Air travel is not always fun, even if you are headed for a much-needed vacation. Between the rush of packing and the stress of going through the security line, eating clean may be the last thing on your mind.
Still, if you take the time to think ahead, you can save yourself from the perils of the airport food court.
You can’t pack a smoothie, but there are plenty of healthy, clean snacks that you can throw into your carry-on bag.
Here are a bunch of my favorites that will keep you from turning to the food court’s processed food. Believe me, I travel all the time and just a little planning goes a long way!
1. Fresh fruit – Bananas or Blueberries may be your go-to fruit snack, but for plane trips, you’re better off choosing a firm fruit like an apple.
To make it even more nutritious, see if you can find one of the portable packs of peanut butter so you can enjoy a shmear with each bite.
2. Nuts – Nuts are easy to pack in a Ziploc bag. They contain healthy fat and are a great source of protein and fiber.
My favorite is almonds. They’ll make you feel full fast and can help lower your levels of LDL cholesterol. Other good choices include pistachios and walnuts.
3. Dried fruit – Raisins, figs, apricots, dates. All of these are delicious and easy to pack. Though they do have a lot of sugar, they’re also loaded with fiber, vitamins and minerals.
Dried fruit tends to keep most of the nutrients as the fresh fruit it came from.Tweet
Pair dried fruit with nuts to be sure you’re getting a good amount of protein.
4. Popcorn – Air popped popcorn is filling and adds no weight to your bag. Try to find organic popping corn.
5. Fresh veggies – there’s no reason why you can’t bring a bag of crunchy carrot sticks, cucumbers, or bell peppers on a plane.
Stay away from cherry tomatoes, as they can get crushed easily – what a mess!
I like to pack a small container of hummus for dipping them too.
6. Kale chips – Kale chips can be a little bit delicate, but you can put them in a Ziploc bag and just blow a little air into the corner to give them some cushioning.
They’re a great substitute for fatty chips. They’re loaded with vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin K. I recommend making your own so you can avoid the bad oils that are usually in the packaged ones.
7. Seeds – When it comes to packing a lot of goodness into a small package, it’s hard to beat seeds.
Chia and flax are best for nutrition but are too small to eat easily on a plane. Pack a bag of pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds.
If you have the time, you can make these snack bars that are loaded with goodness. They’re filling, delicious and easy to pack.
Best of all, the recipe makes 6 large bars, so you can have one for this trip and then freeze the others for the next time you fly.
Nut and Seed Banana Oat Snack Bars
1 cup steel cut oats (uncooked)
½ cup sunflower seeds
½ cup pumpkin seeds
¼ cup almonds, chopped
¼ cup walnuts
¼ cup dried cherries or raisins
3 small bananas
1 tsp vanilla
½ tsp cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9×9 baking ban. Combine oats, seeds, nuts and dried cherries or raisins. Mash bananas and stir in vanilla and cinnamon, then mix with oat mixture
Combine oats, seeds, nuts and dried cherries or raisins. Mash bananas and stir in vanilla and cinnamon, then mix with oat mixture until all ingredients are moist. Press into bottom of
Press into bottom of the pan. Bake for 30 minutes and cut into 6 bars.
You can wrap them individually and freeze for later.
Yours in health,
P.S. Please share this with your friends who travel a lot and I’d love to hear from you in the comments below. What’s your go-to snack when you’re flying?