If there is one passion I have beyond cooking and eating, it is traveling.
In just one week I will be on a plane with my husband, heading for the tropical paradise of Kauai. It has been a dream of mine for many years to visit this Hawaiian island, and since my best friend is currently living there, I knew that this was the perfect opportunity. The only bummer about this incredible dream coming true? Oh, the 38-hours it will take to get there from Copenhagen. Yikes.
Yes, I love traveling, but I am not a huge fan of the in-transit time. Hauling luggage around. Layovers. Crowded airports. Until I actually arrive at my destination, I have my blinders on and my head down in total survival mode. You’d think for someone that travels as much as I do I would be used to all the schlepping by now, but I don’t think I’ll ever be in love with the line up at customs. It’s just not happening.
One thing I have happily mastered in all of my travel experience is the business of food. Just because I am in survival mode doesn’t mean I am eating questionably edible, pre-packaged sandwiches from the vending machine. No way. When this foodie is on the road (or in the sky), she comes fully prepared from door to door!
I take great pleasure in preparing my food for trips, and although it takes a little planning, am I ever chuffed cracking open my Tupperware of thoughtfully made salad, crackers, dip, and dessert, while other passengers are munching on mystery meat. More often that not, I end up sharing my meal with my seatmates, as they always ask about what I have with me. This leads to many great conversations – sometimes new friends – and I bet I’ve convinced more than one person that raw chocolate is better than their mini candy bar.
I posted a picture of my in-flight meal on Instagram during my last trip to Lisbon and the response was surprising: you want to know what to eat on the go! I am very happy to share my easy-to-make recipes that travel well if it means you’ll avoid schwaggy snacks eaten out of desperation too.
Now, I know that the list seems really long, but keep in mind I’ll be in transit for over an entire day and a half! And I eat a lot. And the last time I checked there were no restrictions on how much food you can take on a plane, just what you take.
Here’s what I am bringing with me on the epic trek across planet Earth:
Rice and Beet Salad (recipe below)
Roasted Garlic and White Bean Dip (recipe below)
carrot and cucumber sticks
banana and pears
Simple Gourmet Granola
Mango-Cashew Sunshine Bites (next post!)
Here is what I’ve learned about traveling with food.
1. Pack foods that don’t need to be refrigerated. This one is obvious. All of the above items are fine out of the fridge for at least 24 hours. Soft cheeses, meat, and melty things are not the best choices.
2. Pack foods that will maintain good texture. I chose to make this rice and beet salad because the veggies will maintain their freshness and crispness throughout my journey. I find that all plane food is pretty one-note when it comes to consistency: mushy! I like to crunch on my food, so packing carrot sticks, cucumber, bell peppers, apples, sprouts, rice cakes, and crispy granola are always a safe bet. If you are going to eat greens, stick to romaine. Spinach, butter lettuces, and mixed greens wilt and get soggy. Also, pack foods in a specific order in your containers. With the rice and beet salad, you’ll notice that the rice and beets are on the bottom, while the romaine and cilantro are on top. Mix them all together just before eating and they will maintain their crispness for sure.
3. Pack foods that are easy to eat. I find sandwiches do not always fit in this category. If you do make a sandwich, keep the fillings small and non-liquid-y so that they are not oozing all over you when you take a bite. Sometimes I like to take a wrap with me because I can roll it up in a piece of parchment, which prevents dripping. Oranges and grapefruits are a bad call because they often require a hand washing. Also, don’t take foods that require knives as you can’t bring anything sharp in your carry-on, and you may have to wait for the food cart to come around before you can get your hands on utensils.
4. Be considerate. No one wants to sit beside Mrs. Garlic n’ Onions. Smelly cheeses, curry, and cooked cruciferous vegetables can stink up an entire plane with the flip of a Tupperware lid. The bean dip I made uses roasted garlic, which is far mellower and less offensive than raw garlic. The beet salad is rather inoffensive as well – the main smell is mustard, but it’s very mild. If you know that you’re about to drop a stinky food bomb, be thoughtful and eat when everyone else is so at least your smells are covered up by everyone else’s meal.
5. Avoid liquids. This is a no-brainer these days, but if you are going to take any kind of dip through security, make sure it can be turned upside down and not budge – think mashed potato consistency. It also really depends on who your security team is and what city you are in. Sometimes I get my hummus through one airport but I’ll be forced to toss it at the next one. It helps if the dip is not in a container with a weight or volume measure on the side and if it’s accompanied with veggie sticks, as pictured. If all else fails, playing dumb, smiling ever-so-sweetly and begging are seriously effective tactics. Remember, this is survival.
