10 Healthy Snacks for the Gluten-Free Traveler

I was relaxing and minding my own business when suddenly the flight stewardesses began to offer overpriced $10 mini snacks. I watched the cart roll closer and took a look inside: Pringles, cheese and cracker trays, sandwich boxes, pretzels, candy, etc. My hunch was correct: I could choose between a gluten treat, a sugar rush, or a sliver of an apple so small I would question whether anything was consumed. I seemed to constantly find myself in the same situation where one moment I am full and content and the next I am hangry, as I watch the other 200 passengers munching away.

Hangry: The state of being so hungry that if any soul dares to talk to you or look in your direction, it’s quite possible you’ll lurch out in a fit of anger.

I looked down at my empty tray, searched inside my empty bag, and realized I would have an empty stomach for the next four hours. It was going to be a long flight.

After a few hangry flights, long car rides, and hiking adventures later I realized I needed to make some changes in order to find both gluten-free and healthy travel options. It took a little trial and error while also accepting the fact I had to start planning ahead, but I am proud to say I have reduced my number of hangry travel adventures. Below are a few travel tips and healthy gluten-free snacks that have proven to satiate hunger on the go.

Almond Energy Balls via Food Faith Fitness

Plan and Prep Ahead:

If you have chosen a gluten-free diet, it is important to accept that you must change your lifestyle. Grabbing random snacks and eating whatever is around is no longer an option. It is important to both plan and prepare you snacks ahead of time in order to keep hangriness at bay and ensure you are getting the most from your travels.


This falls into planning ahead because crossing your fingers that your friend’s favorite restaurant has gluten-free options is not always the best way to travel. Researching gluten-free places and snack spots will ensure you always have a back-up plan, and a place to recommend to your travel companions.

Sharing Is Not Always Caring:

Because you can’t just pick up any protein or granola bar, be a bit mindful about how quickly you offer up your gluten-free snacks. Your travel buddies might be able to grab a bite at the local snack shop a few miles ahead, but your next meal might just be that protein bar. So after giving away my snack options one too many times in the midst of an adventure, I have learned to talk to my friends about why I have a random stash of GF food in my backpack/purse, while also trying to carry a few regular bars for them.

image via Jennifer Causey 

Gluten-Free Travel Snacks:

  1. Sliced Veggies: Sliced veggies in mini snack bags are always a healthy choice. Try baby carrots, sliced celery, or cucumbers.
  2. Fruit Bags: Snack bags filled with sliced fruit are perfect to pack for a long trip ahead. Apples, grapes, and clementines are some of my favorites.
  3. Chip Alternatives: If you’re looking for something salty but healthier than the regular potato chip, below are good GF alternatives:
    1. Veggies straws
    2. Baked banana chips
    3. Sweet potato chips
  4. Trail Mix: Picking up mini GF trail mix bags or making your own batch at home proves to be a healthy snack option that will last in your purse or backpack.
  5. Yogurt Raisins: Healthy with a sweet coating for the times you are looking for a sugary snack.
  6. Mini Bag of Nuts: Always a good source of protein and to fill you up on the go.
  7. Protein and Granola bars: Below are a few of my favorite protein bars. If you’re in a jam and need a meal replacement to hold you over, try one of these protein bars:
    1. Quest Bars
    2. Think Thin
    3. Luna Bars
    4. Kind Bars
  8. Rice Patties with Almond Butter Squeezable: Spreading a rice pattie with a squeezable almond butter packet is a great source of protein to keep you going.
  9. Strawberry Banana Fruit Leather: Kind of like a fruit roll-up, but healthier and easy to stash in your purse
  10. 75% Dark Chocolate Bar: Just in case your friends grab dessert and you want a treat of your own.

*Rice Crispy Treats via Starbucks: A bonus snack! There seems to be a Starbucks cities all over the world, so if you are pass a Starbucks while exploring a new city know that their rice crispy treats are always a gluten-free option you can throw in your bag for later.

Oatmeal Cookie Granola via One Lovely Life

I hope are able to use some of the above gluten-free snacks on your next travel adventure—bon voyage!