Have a healthy and convenient alternative when hunger pangs pay you a visit during the day

Being a land vegetarian, my diet consists primarily of grains, legumes (beans), vegetables, fruit, seeds and nuts. I rarely refuse whole grain pasta or bread but my love is dried fruit and nuts. Especially almonds, walnuts, pecans, cashews and peanuts; I also love to snack on raisins and craisins. Often, when I’m at home, I’ll experiment and combine fruits and nuts to make healthy snack food from time to time.

These mixes are  also used if I’m traveling for a day or a few days. They are portable enough to be used if I’m away from home for a number of days. From time to time, I’ll eat a handful or two of my various mixes for my mid-afternoon or evening snack. I’ve also been known to have this fruit and nut mix in lieu of dinner.

Regardless of when I indulge, the flavor really hits the spot. The nuttiness from the almonds and walnuts combined with the saltiness of the roasted peanuts mixed with the sweetness of the raisins or craisins is superb. Often, this mix supersedes my desire or need for a normal meal. Of course, this approach ensures I get a nutty reputation.

Two Notes:
One, all peanuts included here are roasted. All the other nuts are raw.

Two, these are Costco prices, which are very competitively priced, compared to a grocery store or small retail store.

ALMONDS, PEANUTS, RAISINS, WALNUTS and CRAISINS
Almonds $3.30 per pound times 1 pound=$3.30

Peanuts $1.87 per pound times 2 pounds=$3.74

Raisins $2.00 per pound times 2 pounds=$4.00

Walnuts $4.00 per pound times 1 pound=$4.00

Craisins $2.00 per pound times 2 pounds=$4.00

Total would be $19.07/8=$2.38 per pound for this mixture.

ALMONDS, PEANUTS, RAISINS, WALNUTS, CRAISINS and CHOCOLATE CHIPS
For those who love nuts but have a sweet tooth, you may want to add 2 pounds of chocolate chips. Personally, it’s not cup of tea although it provides more variety and fun.

Chocolate Chips $2.00 per pound *2=$4.00

Total would be $23.07/10=$2.31 per pound for this mixture.

ALMONDS, PEANUTS, RAISINS, CRAISINS and CHOCOLATE CHIPS
If you wanted to exclude the walnuts, you would subtract one pound and $4.00

Walnuts $4.00 per pound =-$4.00

Total would be $23.07-$4.00=$19.07/9=$2.12 per pound for this mixture.

ALMONDS, PEANUTS, RAISINS and CRAISINS
Some could exclude walnuts and chocolate chips, subtract three pounds and $8.00

Walnuts $4.00 per pound =-$4.00; Chocolate Chips 2 pounds * $2.00=-$4.00 (total of $4.00)

Total would be $23.07-$8.00=$15.07/7=$2.15 per pound for this mixture.

ALMONDS, PEANUTS and RAISINS 
Of course, if you add a large portion of walnuts or almonds, you’ll definitely push up the per pound price as they both are over $3 per pound. Mind you, this is Costco prices, so it’s difficult to beat these prices overall during the retail chain.

TOTAL COST
The crux of things is that your mixture overall could range from $1.86 to $2.38 per pound. Excluding the chocolate chips will ensure there are no artificial ingredients in the mix. If you think about it, creatively adding nuts and dried fruits together to make a healthy mix can be done for around $2 or so, that’s quite a bargain. I’ve priced snack or student mixes at $2 or $3 per 2 ounces so these prices are unbeatable. They’re a lot healthier too.

By mixing a large batch, you could ensure you always have these available at work or around the house. One catch is that having any of these mixes at home could lead to over indulging.

NICE BLENDED FLAVOR
The salt and oil from the peanuts mixes nicely with the raisins to create a pleasant snack. Almonds and walnuts are raw so there’s no added oil or salt. If you want to reduce your salt intake, you could rinse the salted peanuts to eliminate the majority of the sodium. Unfortunately, Costco doesn’t sell the low-sodium variety of Kirkland roasted peanuts.

HEALTHIEST MIX

  • The healthiest is walnuts, almonds and some  raisins. No oil, no sodium, and the flavor between the walnuts and almonds and adding it to the raisins give it a nice flavor.
  • Also, factor in the quality and freshness. If you enjoy many of the mixes, and you’ll consume pounds over the course of a 1-3 month period, consider this approach. It’s tedious sometimes although you control exactly the combination.
  • If these mixes are too much, cut them in half. The flavor obviously will remain at half the cost. Maybe a friend, relative or coworker could oblige.
  • Of course, you could add cashews to the mix, or pecans, pumpkin seeds to the mix. You could create many more healthy combinations.
  • FAST FOOD SNACK ALTERNATIVE
    Many people complain they have no choice but to eat fast food or junk food or at work or when they are out. With some planning, you can be prepared when the hunger pangs pay you a visit. It’s only a matter of time — it’s inevitable. Why not save money and have a healthy snack available. What are you waiting for?

    Almonds
    Research shows that eating almonds just about every day actually lowers your bad cholesterol levels. Because of the high content of unsaturated fat that actually work to lower the bad cholesterol (LDL’s) while saturated fats increase bad cholesterol.

    Almonds are about 13 percent protein, which is almost double the amount of protein that is found in other varieties of nuts. Almonds are high in vitamin E, which is great news because this gives you a source for natural vitamin E and they have plenty of calcium.

    Walnuts
    • 2.5 grams of ALA, the plant-based source of omega-3 fatty acid.

    • 4 grams of protein

    • 2 grams of fiber

    • 10% of your daily value of magnesium and phosphorus

    • Healthy antioxidants (13.126 ml/gram)

    Peanuts
    Peanuts contain high quality plant protein. When comparing peanuts to similar foods, peanuts have more protein than any other legume or nut, including Almonds. Peanuts contain mostly beneficial monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. These fats as compared to saturated fats have been shown to help lower blood cholesterol levels. One ounce contains 2 big grams of fiber and 16% of the daily need of vitamin E.

    Raisins
    Raisins are really healthy and nutritious dried fruits and are high in antioxidants that help rid impurities in our blood. Some studies have shown raisins help to protect against colon cancer and heart diseases. Because raisins are 70% fructose, they can be used as a quick snack and because fructose is a natural preservative, raisins don’t contain any preservatives and is a good source of fiber.

     

    Kevin Schwarm

    I have over 25 years of professional experience in business, information technology (IT), and customer service. Industry experience in retail, medical insurance, higher education, non-profit, financial services, and property and casualty insurance. Customer focused professional interested in providing value (save time, money and aggravation) by evaluating and analyzing information, services and products with a unique perspective.

    1 Response

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