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10 Healthy Snacks to Pack When You Fly

Packing healthy snacks for an airplane is not that much different than packing healthy snacks for a car, train, or bus ride BUT there are definitely a few things you may want to know!

First let me remind you that I have a one year old daughter on the West Coast:

Those Cheeks.jpg

With Grandparents that live on the east coast:

Grammy and Grammpy.jpg


(OH, I am SO getting in trouble for that one… but really who could resist?! How cute are they?)

So I do quite a bit of flying these days!

If there is one thing that I can say with certainty about flying and eating it’s this: It’s really hard to find “clean”, fresh foods in the airports and on the planes.  I’m not saying that it’s impossible, but it’s hit or miss and not something that I like to rely on.

So my solution is to pack my own snacks!  (You can check out my “Let’s Eat on a Plane” post to see what I packed on my last trip.)

But before I get to the snack list, I want to give you these few flying reminders:

  • No liquids.  Don’t waste your time or your money, you are not getting your own beverages on the plane (unless you buy them once you pass security).
  • No foods that are “gel-like”. So don’t pack things like yogurt and cottage cheese! I did however bring some baby food and they let me take that on.

Now on to my top 10 list:

1. Nuts. You can’t go wrong with nuts. A little healthy fat and a little healthy protein all in one. They are easy to pack, don’t require a cooler, and are really satiating.

2. Dried fruits. Sweet and satisfying, dried fruits like apricots, mangoes and prunes are a great way to help avoid the candy section at the airport!

3. Trail Mix. Try making your own by combing your favorite cereal with a handful of nuts, some dried fruit, and a few chocolate chips (so good!).

4. Oats. Oatmeal is the perfect plane food. Simply pack your dried oats and then all you need is a little hot water and you can have a warm, nourishing, breakfast right in your plane seat. Add a few nuts and some dried fruit and you will be the envy of the plane!

5. Granola/Cereal. Same idea as the oatmeal but instead of water ask for milk!

6. Fresh Fruit. Okay, so now I’m making you work, but there is nothing better than some fresh watermelon or a crunchy apple mid way through the flight!

7. Chopped Veggies. Not only delicious and nutritious but a great way to deal with boredom munchies on the plane not to mention they help with hydration.

8. Protein Pancakes. I know! I never thought of this myself but thanks to one of my readers, Deborah, I will be trying this next time I fly! It’s a perfectly balanced, all-in-one snack.

9. Jerky. I know not everybody is a fan, but this family is! An easy way to get a little protein into a “world of fast-food carbs” when you’re on the go!

10. Water.  Sorry, but you have to shell out the five bucks for a bottle of water from the airport if you want to stand any shot against that recycled air, dehydration that takes place on the plane.

And don’t forget that you can always pack a bar if all else fails!

And my last and final tip when it comes to “food and flying” is this: Eat Breakfast at home.

Have a nice big breakfast with some high quality carbs, fats and some protein too.  An fast and easy choice would be a whole grain breakfast cereal with fruit, nuts, and 1% milk! This alone can set you off on the right foot:

Do you guys have any favorite flying foods?? I’d love ot hear about them in the comments!!

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8 comments on “10 Healthy Snacks to Pack When You Fly

  1. Hey Dani!
    Katie has gotten so big, she’s so cute!
    Here’s a tip my SIL shared with me, take your empty SIGG bottle to the airport and fill it up at the water fountain so you don’t have to shell out $5 for a bottle of water after security.

  2. A comment on #10 – we’ve taken to bringing our own Sigg water bottles EMPTY, with the caps off. Then we fill them once past security. We’ve done it several times now – never a question.

  3. With regard to the water.. why don’t you bring an empty water bottle with you? You can then fill it up with water from a drinking fountain once you get past security.

  4. Lindsey, Brian, and A Geeky Mom – Clearly I have been out of the loop on this one! What a clever idea:). Not only do we get to save money BUT we are helping the environment too!! THANK YOU!

  5. Hint from a couple old timers…you can bring an EMPTY water bottle or thermos through security and fill it at a water fountain or have it filled at any of the food stands or restaurants….we do it all the time. and you can also bring through any of the small dry flavorings for water like Crystal Lite…cheers!

  6. When my Mom comes to visit, I send her home with a little bento, too. Airport food is just nasty, as well as overpriced. I like to pack cheese and crackers, nut butter, spple slices and pretzels, wraps, pasta salads, and mini bagels sammies. Trader Joe’s carries little individual portions of goat cheese and ridiculously cute individual bries, now. I wrap a bandanna or cloth napkin around the little container furoshiki style. It makes a nice placemat…the tray tables always look a little scary. When my daughter was that age, I’d thread cheerios on dental floss and make a necklace that I’d hide until she melted down. Then I’d slip it on me, put her in my lap and let her bite them off. Weird, I know. But, anything to keep her quiet midflight.

    • It doesn’t sound weird at all! It sounds inspired, creative, and delicious!! Thanks for sharing all of your ideas:)

  7. I just flew to Kansas City and took a PB&J sandwich and an apple. Natural PB and sugar free jam/preserves do the trick. I wish I had known about the empty water bottle but I did fill up before the flight and had two glasses while on the plane. Felt great by the time I arrived.

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