Healthy and Budget Friendly Road Trip Snacks
The best part of road trips is the chance to see a portion of the country while traveling the open road. You get to stop at cool locations and snap amazing pictures while meeting unique and interesting people. And with Thanksgiving fast approaching and the holidays coming up as well, you might find yourself on a family road-trip sooner rather than later. Packing a substantial supply of road trip snacks that are healthy, tasty, and budget-friendly can save you both time and money, as well as a bit of sanity so you’re not stopping every time one of the kids gets hungry.
Fresh fruit is delicious, healthy and always a go-to option for a snack on the run. Easily packable fruits that leave no core or pit behind are the best choices. Grapes, sliced apples, blueberries and strawberries are likely to keep everyone happy.
Article originally written on Oct 17, 2014. Updated on Oct 17, 2019.
Pretzels and Celery Sticks with Peanut Butter
One of my favorite things to snack on, pretzels and celery sticks taste great with peanut butter, can be dressed up with raisins or chocolate chips, are kid-friendly, and can be found at almost every grocery store large and small across America.
The wonderful thing about homemade granola is that you can make this stuff in bulk a day or two before leaving for your trip and it will last without refrigeration or use of a cooler for weeks at a time. Granola is a healthy, delicious, custom blend of all your favorite things, tailored to you or your family’s specific tastes. This snack also pulls double duty as a breakfast cereal when mixed with dairy or non-dairy milk.
Apple Slices with Peanut Butter or Cheese
Another nut butter accompaniment, apple slices are easy to prepare and with a dash of lemon or lime juice and will survive for a solid day on the road. If peanut butter isn’t your thing, there are slightly more expensive substitutes like almond or cashew butter. You can also try apple slices with slender slabs of sharp cheddar cheese for a tangy yet satisfying snack.
Grapes and Cherries
This one is super easy to prepare, just rinse well and put into a large sealable container (preferably one that won’t collapse under pressure) and play a game of pass the bowl. Grapes and cherries are the perfect road trip snack because they are cheap, easy to find, and can be eaten quickly or on the fly.
Pita Crisps and Hummus
While slightly more costly of the items on this list, pita crisps and hummus are fantastic road trip snacks because they are filling, delicious, and can be customized to suit everyone’s tastes. With a little bit of planning and prep, the hummus can be made at home and on the cheap but with all the luxury of a store-bought brand.
You’ve had fruit, why not throw some veggies in there too? They may not be a kid-favorite, but with a delicious ranch dip or even some peanut butter, the whole family can enjoy baby carrots, celery, broccoli, cauliflower and more. You can also save money by buying reusable Tupperware containers for peanut butter rather than buying more expensive single serving sizes.
These can get a bit more expensive than fresh fruit, but they are a delicious option and very convenient! Cheaper varieties include raisins and cranberries, but it really depends on what your family loves most! Dried mangos, cherries and blueberries are also tasty choices, albeit a tad more expensive!
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Cheese is easy to pack and serve, and it’s also highly nutritious! Save money by skipping the pre-cut cheese cubes. Just buy a block of cheese, cut it into slices at home before leaving and separate it into baggies for the family.
Nuts are another great option because they are packed with protein and very easy to store. Almonds are usually a favorite, but you can pack a nut medley that includes almonds, peanuts, walnuts and others. For some variety, check out the seasoned options available at many grocery stores, like buffalo, jalapeno and even salt and vinegar.
Cereals are normally a kid-favorite anyway, so why not pack some of your children’s preferred cereals for the road?
On top of these healthy road-trip snacks, don’t forget to bring plenty of bottled water, as well as some napkins/wipes to clean up the spills and messes that inevitably occur during long car rides! Happy and safe travels everyone!
Do you have any other ideas for healthy and budget friendly snacks for road trips? Let us know in the comments!