It may be relatively easy for you to find something delicious and healthy to eat while you are traveling, if you look hard enough, but your kids are a completely different story. Not only do you need to find something that will satiate their hunger, but it also needs to be moderately nutritious. As much as they would love to, your child cannot survive on cookies and Mcdonald’s. Add in the fact that children have extremely picky tastebuds and a penchant for screaming when their hungry… and you can end up with a big problem on your hands. Do yourself a favor, and be prepared with a game plan before you set out on your next trip. These healthy snacks are often preferred by children, and can get you out of a sticky situation, relatively quickly.
Granola or Granola Bars
If your kids like granola, you’re in luck, because it is a great thing to bring along the trip as a healthy snack. First of all, granola bars are a good option since they are non-perishable and can easily store in your purse for a road trip, ride on the train or bus, or on the airplane. You can pull them out whenever, and you have an instant healthy snack. There are organic, all-natural granola bars, so you don’t need to feed them any preservatives. Your younger child will love being able to hold his own bar, and you’ll appreciate the absence of any mess. Also consider: simply putting some healthy granola and nuts in portion-size plastic bags as a quick last-minute snack.
Apples and Nut Butter
Here is a snack that is easy to prepare beforehand and bring with you, especially on a road trip. Slice up some apples and squeeze a little lemon juice on the apples before storing them in a to-go container to prevent browning. In a small container, put some nut butter, such as all-natural organic peanut butter or some creamy almond butter. When your kids want a snack, give them the apples and container of nut butter to dip them in. It is a healthy, low-fat, and uber-convenient snack.
One of the simplest things you can do is find a healthy cereal, place the dry cereal in a plastic bag, and put it in the car or in your carry-on bag at the airport. Hand your starving kid the bag of cereal when they need a quick snack. There are plenty of delicious low-sugar cereals that are soft enough to eat even without milk, especially puff cereal. Some of these also have a good amount of fiber and other nutrients, so it can be a healthy option.
I cannot tell you how many times these little pouches have saved my life. Fresh organic fruit and vegetables. Thanks to these yummy little miracles, my three year old (who refuses to even look at anything green) eats more servings of fruit and vegetables then I do in a day. We
order stockpile these from amazon, but we save them for use only when we’re traveling. When we’re at home, there’s no excuse not to make fresh organic food… but while we are traveling, even I suck these delicious things down to get through the day.
Veggies or Crackers and Dip
If you can keep a cooler in your car, you can bring along a healthy dip with some sliced vegetables or crackers to go with it. Whole-grain crackers are often more convenient, since they are non-perishable and can be enjoyed alone or with a dip or spread. However, slices of bell peppers, carrots, and broccoli can also be placed in a container in the cooler, then enjoyed with some nut butter, hummus, or even a nice spinach dip. Vegetable aren’t always the easiest for little ones, but if you present it as the only option you’ll be sure to get them to give it a try.
I know what you’re thinking: PASTA? It might sound crazy but this is our go-to option when we are eating out with our son. He’s not big into experimenting at the moment, so we have to search for something we know he will eat. Most restaurants have a children’s menu, but it can be seriously limited and really unhealthy. Chicken nuggets? Easy… but gross. For an easy alternative, flip to the pasta section of the menu and search for the healthiest option. Potato gnocchi in Alfredo sauce? Yum. Spaghetti with a fresh ragu? Score.
Even better, ask your waiter if they also serve any vegan dishes that you might not have noticed. Although your child might not be vegan, you can be certain that these are the healthiest options on the menu. If you picked your restaurant well, you should be able to find at least two or three delicious, appealing, and healthy meals that your child will love.
I hope your child will find these snack options equally enjoyable and beneficial for them. Also: be sure not to sleep on fresh fruit that doesn’t require being cool, such as bananas, apples, and citrus fruits. If you’re lucky enough to travel to a place that holds a local market, wake up early and hunt around for some fresh produce. Its a fun way to experience a new place, and it gives a certain magic to anything you find to eat.