We're taking our annual summer road trip to visit relatives. What foods can I bring in the car that are nutritious and travel well?
Road trip—what fun!
It's a great idea to bring your own road food so you don't have to rely on fast food or whatever's in the rest stop vending machine. We like to eat at a scenic place near a trail so we can take a walk, too.

Below are some tasty and nutritious options sure to keep your passengers happy. Don't forget disposable plates, cups and utensils, too.

(No time to get prepped before your trip? Stop at one of our stores along your route to pick up salads custom-made sandwiches and a container of colorful cut fruit from the deli.)

In the cooler (with frozen gel packs or plenty of ice):
  • *Sandwiches on whole-grain bread made with lean roast beef or turkey breast, lots of sliced tomatoes and lettuce, and spicy mustard or low-fat mayo. Tip: To prevent soggy sandwiches, pack veggies toppings in a resealable plastic bag and condiments in mini containers. Add right before you eat.
  • *Coleslaw made with shredded cabbage mix and light poppy seed dressing.
  • *Reduced-fat cheese sticks.
  • *Hummus with cut-up veggies.
  • *Low-fat yogurt.
  • *Fresh fruit salad or delicate fruits such as berries.
  • *Beverages such as containers of fat-free milk, 100% juice boxes and bottled water.

No refrigeration required:
  • *Sandwiches made with nut butter and 100% fruit spread on whole-grain bread.
  • *Pop-top cans of tuna paired with whole-grain crackers.
  • *Whole fruits such as nectarines, plums, grapes and cherries.
  • *Cookies made with whole grain ingredients—use our SimpleNutrition tags to find whole-grain options in the cookie aisle.

For more road trip tips, check out our article, Road Trip! Eating Well and Staying Active on your Driving Vacation.
Nutritionist Experts
Our Nutrition Experts are registered dietitians who hold master's degrees and are members of the American Dietetic Association and several specialty nutrition groups. They combine over 40 years experience in food and nutrition science, communications and counseling, the culinary arts and the development of nutrition education materials. They are quoted frequently in the national media and have written about nutrition for many major magazines, newspapers, and newsletters.