The following two recipes are very simple yet have been thoughtfully created for traveling.
The Rice and Beet Salad supplies you with whole grains for fiber, beets for cleansing your liver if you do choose to have a mini bottle o’ wine with your meal, walnuts for omega-3, cilantro for pulling heavy metals out of your blood, and romaine lettuce for vitamin C to ward off the flu from the dude sitting next to you. This salad has a high water content to keep you hydrated, and feeling like a human being when you land, instead of a zombie. The Roasted Garlic White Bean and Tarragon Dip is flavourful, high in protein and fiber. The roasted garlic won’t be as offensive as raw garlic like in regular hummus. It is also much thicker than regular hummus so that you can get it through security!
Prepare the salad and bean dip well in advance of leaving for your trip – the day before is ideal. You need to make sure all the ingredients are cool before you make both dishes, so that they will keep for many hours outside of the fridge. If they are warm when you leave, they may spoil en route.
Rice and Beet Salad
½ cup short grain brown rice (won’t get mushy in the dressing like long-grain varieties)
1 cup water
2 medium beets
½ head romaine lettuce
1 small bunch cilantro (or flat leaf parsley, dill)
handful of walnuts
Honey-Maple- Mustard Dressing:
1 Tbsp. cold-pressed olive oil
2 tsp. mustard
1 tsp. maple syrup
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
pinch sea salt and cracked black pepper
Whisk all ingredients together. Season to taste.
1. To roast beets, wrap whole unpeeled beets in foil, and place in a 400°F / 200°C oven for 30-45 minutes, until tender. When cool enough to handle, unwrap and slip skins off.
2. While the beets are roasting, rinse the rice, combine it with the water and a pinch of salt in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer and cook covered, for about 45 minutes. Let cool.
3. Chop beets into large chunks and toss with half of the dressing. When rice is cool, toss with the other half of the dressing. In your container, lay the rice in one half of the bottom, then the beets on the other half.
4. Chop romaine and cilantro and place on top of the rice and beets. Sprinkle with walnuts. Cover and store in the fridge right until you leave the house.
Roasted Garlic White Bean and Tarragon Dip
1 head garlic
2 cups cooked white beans (navy, cannellini, butter etc)
1/3 cup shelled sunflower seeds
zest and juice of 1 organic lemon
1 Tbsp. cold-pressed olive oil
1 tsp. maple syrup
5 Tbsp. chopped fresh tarragon
sea salt to taste (this will depend on whether or not your beans are salted)
1. To roast garlic, cut the top off the head to expose the cloves beneath. Drizzle with 1 tsp. olive oil and wrap tightly with foil. Let roast in a 400°F / 200°C oven for 30-40 minutes until soft.
2. Cook beans if using dried. Let cool completely. Canned is fine.
3. In a dry skillet over medium heat, lightly toast sunflower seeds. Remove from heat.
4. In a food processor pulse sunflower seeds until ground. Add all other ingredients and blend until smooth. Season to taste. Store in a container in the fridge until you leave the house.
Help with Jetlag
Jetlag is a serious bummer. When you finally get to where you are going and all you want to do is sleep is incredibly frustrating.
The secret to combating this very common affliction is staying hydrated and avoiding those things that cause dehydration. I’ll share with you my own little tips that get me through every time. In fact, I rarely suffer from jetlag at all.
1. Drink tons of water. The circulated air on planes is incredibly dehydrating. Drink as much as you can the day you are traveling before you get to the airport. Take a bottle with you on the plane and have the flight attendants refill it often, or ask if you can have their 2-liter bottle for long-haul flights. They usually give me one, as they find coming to my seat every hour to fill my bottle annoying.
For every hour you are flying, drink at least 500ml / 17oz. of water (I aim for double this). This sounds like a lot, but it helps more than anything else. Yes, you may have to pee a lot, but it’s good to get out of your seat anyway.
2. No alcohol, coffee or tea. Yea, yea, I’m a big party pooper, but I say this in your best interest. Alcohol and caffeine are also dehydrating, which will exacerbate any feelings of jetlag you may have. Save the celebrations for when you actually get to your destination instead of suffering through a jetlag fueled hangover. The worst!
