The Traveling Vegan

As I’m sure you all know, maintaining a vegan diet can be quite a challenge when on a road trip and while staying in another city — especially if that city doesn’t have ready access to the ingredients you’re used to using. Thankfully, though, with a little planning (and a large cooler), you don’t have to sacrifice your diet to stay full while away from home.

My husband and I went on a small road trip this past weekend. The trip itself wasn’t that long, but we were going to be gone for two nights. We had access to a kitchen, but I really didn’t want to dirty up more dishes than necessary. We also didn’t want to spend the money on meals that were elaborate. Thankfully, with the help of some prepared foods, we were able eat fairly healthfully and cheaply. While not exactly enlightening, I thought I’d share a few tips and meal ideas that we used for eating vegan on the road:

Breakfast: Homemade muffins or banana bread are perfect because they travel well and last a while. If you don’t have the extra time to bake, bagels or cereal are a great standby.

Lunch: Again, homemade is always better, but canned soups, along with Daiya cheese, crackers and sliced fruit are always a good way to go. If you need to eat while on the road, pasta salad, tabouli and hummus, or chickpea salad sandwiches are great options.

Dinner: Casseroles that you make ahead of time are my favorite because all you have to do is heat it up when you get to your destination. Lasagna works in the same way. But if you do have to cook, basic spaghetti is quick and can easily be rounded out by mixed salad greens and freezer rolls. Veggie burgers and oven fries work well here, too.

Snacks: Cliff bars, nuts, dried fruit, bananas, homemade cookies — all pack well and will last from the beginning of the trip to the end.

The one thing we’re bad about doing is not planning for the trip back. This happened when we took a road trip to Florida last fall. That’s when we usually hit up Taco Bell for a Fresco Bean Burrito or a Seven Layer without cheese or sour cream. It’s not great for you, but it’s vegan.

What meals to you like to take with you on the road? I’d love to hear your ideas.

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6 thoughts on “The Traveling Vegan

  1. I always put hummus, avocados, peanut butter and coconut butter in a container with bread/crackers what have you so all parties can have something they’ll enjoy while we’re driving. That way when we need to stop we can find a place to play and stretch out instead of looking for a grocery store. :-)

    • You can never have too many avocados, in my opinion. I never thought to bring those along. How do you serve your coconut butter? As a spread on a slice of bread? I’ve used it, but only in a recipe, not by itself.

  2. When I travel by myself, I pack the kind of stuff I take when I go hiking- it’s all vegan because I don’t usually have access to a fridge:
    Granola bars & power bars (great for breakfast)
    Nuts/trail mix
    Peanut butter & jelly, or just plain peanut butter sandwich. I bought some almond butter at Whole Foods recently- I’m going to have to try that too
    Cut up carrots & bell peppers- usually don’t get yucky when traveling
    Dry cereal (I’ve always loved snacking on plain cereal- stuff like Rice Chex & Cheerios travels better than flakes- they tend to get smashed) Good post! I’m going to a conference for about 5 days next month & I hate to eat out all the time, so this has given me some ideas on what to pack w/me!

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