Lifestyle Entertaining Food & Drink

The Best Snacks to Make and Pack for a Road Trip

Skip the fast food, and fuel your wanderings with these homemade options.

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Hitting the open road (or the open skies or the open water) with your favorite people is one of the greatest pleasures in life. Another great pleasure? Having grub that’s tasty and portable to bring along on these trips. These snack options—which include standbys like trail mix and unexpected treats like Japanese rice balls that are surprisingly travel-friendly—will satisfy no matter what type of cravings hit. And they’re sure to keep roadtrippers energized and ready for the next adventure.


Banana Bread Flavored Popcorn

Oh banana bread; we love everything about you…except for your tendency to get squished in transit. Jessica Gavin’s simple, spiced popcorn recipe is an ideal alternative. Elevating humble popcorn with the addition of crunchy banana chips and walnuts makes for a treat that’s easy to grab by the handful and munch by the fire, in the car, or on the trail.


Oat and Honey Granola Bars

These treats may look just like the granola bars you toted in your school lunchbox, but this homemade version is so much tastier. And the recipe, from Five Heart Home, can easily be made gluten-free. Each batch makes twelve bars, so they are a perfect snack to make in anticipation of a group hike or an all-night-long car ride.

Roasted Chickpeas

Although we frequently top salads and pastas with these crisp little protein powerhouses, they’re also great for snacking. Four flavor combinations from Yay for Food will make for happy travelers, and they are a cinch to pack up in baggies or mason jars. Choose from smoked paprika and cumin, sugar and cinnamon, turmeric and ginger, and lime with black pepper. Or make all four to fuel your day deliciously.


Savory Garlic Roasted Almonds

Simple and salty, A Joyful Riot’s paleo and Whole 30-approved nuts will disappear in the blink of an eye. With only five ingredients and an hour of roasting time, these crunchy bites will become a staple at get-togethers and on the road.


Maple Vanilla Latte Nut Bites

Your friends and family will go nuts for these no-bake, grain-free bites. For kitchen novices, this recipe is uncomplicated and a guaranteed hit. Who wouldn’t love a snack or breakfast on-the-go with yummy nut butter, chopped nuts, almond meal, protein powder, maple syrup, and a little coffee? The bites by Cotter Crunch, should be kept chilled, so make space for them in the cooler—but they probably won’t last long before being eaten anyway.


Trail Mix

Hitting the open road without some trail mix? Inconceivable. The Harvest Kitchen’s Antioxidant Blend features a bevy of health-boosting nuts, seeds, dried fruit, and berries. Add some shredded coconut and a handful of chocolate chips to the mix for more sweetness. Want a slightly less virtuous snack mix? Try this S’mores Snack version from Like Mother Like Daughter.


Trail Mix Cookies

For messy roadtrippin’ companions who can’t be trusted with loose trail mix, try Beaming Baker’s vegan and gluten-free dark chocolate almond coconut trail mix cookies. A sweet combo of ingredients such as nut butter, coconut oil, rolled oats, chocolate chips, and dried fruit makes these cookies into irresistible energy boosters. They will be the ideal reward at the end of a long trek (or perhaps a sanity keeper during any trip that involves traveling with children).


Sweet Potato and Avocado Yaki Onigiri

Onigiri (aka omusubi) are essentially pressed rice balls or triangles, often filled with ingredients like salmon, tuna, or veggies. These popular and perfectly portable snacks are a staple in Japan, where they are found in convenience stores and even in vending machines. Jenessa’s Dinners’ version includes sweet potato and avocado; the rice gets crispy from being briefly grilled for this no-utensils-required treat.

Root Veggie Chips

Gas station junk food won’t be quite so tempting if you have crunchy snacks on hand. Hither and Thither’s recipe is easy to follow and modify according to your favorite root veggies. Bake these beauties in lieu of frying them, and size up your batch according to the number of people in your traveling crew (and their appetites).