3. Limit or avoid the plane food. Meals on planes are heavily salted and/or sugared
because food tastes blander at high altitudes. To dilute both salt and sugar, your cells excrete water and send a thirst message to your brain saying they need more fluids. Wine does not help the situation. Nor does a cold beer, an iced tea, or coffee. Drink water on the plane only, and stick to high water content fruits and veggies. If you are going to be eating on the plane, order a vegetarian non-diary meal in advance – it’s your best bet!
Preparation for Coming Home
As a final detail, if you can plan ahead to your home coming, it will make the end of your trip a lot more pleasant. For my last meal at home I make a large pot of soup or stew and cook extra to freeze so that when I arrive back I have a meal waiting for me to heat and eat. It seems like a small thing, but when I get off the plane tired and needing a hot, nourishing meal, I know that there is one waiting for me when I get home without any fuss.
I hope that these recipes and lists of travel tips will help you on your next trip. Bon voyage! And I’ll see you when I am back from paradise…Peace out winter!
187 thoughts on “Recipes and Tips for Healthy Travel”
I’ve always had health problems when taking long trips, but your recipes will now be helpful to me. I’m so grateful that you shared these with me.
I like your food tips. I need to get a new recipe. I’ll have to look for ones on lasagna.
I made this and it was delicious. I didn’t have rice so I used lentils instead. Thank you for this recipe. I do have a question though. How do you get through TSA with food?
Hi Daphne! There have been a few close calls but as long as I steer clear of anything too soup-like or anything that could be considered liquid I haven’t had any problems. It’s always a gamble I’m willing to take for my own food… good luck and happy travels!
If there is one passion I have beyond cooking and eating, it is traveling.
In just one week I will be on a plane with my husband, heading for the tropical paradise of Kauai. It has been a dream of mine for many years to visit this Hawaiian island, and since my best friend is currently living there, I knew that this was the perfect opportunity. The only bummer about this incredible dream coming true? Oh, the 38-hours it will take to get there from Copenhagen. Yikes
We went form Copenhagen too! It was pretty brutal, but totally worth the long haul! Enjoy your trip – you’ll love it there.
xo, Sarah B
I have used these recipes several times and love them, thank you! I just noticed that the dressing is called “Honey” Maple Mustard dressing. Is the honey just an alternative to the maple?
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Good article I just bought a lot of books and tips on healthy living, while traveling I bring a lot of healthy foods as well instead of instant food. After reading this, I am more excited than ever! Thanks for the helpful tip! netpolis.nl
Wow this such a great post. It’s very healthy recipes and tips. Thanks for sharing it. Keep it up!
I always follow my healthy routine while travelling…. I’m gonna add some more from your post.. 🙂 btw Thanks for sharing this article with us 🙂
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Thank you for the great tips. One question, how about baked vegan lentil and brown rice burger that has been frozen. Is it safe to bring that in the plane and let it defrost at room temperature and eat it? I have a long haul flight, 25 hours.
With thanks! It is an great web site.
I am a flight attendant and always looking for decent food to take. Also smoothies that are easy to pack. There is a great insulated travel food bag we are able to purchase and can put freezer gel packs in to keep food cold. Also, I was also able to purchase a very small travel blender for the smoothies. So far TSA has been ok with the mechanical parts!
From a fellow Canadian in US
Thanks so much for a fabulous site that I came upon by accident.
hi sarah! i’m looking at planning a trip to hawaii and was wondering if you could recommend some vegan/vegetarian restaurants with good wholesome options? thank you x
I just saw your comment and I used to live on Oahu. If you’re going there you must check out Down to Earth. It’s a local grocery veg grocery store with lovely hot food bar and a veggie burger I still day dream about!
Also if you get a chance check out the Kapiolani Community College farmers market. It’s bonkers! There’s a raw foods booth that has the most amazing crackers and dip! <3
Lastly, I don't know if it's still there but Blue Tree Cafe on Kapiolani Blvd has vegan, raw and gluten free options!
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I flew to Berlin-Singapore and I did all of the above and I must say- full on SUCCESS! I got a big bottle of water, drank 3-4L, ate my own food (gave my veggie order plane food to the kid next to me who was so confused as to why I was eating carrot and cucumber sticks and granola bars- also your recipe! aaaahmazing) and can honestly say I have NEVER felt so good after a 15hr travel. WITH NO JETLAG. thanks for all these tips- you are the boooooomb!
Congrats to Chelsea!
Hi Sarah, how many cloves is 1 head of garlic? Also, can I use vacuumed packed organic beetroot instead to speed up time? Thanks;)
Whenever traveling for business, don’t let trip be the reason for slacking off on physical work out or selecting unhealthy food. I would like to thank you for sharing such helpful tips for travelers, great to read whole content.
