It can be quite challenging to plan out family vacations, especially when you have young kids. Packing their snack bag for traveling is almost as important as the trip itself! You want to pack foods that are easy to eat and even easier to clean up.
If you've been trying to decide what to pack for your next road trip or airplane ride, keep on reading to get inspired! Here's a list of our top fifty favorite travel snacks that are perfect for your whole family:
Berries are great options for road trips because they're easy to pop in your mouth and taste like a sweet treat. They're also incredibly healthy and rich in antioxidants! Nearly every kid loves to snack on blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries. The only downside is that they can be pretty expensive.
Grapes are delicious, inexpensive, healthy, and are beloved in snack boxes. They're great on their own and also pair well with cheese cubes.
Speaking of cheese, add some slices or cubes into your kids' lunches for a good source of calcium and protein. Cheddar, mozzarella, and gouda cheese are our favorite!
Whether you choose to buy them in-store or make them at home, granola bars are the quintessential road trip snack. Just toss them into your snack bag, and you're good to go!
Banana chips or plantain chips are a yummy snack that is toddler-friendly and mess-free. You'll have to carefully inspect the labels to make sure they're not full of sugar, though.
Meat in a packaged stick form is perfect for individual use. You don't have to worry about preparing salami slices or bringing napkins to clean greasy hands. They provide protein and calories in a kid-friendly wrapper.
Use tortillas to make easy on-the-go sandwiches. The most popular types are made with bananas and peanut butter, deli meat and cheese, or chocolate sauce.
Crackers are a must on trips, although you might have a lot of crumbs while eating them. Salt also helps against nausea, so these are great for when someone gets a little carsick.
Sugar Snap Peas
These might not be for everyone, as some kids dislike peas. However, they make an excellent snack for trips because they're easy to pop in your mouth, don't make a mess, and are healthy. Add some hummus on the side for an even tastier treat.
Baby carrots are another classic healthy road trip snack. Everyone loves them, and they're super easy to eat. They can even be found in individual servings, making them perfect additions to your lunch bag.
Clementines, Mandarins, Cuties--whatever you call them, they're delicious! You can simply toss them in your bag and peel them when you get hungry. They make a little mess, though, so you'll need a trash bag and some wet wipes for cleanup.
Nuts are always a great way to get protein and healthy fats. You have endless options to choose from: almonds, macadamia nuts, peanuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, etc. Just a handful can keep you satisfied until your next meal.
Cut them in round slices or as sticks for easy eating. Keep in mind, though, that they contain only water, so your kids might still be hungry after eating them. Try pairing them with some hummus or feta cheese for some added protein and calcium.
Sometimes, eating dry cereal tastes even better than eating it with milk. The classic cereal snack is Cheerios, but you can choose whichever one your kids love best. Keep in mind that this snack is harder to eat and is likely to end up on the floor.
Dried apple slices make some of the most delicious and healthy snacks. You can find nearly every kind of fruit in dried form, like mangoes, apricots, and raisins. They don't make a mess, and your kids will think they're eating sweets!
Eggs are a fantastic source of protein and perfect for lunchboxes. You can either add a little salt to them or eat them plain. They're also great for any age, even your young ones!
Popcorn is an excellent choice for an easy snack that your whole family can enjoy. You can either keep it plain or choose ones with flavor--our personal favorite is white cheddar! There are so many brands available that are low in calories and fat, and you can even buy it in bulk from the grocery store to save money.
Is any lunch box complete without a stick of string cheese? Children love the taste of the cheese sticks and can have fun pulling them apart. You can choose low-fat ones if you're concerned about the nutritional value.
The best snack ideas are the ones where you don't need any utensils to eat. Applesauce pouches are also TSA-friendly since they're only 3oz.
Instead of choosing the sugary versions, opt for fruit snacks made with natural 100% fruit juice. You can easily find healthy fruit snacks in the store that still taste as sweet as junk food.
Bagels and Cream Cheese
Bagels are a hassle-free snack idea that can help keep your kids from feeling hungry on long car rides. They're even better than a basic peanut butter sandwich!
Eat them on their own, or dip them into some nut butter for added protein. Both peanut and almond butter are delicious with apples. Try dipping them in yogurt for a great alternative!
Those yogurt squeeze pouches make great road trip snacks when you're stuck in your seat and don't want to have to use utensils. Freeze them so that they're chilled by the time your family is ready to eat. They can even serve as ice packs for your snack bags.
Depending on the time of year, you should consider adding melons to your snack bag. Watermelon, honeydew, and cantaloupe are inexpensive and perfect for all ages. Cut them in small cubes for less mess.
This snack requires you to make it ahead of time, but you can add whatever ingredients you want. Peas, cherry tomatoes, cheese, broccoli--the combinations are endless! It also tastes even better when it's eaten cold.
These are simple to prepare and great for the whole family! You should always include some carrot sticks in everyone's trip snack bag. Add a side of hummus or ranch for those who don't like to eat them plain.
