Road Trip Travel Travel Tips

Road Trip Food List: Easy to Pack Meals & Snacks

By
on
February 28, 2020

Are you looking for a road trip food list that includes the best road trip snacks and other food to bring on a road trip?

Road trips can range from being budget-friendly to out-of-this-world expensive if you do not plan ahead, especially when it comes to eating food.

The temptation to grab a snack at every gas station, as well as to eat out at restaurants or gorge on fast food, can really start to add up in terms of money and wasted time.

One way to save money and time while road tripping, however, is to bring your own food!

By making a road trip food list and packing fun road trip snacks, you’ll avoid having to stop and spend as much.

Our road trip food list includes easy road trip snacks, as well as portable breakfast, lunch, and dinner options – plus, a FREE Road Trip Food List printable to take with you to the grocery store.

The links on this page are Amazon affiliate links. If you click on the links and make a purchase, I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Road trip foods, yogurt parfait
Portable yogurt parfaits

Road Trip Food List: Breakfast

One of our absolute best family road trip tips is to leave bright and early in the morning when starting a long road trip.

As the most important meal of the day, luckily, having breakfast on the road is the easiest meal to eat cold and on the go.

If you decide to hit the road early, or if your hotel en route doesn’t offer a free breakfast, plan ahead by bringing along these simple road trip breakfast foods.

Road Trip Breakfast Ideas

  • Dry cereal
  • Yogurt tubes and granola bars
  • Muffins, donuts, and scones
  • Bagels and cream cheese
  • Fruit
  • Squeezable applesauce
  • Hard-boiled eggs
  • Peanut butter, banana, and granola wrapped up in a tortilla
  • Make-Ahead Fruit & Yogurt Breakfast Parfaits

Additional planning tip: For added morning fun, use the category “breakfast foods”, “brands or cereal”, or “types of fruit” while you play a road trip word game.

Road trip food, colorful sandwich
A sandwich with all the toppings!

Road Trip Food List: Lunch

When it comes to planning for lunch and beyond, your road trip packing list should always include a reliable portable cooler.

Whether you chill made-ahead sandwiches, salami & cheese, fruits, or veggies, there are so many awesome road trip food ideas when it comes to having lunch on the go.

What we love about these road tip lunch ideas is that they keep us out of congested cities and fast-food drive-thrus during the busy noon hour.

Road Trip Lunch Ideas

  • Premade sandwiches with deli meat and cheese (make them extra fun by using shaped sandwich cutters!)
  • Peanut butter sandwiches (skip the jelly to avoid sogginess)
  • Pita pocket with mozzarella, tomato, basil, turkey, cheese, hummus, cucumber, and/or tuna salad
  • Home-ade Lunchables with summer sausage, cheese, and crackers
  • Tortilla with cream cheese, sliced olives, and pepperoni
  • Veggies and single-serve packs of ranch dressing, hummus, or guacamole
  • Pre-assembled Salad In A Jar

Road Trip Food List: Dinner

If there is one meal that you choose to splurge on, I recommend stopping to have dinner at a roadside restaurant or cafe.

Though this may not be your final destination, experiencing another city in this way will help you check more places off of your family travel bucket list!

If you’re not keen on stopping, however, here are the road trip foods we enjoy that are tasty and hearty enough to serve as dinner.

Road trip salad
Portable salad

Road Trip Dinner Ideas

  • Cold rotisserie chicken, chunked and served with a garden salad (package in a disposable salad container)
  • Pre-made pasta salad, such as Pizza Pasta Salad
  • StarKist ready-to-eat tuna salad in an avocado half or on a bun
  • Chicken and pickled veggies in pitas
  • Hummus veggie wrap
  • Cold pizza
The best Road Trip Food List from Top U.S. family travel blog, Travel With A Plan!

Road Trip Food List: Snacks

In my opinion, snacks are the No. 1 way to keep everyone (including you!) happy on a family road trip.

Homemade snack mixes and individual pre-purchased snacks are also a great way to help cut costs associated with buying food on the road.

For this reason, I suggest assembling an entire tub filled with fun and appetizing snacks and surprises that you know your kids will love.

We use these 16-quart storage tubs from Sterilite that are the perfect size, price, and durability!

Road Trip Snacks Ideas

  • Chips and pretzels
  • Animal crackers (Suprise them with Barnum’s Originals!)
  • Trail mix
  • Popcorn
  • Filled crackers (peanut butter, cheese)
  • Beef jerky
  • Nuts (cashews, almonds, peanuts)
  • String cheese, Babybel, Laughing Cow cheese wedges
  • Fresh or dried fruit
  • Healthy no-bake cookies
  • Candy and gummy candy

Be extra organized for your family road trip by clicking the following image to get your FREE family vacation packing list that is both customizable and printable!

Road Trip Food

Travel Snacks for Toddlers

Road tripping with toddlers presents its own set of challenges and requires additional thought when it comes to toddler-friendly road trip activities and food.

(It’s much harder to keep a close eye on them when they’re in the backseat, and you’re in the front.)

When considering toddler road trip foods, the most important thing is to avoid giving them anything to eat that could be deemed a choking hazard.