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I was under the impression that TSA here in the United States still restricts bringing in food that is not pre-sealed and pre-packaged past security screenings. I checked the TSA website and it seems as though they still do not allow this. How are you able to bring your homemade meals with you past security? Is this allowed when traveling in Europe? I would really love to do this as I find I respond very quickly to how I eat while traveling – low salt, more veggies, etc. The lighter I can eat and the more water I can drink, the better I feel and the less tired I feel from travel.
Hello Sarah! I had a question about preparing the garlic for the Roasted Garlic White Bean and Tarragon Dip. It sounds like you are leaving the skin on before you cut of the heads and roast? Do you also leave the skin on the garlic when placing into the food processor?
A security guy once had me step aside and mix my cut veggies with my runny hummus and tell him it was a salad. Then he let me through.
I am a flight Attendant. We are not catered with enough water to give out A huge bottle for everyone. It’s not a grocery store, we run out of things. Take empty bottles thru security and fill them up on the other side. or buy them past security.
That was fabulous, thank you for all the wonderful tips! We are up for some traveling soon and so I will be putting this all to good use.
Other than having food waiting at home, any tips for the return trip?
These tips and recipes are great, thank you. As I rationed my water intake on my last trip I realized that I may have to change from being a window seat person to being an aisle person…
Thanks again. Cheers!
I’m blessed to have wonderful and healthy options at O’Hare, and I’m constantly reminded of that when I travel to other cities. However, these options gave me great ideas. I’ll definitely try the bean dip as I love anything savory to snack on in transit.
I’m about to leave for LA on Tuesday and am definitely going to take your advice and make my own lunch!
One question: I’ve been searching your website for the name of the Vegan restaurant in LA that you visited, but can’t find it. If you could pass on the info, I’d be very grateful! Thank you!
i made the beet salad, the bean dip, and the sunshine bites not for travel, but for a weekend seminar where we had no access to a fridge or microwave. it was perfect! the dressing on the rice and beets is just perfect. i love how you snuck in that the garlic and the beets roast at the same temp for the same amount of time – simplifies the prep! i actually doubled the beet salad recipe and left some for my husband – he loved it too. definitely a keeper. the sunshine bites were cute (i love putting turmeric in everything!), but i think i used too much mango and should have added 2 tsp brown rice syrup. they lacked the punch that i love from my cacao-date-almond butter bites. maybe i’m too much of a chocoholic. the bean dip was different – the store didn’t have tarragon, so i used sage, and i should have skipped the maple syrup. it was just a bit too sweet. it did oxidize quickly, like guacamole – maybe i should have sprinkled it with lemon? thank you sarah, for an inspired and all-around useful post!
Thanks for sharing these tips. It seems you need to be more prepared when you have a strict diet.
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Nice recipes! A tasty snack can certainly help get you through a nasty layover, and 3 month old chips from the vending machine aren’t my cup of tea.
Cooking while traveling could prove to be difficult for some. Thanks for posting these helpful tips.
I clicked over from Heather Bullard’s post today, & though this would be an “eat this, not that” kind of post. Oh, this is SO much better. Thank you
for all of the recommendations! And enjoy, enjoy your trip to Kauai!
This is wonderful! I travel lots for work and am always trying to figure out what I can take with me. Plane food is horrible!
Thanks for this good tips. I tried the bean dip and it’s awesome, I really enjoyed it! thanks!
We just got back from a trip, and I took 101cookbook’s Moroccan carrot and chickpea salad (http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/moroccan-carrot-and-chickpea-salad-recipe.html) with us. Fortunately, the place we were staying had a mini fridge in the room so I took one container for the trip out and one for the trip back that I left in the fridge while we were there. Kale salads work well too.
One other note: if I want something with a liquid dressing, I put it into a (clean!) small lotion/makeup container (the kind you can buy for taking liquids through security) and put it in my quart bag of liquids to go through security. It works perfectly!
A very informative article. Thank you for sharing your knowledge.
Thank you for this article. It was a great read.
I love this post! I need to travel soon so I can make the delicious beet salad. Thanks so much for the great tips.
yum! wish i knew about all these delicious recipes last week when traveling to costa rica. i ended up making quinoa and hummus. love travelling with my own snacks.
The post you shared is very informative. I admire your work. Wish you all the luck for all your blogging efforts Sarah 🙂 Happy cooking and happy travels!