Don't forget to pack some veggie chips into your snack bags. Your kids won't even realize that it's not junk food! They offer a salty taste but with less harmful nutritional value.
Bananas are vital to your health and are one of the cheapest foods on this entire list. You'll need a trash can to throw the peel away, though, and remember that they're quickly bruised when put in your bag.
All you need are crackers, lunch meat, and cheese slices to make your version of a healthy Lunchable. You can either set up the mini sandwiches yourself or let your kids build their own.
Yogurt drinks are another great snack that doesn't require utensils. Be careful with your toddlers, though, as they might end up spilling it all over themselves.
Bell Pepper Slices
Bell pepper is another fresh vegetable that fits perfectly in your travel snack bag. Just slice them up or grab those mini ones for less work. They taste sweet, so your kids will love them.
Your family can eat these plain or add some peanut butter for extra calories. Try and break them up into bite-size pieces ahead of time; otherwise, you'll probably find crumbs in the car seats!
This snack requires extra effort on your part and utensils, but overnight oats are a great idea for healthy meals while on the road. There are endless flavor combinations, so your entire family can enjoy it.
These bite-sized tomatoes are the best healthy snacks for your young kids. They're sweet, flavorful, and require no preparation. The whole family can enjoy them without making a mess or leaving crumbs.
Jerky can be both a healthy snack option or junk food, depending on which one you get. Regardless, it's a great source of protein and can be purchased in bulk to save on costs.
Celery Sticks and Peanut Butter
This is a classic pairing, especially when you add raisins to the mix. Smear the sticks with peanut butter ahead of time to make it easier for your children to eat. You can always substitute the nut butter with hummus if anyone in your family has a peanut allergy.
Homemade Trail Mix
You can't even think about going on a trip without packing trail mix--it's just part of the rules! Store-bought trail mix can be expensive and full of things your kids won't eat. Make your own with nuts, chocolate chips, dried fruit, seeds, and shredded coconut.
Here is a list of our favorite car or airplane snacks that aren't technically healthy for your little ones but are delicious and crowd-favorite! Sometimes you're tired of the veggie sticks and just want to snack on some junk food.
Cheap, easy to eat, pairs well with chocolate--what's not to love? They're not the best for toddlers, though, and the saltiness might make you extra thirsty, so don't forget water bottles.
You can either get the square crackers and make little chocolate or peanut butter sandwiches or get the Teddy Bear Grahams. They come in various flavors, like honey or chocolate chip, and kids love them!
Goldfish are a staple for snack bags and road trips. They're perfect for all ages--even toddlers! They also come in whole grains if you want a healthier option.
You can either get an entire can of Pringles for your family to share or buy those individual servings of chips. They're great when you don't want to prep anything or are only traveling for short trips.
These are another classic junk food item that is necessary for any travel. You can get the reduced-fat version if you're concerned about the nutritional value. Toss some in a baggie to drastically improve your next road trip!
People either absolutely love corn nuts or loathe them. They're crunchy and packed with a ton of flavor. You'd be surprised how fast your family will go through a bag!
Girl Scout Cookies
Although you can only get these once a year, Girl Scout Cookies are great for traveling. They don't make as much of a mess as other cookies, and kids love them.
Waffles work surprisingly well as travel snacks. Just quickly pop them in the toaster before you leave to crisp it up a bit. You don't even need any syrup! Try eating it plain or add some nut butter or jam to it. You'll be surprised by how tasty it is!
Sunflower seeds are a delicious and addicting snack--you just can't stop reaching into the bag for more! You'll need a cup to throw the shells into or just buy the pre-shelled version to avoid any messes.
Chex Mix is best for older kids and even comes in individual serving bags. They come in various flavors and can be purchased in bulk, making them cheaper for you. You can also make your own Puppy Chow (or Muddy Buddies) with them!
If you need some quick calories, then a protein or energy bar is the best option for you. They're not the best for long trips since they don't fill you up that much.
This could be anything from Sour Patch Kids to Twix Bars! Everyone has their favorite candy, and you can easily find them at any rest stop, although it would be cheaper to buy in bulk before you leave.
If your kids love cookies, add some Oreos to their snack bag. Even without milk, they're the best store-bought cookies! Just remember to bring wipes to clean off any black cookie dust the Oreos left.
Here are some last-minute tips to remind you of what you need to pack to ensure smooth travel!
You should keep your family hydrated throughout the entire trip. Remember that they will be incredibly thirsty after eating any of these junk foods. These snacks contain a lot of salt, so just keep in mind that you'll need to have drinks on hand as well.
If you want to be more eco-conscious in your daily life, try swapping out your single-use plastic baggies for reusable silicone ones. If you use plastic, then reuse them as trash bags to collect your fruit peels and wrappers for easy cleanup!
Any kind of napkin and wet wipe is essential when traveling with kids. They're most likely going to spill something or get their hands and clothes dirty while eating. A quick wipe of the napkin, and everyone's good to go!
Do you have a favorite Travel snack ? Please share in the comments below and spread the Traveler Butterfly love.