With convenience stores and cafes popping up on every street corner, most of us give little thought to packing nutritious foods when traveling. Surely, you can find accessible food nearby to keep you from getting ‘hangry’ nearly anywhere you go. But these accessible foods may not be the healthiest options available. Having snacks handy is an excellent way to ensure that you are never forced to indulge in unhealthy and pricey food on the go. So, read on to find out how you can equip yourself with snacks that are nutritious, healthy, and can be packed easily in your bags.
To know how to quickly fix some healthy travel snacks, check out the slides below:
15 Best Foods to Pack When Traveling
1. Dried Snacks
Dry fruits or snacks are super convenient to carry, long-lasting, and can be eaten easily on the go. You can pick up loose dried fruits and seeds at the grocery store to create your own snack mix or purchase premixed packets depending on your preferences. Dried mango, pineapple, pears, cherries, almonds, cashew, and other nuts… the options are endless!
2. Protein Bars
If you’re looking for a healthy but filling option, protein bars might be a perfect choice for you! You can easily find protein bars that are low in sugar and high in whole grains, making them the perfect snack to reach for if you are hungry and the next meal is still a couple of hours away. You can make your own protein bars with a few simple ingredients before traveling or you can buy them in most grocery stores or convenience stores. Pre-packaged protein bars are convenient to carry in your handbags as they are sealed and spill-free.
3. Roasted Snacks
When it comes to roasted snacks, it’s possible that nothing is as delicious as chickpeas roasted in sea salt. In fact, it is one of the best ways to consume some light plant-based protein and fiber. So try keeping a bag of this healthy snack in your bag as you head out to explore your new surroundings during the day.
4. Oatmeal Cups or Packets
Instant oatmeal is a healthy snack option whether you are on a flight or in your hotel room. Since most flights have hot water readily available, they are just as convenient to prepare as instant coffee or tea. Just request the flight attendant to pour some hot water in your oatmeal cup and you have yourself a perfectly healthy snack.
5. Cucumber and Cheese Sandwiches
When it comes to veggie sandwiches, there are many options to choose from. Out of these, cucumber sandwiches with whipped cream cheese are delicious and nutritious if you make them using whole wheat bread. Zip the sandwiches safely into a plastic bag and you have yourself an easy meal on the go.
6. PB & J
We couldn’t write this list without including peanut butter and jelly sandwiches; these are the perfect blend of sweet and savory combined in a delicious and protein-filled snack. Just make sure that you select a healthy bread as the base. If you’re an ambitious cook, you can create your own peanut butter and preserves, also. However, if you are opting for ready-made products then select a peanut butter brand that is low in salt and sugar-free.
For the hungry traveler, wraps can replace an entire meal! You can make and freeze them before your travel date if you want. On the day of travel just reheat a few for a meal that’s as fresh as ever. Wraps can also be easily customized depending on your personal preferences. You can make them vegan, with eggs, or add any protein you wish. Just make sure that you select ingredients that will reheat well and last a decent amount of time before going bad.
8. Crunchy Veggies
An assortment of veggies like cucumbers, celery, carrots, bell peppers, and others can make up a perfect salad blend. One of the best healthy foods to pack when traveling, a crunchy veggie box can be made right in your hotel room. A quick visit to the local grocer can equip you with all the healthy ingredients and you can request the hotel staff for some seasoning.
Greek yogurt has taken the world by storm in the last few decades. Whether you like it plain or flavored, this is one of the best foods to pack when traveling, especially in hotter climates. This probiotic-rich snack is also ideal to balance out all the heavy meals you’re eating on vacation.
10. Cheese Sticks
Another dairy product, cheese, is both healthy and versatile. Cheese sticks are the perfect companion of any traveler who is always on the go. Even if you have forgotten to pack them in your bag, you can easily grab a few at the local store to munch on whenever you feel hungry.
