Road Trip Food
I love road trips. I love the journey as much as the destination and I thoroughly love spending lots of time with a favorite person in the car next to me as we journey across the United States. Road trips are a time to see parts of America or the world you may have not seen before. Road tripping I have randomly stopped in New Mexico to try alien beer or the border of Arizona and California to try a date shake. Once I ended up in a small town on the original Route 66 where I had lunch with the locals, got to participate in a town-wide horseshoe competition and watch a community beer pong tournament. These are experiences I couldn’t have planned and wouldn’t have had the opportunity to try without a good old fashioned road trip.
Road trips to me are about music, conversation and snacks. After spending a long day/s in the car, you’re not going to want to eat Munchies and beef sticks day after day. Those high-fat snacks can ruin your diet or simply make you feel lethargic and contribute to road weariness. I have the added fun that my body doesn’t enjoy lots of processed food as I end up with killer headaches from consuming too many Pringles. Let’s talk about lighter, maybe even healthier fares you can manage for a road trip of any length. Time to get out of the house and get moving.
- I like to keep a small moving box, leftover from a recent move or shipment, for corralling non-perishable items. The box helps keep them contained. Also consider having some plastic bags from the grocery store for trash.
- Herb and Season Popcorn. Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods sell this beauty but I’m sure you can find similar options in a market near you or even make your own prior to setting out. It’s cheap, it’s light and it doesn’t make me feel guilty for snacking when I’m sitting on the couch.
- Fruit and cheese platter. This sounds fancy and healthy but, oh my, it’s not really either one of those things. I discovered this as a snack item when my boyfriend who was getting progressively more hangry (hungry + angry) when I made us stop to buy cat food on the way to dinner one night. A bag of Welches fruit snacks and a bag of Goldfish. Mix this up how you like – Mott’s or Annie’s any of your favorite fruit snacks and choose any cheese cracker – Cheez-its or whales or whatever you happen to have salty. Fun and hits all the sweet and salty notes plus you get to sound so fancy when you brag to your friends about the fruit and cheese platter you ate on the road trip.
- Individual packets of peanut butter or almond butter are a great way to add protein into your snacking. Add to fruit or crackers for a more sustained filled feeling.
- Granola is a really great healthy option to keep you fueled throughout your drive. If you’re doing store-bought, check the sugar content as they can often get quite unhealthy. If you’re making your own (and I highly recommend you do because it’s so easy and so good), throw some dried apricots and raisins into the mix to give yourself a nice variety of Vitamin C and potassium. Potassium in dried apricots will prevent you from getting leg cramps or Charlie-horses. Bonus: You can use that granola to bulk up yogurt container for a breakfast on the go on the cheap. Double Bonus: This is my favorite granola recipe.
- Easy to prepare veggies like pepper strips or grape tomatoes are great to pop as desired. This will take minimal effort to get veggies prior to leaving your house. Or pick up a veggie tray on your way out of town. Best to keep these items in a cooler or on ice.
- Apple slices can be purchased in those packages. Or you can do your own at home before leaving by soaking slices in a bowl of cold water with a pinch of salt for 3-5 minutes. Or you can do a bowl of cold water with a squeeze of lemon juice for 3-5 minutes. This will keep the fruit from oxidizing and browning quickly.
- greasy foods like corn nuts
- crumbly foods like cookies
- foods that make you feel bad
- really salty foods that will make you thirsty
Alright, keep it clean and keep it fun. Roll out!