannabis strains, so you can customize it to get just about any effect you’re looking for. Commercially prepared cannabis edibles come in a variety of strains as well as flavors, with varying proportions of THC, CBD and other compounds. Many recipes for homemade cannabis infused oils or butters are available, and they can be tailored to any taste. Springtime is a time for getting outside and getting moving again, and cannabis can help. An easy to make cannabis-infused trail mix can elevate your outdoor activities – and make it easier to recover at the end of the day.