“Grocery Store Helpers” Come in Handy When Traveling

by | Jan 3, 2020 | Tips And Techniques | 0 comments

“Grocery Store Helpers” Come in Handy When Traveling


Can one continue to eat well on the run without a kitchen?
Here’s one strategy this chef uses, especially when on the road.

On a recent trip to Minnesota, I was reminded of the challenges of eating well when routines are upended. Although I enjoyed several wonderfully healthy meals, the visit took an unexpected turn which presented some inherent food challenges.

One resource I find particularly helpful when traveling is what I call “Grocery Store Helpers”. Grocery stores offer many delicious snack and meal options that are easy to take out and greatly support the desire to eat well. I make it part of my travel routine to stop by a grocery store soon after arriving at my destination to pick up a few things. This approach helps me feel and function better during my trip and also lowers my overall food costs, which is an added bonus.


Making Better Choices

It’s so easy to fall into the quick and easy routine while traveling – grab this here, try this there. Yet, that leaves me feeling tired and run down rather quickly. With the goal of continuing healthier eating habits while traveling to maintain energy, good health, and wellbeing, it’s important to avoid highly-processed foods. Having a treat here and there can be fine, but for the majority of the time, I concentrate on foods that –

  • provide high nutrient value
  • have little or no added sugar
  • are low in sodium
  • are low or minimally processed
  • are made with real ingredients (real food), avoiding additives


From the Produce, Refrigerated Sections, and Center Aisles

You may be surprised by the number of healthier fresh and ready-made options available in the produce, refrigerated, and center aisles of the store. Here are a few examples:

  • Cheese + Whole Grain or Rice Crackers
  • Veggies + Yogurt dip, Hummus, or Tzatziki sauce
  • Salads + Vinaigrette
  • Guacamole or Salsa + Tortilla Chips
  • Seasoned Chickpeas
  • Yogurt and Kefir (dairy or non-dairy varieties)
  • Nuts and Seeds
  • Nut Butter + Whole Grain or Rice Crackers or Apple Slices
  • Fresh and Dried Fruit
  • Hard-boiled Eggs
  • Pickled Vegetables
  • Soups
  • Whole grain or gluten-free buns or pita
  • Snack Bars
  • Plain Water or Sparkling Water
  • Green or Herbal Tea Bags


From the Deli Counter

The deli section in grocery stores and co-ops offers a variety of ready-made options including vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free. Some that I find particularly good are:

  • Indian Entrees + Brown Rice or Quinoa
  • Build-A-Bowl + Brown Rice or Quinoa
  • Grilled or Sautéed Meat, Fish, Seafood
  • Roasted or Grilled Veggies
  • Whole Grain Salads
  • Green or Vegetable Salads
  • Deviled Eggs
  • Soup and Chili
  • Rotisserie Chicken
  • No added sugar, low or non-processed meats, such as turkey or chicken
    (I make roll-ups with mayo, hummus, or tzatziki sauce + spinach, super greens or grilled veggies.)



Have an idea of a grocery store item that would help support healthier eating while traveling? Share it in the comments section.


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