You’ve been driving for hours. Your only food options are McDonald’s, Wendy’s, or a gas station, and all you can think is that you really, really, want something homemade and flavorful. You’re in a food desert. If this sounds awful, horrible, nightmarish, imagine how you’d feel after several days of barren food options. How can you protect yourself from this tragic situation? Pack your own food. We’ve already talked about how packing food saves money, and it can definitely give you healthier and more flavorful food options. What, though, can you pack? Today we’ll look at a round-up of travel-friendly foods from around the blogosphere.
- If you’re planning on cooking on your trip, do a little menu planning. Narrow your meals down to a few options that use similar cooking utensils / ingredients.
- Pack fresh fruits and vegetables that travel well for snacks, such as apples, baby carrots, and celery. Remember that bananas tend to make everything else in their container or bag smell and taste like bananas, especially as they ripen.
- Bring plenty of water, and stock up on dry goods like peanut butter, bread, tea bags, and coffee.
- If you want to cook with milk, or have access to a refrigerator one night and want to make overnight oats or chia pudding, try packing shelf stable milk substitutes (like almond or soy milk). If you can’t go through an entire carton in one meal, look for smaller, individual size boxes.
- If you’re packing canned goods– don’t forget your can opener. Ditto for wine bottles and a corkscrew, as well as beer bottles and a bottle opener.
Food that needs a cooler
Some food, as we all know, needs refrigeration. It might be tempting to completely write these foods off, call them ‘driving incompatible,’ and stick to granola bars and muffins. However, if you, like me, crave fresh food, these foods will be perfectly fine on days that you have a chilled cooler. Some of these foods need a little preparation, but are all portable and work well for day one of your trip. If you happen to be staying in a hotel along your route with a mini-kitchen or fridge, keep these snacks in mind your whole trip. If nothing else, they’ll help make the first day of your road trip a little tastier and healthier.
Road trip snack-bag staples
After the ice melts in your cooler, and you’ve (hopefully) finished eating all of your cooler food, you’re probably still going to get hungry. If you’re tired of gas station snacks, fast food, and want something homemade instead of store-bought, check out these travel-friendly foods. Make them at home, and bring them along to snack on.
bonus: Cooking while camping
If your road trip involves camping, or if you’re just extra ambitious and plan to bring cookware with you on your vacation, here’s a few more recipes for ‘camping-friendly’ cooking from Megan and Michael over at Fresh Off the Grid.
What are your favorite foods to pack on road trips? Let me know in the comments!
Want more food advice? Read these: