Buying healthy gas station snacks is actually easier than you would expect. Surprisingly, hidden among the yummy sugary treats are some great food options for you and your family.
When I have to run into a convenience store quickly, I like to buy healthy snacks that the entire family will be happy with. Why? Because food is fuel for our bodies and the healthier the snack, the better my family feels.
Now granted, I don’t recommend buying snacks at gas stations that often as the price is often inflated, but sometimes you just don’t have an option. And if you have to, there are plenty of healthy options!
You may also like: Learn how to eat healthy on a tight budget!
Curious to see which healthy gas station snacks made the list? Keep reading…
Why Get Snacks From the Gas Station?
Sometimes you are in a rush and need to grab a snack on the go, I completely get it. Sure, if you have the time you might make something like a no-bake energy ball snack, but some weeks that simply isn’t an option.
Whether you are taking a road trip across country or to your in-laws across town, there are moments of life where you need to run into the convenience store and grab something quick, easy, and healthy.
While that may feel simple, it isn’t always. Gas station stores are designed to tempt you into purchasing yummy snacks and a lot of them. Trust me, it is almost never worth it.
If you must run into the gas station for a snack, go with a plan that will help you purchase the healthiest gas station snacks.
Curious what snacks are actually available that will help fuel your body? Keep reading….
What to look For When Looking for Healthy Snacks at the Gas Station
When looking for a healthy snack, you must take the time to look at the ingredients to help you make the best decisions. Some things I always look for are
- How much sugar is in the product?
- How many servings are included?
- What is the saturated fat content?
- Are the ingredients pronounceable?
- If I am on a specific diet (like the Keto Diet), does this product contain any foods that I am not supposed to eat?
These are simple yet effective ways to help you determine if a snack is healthy or not.
How to Find the Healthiest Foods at the Gas Station
When you are looking to purchase healthy food from any store, the most important thing that I can recommend to you, my friend, is to have a plan.
Before you walk into that store, what is it exactly that your body needs? Is it protein? Is it carbohydrates? Once you know that, then you can look at the options on the list below and decide what it is that will fuel your body properly.
If you aren’t sure what your plan is, then my next advice is to simply shop the perimeters inside the gas station. Just like the grocery store, a gas station layout is designed with the healthier foods on the walls while the tasty, fattier food sits on the aisles in the middle.
Curious to read the healthiest snacks available at just about any convenient store? Keep Reading…
The Healthiest Snack Foods at the Gas Station
One of the easiest vegetables to find at almost any convenience store and the perfect healthy companion for a long car ride is baby carrots. Pair them with hummus and you have a hearty snack that won’t ruin your diet.
As a mom, baby carrots are awesome for kids as well. Not only do they help develop kids’ growing vision, but almost every kid loves them!
When they began incorporating fruit at stores in gas stations, it was a little surprising at first. Isn’t this place supposed to have junk food snacks for road trips? But when customers started taking their health more seriously, gas stations listened and began supplying lots of fresh fruit.
Grab a banana or a crunchy apple for a sweet snack that will keep you full for hours.
I love to grab a few cheese sticks when I need some protein at the gas station. They are a quick snack that will help increase your energy and keep any grumpy attitudes away.
While you’re in there, grab some for the entire family- chances are good that they will see yours and be begging for their own.
There are so many trail mix options these days- it’s kind of crazy! What’s important to remember is that not all trail mixes are created equal when it comes to being healthy.
When looking at trail mix options, make sure you check the ingredients and that the sugar isn’t too crazy.
Here’s a hint: If you want a healthy trail mix- don’t grab the trail mix with 3 different kinds of candy in it.
Raw nuts like almonds or pistachios are the perfect healthy snack from the gas station. They are tasty, filling, and will help your body run smoothly the entire day.
Hard Boiled Eggs
Hard boiled eggs are surprisingly easy to find these days at gas stations. After the Keto diet became popular a few years ago, one of the most purchased healthy snacks inside of gas stations is hard boiled eggs!
This snack is packed with protein and easy to eat fast so that you can focus on driving safely for the rest of your trip.
Most convenience stores have a section just for protein packs- which is a great thing for you. They can hold anything from cheeses, nuts, eggs, or meats to help keep you full without the unnecessary junk that a lot of snacks tend to have.
Hummus packs are great for a quick, healthy snack because they are filling and delicious. Each pack comes with a single serving of hummus as well as something to dip it will (usually pretzels or some vegetables).
