When you’re headed cross-country and hunger strikes, it may seem like the easiest option to just pull over at a gas station to grab some chips or chocolate and a slurpee. But you won’t be doing yourself any favours with these types of treats: high-carb, sugar-filled munchies will only slow you down in the long run, leaving you dealing with drowsiness and a sugar crash all of an hour later. Not to mention that greasy, crumby snacks will leave you (and the driver’s seat and steering wheel) a mess upon arrival. Fast food is no better of an option – the high-calorie counts and over-inflated prices will leave you with a bloated belly and a shrivelled wallet.
With a little pre-planning and nutrition knowledge, you can pack a stash of healthy road trips snacks that will leave you satisfied, alert, and ready to face the open road!
Healthy Road Trip Snacks
Protein-Packed Snacks Like Eggs or Peanut Butter
An absolute must for staving off hunger pangs and delivering a hit of slow-burning energy, some form of protein should be the first snack you reach for. Keep it simple with some hardboiled eggs, cheese cubes, deli roll-ups (try sliced turkey wrapped around a tomato slice or some cheese), or peanut butter in the form of ants-on-a-log (PB in the well of a celery stick, with raisins sprinkled on top). Ensure hours-long freshness by tucking everything in an insulated container with a cooler pack.
Tasty Vegetables Like Carrots or Bell Peppers
Refreshing, crunchy, and nutritious, nature’s bounty of vegetables makes a perfect on-the-go snack. But while veggies and dip are an awesome idea for picnics, you’ll want to skip the gloopy condiments when you’re behind the wheel. Instead, prepare a few varieties that you enjoy sans ranch dressing. Some tasty options include baby carrots (or just pre-cut regular carrots), sliced red and yellow bell peppers, pickles, and edamame beans.
Savoury Snacks Like Kale Chips or Crackers
There are tons of great choices that will satisfy your wish for salt without reaching for a greasy handful of potato chips. Try roasted salted nuts, whole-grain crackers (bonus points for pre-topping them with a dollop of guac or hummus!), dried seaweed or kale chips – which are surprisingly delicious and pack a major crunch.
Sweet Treats Like Fresh Fruit or Dark Chocolate
When you’re staring down an open highway, sugar cravings are to be expected. Don’t deny yourself – just come prepared to satiate your sweet tooth with some healthier options. If you’re going to pack fresh fruits, make sure to prepare them so they can be eaten while driving, and with minimal mess left over: pre-slice apples and bananas (a sprinkle of lemon juice will prevent browning), and avoid items like cherries and peaches so you won’t have to worry about pits. Dried fruits are just as delicious and slightly more convenient – reach for raisins, cranberries, and apricots. If you’re really looking to indulge, try some trail mix with a mix of nuts, fruits, and chocolate, or go crazy with some chunks of delicious dark chocolate bark.
Have a great trip, and happy munching on these healthy and nutritious road trip snacks!