Eating Healthy On A Road Trip

Posted by Laura S on

Family road trips are the best way to explore our own backyards!  Recently I drove from Alberta to Nova Scotia, 55+ hours on the road with a friend over the course of 6 days. We primarily stayed in Airbnb's which had the kitchen basics including pans, stove, BBQ, and fridge to cook, unpack the cooler and refreeze ice packs each night. 


The first thing is to make sure there is car space for a hard cooler and have a few cryopack ice packs in the freezer. There are lots of different cooler options out there including electric, but it is really about having the right size to store enough food for everyone and ice packs to keep it cold. For 2 adults we had a 45L which was enough space. 

A bigger plastic bin was handy to hold non-perishables like avocado oil for cooking, granola, apples, snacks, containers, utensils and paper towel. 


Hydration is a top priority, so having enough water bottles for all road trippers to have drinks throughout the day is key. Each of us had 3 water bottles (+2 litres) and a thermos. Keep in mind most coffee shops are not filling personal bottles.

Before heading on the road we typically made and packed meals daily each having:   

  • 2 x medium meal sized containers 
  • 1 x snack container  
  • 1 bigger container filled with healthy baked goods like muffins 

Although some gas stations do have microwaves to heat up on the go, it is important to consider that it will likely be eaten either cold or at room temp when prepping. I am happy to eat room temp scrambled eggs so would just take my meal out of the cooler 20 mins before eating. 


Although it is not necessary to pack an entire kitchen, I would recommend a few essential tools: 

  1. Cutlery - a set per person to avoid using disposable plastic 
  2. Knife - very handy for cutting an apple or to whittle a stick for marshmallow roasting! 
  3. Peeler - sweet potatoes and carrots are easy to keep in the cooler for a couple days and to roast or BBQ 
  4. Bag Clips - to keep chips and salad mixes closed 

4. EATS 

For meals, it takes a little bit of planning and possibly grocery store stops along the way depending how long and far the trip is. Here is a list of groceries and the meals and snacks we made. 


  • Berries
  • Apples 
  • Bananas (great to have, but don't hold up so well in a Tupperware bin) 
  • Sweet potato 
  • Cucumber 
  • Green beans
  • Carrots 
  • Mixed greens or Spinach bag
  • Chicken 
  • Natural shaved turkey 
  • Eggs 
  • Yogurt (large container) 
  • Guacamole - pre-made 
  • Granola
  • Salad dressing (non-dairy so it is less perishable) 
  • Root Melody or Sweet Potato Chips 


  • In my opinion, the snacks are essential. Yogurt parfait with granola and berries 
  • Spinach and turkey omelet
  • Scrambled eggs with shaved turkey and roasted sweet potato 
  • Cobb'ish salad with hard boiled egg, shaved turkey, chicken, green beans, and cucumber with dressing 
  • Chopped raw veg (carrot, beans, cucumber) with crackers or chips, guac and shaved chicken 
  • BBQ chicken breast with roasted sweet potato and green beans 
    • Turned into a salad the next day tossed with mix greens 


  • Jerky 
  • Dark chocolate 
  • Trail mix with an apple 
  • Chips with guac and chicken 
  • Healthy Bar (we had Rx and Good To Go) 

Typically I do not purchase individually packaged items like guacamole, greens or yogurt to avoid unnecessary plastic waste, but they are handy when on the go and you don't have all the ingredients or tools to make homemade guac. 

Pause to eat along the way! Depending on where you are road tripping to, there are lots of nice picnic spots to take a break, enjoy your meal with a view and stretch your legs. 


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  • Great post, learning from the best.

    Amanda on

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