5 from 13 reviews

Sweet and Salty Trail Mix Cookies

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trail mix cookies on a white plate.

These Trail Mix Cookies are a delicious dessert option that offer sweet, salty, and nutty flavors. Packed with chocolate candies, a variety of nuts, and dried fruit, you’ll love the sweet, crunchy, and chewy texture!

If you’ve had my monster cookies before, this cookie dough base is the same but with the addition of trail mix. I used a store bought mountain trail mix, but really any trail mix blend works well and makes these cookies versatile!

You can even make your own trail mix with your favorite nuts, dried fruits, candies, oats, etc. and make these cookies just how you like them. 🥳

And if dried fruits and nuts in a cookie just isn’t for you, be sure to check out my classic snickerdoodle cookies, chocolate chipless cookies, or my brown butter chocolate chunk cookies.

cookies stacked on each other made with trail mix and flaky sea salt on top.

I know you’ll love the energy-boosting ingredients in these cookies and how they’ll totally satisfy your sweet tooth and provide sustenance during outdoor adventures or just for a tasty treat!

Why this recipe works

  • Letting the cookie dough rest for just 20 minutes at room temperature will allow the flour to hydrate the dough and help us get a soft baked center and chewy cookie.
  • Creaming the butter and sugars together with the peanut butter helps to aerate the butter and gives the cookies an overall yummy texture. 
  • Just a touch of milk in the cookie dough batter helps keep these cookies moist and hydrates the starches in the flour.
  • The recipe is highly customizable, and you can adjust the ingredients to suit your personal preferences and dietary needs.
cookies on a white plate made with trail mix.
ingredients to make cookies in small glass bowls.

Ingredient Notes

For the ingredient measurements and entire recipe, be sure to scroll down to the bottom of the blog post where the recipe card is located.

  • Trail mix: use your favorite store-bought trail mix or make one from scratch with your favorite combination of nuts, seeds, chocolates, dried fruits, oats, etc. I would recommend to make sure all the mix-ins are chopped small so they incorporate into the cookie dough nicely.
  • Creamy Peanut Butter: I love using a smooth, creamy peanut butter (like Jif or Skippy) as opposed to a natural peanut butter. Natural peanut butter tends to dry out the cookie. Creamy peanut butter lends a rich, nutty flavor to the cookies.
  • Quick oats: the quick oats give the cookie an overall better texture than the old fashioned oats. The chewy texture from the oats and sets them apart from typical chocolate chip or peanut butter cookies.
  • All-Purpose Flour: All Purpose Flour provides a delicious texture and gives the cookies the perfect chewiness you love. I have not tested this recipe with other flours yet. If you do, please be sure to drop a comment in the comment section below to help other readers!
  • Unsalted Butter: The biggest benefit of unsalted butter lets you control the overall flavor of your cookies, plus you get the pure sweet flavor of butter in the cookies.
  • Brown Sugar: I use light brown sugar, but you can easily substitute dark brown sugar.
  • Granulated Sugar: granulated sugar adds to the crispiness of the cookie, and makes for a lighter colored cookie.
  • Vanilla: Vanilla is a must in cookies, it adds a complex and subtle spice, and I always recommend using real vanilla extract.
  • Egg & 1 egg yolk: The protein in eggs adds to a chewy texture, so adding an extra yolk, gives the cookie the extra chewiness that makes these cookies perfect.
  • Milk: like I mentioned above, just a touch of milk in the cookie dough batter helps keep these cookies moist and hydrates the starches in the flour.
trail mix being poured into cookie dough.
trail mix cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Step by Step Directions

For the full recipe instructions, scroll down to the bottom of the blog post to the recipe card.

  1. Whisk together the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and set aside.
  2. Cream the softened butter with sugars and peanut butter for 3-4 minutes or until light and fluffy. 
  3. Add in the eggs and vanilla and mix again. Then gradually add in the dry ingredients.
  4. Fold in the trail mix. Allow cookie dough to rest just 20 minutes at room temperature.
  5. Bake and enjoy!
trail mix cookies garnished with flaky sea salt.