Made that bean dip yesterday! Delicious! With that lemon taste! hmmmm!
But I was wondering, I know the nutritional value of chick peas, what are they of white beans?
Thank you for sharing your travel tips! I do just the same…
I always make a little quinoa / veggie combo packaged in a nori sheet.. So gooood
Also I bring an avocado with sunflower seeds and chill flakes!
And the good thing about bringing tupperware on holiday, is that I fill them up with some fresh veggies to snack on while being on the road, or need a snack while wondering around a city! Great to have on hand!
Maybe some inspiration for your next travel?
Congrats on your trip. I just got back from Hawaii, as was my first time too. Although we were lucky enough to grab us a non-stop flight from Chicago for about 8.5 hours of flight time, I did not drink enough water. When we landed and I went to put my shoes on they barely fit and it hurt so bad. I attribute the all the swelling to not drinking enough water. Very very important during long flights.
I was not aware that we could bring our own food through security. Will have to check on that next time I travel.
I love the beet salad idea, only problem is I am the only one in the family that likes them. Maybe I will try growing some this year in the garden… Thanks for the inspiration.
Love the dressing on the beet salad! Can’t wait for the sunshine bites recipe.
A friend passed this along to me and this is wonderful information! I have celiac disease and prefer to eat mostly vegan/non-processed food so finding food while traveling can be challenging. I have a question for you. What do you do for your trip back? That always seems to be my biggest challenge. I usually can find some fresh fruit and bring that with me, but preparing veggies or a salad isn’t usually an option. Thanks in advance!
THANK YOU so much for this advice! I’ve got a mammoth trip next week, Valencia Spain to Montreal Canada, I dare not to work out how many hours that is. I am loving the ideas of pears and home made granola- thanks for inspiring me to do something this weekend. x
Just stumbled upon your site and love it!
These recipes are so helpful not just for planes but other long trips as well. I can’t wait to try your Mango Cashew Sunshine Bites. It sounds delish!
Great travel tips! I too overpack (food) when traveling, just in case others wish to share in the veggie goodness! Safe travels to our island paradise, and if you are coming to Oahu it would be a pleasure to meet you! You are one of my culinary heroes, inspiring my cooking, teaching and blogging. aloha, andrea
Oh, you’re a lifesaver. I love travelling but loath the flying for this very reason! I’ll definitely be trying these next time I fly. THANKYOU!
Two other helpful things i’ve learned in the air: An avocado is a packable, high calorie, low fuss, amazingly good plane food. Slice it in half before you leave and get the seed moving, hug with a rubber band, then scoop out the fruit with a spoon. For the dehydration problem, bring a thermos and fill it with boiling water at one of the coffee shops at the gate. When you open it (carefully) during the trip, the steam provides a mini-sauna for your eyes and nose.
Can’t wait for the Mango Sunshine bites recipe.
I was flying out of Kauai December 2011 with some amazing homemade gaucamole for my plane ride home (with organic avocado’s from the tree’s in the backyard of where I was staying – yum!). At the airport, I had to say please about 300 times to get it through. While eventually they let me have it (after doing a test on it) the very kind gentlemen suggested freezing it the night before so that it was SOLID when going through. I have since done this and always been allowed to take on any borderline consistency items. It opens up more food possibilities without the risk of having to throw it out! Mmmm enjoy the bounty!
What beautiful ideas! Raw kale also seems like it would be a nice travel salad as it is so firm. You will fall in love with Kaua’i! I’m headed back to my home in Maui in just a week! Also a magical island with a growing healthy food scene. Safe travels 🙂
Thank you so very much for this highly informative post! I sincerely appreciate all your travel tips and suggestions and, of course, your recipes. I made the bean dip today, and oh my, is it ever delicious! Thank you, again. 😀
Love these recipes and will definitely be trying them for my next trip! One question … what do you eat on the long way home?? That’s something I always struggle with, especially if we have been staying in a hotel without a kitchen … 🙂
What a wonderful post! Your recipes are perfect for a looooooooong day at the library! And will hopefully keep me away from the candybars….Thank you so much for sharing! And have fun in paradise 🙂
Lots of love!
Such great tips, thanks!! I do Norway to Australia (36hrs+ from start to finish) every year and must say it´s getting harder as the mouths to feed increases. We have found food thermoses to be essential travelling partners. I find the kids make better travellers when getting some sustenance so the extra effort is well worth it. Have a great holiday!!!
