Backpacking Snacks: Reviewed

Keeping energized on the trail can be difficult. In order to perform your best you’ll need high quality, high density snacks that provide lots of energy per ounce. I’ve tried a variety of snacks from Clif, GU, Amazing Grass, Honey Stinger and Scratch. This is what I thought.

Backpacking snacks

Honey Stinger: Nuts, Seeds and Roasted Serrano bar: Sweet with a latent hint of serrano pepper, but not enough to actually be spicy, this bar is chewy and dominated primarily by the taste of sesame seed. It’s good, but not great. It tastes decidedly healthy and plays it safe, but makes a great snack for anyone who loves sesame seeds but prefers their snacks to be mild.

Scratch Labs: Lemon+Limes hydration mix: Pretty good. A subtle flavor that reminds me of a watered down Powerade. Does a great job of rehydrating without being too powerful or salty.

Scratch Labs: Fruit Drops energy chews, Raspberry: I like these. Soft and chewy with a nice sour taste on the outside with a convincing raspberry flavor. A bit potent at times but those who loved sour candies as a child will likely enjoy these.

Green Superfoods: Detox and Digest: It’s like someone ran out of tea and started supplementing with grass. It’s bitter and lifeless, and generally tastes like I shouldn’t be eating this at all. Fans of unsweet tea will probably find some love here, but being from the south this isn’t working for me.

GU: Energy Chew: Salted Caramel Apple: A cube of defeat; Smells like stale butterscotch candy and tastes like an old caramel apple sucker that melted into a puddle of off brand gummy bears. Not pleasant. I only found one tester who liked these, stating they taste like whisky without the alcohol.

GU: Tri-Berry Gel: This one takes me back to my childhood, but I cannot exactly place where. It tastes like a slightly leaner version of the gel candies that were rampant in the early 90’s. Not bad a good way to get some energy on the fly.

Amazing Grass: Protein Superfood: It’s like peanut butter with a hint of tea. It mixes really well even simply by shaking and goes down easy to. One of the better tasting shakes I’ve tested, and the consistency is way better than most. This is a good one, even when mixed with water.

Cliff: Banana Maple Oatmeal: I like this one. It punches strong with a vivid banana flavor with a hint of maple. It comes across tasting sort of like banana ice cream when it’s cold, or a bit like banana bread if it’s hot. It’s about the viscosity of the liquid from oatmeal, although the presence of actual oats is very limited. This one I recommend trying as it’s been universally enjoyed by my testers.


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I wanted to send out a special thanks out to our friends at Expert City for their continued support and for providing this excellent assortment of food to review. We couldn’t do this without their help. Thank you so much! Our full disclosure can be found on the about me/contact page.


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