Snacks For Road Trips

eating on road trip

Healthy Road Trip Snacks

Other than traffic, snacks are probably the most important thing on a road trip. Road trip snacks can help drivers stay energized and keep your kids from bugging you to pull over every time they see a McDonald's .

Now, just because you are on the road, doesn't mean you need to eat greasy, fatty foods. There are plenty of quick and healthy options for you and the family to eat while traveling.

Fresh fruit: Apples, oranges, grapes, and bananas are all portable, mess-free options. For a refreshing twist, freeze grapes or berries before packing them in your cooler.

Vegetable sticks: Carrot, cucumber, celery, and bell pepper sticks make for crunchy, satisfying snacks. Pack them alongside hummus or Greek yogurt dip for added flavor and nutrition.

Nuts and seeds: Almonds, walnuts, pistachios, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds are nutrient-dense options that provide healthy fats, protein, and essential vitamins and minerals. Portion them into small containers or zip-top bags to avoid overeating.

Nut butter: Single-serve packets of almond, peanut, or cashew butter are perfect for dipping apple slices, celery sticks, or whole-grain crackers.

Greek yogurt: Opt for plain or low-sugar Greek yogurt as a protein-rich, calcium-packed snack. Add fresh fruit, nuts, or granola for extra flavor and crunch.

Cheese and whole-grain crackers: Portion out small servings of cheese, such as cheddar, mozzarella, or gouda, and pair them with whole-grain crackers for a satisfying and tasty snack.

Roasted chickpeas: These protein-packed legumes can be seasoned with your favorite spices and roasted until crunchy. They're a nutritious alternative to chips and other processed snacks.

Dried fruit: Dried apricots, mangoes, and figs make for a sweet, chewy treat that can help curb sugar cravings. Opt for unsweetened varieties to keep sugar intake in check.

Rice cakes: these low-calorie, whole-grain snacks are perfect for topping with nut butter, avocado, or tuna salad for a more substantial snack.

Edamame: Pre-cooked and shelled edamame are a high-protein, high-fiber snack that can be enjoyed on their own or with a sprinkle of sea salt.

Rice cakes: Low-calorie, whole-grain rice cakes are versatile snacks that can be topped with nut butter, avocado, or tuna salad for a more substantial option. They provide slow-digesting carbs for sustained energy.

Whole-grain tortilla wraps: Fill a whole-grain tortilla with your choice of lean protein, veggies, and a dollop of hummus or guacamole for a satisfying, nutrient-rich snack that's easy to eat on the go. Now, I have no clue if wheat, whole-grain, or white is better for you but if you eat this in moderation it should'nt be too bad.

Turkey burgers: Turkey burgers can be a very good alternative to traditional hamburgers. Turkey meat is much less fatty and greasy. Granted it doesn't taste nearly as good but your arteries will thank you.

Fruit leather: These are essentially the fruit version of beef jerky. Fruits are dehydrated and placed in small, portable packages that make them super easy to travel with.

Turkey or chicken roll-ups: Wrap slices of lean deli meat around cheese, avocado, or veggies for a protein-packed snack.

Cherry tomatoes: Admittedly, my oldest daughter is the only person I have ever seen eat this outside of a salad and without a dipping sauce. However, they are low in caloric value but jam-packed with antioxidants and vitamins.

Baby Carrots: These are great snacks and are kind of sweet but no so much that you feel guilty about it. Like cherry tomatoes, they are packed with vital nutrients.

Protein shakes: High protein foods are supposed to keep you full longer, according to the Internet. But in practice, I have yet to be kept satiated by a protein shake for long. But, many do claim to remain fuller for longer periods of time when following a high-protein diet, maybe you will too!

Hard-bolied eggs: These are far inferior to scrambled eggs but are exponentially more portable. Just exercise caution when buying these from gas stations. The snacks are not very popular and thus may not be re-stocked frequently which increases the potential for finding an expired one. Food poising will wreck a road trip.

The importance of hydration

Remaining hydrated during a road trip will certainly result in more bathroom breaks but will also provide you with a number of benefits.

Here is a very short list of the benefits of being well-hydrated on the open road.

  1. Improved concentration and alertness: Adequate hydration is essential for maintaining optimal cognitive function. A well-hydrated brain is better equipped to handle the mental demands of navigating unfamiliar roads, processing new information, and making quick decisions.
  2. Enhanced physical performance: Sufficient fluid intake helps to prevent muscle fatigue and cramping, ensuring you are better prepared to tackle any physical activities during your road trip, such as hiking or sightseeing.
  3. Regulated body temperature: As you travel through different climates, staying hydrated helps your body maintain its core temperature by allowing it to sweat and cool down efficiently.
  4. Proper digestion and elimination: Consuming enough fluids is crucial for healthy digestion and preventing constipation, which can be exacerbated by long hours of sitting during a road trip.
  5. Prevention of dehydration-related health issues: Dehydration can lead to headaches, dizziness, and fatigue, all of which can negatively impact your road trip experience. Staying hydrated helps to prevent these issues, ensuring you feel your best throughout your journey.

If you want to realize the benefits of pumping a steady stream of liquid into your body during long trips, here are the easiest ways to do it.

  1. Carry a reusable water bottle: Adequate hydration is essential for maintaining optimal cognitive function. A well-hydrated brain is better equipped to handle the mental demands of navigating unfamiliar roads, processing new information, and making quick decisions.
  2. Set hydration reminders: Your smartwatch is probably the best tool for this.
  3. Choose water-rich snacks: Fruits like oranges and watermelon double as food and a beverage.
  4. Listen to your body: For me, whenever I start to get a headache or am sensitive to light it means I need to get some water ASAP. Other signs include dry mouth and dizziness.
  5. Reduce the amount of diuretics in your body: Caffeine and alcohol contribute significantly to dehrydration. Although it can be tempting to drink a Monster or have coffee to stay awake, you run the risk of dehydration. To combat this, pair your favorite energy drink with a bottle of water or two.

Road trips are a mainstay in my family and many others. Getting there truly is half the fun of any trip, provided traffic doesn't suck and you have a steady supply of healthy snacks for the ride.

Matt Irving is the CEO of Super Easy Tech, LLC.
Matt is the founder of Fueling Food, Make It Super Easy, and Super Easy CRM. He is a beast of a software engineer, blogger, and gamer. Feel free to connect on any of the platforms listed below.

Posted by: Matt Irving on 04/16/2023


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