Summer is the time of travel, vacations, and outdoor activities for many. During this time sometimes regularly scheduled routines and meals are put on hold. However, this does not mean you need to loose sight of eating healthy. For example, I chose an Acai bowl as my fast food alternative.
Because I have been a Vegetarian for close to two decades (before the time when fast food chains had alternatives), I discovered many creative ways to bring healthy meals on the road. Sometimes, it just requires a little planning the day before. Also many chains, such as Starbucks, are also offering healthier options. Here are a few ideas for the road, or a meal “to go” for a day outdoors or camping.
For short road trips, or quick snack/lunch ideas for a cooler:
-Wraps- take a wrap ( I like Ezekiel) spread a little hummus, add a protein (optional), and veggies of choice
-Or, keep it simple with hummus and veggies
-Egg and veggie scramble- for a bigger meal add a bagel
-Smoothie in a thermos (freeze the night before for longer road trips)
-Salads with dressing on the side
-Granola, fruit, yogurt parfait
-Homemade muffins, bars, breads
-String cheese with fruit or raw nuts
-Dates stuffed with goat cheese and sprinkle of cinnamon
For longer trips with no refrigeration, or Camping:
Peanut Butter and Jelly (or honey) – An oldie but goodie will keep you full for a while. Good for breakfast, lunch, dinner or even a snack.
Pretzels and almond butter
Fruit such as apples, oranges, bananas, kiwis, figs. Very easy and portable.
Raw Trail mix (raw nuts, raisins, dried fruit without added sugar, dehydrated veggies)
Protein or snack bars
Homemade muffins, bars, fig newtons, etc.
For a complete meal REI offers dehydrated meals which are good for backpacking or long camping trips with no refrigeration
I’m still working on figuring out how to bring more veggies backpacking….
On the road ideas:
-Starbucks is now offering healthier items such as oatmeal with fruit
-Acai bowls or smoothies
-Veggie or chicken burgers
-Grilled fish tacos
I’m not sure what is on the menu these days for fast food chains, since I have not been through a drive through in a long long time. If you know of a healthy item on a fast food menu- be sure to leave it in the comment section! Or, leave some of your healthy “food to go” ideas….
Things to be on a look out for:
1. Added sugar content in smoothies, or Acai bowls.
2. High fat or sugar salad dressings.
3. For the veggie and chicken burgers, and fish tacos, hold the heavy sauces
4. Portion sizes. As you can see in the pic above- that Acai bowl was huge!
5. If you are using trail mix as a healthy snack watch out for the over processed, and sugar filled ones. I love those myself, but I eat them as a treat.
6. When bringing muffins, bars, trail mixes and there is no refrigeration, make sure there are no chocolate coverings, or items that may melt. You can freeze a muffin or bar and then place in a cooler, they will last longer before melting.