There’s Christmas music playing everywhere and decorations out. And after reading Taylor’s cookie post, I realized there’s one and month and 9 days till Christmas. WHHHHHHAAAT!? I’m beginning to think we should move our Thanksgiving to October, like the Canadians. You know, so we can all have more time for the shopping, cookie exchanges, parties, and not feel so rushed. Maybe? Yes? Everyone who agrees, say “I.” I!!!!!!
But let’s also be real. Our society moves at extremely fast pace. I will never keep up, and I’m okay with it. In fact, I’m just going to slow cook my way through life and holidays to enjoy the pumpkin spice and everything nice fragrance. Ohhh ahhh! Speaking of slow cooking (see what I did there?), I’ve got paleo pumpkin spice trail mix recipe that’s gonna POWER charge through till Christmas.
Remember the essential kitchen must haves? Well, the slow cooker is definitely an essential for entertaining and healthy holiday gift ideas. Ahhh, killing two birds with one stone here. YES!
So here’s the thing, you have two options.
Make this slow cooker pumpkin spice trail mix for parties, holiday gifts, and Santa (as mentioned above).
Why? Because this trail mix is paleo and vegan friendly and there’s dark chocolate involved, which means you can PLEASE EVERYONE!
Or option two. Make this slow cooker pumpkin spice trail mix, let the aroma fill your house, grab a cup of hot toddy, and cozy up with this snack bowl on the couch. Perhaps with a Holiday Movie Netflix marathon.
*Bonus option* –> Make 2 batches of slow cooker pumpkin spice trail mix and choose both options. There… problem solved.
In all honesty, the bonus option is the best way to go. You won’t be disappointed.
Also, did you know that this pumpkin spiced trail mix has health benefits to keep boost your mood during the holidays? Oh yes, more on that below.
But first, let’s shine some light on how EASY this edible DIY Holiday gift is. Healthy too!
PLEASE NOTE –> I am NOT CRAFTY! Which why I make food as my homemade gifts for friends and family. Then I stick it in a jar with a bow. BAM! Done! That’s one area I will never try to impress you with. Haha.
Now, let me walk you through the simple steps for this slow cooker pumpkin spice trail mix. It’s just as easy as my chunky monkey trail mix.
Things you will need: The healthiest nuts out there, pumpkin seeds, cocoa nibs (optional), dark chocolate, dried cranberries (without added sugar is best), cinnamon, pumpkin spice, coconut oil, and coconut sugar.
Okay first you pick a variety of nuts and seeds. I chopped some pecans and added it in the mix with walnuts, cashew, and pumpkin sees. Toss the nuts in coconut oil, spices, and bit of salt. I added extra cinnamon too. Always.
Then you place it in the slow cooker for 1 hr to 90 minutes. It comes out nice and “roasted” like!
Next, you let your easy to make trail mix cool on parchment paper.
Finally you add in your dark chocolate and naturally sweetened cranberry.
I told you this was ridiculously EASY!
Now that you know how simple it is. Can I tell you how ridiculously these spices and nuts are? I will wrap it up in a “Nut Shell” for you. I just went there on the puns.
ONE –> Cashew, walnuts, and pecans are the top healthiest nuts. Pumpkin Seeds are no different, but they aren’t a nut. You get this. Each are high in magnesium, vitamin E, potassium, and zinc. Pumpkin seeds highest in zinc. Cashews highest in magnesium. The real winner (and new proclaimed superfood) are the walnuts. Walnuts contain highest amount of Omega -3 fatty acids. Now, the cool thing about walnuts and omega-3 fatty acids is that they can help increase serotonin levels. Increase in serotonin levels can help combat depression. See –> MAGICAL HOLIDAY MOOD BOOSTING pumpkin spiced trail mix.
TWO – The pumpkin spice (nutmeg, cloves, ginger, cinnamon) plus the coconut oil are ant-inflammatory foods that can keep your bodies immune system in check. Plus, these real food ingredients can help fight oxidative stress. The stress that occurs within the body from say…traveling a bunch, too much processed food/sugar, and even to much physical stress. GASP! I could go on and on about oxidative stress but I’ll save that for a non holiday post. It might make you stressed reading it. LOL!
Let’s get to the recipe now.
I am pretty sure if you made it this far through my post, you deserve to eat the whole batch of paleo pumpkin spice trail mix, and you don’t have to share. I won’t judge.
Slow Cooker Paleo Pumpkin Spice Trail Mix (Vegan Friendly)
- 2 1/4 cups raw walnut halves
- 1/2 - 2/3 cup raw cashews
- 1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
- 1/2 - 1/3 cup chopped pecans
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar (maple syrup is fine but it will be more like clusters when cooked)
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 tbsp pumpkin spice
- dash of sea salt
- extra cinnamon if desired
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 1 cup or more of dark chocolate and/or cacao nibs combined.
- parchment paper
- Make sure your pecan and walnuts are chopped or in halves.
- Place nuts/seeds in the slow cooker.
- Add your sugar, spices, coconut oil, and salt.
- mix all together so it's coated well.
- Cover and place on high for 1 hr or 90 minutes if your nuts need longer too "roast." Be sure to stir once or twice during cooking process.
- Once you think the nuts look browned enough, remove from slow cooker and place on parchment paper.
- Spread out the nuts/seeds mixture.
- Let it dry.
- Add in your chocolate and cranberries and mix all together.
- Store in tight container or ziplock bag.
If you decide to use maple syrup instead of coconut sugar, be sure to stir often or it will get clumpy. Cooking times will vary.
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Nutrition Per 1/4c to 1/3 cup
Go fill up that slow cooker and grab a spoon (or a jar).
Video tutorial for making pumpkin spice trail mix! SO easy!
Here are a few more uber talented blog babe friends with healthy DIY Holiday gift ideas. Get ready to take notes and drool a little while you’re at it. These DIY are scrumptious. Just sayin…
Taylor (Food Faith Fitness) Vegan 5 Ingredient Peppermint Bark
Brittany (Eating Bird Food) Rosemary Candied Pecans
Gina (Running to the Kitchen) Candied Bacon Nut Brittle
What’s your go to Holiday gift? Ever made a pumpkin spice trail mix?