Road Trip Food List (Must-Have Snacks)


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Summer road trips are finally on the radar and I’m so excited! One of my favorite parts of the open road is snacking on something tasty. Tell me I’m not the only one who loves road trip snacks!

This road trip food list is designed to give you easy, transportable snacks to take on your next road trip. And I’ll share our tried and true favorite road trip snack ideas for teens and tweens.

And the best part? These snacks are delicious, healthy(ish) and keep sustainability in mind.

plastic containers filled with fruits, vegetables, nuts, crackers and sandwiches with Road Trip Food List graphic overlay

Planning a Road Trip Food List

Take the stress out of planning your getaway by creating a road trip food list. Aside from your road trip packing list, this food list helps you stay organized while you shop and pack.

It also helps you save money. Shopping with a list keeps extra spending in check and keeps you from purchasing more expensive snacks at gas stations ($10 beef jerky anyone?).

First, select a few healthy, filling snack options. You don’t want a car filled with junk food that will make everyone feel icky. To keep things tasty, you’ll want to include several family favorite snacks.

Next, consider buying in bulk and using reusable snack baggies. One fun way to keep track of snacks is to select a color or pattern of baggie for each family member. You not only save money purchasing in bulk, but you also help the environment by cutting back on single-use plastic.

Lastly, don’t forget about a cooler. I love our Igloo cooler. It keeps things cool for a long time, even in a hot car. You can use ice packs (or fill up water bottles 4/5ths of the way and freeze them) to keep snacks cool. Simply re-freeze your ice packs or water bottles in the hotel mini-fridge if you can. 

small sub sandwiches on a clear plate

Travel Snack Ideas for Teens

Selecting the right snacks for teens can be tricky, especially if you’ve got a picky eater. Include your teen while you make your food list, so you can get his or her input (and avoid potential complaints).

You’ll also let your teen take ownership of part of the trip, which is one of the essentials ways to plan a successful road trip for teens.

Here’s a list of road trip food ideas your teen will love.

  • Beef Jerky
  • Fruit : grapes, strawberries, apples, and easy-peel oranges work great.
  • Hummus with pita chips. Instead of buying the small, individual plastic-wrapped ones, buy in bulk and separate hummus into individual plastic containers to cut down on plastic waste.
  • Trail mix. Check out the bulk section in your grocery store for a wide variety of trail mixes.
  • Road sandwiches (these are a must-have on our road trips): purchase large sub sandwiches and cut them into smaller snack-sized slices.
  • Yogurt
  • Cheese sticks or cubes: slice up blocks of cheese ahead of time.
  • Nuts: buy bulk to save money and cut down on waste.
  • Crunchy snacks: purchase your Teen’s fave. You may want to put a limit on the number of bags to avoid having an overabundance of chips and popcorn bags pile up. Or buy a big bag and divvy up the tasty treats into smaller bags.
  • Bars: fruit, breakfast and protein bars are good options.
  • Water: consider taking reuseable water bottles. You can refill them from gallon-sized water bottles or drinking fountains at rest stops.
  • Sports drinks
  • Drink flavorings: add some variety to plain water with flavoring drops or electrolyte drink tablets. This is a great way to avoid sugar-loaded soda.

Sustainability Tips for Food on the Road

One of the worst offenders of plastic waste is food. Believe me, I know it can be difficult to find food to take on a road trip that isn’t covered in plastic. The good news is you can cut down on plastic and save money while using less.

Here are a few quick ways to reduce your waste on the road:

  • Use reusable water bottles. If your kiddos are into stickers, you can collect a sticker at each stop so they can personalize their bottles.
  • Buy snacks in bulk and use reusable snack baggies.
  • Choose glass or aluminum canned drinks over ones packaged in plastic.
  • Hit up fruit stands and buy healthy snacks directly from farmers.

Finding snacks for teens on your road trip food list doesn’t need to be complicated. With a few healthy yet delicious road trip food ideas, you’ll have a car full of satisfied adventurers.

Happy travels!

More Tips for Amazing Road Trips

**Pin the BEST Road Trip Snacks for Later**

background photo of fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, cookies and sandwich with road trip snacks graphic overlay

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