Happy travels! I love the photo of all the travel-goodies on white. So pretty. 🙂
One of my fave things to recover from travel is yoga – I recommend checking out the Yoga Today podcasts on iTunes for some great, short, free travel series, like ‘yoga for insomnia’, ‘yoga for the weary traveller’, ‘calming vacation sequence’, ‘evening wind down’, etc. I may or may not even do them in airports sometimes … 🙂
Thanks for the great tips for beating jet lag. I guess my problem was not drinking enough water. I will definitely drink more!
OMG whatever Mango Cashew Sunshine Bites are they sound absolutely incredible. Must. Have. Now!
Thanks for the helpful post. In two weeks we are travelling from Hungary to Seychelles with our 3 year old daughter.
I will surly prepare the Rice and Beet Salad, but do you think I can replace rice with quinoa? Quinoa is my new favourite and I eat whenever I can. 🙂
Thanks so much for this timely post! We are only flying from Chicago to Florida next week but we will be flying from 9am-12pm and will have an hour drive once we arrive. Today I made the bean dip, crackers, and granola and will prep fruit and veggies tomorrow night before we leave. We should arrive satisfied and ready to start our vacation without having to worry about finding food the second we arrive!
The roasted beet salad sounds amazing and I can’t wait to see the recipe for the mango cashew bites! Thanks, as always, for the inspiration!
These are great tips, and I love your honesty, that you, too, get your food tossed by security. Last time I went through security in San Diego the guy stuck his finger in my chicken salad to make sure it was ok. Lovely. You will love Kauai! If you like pizza, Brick Oven Pizza is the best – definitely worth the splurge. Have fun!
I don’t have to travel too much, but when I fly from London to NYC to visit relatives I now always take my own food. How grateful was I for the lentil salad I’d packed when my flight home was 4 hrs late?! I’m pretty sure the whole JFK departure lounge was giving me envious/hungry looks while I tucked into that. One thing you do need to remember is to eat all your fresh fruit before landing (in the US at least), or you’ll be forced to throw it away.
I was in your Ayurvedic cooking class in March 2012 in Copenhagen and am reminded of all the tips we shared on traveling. I just did an informational speech on the same topic. Glad we share the same passion for traveling with food and health in mind! Have a great trip 🙂
Thanks-greats tips! I have an additional one: I often travel on overnight-flights, and I have found that many airports have showers and even saunas. Paying a dollar for a shower in transit (with scrubs, hairmask – you name it) – before or after the flight (or both!) – really makes the jetlag less heavy. So does yoga, by the way – I am sure you know!
This post could not have been better timing! I leave for a 3 week trip to Peru in a week. Like you I travel a lot but the more I travel the more I dislike the in-transit period. I used to find flights exciting but after doing upwards of 20 flights a year I find them exhausting! I’m looking forward to the mango bites post!
Great ideas for travelling without getting sucked into “airport food” or worse!! Coming from an Australian perspective these recipes are a little complicated by the fact that you can’t bring any food into Australia without declaring it, and generally only processed food like chocolate is allowed. Once you reached Australia (a very long flight!) any of the food that is left would be thrown in the bin along with the container. Also as someone else noted, the rice salad sounds delicious but rice left out of the fridge is a major source of food poisoning. Cooked rice should be refrigerated at times. There are ways around this of course, just pack food for the first leg of a long trip or use a small ice pack.
Thank you, thank you, thank you! i’m flying to the States from Copenhagen this summer and have been thinking alot about how to deal with the food situation since the flight company (Iceland air) don’t seem to have anything vegetarian to offer. I didn’t even consider it possible to bring your own food but thanks to your tips I now can start planning what to bring. 🙂
So excited for your travel – Kauaii is beautiful! Hanalei Bay is worth the trip, regardless of what part of the island you are staying on. Thanks for the food tips – I’ll be traveling for a day and a half in a few weeks with two small kids and will be sure to pack some of these for the plane!
Perfect spread for happy travels!
Love Love Love your blog… Tell me what kind of containers do you use. By the photo it looks like glass, thou it would be heavy and hassle once there empty. Any ideas? Thanks again for your inspiring recipes and beautiful photos. Cheers~
Great tips Sarah, in this season of my life I don’t travel much but I do take lunch to work. Have you a trick for carrying pears? I find they bruise very easily.
Have a fabulous time.
Such great advice and tips, Sarah! I will keep them in my back pocket for my long flight back to LA in 5 months; in the meantime, I am totally making that white bean & tarragon dip. Sounds DIVINE.
