Anyone who has spent any significant amount of time pounding miles, whether thru-hiking, bikepacking, trail running, whatever … knows that feeling of being ‘totally over’ the food you have with you.
One too many electrolyte gummies in that flavor you used to love … and now gag at the mere thought of. One too many nights cold soaking beans and rice. One too many mornings spooning bland oatmeal.
In moments of low to no appetite, it can be easy to turn to candy and salty potato chips, because at least you can swallow them. This does have its place. Peanut M&Ms and Cheez-Its once rescued me from one hell of a 3 am bonk.
But, sugary, high-carb foods also spike blood sugar, meaning they need to be paired with protein and fat (like string cheese or nuts) to sustain any short-term boost.
That’s where the adventure cookie comes in! A few small outdoor food brands are pairing the appetizing flavor of a cookie with healthy ingredients that will fuel you for the long haul.
Sue Kakuk entered the scene in 2010 when she launched Kakookies. After learning that her daughter and teammates were fueling up before cycling races on Dunkin’ Donuts, she created a healthier cookie for them to eat for breakfast.
The breakfast cookie Sue created had gluten-free oats, less sugar and some chia seeds. They also have fat from coconut oil.
She didn’t want to create something that lost the sweet taste of a dessert. “I just wanted a healthier cookie,” she said. “There needed to be something in between a healthy snack and a chocolate chip cookie, a choice you could make and say ‘I feel better about this’ than eating a regular cookie.”
Kakookies are available in five flavors, ranging from Boundary Waters Blueberry and Cashew Blondie to Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip.
They’re gluten-free, dairy free and vegetarian. There are no artificial sweeteners, flavors, or preservatives. No flour substitutes, protein powders, liquid sweeteners, or egg/dairy replacements. Just pure, real food ingredients.
Heather Kelly, founder of Heather’s Choice, reimagined an adventure cookie in the form of a ‘Packaroon’ … a macaroon for your pack!
It’s made with shredded coconut, maple syrup, almond flour and coconut butter, leading to an impressive calories and fat count per 1 ounce cookie.
These little gluten-free macaroons are what started it all. It was one of the first recipes that Heather developed with her small home dehydrator back in 2011. Heather’s Choice became LLC-official in the summer of 2014, and since then her delicious coconut cookies have developed a devoted following.
With several flavors to choose from — Blueberry Almond, Snickerdoodle, Orange Vanilla, Black Espresso — if you love coconut, you’ll certainly find a cookie that earns a place in your pack.
Alpen Fuel, makers of high octane breakfast granola, is now offering up its own version of a trail cookie.
In a recently launched Kickstarter, Alpen Fuel describes their bite-sized trail cookies as durable — they won’t crumble even when shoved in the bottom of your pack for several days. The gluten-free cookies also contain lots of fat and protein for sustained energy; are easily eaten in both hot and cold conditions; and taste amazing!
“We worked for several months to get the recipes dialed so they meet our high standards,” they said. “We are an engineer and foodie team after all.”
The Alpen Fuel cookies are being offered in three flavors: Monster, German Chocolate and Maple Pecan.
Click here to back Alpen Fuel’s Kickstarter campaign and get literally rewarded with cookies!
There’s never been a better time to eat good, nourishing, absolutely tasty, small batch food on trail … adventure cookies most definitely included! They taste amazing and keep you going too!
Have you tried any of these? What did you think? Are there other adventure cookie brands that you love?