Family vacations can be really tricky when you’re trying to stay on track of your diet. There are hazards everywhere when you travel—every rest stop has enticing fast food options, every gas station has a candy aisle brimming with cheap temptation, and every beach town has a signature ice cream shop calling your name. Basically, every road trip is a pitfall of unhealthy food waiting to happen.
Of course, a little indulging here and there is definitely OK (and encouraged), but we know you’ll want some ideas in your back pocket to help you stick to your daily plan. We’ve compiled a list of our favorite easy-to-pack lunches and snacks that you can find on your Cooking Light Diet plan to keep you healthy and happy all travel-season long.
Avocado-Egg Salad Sandwiches with Pickled Celery
This delicious twist on the classic egg salad sandwich will make any park picnic seem like a gourmet get-together. The chopped celery and sunflower seeds add crunch while avocado adds creaminess without the calories. Simply make the sandwiches before you head out the door, or package the salad in a container with a side of bread to make before you enjoy.
Avocado and Tomato Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Take boring cheese sandwiches to the next level with the addition of avocado and tomato. Wrap them in tinfoil to toss on a park grill, or grill at home and wrap in paper towels to absorb the moisture while on the road. Not able to heat things up? These sandwiches are also delicious cold!
Hummus Club Sandwiches
Homemade hummus just can’t be beat, and this recipe calls for a super simple version that’s extra creamy from yogurt. After you’ve stacked your sandwiches for the road, spoon the rest of the hummus into a small container and bring along a small bag of chopped veggies for an additional snack.
Roast Beef Sandwiches with Watercress Slaw
When you’ve filled your beach cooler with packs of deli meat, mix up your sandwiches with this refreshing watercress slaw. The tarragon leaves add a breezy freshness, and baguettes are crusty enough to not let the mayonnaise mixture soak through throughout the morning.
Apple, Almond, and Cheddar Sandwich
Kids will love this day trip-friendly sandwich. Stuffed with almond butter, sliced apples, sharp cheddar, and deli ham, your family will go mad for this sandwich. We recommend slicing thse down the middle and wrapping each half individually with plastic wrap to avoid any of the ingredients from slipping away.
Egg Salad Sandwiches with Bacon and Sriracha
These grown up egg salad sandwiches are sure to be a winner at your family picnic. Mix in crispy bacon, creamy yogurt, and hot sriracha for a play on the classic version that you’ll want to eat again and again. We recommend keeping the mixture in an airtight container, and spooning it on the bread slices when you’re ready to enjoy.
Tarragon Chicken Salad Sandwich
Use up last night’s chicken for this picnic-ready masterpiece. Pile it high on whole grain bread and add thick slices of summer tomatoes and green leaf lettuce for a tasty meal. Fresh tarragon gives a slight anise flavor, so feel free to make a separate batch omitting the herb for little ones.
Roasted Red Pepper Hummus Veggie Wraps
Roasted red pepper hummus makes these wraps a quick, flavor-packed lunch for any day out. Roll up whatever veggies you have on hand and sprinkle on some goat cheese for a tart, creamy kick. Simply pop a toothpick in to keep everything together and you’re good to go.
Turkey and Swiss Wrap with Carrot Salad
The dilly Dijon spread makes this wrap a true winner in our book. Mix mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, fresh dill, lemon rind, lemon juice, and black pepper and spread it onto a wrap with turkey, veggies, and cheese. As an added bonus, the carrot salad on the side is a forever favorite.
Nuts and Bolts Trail Mix
Goldfish crackers and dried cherries take this trail mix beyond what you’ll pick up at any rest stop. Snack on this while you’re cruising the highway or with your kids after you’ve constructed the world’s coolest sand castle.
S’mores Chew Crispy Bars
Indulge on a snack your whole family will love. Marshmallows, cracker crumbs, and chocolate chips make this crispy bar absolutely irresistible. Plus, the kids can help you make these the day before you head out. They’ll love getting involved!
Almond Date Bars
Dates, dried apples, sweetened coconut, and honey make this bar extra sweet. But believe us, this is totally Cooking Light Diet-approved for an on-the-go snack to keep you on track.
When you’re staying at a vacation home, these muffins are a quick fix for an easy breakfast no matter what equipment you have on hand. Bake a batch before you leave home and pop them in the freezer for a healthy raspberry almond breakfast or snack any day.
Orange-Hazelnut Snack Muffins
Pack these away for easy to enjoy midday snacks. Baked with hazelnut flour and cake flour, they have a subtle nuttiness and a light, fresh sweetness from the agave and orange juice.