Thursday, June 14, 2012

Road Trip Tips: Eating Healthy (on a budget)

Road Trips typically mean a lot of fast food! 
and a family can only eat SO much fast food in 12 days,
before they a. gain 12 pounds b. get sick of it. and/or c. can't afford to eat anymore.

So in hopes of eating MUCH more healthy while on the road --
I did a little preparation before we left!
I knew it was going to take us two days to get to our destination -
so I planned for two "on the road" lunches each way.
The first day we had fresh chicken salad!
Yes! I made chicken salad at a rest area!:)
The second day we made deli sandwiches!

The night before we left, we boiled the chicken, cut it up into small chunks and added S/P. (note: on the way home, we were unable to BOIL the chicken - so we bought a Rotisserie chicken and used that for our chicken salad)
Then we placed it in some tupperware and put it in the cooler!
When we stopped for lunch -- I added the ingredients and voila!
Fresh Chicken Salad on multigrain flat bread! :)
So Easy and SO much better than greasy fast food!
I also purchased fresh fruit and a veggie tray!
Doesn't look like a Rest Area lunch, does it?
The second day we made deli sandwiches! 
I brought lunch meat, a tomato to slice, sliced cheese, some spinach and mustard. 
Other snacks we brought:
- Hummus with Carrots
- Carrots and Ranch Dressing
- Cheese Sticks
- Goldfish & Pretzels
We are a peanut-free house, but peanut butter makes an excellent snack! 
We chose to stay in hotels that offered a continental breakfast, so that we wouldn't have to worry about packing breakfast food! We also made sure the hotels had microwaves and refrigerators for the boy's dinner. La Quinta is typically our hotel of choice for over night stops while traveling, as they also allow dogs for no extra fee. For dinner we (the hubs and I) would pick up take-out on our way to the hotel. The last thing the boys wanted to do, after traveling 10+ hours, was sit in a restaurant. We would eat our dinner by the pool or outside - somewhere where they could just run!!! Plus, getting take-out from "nicer" restaurants is a good way to save money - as you don't order drinks, have to tip as much, etc. We would order one entree from Olive Garden to share - and then pay the extra to add an additional salad with breadsticks. It was the perfect amount of food, under $20 and we were eating more salad and less pasta! :) For the boys I packed Easy Mac (don't forget disposable bowls), Turkey Dogs and Ravioli. I also packed them canned green beans, mandarin oranges and pineapple. Ordering them food (that they may not like) from a restaurant is a waste of money, so I just packed them what I knew they liked.

More Tips for eating {healthy} on the road:
- Coolers are a must! (We just added new ice every night at the hotel, FREE!)
- Bring a knife in a ziploc bag to cut things like the tomato, etc
- Bring extra baggies for leftovers, etc
- Bring disposable plates and silverware
- Make sure to bring a can opener if you pack can goods or buy cans with pop top.
- Buy a big case of water before you leave
- If you're a soda drinker, buy a 12 pack before you leave and put in the cooler.
(all those $1.59 sodas can really add up)

How do you save money while on the road?
How do you eat healthy?
What did I miss?

Tomorrow I'll show you how we packed the boys' clothes! :)
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  1. I miss road trips with my mom and sister, they are one of my favorite childhood memories. My favorite part of the trips was the food and finding a cool place to eat it. We always packed our own cooler also. I hope we get to have fun like this with our baby boy when he grows up!

  2. Your suggestions are great! Thank you!


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