11. Stay Hydrated
There is nothing better than water to quench your thirst as you explore and wander. So, pack an empty reusable water bottle in your bag if you are flying. You can fill and reuse it rather than buying one every time you feel thirsty. It is also a good idea to invest in a filtered bottle that cleans your water in case you are traveling to areas that do not offer potable water.
12. Whole-Grain Pasta
Pasta is a quick, versatile and easy meal to prepare. It can be turned into a warm dish with a delicious sauce or used as a cold pasta salad. So, if you are planning to pack a pasta dish as your travel food, then opt for whole grain pasta. You can add your choice of veggies, meat, cheese, seasoning, etc., and have different dishes made with whole-grain pasta as your base.
13. Unsweetened Drinks
Depending on the climate you are traveling to, you may have to watch your liquid intake. Warmer regions will necessitate that you drink more and sticking to water can be quite boring. Therefore, it is never a bad idea to quench your thirst with flavored drinks. Just make sure that you pack unsweetened drinks. Sugar in drinks is not the most ideal ingredient to satisfy your thirst.
14. Breakfast Cookie
Breakfast is, indeed, the most important meal of the day. However, it is also one that is commonly ignored when you are constantly traveling, hopping on one tour after another. The best way to pack a long-lasting wholesome snack is to bake a batch of wholemeal cookies before you travel. If you are busy packing, don’t worry– you can always pick up some healthy ones from the store.
15. Local Produce
As a tourist, you have enough and more to pack and take along on your travels. So, it can be difficult to accommodate food into your bags at the last minute. An easy way to solve this problem is to hit up a local produce store near you and pick up a few ‘fuss-free’ fruits, nuts, or veggies that can be packed in a small snack box and carried in your bag for the day.
Other quick-fix healthy foods to pack when traveling can include crisps, granola bars, pita crisps, popcorn, and pretzels.
Things to Remember
I. Use the Right Ingredients
You are the best judge of your preferences, so include foods that you are sure to like. Also, avoid ingredients that can ruin your snack. For instance, if you are making a sandwich for your flight, then do not use ingredients that give out a strong odor, out of courtesy to your fellow passengers. Additionally, ingredients like avocado may rapidly turn brown and go bad if used in sandwiches or wraps.
Think about Convenience
Remember not to go overboard with food to pack when traveling. Your vacation should be a time to relax and unwind. So, do not overwhelm yourself preparing healthy snacks before your trip. Here are some suggestions for healthy snack options available in the market to please your appetite.
Salads make a light and healthy travel snack. However, they have a low shelf life. So, if you are not going to eat the salad in the next few hours, then avoid packing it in your suitcase.
III. Baked Goods
Baked goods should be on the top of your list. They are long-lasting and offer a number of healthy snack options. You can make them in advance and store them in airtight containers that you can travel with. Plus, they are one of the few foods that are totally suitable for air, road, or rail travel.
IV. Savory Snacks
When deciding on foods to pack when traveling, select savory snack options over sweet ones. As a rule of thumb, you are more likely to crave something salty and savory when hungry. Additionally, you can save your sweet consumption for the delicacies and desserts available in local restaurants or street vendors on your travels.
V. Consume in the Right Order
In other words, you should know the order in which you will consume the foods beginning with the ones that will perish the fastest. This way, you will reduce wasted food and stay healthy as you travel around.
VI. Travel with a Few Empty Containers
Empty containers come in handy for packing leftovers after a meal at a restaurant. You can easily convert your leftovers from dinner into a healthy morning breakfast wrap! By doing so, you reduce waste and costs!
While it is important to keep some space in your bags and suitcases to pack healthy snacks as you travel, it is not always possible. As a result, more and more health-conscious travelers are opting for vacation rental accommodations instead of hotels or resorts. These properties are fully functional homes that are rented out to tourists and travelers. They are equipped with kitchens where you can prepare your healthy travel snacks every day. For more information about Rental Trader, see our Contact page to fill out the web form and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.