I’m always a fan of saving money and at the same time saving myself from hangry kids….and saving the kids from a hangry mom.
It’s no fun to be on the road, and everyone is hungry, and you can’t find a place to stop and pick up some snacks or worse to spend $20 or more on one snack run. That’ll kill your road trip budget fast.
Not to mention all that trash and what it does to your car and the planet.
Between all our road trips (see them here), I’ve learned to pack snacks to be both space efficient and budget efficient. I’m sharing all my tips, tricks, and secrets with you today. You only need to read the post, shop, and pack up. Then enjoy the snacks, savings, and the open road.
BTW if you’re struggling with planning your road trip, I’ve written a whole post about how I plan our trips. It should give you a good starting place along with the road trip planner to get you planned and out the door.
Road Trip Snacks
Step 1: Get a bin for your snacks
You’ll want a container that will fit in your car and hold all your snack supplies.
I usually keep this bin on the floor of the passenger front seat. If you have 2 adults on your road trip or someone using this seat, you can keep your container in the back seat or in the back of the car, wherever you have room.
It’s easiest to keep the snack bin in a place where you don’t have to stop the car to access the snacks, but I know that isn’t always possible.
TIP: I’ve used several bins over the years. I tend to like one like this one that is a little more wide and long. That way, I can put all the snacks in without any resting on top of another snack. That makes it easier for me to grab them and give them out while I’m driving (I’m the only driver on our road trips).
Step 2: Fill your bin
Now that you’ve figured out the bin that works best for your car and family. You need to fill it up.
First, let’s start with a few basic items that aren’t snacks that you’re going to want to have.
- Plastic silverware
- Wet cloths
- Chip clips
- Reusable containers
SECRET: The chip clips and reusable containers will help you save money. They allow you to buy the family size packages of snacks versus the individually packaged snacks.
Then you can fill your reusable containers with the snack and save the rest for later.
The plastic silverware allows you to have some shelf stable snacks, like applesauce, and the wet cloths are for those inevitable messes or messy snacks you’ll eat.
Next, you need to pick out your snacks. Pick snacks that your family will like.
I’ll list what we like as it may help you think of things your family will enjoy.
- Fruit Snacks
TRICK: Buy individual portions for foods you’re likely to eat too many while driving…for me that’s the Oreos. I’d eat too many, so while I love being eco-friendly, I buy those in individual portions, so I don’t eat too many in one day.
Step 3: Pre-make a few snacks
If you have time, it’s a great idea to pre-make a few snacks.
This is an excellent way to add some healthy and fun snacks to the mix. We usually make a ‘mix’ from the snacks we have on hand. Something like popcorn, cheez-its and some almonds. Or almonds, raisins, and popcorn. It doesn’t matter, It adds some variety to snack time.
TIP: I recommend no chocolate in your snacks or mixes, so it doesn’t melt in the car.
TRICK: Once you’ve got your snack made, you can put them in a container or baggy and add these cute stickers with activities for the car. It makes the snack a little more fun to have an activity right on the container for your child.
Step 4: Hit the road and snack it up
Having all the snacks with you in the car will be so handy!
TIP: It’ll save you so much money over running into the convenience store and buying whatever unhealthy snack your kids are craving at that moment.
If you want to see how to pack the rest of the car for a family road trip, check out my post on how I’ve packed for all 4 of our road trips.
Leave a comment below and help other moms out by sharing your road trip snack tips. We all get smarter by sharing. ?
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