Make Your Own GORP

Make Your Own GORP

What do we always pack when we are planning on going on a hike? Well, the answer depends on the person, but most of us were probably thinking of getting some trail mix, or GORP. Making your own GORP is easy and doesn't take many ingredients or much time. Traditionally, GORP is made of its basic ingredients "good old-fashioned raisins and peanuts," but you'll find that your mix can contain just about anything.

Making GORP or trail mix is actually pretty simple. The best place to start is your local grocery store, preferably one with a good bulk foods section.  The specific ingredients depend on the individual, but you are going to need granola, (see below for the recipe), dried fruit, nuts, and maybe some chocolate.

These ingredients are packed with protein and nutrients, so when mixed they make a great energy supply as well as a delicious snack. When you make GORP yourself, step one is to make a grocery list. You will need lots of oats, or granola, and if you are making your own granola you will also need honey, maple syrup, and vegetable oil.

Next decide what types of dried fruit you want -- raisins, dried cranberries, dried apricots, banana chips, dried pineapple, etc.  If you are feeling really creative you can make a mixture of fruits. On top of the fruit, you will also want nuts, which could be peanuts, almonds, cashews, pecans, or a mix. Finally, you can add a sweet, such as M&Ms or chocolate chips.

Now it is time to make the granola. Making great granola is fairly simple and you can use these skills to make your own delicious breakfast cereal. If you want to make granola for breakfast, experiment by adding ingredients like nuts, coconut flakes, sunflower seeds, wheat germ, and sesame seeds to the raw granola mixture.

To make granola:
2 cups oats
1/8 cup vegetable oil
1/8 cup honey
1/8 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup water

1. Preheat your oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Put the oats in a bowl.
2. Spray your measuring cup with non-stick spray before you measure your honey and maple syrup. Then measure the vegetable oil, honey, maple syrup, and water; put all of these ingredients in a small cooking pot.
Note: this may seem like a lot of liquid for the oats to soak up. You don't have to include the water, but it expands the oats and helps them soak up the flavors of the maple syrup and honey.
3. Heat your liquid ingredients over low to medium heat until the ingredients are well blended. Heating them will make it easier to mix the different ingredients thoroughly.
4. Pour the liquid ingredients over the oats and mix thoroughly.
5. Spread the oats out in a single layer on a cookie sheet and toast in your preheated oven until all of the oats are thoroughly dried.

After the granola is thoroughly cooled, mix all of your GORP ingredients together.  And there you have it -- your own homemade GORP ready for copious snacking.