Hummus packs taste amazing– but that’s not all. This snack is high in carbohydrates so you will have the energy to play another round of the license plate game.
Much like the trail mix mentioned earlier, popcorn has the option to be an extremely healthy snack. Look at the ingredients and try to avoid any chemicals or toppings (like cheese dust) that could increase the calories.
Most gas stations you can find a bag of air popped popcorn with light sea salt, which is the perfect healthy gas station snack!
Next to the candy bars (yes, we are avoiding those!), is usually a pretty decent selection of protein bars to help properly fuel your body. These days, they offer almost any flavor combination to help you curb any cravings that you may be having.
My personal favorite combination? Peanut Butter and Dark Chocolate, or course.
Yogurt and Granola
A winning combination that doesn’t get as much credit as it deserves is yogurt and granola. It is a tasty snack that most grocery stores carry that will keep you (and your hangry kids) full for hours.
Grab a fruity flavored, protein packed Greek yogurt and pour about ⅓ cup of granola on the top and mix it together. Delicious!
Plus, yogurt feeds the microbiome (the good bacteria) in your stomach so that your digestion stays on track the entire trip. Trust me, that is a win.
I get it, sometimes you are on a road trip and you need a bag of chips- that’s okay. In fact, there are healthy options to help you even with chip cravings.
If you are looking at the chip section at the gas station, try to find baked chips. Typically, they are fried in oil that is unhealthy and increases the fats by a lot. If you are looking for healthy gas station snacks, then that is not what you want!
Most convenience stores have baked chips in almost any flavor imaginable, so you are able to satisfy those cravings and enjoy the rest of your drive.
Yum I love turkey jerky! Have you had it? I can’t recommend it enough!
It has the same amount of protein as your typical beef jerky, but with much less sodium. You can look for it in the same area as turkey jerky and – I feel like I have to warn you – get extra for your kids. Otherwise, you might end up with none!
Peanut Butter or Almond Butter
This may seem silly, but hear me out. A jar of peanut butter is a great option for a healthy snack at a convenience store! For one, it is delicious.
The flavor alone is worth it, in my opinion. For another, peanut butter is the perfect snack filled with healthy fats and protein.
If they have a no-stir almond butter option like Justin’s Almond Butter, that is an even healthier option. Pair it with some apple slices or celery sticks and you are good to go!
While dried fruit is high in sugar so you can’t consume too much of it, it still made this list because of its amazing qualities. Dried fruit has a lot of vitamins, fiber, and a great taste that almost everyone loves.
From raisins to mango to strawberries, you can find almost any type of dried fruit that your family will enjoy. You can even pair it with some nuts and make your own trail mix!,
Sunflower seeds are excellent for long road trips for a few reasons. For one, removing the shells helps pass the time and, for another, they are low in calories. This is why almost every convenience store in the world is going to offer sunflower seeds!
Nowadays you can even find them in any flavor too to help kick any cravings you might have. From salt and vinegar to BBQ to even pickle– if you want it you can probably find that taste in a sunflower seed package.
There are so many benefits to coconut water, which makes it the perfect healthy gas station snack. Not only does it improve your hydration, it can improve digestion and support your liver to filter out any toxins in your bloodstream.
If you are never endingly thirsty on a road trip- grab a carton of coconut water and you’ll have more energy than ever.
In the refrigerated area of the gas station, you should be able to find a snack area with lots of healthy items- including already diced apple slices. These snacks are great! Not only is the ingredients list short (just apples!), this healthy snack is a guaranteed home run for anyone in the car- especially children.
These sweet, crunchy snacks are a dream come true for anyone rushing into the gas station for a healthy snack.
If you are looking to satisfy that crunchy, salty craving, then look no further than pretzels. Low in fat and sugar, pretzels are an ideal snack for the road.
Grab a bag for the driver and a few cups to share with any passengers. Trust me on this one- everyone likes pretzels and little kids will be begging for you to pass some back to them.
Finding healthy snacks at the gas station can feel impossible! With all of the fried food and shiny packaging, it is so easy to be drawn to the colorful candies and unhealthy fried dough.
But if you think through this list before you walk inside, you will be able to make some great food choices for you and your family.
So tell me… what did I miss? What snacks have you found at the gas station that are healthy that I must try? Comment Below!