In addition, opt for healthy versus overly sweet options that may give them a tummy ache.

Our favorite healthy toddler car snacks and road trip foods include:

  • Graham crackers
  • Snap pea crisps
  • Applesauce and/or yogurt pouches
  • Cheese sticks
  • Soft mini muffins
  • Whole-grain crackers
  • Bananas and/or this apple slices
Road trip sick bag essentials
Road trip Go-Kit

10 Essential Tips For Traveling With Food

As seasoned travelers, we’ve assembled a list of tips for traveling with road trip foods and make-ahead hotel room meals.

  1. Use up your most delicate fruit first when on long-haul road trips.

In other words, start by eating bananas and berries, then move on to more sturdy produce such as apples and oranges that don’t spoil as easily.

2. Every family needs an organized packing strategy!

When it comes to road trip food, tortillas, pitas, or other sturdy flatbreads work better to bring along than do loaves of bread. They take up a lot less room and do not risk getting smashed.

3. When packing a cooler with items that need to stay chilled, be sure to lay the ice on the top, versus the bottom of the cooler.

This is because cold air sinks and will, therefore, disperse itself more evenly if laid on top of the food.

4. Aim to open the cooler only 1 or 2 times a day in order to maintain its refrigeration and keep the ice from thawing.

5. Use individual condiment packages such as Mayo, ketchup, mustard, and BBQ sauce so that you can use it all in one sitting and don’t have to refrigerate them.

6. If buying in bulk, break down snacks into single servings. That way they are way easier to divvy up and the kids won’t plow through the entire stash on the first day.

Also, make all food, including snacks, easily accessible throughout the duration of your family road trip.

This prevents someone (likely mom or dad!) from having to constantly bend over the back seat or stop to open the trunk every time hunger or boredom hits.

7. Avoid bringing anything made of glass on your road trip, including glass food containers. Glass is heavy, bulky, and very dangerous when broken within the confines of your family vehicle.

8. Assemble and bring along a road trip kit with the following road trip essentials for spills, clean-ups, and car sickness:

  • Anti-bacterial wipes
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Garbage bags
  • Ziplock bags
  • Napkins/paper towels
  • Kleenex
  • Saltine crackers and motion sickness medicine

9. Each time you stop while on a road trip, don’t forget to pitch any garbage that has accumulated.

This prevents build-up and smelliness.

10. Head to the grocery store with our FREE printable checklist and purchase all of your road trip food in one shopping trip!

Road tripping is one of our favorite family vacations!  Get our awesome road trip food list that includes ideas for meals and snacks on-the-go and a printable checklist to take to the grocery store!  #roadtripfoodlist #bestroadtripfoods #roadtripsnackideas #toddlerroadtripsnacks #healthyroadtripsnacks #roadtripmeals

If you enjoyed reading our best Road Trip Food List and Travel Food Tips, click here to check out our Related Posts:

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Road tripping is one of our favorite family vacations!  Get our awesome road trip food list that includes ideas for meals and snacks on-the-go and a printable checklist to take to the grocery store!  #roadtripfoodlist #bestroadtripfoods #roadtripsnackideas #toddlerroadtripsnacks #healthyroadtripsnacks #roadtripmeals
Click here for the ultimate list of fun and easy meals and snacks to pack for a long-haul road trip!  Our road trip food list will help keep everyone satisfied and fed while on the road!  #roadtrip #familytraveltips #roadtripsnacks #familytravel #roadtripfood
Click here for an epic road trip food list that is perfect for families on-the-go from Top US Family Travel Blog, Travel With A Plan.
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6 Comments
  1. Reply

    Umiko

    April 29, 2020

    This is a great list as we also big in road trip. Snacks is so important especially to keep them from asking are we there yet. Haha… I myself like peanuts to keep me awake when it’s my turn to drive.

    • Reply

      Jen

      April 30, 2020

      Thanks for reading and for sharing your favorite road trip snack!!

  2. Reply

    Bolupe

    April 27, 2020

    This is such a comprehensive list and it is so helpful as I predict a lot of us will be going on more road trips once we can.
    Prepping these meals will definitely save some money and help the kids feel less bored. I know that my kids are usually pleased munching stuffs during road trips.
    I also like that it is more likely for the road trip snack to be more healthier than what you’ll buy elsewhere.

    • Reply

      Jen

      April 29, 2020

      Thank you! Yes, the health factor of pre-packing is a big one, as is the enormous cost savings 🙂

  3. Reply

    Harmony, Momma To Go

    April 27, 2020

    I like to have a good mix of healthy (kids like apples, those are easy to eat) and snacky/salty. I am also very particular. about road trip drinks. Big coffees, la croix, iced tea!

    • Reply

      Jen

      April 29, 2020

      I like your ideas! We’d be good road trip buddies!

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Welcome Friends!

We are the Brommer family from Minnesota, and I'm Jen - the travel planner for our family of 5! We are passionate about traveling together for it's what keeps us happy and healthy at home. The free family vacation itineraries and tips you'll find here are crafted with love to be shared with you. We hope our experiences inspire you to start planning your next family adventure!

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