Fantastic post Sarah! Love your tips for pre and post travel. I wish I was sitting next to you on the plane! x
Great tips Sarah B.! I hope you have a terrific vacation. I can’t wait to see the amazing photos : )
My boyfriend and I actually like plane food. I like the little trays. We went to Thailand last year and Emirates has a large variety of vegetarian meals, so I tried a different one for each meal. I like the oriental meal, it’s way more interesting than the standard meal. We got upgraded to business class for one of our flights and strangely the economy food was much better.
Fabulous ideas! Have a safe trip and I can’t wait for the recipe for the mango-cashew bites! YUM! ~Angela
Oh, Sarah, I love you. What a wonderful, wonderful post! Thank you! And have the most wonderful time in Hawaii!
Those are some great ideas! I have to confess that I’ve never really gotten into packing my own food for travel since I always have so much work to do getting ready to leave. I usually just don’t eat much on the plane (unless it’s British Airways, which has good food) and aim for the healthiest dining options on concourse that I can. Things are getting a lot better on that front–last Christmas when I flew to England my lunch was organic tomato soup with whole wheat sourdough bread. I do try to drink lots of water as well as get moving as much as I can, and that tends to help me feel better. For jetlag I sometimes use melatonin, a natural sleep aid, to help get my sleep cycles back on track.
Thanks for great tricks!
Great travel tips! Thanks for posting! Just don’t forget to be careful about how you store everything. Of course, you need to make sure the food stays crisp and fresh, but be careful of what you are putting it in! I just picked up a new book, Health On Your Plate, and it has some really eye-opening info about how you store your food.
Looks delicious! However, it may be a bit misleading to suggest keeping some of these items unrefrigerated for an extended period of time. For example, rice can be one of the most dangerous items when kept at room temperature. Perhaps I missed something and you carry ice packs, or do something else to prevent spoilage?
I’m not travelling anywhere in the next while but I will definately keep this post in mind for my next trip. I guess all these treats would also be great for a picnic. Winter just doesn’t want to end here in Austria. have a great time in Hawaii!!!
Loving these reminders for healthy and happy travelling, Sarah. The whole thing about having a meal waiting for you at home is SO key. And woohoo to Kauai vacation fun time! 🙂
This is seriously one of the most useful posts I have read in a really long time, and one of the funniest, I could not stop laughing of the very recognisable on-flight-food-stituations, lol. I am an idiot when it comes to bringing all the wrong things with me, liquid, smelly stuff, slacky veggies, you name it I’ve been there. So this summer when Bali and Shanghai are calling my name, I am SO definitely gonna bring some of your awesome snacks and send my love and gratitude while indulging my home made treats on my way to paradise.
Thank you for being who you are and especially for sharing it with all of us.
Gratitude & Sunshine from a fellow danish foodie
And great post! I am really looking forward to your next post on those mango treats 🙂
I adore traveling – and spending last year in Europe just solidified that love! That being said I definitely could have used some of these tips. I did learn a bit about travel prep, and came up with a few tricks of my own.
Also random – if those are glass containers I see (the ones with the salad and veggies), where did you get them?! I do not like to use plastic if I can avoid it, and am looking for some good, bowl-sized containers.
Sweet! I always bring apples and nuts when I am on the go. And this gives me lots of inspiration for more 🙂 !! Lovely and so inspiring.
Thank you so much for sharing this! It’s perfect since I’m leaving Toronto next week to return to my home city Copenhagen – and I’m really not a fan of the food they serve on board the flights. So thanks again for sharing – I’m totally bringing my own food this time:-)
Heading off to Australia from France on a hefty 24 hour flight in a few hours. Been juicing my way through everything in the fridge but still got too many carrots and a cucumber left. Bean dip, genius!!! Thank you clever woman.
You will love Kauai! We vacationed there 2 years ago and, hopefully, going again this summer! So many farmer’s markets, you can shop for fresh produce everyday. Bring along a few cloth bags for your purchases, shops on the island have banned all bags, plastic bags, yay! Recycling is also very big in Kauai. Lots of great food, gluten free too, Hanalei Pizza Co., now also in Piopu, and there’s a nice health food store, Papaya’s, in the Kauai Village (Safeway) Shopping Center in Kapa’a. Have a great time! Going out of town in a few weeks myself, always a concern, gluten free, sugar free, so thanks for the delicious ideas. Photos always so tempting!
*Reminder, can’t take fruit or vegetables into or out of Kauai. Eat the goodness while you can!
