Whether you’re piled in a car with friends or family for 4 or 48 hours, road trips are a classic summertime getaway. But when hunger strikes on the open road, fast food chains dotting the sides of highways are your only options for miles. Although it’s a quick fix, the heavy food can send you snoozing in the backseat or worse: the driver’s seat. This post shows some snacks to pack that will let you drive on by the restaurants while earning you some energy for the adventure ahead.
Fruits and Veggies
Long road trips are a perfect time to squeeze in some of your fruits and veggies for the day. Their low-calorie counts mean you can snack on them all trip long! While you want to leave the juicy (like peaches or plums) and easily bruised (like bananas) fruits at home, most raw fruits and veggies will travel well. Some example fruit & veggie choices:
- Baby carrots (or sliced carrot rounds)
- Snap peas
- Broccoli & cauliflower
- Sliced bell peppers (though peppers do best if you have a cooler!)
- Celery sticks
- Dried or freeze-dried fruit. But be mindful of serving size – dried fruit can have a higher calorie count than raw fruit but freeze-dried fruit has a much lower calorie count than dried
- Squeezable applesauce. That’s right, squeezable snacks aren’t just for kids! As long as you look for squeezable pouches with 100% fruit and no added sugar, you can nosh on these with no spoon necessary
- Smoothies. Be sure to look for ones with no added sugar; or you can blend up some of those juicy fruits you won’t be able to bring!
You can jazz up your raw veggies with some dippers too; look for travel containers of hummus, guacamole, and peanut butter for dippers that are hard to spill!
Protein is key for long-lasting energy, which is vital for those long, boring stretches of highway where everyone else is asleep in the backseat. Turn the radio up and munch on these protein packed snacks for some energy to fuel your road-trip singing voice!
- Squeezable Greek yogurt. Squeezables strike again – many Greek yogurt brands also make squeezable pouches so you can enjoy some yogurt without a spoon. As with any type of yogurt, make sure to check the ingredients. Stay away from yogurts that have added sugar. Milk has naturally occurring sugar in it already, so you don’t need more added sugar on top of that.
- Snackable Almonds. Nuts are high in protein, but mind the serving size; nuts can also have a high calorie count. It might be helpful to buy or make containers with about one serving so you don’t mindlessly munch!
- Nut butter packets. Spread them on whole grain crackers, fruit, or just eat it straight for some high-protein deliciousness!
- Cheese – cheese is packed with protein and hard to spill
- Hard boiled eggs
Road trips are notoriously dehydrating. Yes those extra beverages may mean extra pit stops, but you won’t be limited to a stop with a restaurant. This means you can stop wherever you want to appreciate the places you’re passing through!
- Flavored sparkling water
- Unsweet tea. You may want to avoid this drink in the evening due to its caffeine content
For those times when you find a stop you just can’t pass up, any of these snacks combined can make for a satisfying side of the road meal. But if you’re looking for something a little heartier, try tuna! Canned 100% pure tuna with no added salt or liquids is a healthy, protein-packed food that keeps without a cooler. Pop open a can and mix it with some of your other veggies for a tuna salad, or just spread it on whole grain crackers or celery sticks for a snack that feels like a meal.
- Save space by ditching the store packaging and packing your snacks in your own stackable containers so you can see what’s inside
- Label each container for even more snacktime clarity
- Use a “snack bin” & stack your containers in one location in the car so you know where each snack is; no more digging through a suitcase to find your favorite crackers!
These snacks will help you be a power road tripper throughout the summer season. Safe travels from Army H.E.A.L.T.H.!