Expert Tips

  • Press a few trail mix ingredients on top of the cookies prior to baking to give them a finishing look. 
  • Be sure to preheat the oven for 20-30 minutes so the oven is at a stable temperature when you’re ready to pop your cookies in the oven. 
  • Give your eggs a whisk before adding into the creamed butter/sugar/peanut butter mixture. Whisking the eggs, as opposed to adding them in whole, will help the creamed butter and sugar stay together. 
  • Use a cookie scoop to keep your cookies uniform in shape and size.
  • Chill the Dough: If you find your dough to be too sticky or soft to handle, you can chill it for about 30 minutes to an hour before baking. This can also help prevent the cookies from spreading too much during baking.
  • Let Cookies Cool on the Baking Sheet: After removing the trail mix cookies from the oven, let them sit on the baking sheet for a few minutes. They’ll continue to bake slightly from the residual heat and will set up a bit more.
  • Adjust for Altitude: while I don’t have much experience baking at higher altitudes, you may need to make adjustments to the recipe. You may need more liquid and less sugar in the recipe. Increasing the oven temperature by about 15-25°F can help to set the structure of the cookies before they over-expand and dry out. The cookies might need less time to bake at a higher altitude so start checking them a few minutes earlier than my recipe suggests.
a hand holding a cookie with a bite taken out of it.


  • Fruity add-ins: Add raisins, dried cranberries, or chopped dried apricots for a fruity twist. Stir in some shredded coconut for added flavor and texture.
  • Nuts: Swap peanut butter for a creamy almond butter, cashew butter, or sunflower seed butter for a nut-free version. If making you’re own trail mix, try using different nuts like chopped walnuts, pecans, or almonds.
  • Tropical Trail Mix Cookies: Create a tropical twist by incorporating dried tropical fruits like pineapple, mango, or coconut flakes into your trail mix cookies. Pair these with macadamia nuts for an extra exotic flavor.
  • White Chocolate Trail Mix Cookies: Replace traditional chocolate chips or M&Ms with white chocolate chips for a sweeter and creamier flavor profile.

Storage and Freezing

  • Store these Trail Mix Cookies in a sealed container at room temperature for up to 5 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. 
  • To freeze the cookie dough, scoop the dough into 2 Tbsp. balls and freeze in a single layer in an airtight container for up to 3 months. You can bake the frozen cookie dough from frozen, just add an extra minute or so to your bake time. Ovens vary. 
  • Make Ahead: You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 2–3 days. Allow to come to room temperature then continue to bake as directed.

What is your favorite trail mix ingredient?

Feb 2024 Baking Challenge

Before You Begin! If you make this, please leave a review and rating letting us know how you liked this recipe! This helps our business thrive & continue providing free recipes.

5 from 13 reviews

Sweet and Salty Trail Mix Cookies

Prep: 25 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
Servings: 22 cookies
These Trail Mix Cookies are packed with classic trail mix goodness like oats, peanut butter, nuts, dried fruit and lots of chocolate! They are soft, chewy and can easily be customized with your favorite store-bought or homemade trail mixes. They are a fun cookie to fuel your busy day or for when you're craving something sweet and salty!


  • 1 1/3 cups all purpose flour, spooned and leveled
  • 1 cup quick oats
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter (like Skippy or Jif, not a natural peanut butter)
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 large egg yolk, room temperature
  • 1 Tbsp. whole milk
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 cups trail mix (I used a Mountain Trail Mix)
  • flaky sea salt, for finishing

Last step! If you make this, please leave a review and rating letting us know how you liked this recipe! This helps our business thrive & continue providing free recipes.


  • Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silpat baking mats.
  • Whisk together the dry ingredients in a medium sized mixing bowl and set aside.
    1 1/3 cups all purpose flour, spooned and leveled, 1 cup quick oats, 1 tsp. baking soda, 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
    dry ingredients in a glass bowl.
  • In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter, peanut butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, ~3-4 minutes, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl as needed.
    1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature, 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter (like Skippy or Jif, not a natural peanut butter), 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed, 1/2 cup granulated sugar
    sugars and butter in a glass stand mixer bowl.
  • Add in the egg and yolk, milk and vanilla, mix again until combined, once again scraping down sides of the bowl as needed.
    1 large egg, room temperature, 1 large egg yolk, room temperature, 1 Tbsp. whole milk, 2 tsp. vanilla extract
    eggs being poured into creamed butter and sugars.
  • Slowly add in the dry ingredients, mixing just until combined. The dough will be really light/fluffy/airy but shouldn’t be overly sticky. 
    dry ingredients added into a mixing bowl to make cookie dough.
  • Add in the trail mix and fold in with a spatula, being careful not to over mix. 
    2 cups trail mix (I used a Mountain Trail Mix)
    trail mix being poured into cookie dough for trail mix cookies.
  • Let the dough rest at room temperature for 20 minutes or in fridge is OK too! This brief rest period will allow the flour to hydrate the dough and help us get a soft and chewy cookie.
    a rubber spatula in cookie dough in a glass bowl.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Scoop the cookie dough with a 2 Tbsp. scoop (should yield ~22-24 cookies).
    a cookie scoop scooping out some trail mix cookie dough.
  • Place on prepared baking sheets and top the cookies with a little more trail mix if desired.
    scooped cookies on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  • Bake for 9-11 minutes (I like to go slightly underbaked for a delicious chewy cookie, the edges should be a light golden brown and centers still a little gooey looking, they will continue to bake on baking sheet when removed from oven). Swirl a cup around the cookies when still warm if needed to make perfect circles. 
    freshly baked trail mix cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Let them rest on the cookie sheet for a few minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Garnish with flaky sea salt and enjoy. 
    cookies with flaky sea salt on top.


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  • Store these Trail Mix Cookies in a sealed container at room temperature for up to 5 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. 

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1cookie, Calories: 244kcal (12%), Carbohydrates: 25g (8%), Protein: 5g (10%), Fat: 15g (23%), Saturated Fat: 4g (25%), Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 7g, Trans Fat: 0.2g, Cholesterol: 28mg (9%), Sodium: 193mg (8%), Potassium: 149mg (4%), Fiber: 2g (8%), Sugar: 13g (14%), Vitamin A: 155IU (3%), Vitamin C: 0.1mg, Calcium: 26mg (3%), Iron: 1mg (6%)

Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is automatically calculated. It should only be construed as an estimate rather than a guarantee. Ingredients can vary and Kroll’s Korner can’t make any guarantees to the accuracy of this information.

Photography: photos taken in this post are by Megan from The Broke Girl Table.

Krolls Korner

Krolls Korner

Welcome to my tiny “korner” on the Internet! I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who loves cookies as much as kale. (OK, maybe I like cookies a little bit more but shh, don’t tell anyone). I am so glad you’re here! Follow along for hassle free, realistic and approachable recipes.

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5 from 13 votes (3 ratings without comment)
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I made some adjustments since I’m allergic to nuts. I used sunflower butter and my mix ins were mini M&Ms, pretzels, and craisins! They were so chewy and the perfect balance of sweet and salty! I’ll make these again!

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I made a few edits since I’m allergic to nuts by using sunflower butter and my mix ins were mini M&Ms, pretzels, and craisins! They were so chewy and the perfect sweet/salty mix!

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Tamara Grafsgaard

Huge hit! Simple to make and tasted amazing! My homemade trail mix included pecans, salted peanuts, dark chocolate chips, semi-sweet chocolate chips, and raisins. I followed your advice and underbaked the cookies a little. It made all the difference – crispy edges and chewy centers. These cookies are literally perfect! Will definitely make them again!

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These cookies hit the spot everytime I eat one (or 2). The sweet salty combo and then the chewiness of the raisins is the perfect mix!!

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Very good! I didn’t add sea salt to the top (I just prefer salt to be evenly distributed, not all on top). If you leave it off, then increase the salt to 1 t and use salted butter to get the even saltiness all through the cookie. I also left out the milk on accident and chilled the balls of cookie dough, so they barely spread at all. But tasted amazing!

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These trail mix cookies were moist, gooey and chewy! I didn’t have quick oats so I subbed with rolled oats and they were still good. I loved them and so did my co-workers. My trail mix bag contained dried cranberries, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, raisins, golden raisins, almonds and peanuts. I also added shredded coconut and chocolate chips.

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These were so soft and just wonderful. They are different but so good. A big hit with the grandson.

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Adrienne L.

I forgot to add my photo of these yummers! See my glowing review below. A winner for sure!

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Adrienne L.

These are the most delicious cookies! I love the idea of trail mix because it adds a little bit of different flavor and texture in each bite. My homemade trail mix has sunflower seeds, chocolate chips, toasted pecans, dried cranberries and toasted coconut in it and it worked perfectly for this cookie. Can’t wait to make them again!

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Loved this cookie! Perfect combination of sweet and salty! Texture was also very complex but wonderful!!

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