Although hiking is a considered a cool weather activity, many people regard summer as the peak season for hiking simply because they have vacation time to burn. And that means summer is a good time to make trail mix cookies. What's that, you ask? It's everything you like about oatmeal cookies combined with GORP (Good Old Raisins and Peanuts) — snack food designed to provide hikers with enough fuel to cover miles of travel on foot.

The result is a chewy cookie packed with enough wholesome ingredients to lead you to believe that this is health food instead of a treat made from items that your grandparents would recognize without preservatives thrown into the mix. Even better, zero kitchen gadgets are required, not counting a working oven.

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 30 minutes

Yields: 18 to 20 cookies a batch

Trail Mix Cookies

Equipment you'll need

  • Chef's knife
  • Newspaper
  • 2 baking sheets
  • 2 mixing bowls
  • Rubber spatula or fork
  • Parchment paper

Ingredients

  • 1 stick butter, cold
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup brown cane sugar
  • 1/4 cup white cane sugar
  • 1 cup rolled oats, not the quick cook kind
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 1 cup trail mix, any combination of dried fruit, nuts, seeds and chocolate
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch kosher salt

Cooking directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. While the oven warms, remove butter from fridge cut into small sections. Rest butter on top of oven to soften in small mixing bowl.
  3. Meanwhile, combine dry ingredients in a second large mixing bowl. Oats, trail mix, whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and kosher salt. Fold until ingredients are combined about 2 minutes. Indent to form a shallow bowl.
  4. Crack two eggs into first bowl with softened butter. Stir to combine, about 2 minutes. Then add brown and white sugar with vanilla extract. Stir until blended, about 2 minutes.
  5. Pour liquid ingredients into indentation. Fold ingredients to combine until a sticky batter forms, about 4 minutes. Scoop dough using cool wet hands (to prevent sticking) to form cookie dough balls. Place balls on parchment lined baking sheets. Nine cookies per baking sheet each, about 2 inches apart. Press lightly on each cookie, until approximately 1/2 thick.
  6. Place baking sheets on top and middle racks of oven. Bake for 9 minutes and reverse order of sheets, cooking 3 more minutes. Remove from oven, cookies should be semi-soft, allow to cool. Store in cookie tin or sealable plastic tub.

Baked trail mix cookies next to trail mix

These chewy cookies take everything you like about oatmeal cookies and combines them with raisins and nuts. (Photo: Enrique Gili)

Related recipes on MNN: