Family Food: Snacks for a Road Trip

by Maytal Wichman

It’s here – your long-awaited road trip! You’ve planned, packed and triple-checked everything. Your car is filled with gas, your spouse is in a good mood and your iPod is set to your favorite road trip song. This is your time to live it up like the old days…wait, what’s this noise coming from the back seat? Oh, that’s right; you’ve got a couple of kids there. You are well aware of the fact that whatever happens in the back seat can have a direct effect on you; that is why having well-nourished kids with a full stomach can either make or break your road trip. Here are some suggestions for snacks to pack in order to keep the kiddies (and their parents) happy:

  1. Make your own trail mix: use any kinds of unsalted nuts, chopped into small pieces, along with dried fruit. For example: peanuts, cashews, almonds, walnuts pecans, dates, figs, raisins & apricots. Because you are making it yourself, you can put in anything!
  2. Unsweetened applesauce: get individual packs and put each one in a separate sandwich-size Ziploc, along with a plastic spoon. That way you can have individual snacks ready to go and there’s no need to look for a spoon when you’re on the road. Editor’s note: If you think that it might be too messy for the car, look for the squeezy packages of applesauce or pureed fruit. Look for versions that just contain fruit (no added sugar). We love Revolutions Foods’ Fruit and Veggie Mashups – organic fruit (with some veggies thrown in) and NO added sugar!
  3. Baked chips, all-natural, with no additives or preservatives.
  4. Whole-grain/whole wheat crackers. Get crackers that are big enough for spreading. Ak-Mak is one good option.
  5. Individual organic milk, soy milk or almond milk drinks.
  6. Oranges, bananas, apples, clementines – these fruits will stay for a while. Make sure the bananas aren’t ripe.
  7. Sliced cucumbers, bell peppers, plus baby carrots.
  8. Rice cakes (brown rice only and unsalted).
  9. Kiwi – bring a plastic knife, cut kiwi in half and scoop out with a plastic spoon.
  10. Avocado – Cut with plastic knife and spread on crackers, rice cakes, etc.)
  11. Peanut butter – make sure this is not the “natural” type that you have to stir and refrigerate. I usually recommend those but they won’t work for a road trip. Just make sure the ingredients are only peanuts, oil and maybe salt (and it does not require refrigeration after opening).
  12. Organic granola bars – not a very healthy option but good to have in your bag for those times when you run out of food and need a quick snack. Get the ones with the least sugar and artificial ingredients possible. Editor’s note: Cascadian Farms makes an organic chocolate chip version that is delicious.
  13. Don’t forget water – buy big bottles and bring a few small bottles for refills. Editor’s note: We switched from using tons of juice boxes to reusable water bottles. While we loved Green Sprouts’ bottles, my children preferred Thermos’s Foogoo Bottles (with licensed characters) with the built-in straw.


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