First of all this post makes me want to jump on a plane and travel travel travel! I was already planning on ordering a vegetarian meal next time I take a plane, but bringing my own food actually sounds way more interesting and fun and healthy. The drink-water advice was actually the only thing I was already doing, but I can’t wait to bring some improvement to my next trip! Thank you so much for this very helpful post, have a great time in Hawaii!
Oh I looooooove all these snackies. I’ll eat ’em now, cool?
Great picture: makes my mouth water right away!!
But one big question: how do you deal (especially on the trip that you wrote about: into the US with onward flights beyond your port of entry there) with the US agriculture regulations that forbid any kind of fruits, vegetables and as far as I know also grains beyond their borders? It can become as expensive as $ 3.000,- or more to bring something that they don’t allow into the US and even a banana that you were carrying around for several hours (but that got eaten before entering) can make their “food-dogs” sit down beside your bag!!
Thanks for the ideas..always have a tough time trying to keep snacks while travelling healthy!
PERFECT timing on this post! I’m flying to Hong Kong today and needed some advice on what to pack!
I love this post! I often think of my vacation starting as soon as I hit to road or airport and splurge on foods I normally wouldn’t (Starbucks lattes, yogurt parfaits…). I like this idea of using travel time as an opportunity to try new healthy “travel foods” recipes, and you’re also saving money for the actual destination! 🙂
So incredibly helpful! Leaving for a trip on Monday, and I’ll be bringing the beet and rice salad for sure.
You are such a freakin genius!
Great post. I also find hummus hot-or-miss, so now I just don’t bring it. If all else fails, I add it to my checked baggage.
Awesome thank you so much! I am also like you – love to travel but hate the actual travelling itself. Although I do enjoy a road trip. I will be following these tips next time 🙂
These are such great tips Sarah! Especially the one about being prepared for your journey home. All stores are closed in Germany on Sundays and although I’m quite good at preparing for flights (even for short flights I always pack an apple, a mix of nuts and goji berries and some dark chocolate), I still haven’t learned my lesson apparently as many times I’ve gotten home from a transatlantic flight to find an empty fridge and maybe a rotten lemon or two.
And I totally agree. The only thing worse than airplane food is the food that they sell in airports. A lot of people seem to not know that food is allowed on planes (because of the whole liquid situation I guess), so I hope that this post means that on future flights I’ll see more people munching away on homemade delights. Another revolution perhaps?
And I can’t wait for that Mango-Cashew Sunshine Bites recipe. Enjoy paradise! Hopefully spring will have finally made it to Europe when you return.
My boyfriend and I recently drove from Pennsylvania to Tennessee (and back), and I did my best to pack healthy foods to eat along the way so that we could avoid desperately scarfing down Wendy’s chicken nuggets. For our lunch, I packed the Moroccan quinoa salad from Green Kitchen Stories, which was delicious and traveled well. Unfortunately our timing got thrown off by the snowstorm that hit the east coast last week, so the smoothies I had made in advance and kept in the freezer until our journey thawed too soon and wound up getting thrown out. Live and learn!
This is brilliant! I spend half of my time travelling for work and I am about to fly from London to Vietnam so these recipes will save me on the long flight.
I am changing my diet and your blog is such a support and source of inspiration to me …Keep it up ! Love, Hanna
Thank you, Sarah, for the wonderful tips. You kept your word. 🙂 I will be traveling by car for 11 hours next week and this will be as useful on a car as it is on a plane (minus the altitude).
Have a lot of fun on your trip !
Oh my Kauai! Well worth the travel time! One of my favorite parts of my trip there was the farmers market; “apple bananas” still hold a very special place in my food memory! Enjoy, and if you can find an excuse to get stuck there indefinitely no one will blame you!
Thanks for this. I’ve just spent 6 weeks in Madrid and leave to go back to Amsterdam tomorrow. One of the things I can’t wait to do is cook again in my own kitchen. Even though we’ve had a kitchen the small size, lack of oven, and lack of spices has been tough. Although I love Spanish food, as a vegetarian it has been a challenge to eat well. Cheers for great food and great travels!
Great timing! Next week I am flying from Reykjavik to Rio with my 3yrs old daughter and I’ve been wondering what treats to take with us. Thanks!!! 😉
This is very helpful, thanks!
it makes me feel less crazy and control-freakish (my friends words) cause I bring my own food wherever I go (which i do constantly :))
Very nice !! thank you !!