The sun is up, the sky is clear, and it’s time to hit the road! Whether you are traveling alone or with loved ones, taking a road trip is always an exciting experience. But finding healthy food at gas stations, convenience stores, and rest stops along the way can be difficult. Eating infrequently and sitting for long periods while driving can contribute to digestive problems, including constipation and bloating. That’s why packing a few healthy snacks with you or picking some up along the way is a good idea.
1. Never Forget the Drinks. Drinks are always the most important thing when embarking on a long road trip. If you are planning to bring the kids, it is advisable to have a reusable water container for each child and each adult to ensure that you never run out of water while on the road. Packing a few more beverages, such as drinks in a smoothie packed in an insulated thermos and juice pouches that are 100% concentrated with no artificial additives, is also a great idea.
2. Bring some fresh fruits and vegetables. Fresh fruits and vegetables are a great way to get your road trip off to a good start. A small cooler or an ice pack in one of the children’s insulated lunch bags can keep chopped produce fresh. Bring a nice treat everyone will like, like fresh strawberries, pineapple, mango, and snap peas for my family. In addition to being a great source of vitamins and minerals, fresh fruit is also quite convenient. You can prevent constipation caused by inactivity by eating hydrated, high-fiber foods like fruit while driving.
3. Sneak in some whole grain snacks. Another excellent addition to your road trip stash is some whole grains. In terms of nutrition, popcorn is a perfect choice for older kids because it is high in fiber, low in calories, and whole grain. It’s a hit with kids because of its salty, crunchy flavor. For a tasty road trip snack, you only need air-popped popcorn and a simple lemon-Parmesan seasoning mix. Add honey, peanut butter, or butter if you want to be more daring.
4. Protein is essential for long-term energy. Remember to include some protein-rich treats for your kids while you’re on the road. For a more extended period, protein will satisfy their growing appetites. It’s easy to whip up a bite-sized snack of peanut butter or sunflower seed butter on micro rice cakes and banana coins.
5. Stash some small packs in the event of an emergency. Keep a few small nonperishables in your day bag. When you’ve finally arrived at your destination, but there isn’t a grocery store nearby, or you don’t have the time to go shopping right away, you’ll be glad you brought these snacks with you. If there’s one thing that can prevent a zoo meltdown, it’s having a supply of fast food on hand. Unsweetened applesauce and trail mix are staples because of their high protein content and ability to sustain energy levels throughout the day.
Here are some easy-to-prepare road snacks you can bring if you plan to take that long-awaited trip.
1. Hummus and Veggies. For your road trip snacks, you can pack a small cup of hummus and some firm, fresh vegetables, such as carrots, cucumbers, and bell peppers. “It’s wonderful for longer flights or road trips because it gives you energy, plant-based protein, and fiber,” Price explained. Hummus is another high-protein food that keeps your stomach happy and satisfied, packed with B vitamins.
2. Avocado. Avocados are packed with beneficial fats and are easy to bring anywhere. Scoop it out with a spoon after cutting it in half and eating it on its own. Alternatively, you may mash-up as much avocado as you like and serve it with some corn chips as a snack. You can always make guacamole ahead of time!
3. Carrots. Aside from being high in fiber and other nutritional benefits, carrots are recommended as a road trip snack, a great way to ease boredom and hunger while on the road. What better way to deal with boredom than by munching on some carrots, which will keep you occupied without causing a mess?
4. Grapes. For those times when you’re bored and need something to eat, grapes are a terrific option. Grapes are a great way to combat boredom because they are both nutritious and easy to consume. Grapes have a lot of sugar, so don’t use them excessively.
5. Granola Bars. On the run, granola bars are a great option because they’re easy to pack and don’t require refrigeration. However, it’s vital to choose bars produced from natural foods like almonds, oats, seeds, egg whites, and dried fruit instead of those with added sugars and other dangerous additives.
6. Beef Jerky. This protein-rich road trip snack is a great way to keep hunger at bay while traveling long distances. Preservative- and sodium-laden jerky from the convenience store is OK but avoid it at all costs. Pick purchase a grass-fed organic one from your local health food store instead.
7. Dark Chocolates and Almonds. It is hard to resist the temptation of sugary snacks and beverages at every stop at rest areas or at gas stations to refuel. To fight this sweet temptation, bring some dark chocolate in your car as a healthy treat. It is packed with polyphenol antioxidants, which have anti-inflammatory and heart-healthy effects on the body. Having a small amount of chocolate daily may also be beneficial, as it may help avoid stroke and diabetes in the long run. To enjoy the complete experience, add a handful of almonds for a crispy, fiber, and protein-rich snack.
8. Hard-boiled eggs. Hard-boiled eggs are a good source of energy for long rides. As a bonus, they’re convenient to consume on the go and easy to bring. They’re easy to clean up and packed with protein that your body will need while you’re on the road. Whole wheat crackers are the perfect addition to your egg snack for an added crunch and the benefits of some quality complex carbs.
9. Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels. In addition to satisfying your craving for crunch, this snack will also give you protein and fat to help keep your stomach full until the next meal. This snack aisle favorite has a lot: it’s crunchy, salty, and sweet. However, check the labels for sugar content and stick to the serving amount to avoid overeating the entire bag of chips.
10. Dried Fruit. Dr. Meredith Price, a registered dietitian who focuses on plant-based nutrition, says that dried fruit is a go-to because it’s easy to throw in a bag and provides a serving of fruit without worrying about something fresh being crushed or going bad. Besides being packed with vitamins and antioxidants, dried fruit tastes like candy, so it can help reduce sugar cravings.
Good car trip munchies are a necessity; therefore, packing snacks ahead of time is the greatest method to avoid becoming hungry when there are no food stops open or nearby along the road. Snacking on healthy foods will help you feel fuller and have more energy on the road, even if you indulge in classic road trip traditions like fast food stops such as McDonald’s hash browns. A variety of nonperishable, fresh produce, crunchy and salty snacks, high protein snacks and bars, and a few sweet delights are some favorite things to bring on your road trip. You may save money and keep healthy by bringing your food on a short vacation or a long road journey.