How to Eat Real Food on a Road Trip

Tracking PixelThis information about the best way to eat real food on a road trip has been sponsored by Fazoli’s®. All opinions are my own.

Real talk: when you’re going to be on the road for over 14 hours, the last thing you want to do by the end of the journey is to see another fast food joint. And guess what? You really don’t have to. After over a decade of driving down the Gulf Coast from our Kansas home, my family has perfected the art of eating real food on the road. By real food, I’m talking about great food with fresh ingredients. If you’re over the fast food lifestyle, here are a few tips to help you eat fresh food on the go.

Bring Your Own Food

One of the best ways we’ve been able to eat real food on the road is to bring it ourselves. If we’re embarking on a long journey, one of the first ways we prepare is to pack a cooler and a box full of healthy snacks. Fresh fruit and vegetables are usually at the top of our list.

Our favorites include:

  • Mixed nuts
  • Dehydrated fruit (bananas, papaya, and pineapple are all delicious in dehydrated or dried form!)
  • Fresh melon, pre-sliced and bagged for easy cleanup
  • Grapes
  • Celery or carrots and pre-portioned dips like peanut butter or ranch
  • Homemade granola bars
  • Water
  • Sliced meats and cheeses for topping crackers

Skip the Bagged Stuff at the Gas Station

Rest stops and gas stations can be packed with pre-packaged candies, chips, and other treats. However, more and more are now offering fresh foods like fruit cups and salads. Skip the stuff in brightly colored bags on the shelves and head over to the section that has the freshest selection for those quick road pit-stops.

Select Fast Casual Restaurants with Quality Ingredients

Our favorite place to stop on the road, hands-down, is Fazoli’s®. Over the years, we’ve been big fans of it, but recently they’ve shaken up their menu to include natural ingredients.

Now, the entire menu is 100% free of any artificial colors, sweeteners, preservatives, or flavors. That means that when I stop into a Fazoli’s® restaurant on the way down to our condo, I know my family is getting real food, real fast, that has real Italian flavor. Plus, it’s priced reasonably, which is great for our large family.

One of the best ways to stay full on the road and avoid having to stop too often is to make sure you’re fueling up with the right foods, rather than just grabbing any food.

Seeking out options with higher protein (so a good meaty dish) is helpful, and choosing a salad to help start the meal can help fill you up. The longer you’re feeling satisfied, the fewer stops (and gas station temptations!) you’ll have to worry about.

At Fazoli’s®, you can actually make your food a meal by adding on a salad and drink. Of course, if you’re dining in, they do have unlimited breadsticks, too.

The food is perfect for picky eaters, too, because they have a dish that you can totally make your own by choosing the pasta, meat, and vegetables you like best! My mom is not a fan of pasta sauce at all, so she was able to get her dish completely sauceless.

My dad, on the other hand, is all about the sauce, and there was a great meal with meat sauce available for him, too!

The real treat, though, is knowing that I can feel comfortable with what I’m serving my son. Knowing that his pizza was made with natural ingredients was a big deal to me, and it’s part of why I’m really careful about where my family eats on the road. I love knowing that it’s real food.

And don’t worry if you’re not wanting to waste a lot of time at a pit stop for your meal. Fazoli’s® fast casual atmosphere means you aren’t compromising your schedule in the pursuit of natural ingredients and affordability. Fazoli’s® food is served up quickly, at prices you’ll love, and in flavors you’ll enjoy.

In the pursuit of freshness, Fazoli’s® worked with over 50 suppliers to completely eliminate 81 artificial ingredients as part of its Naturally Italian incentive. Instead, you’re met with fresh vegetables, creamy sauces, and delightful pasta that is made the right way, with natural stuff, and that’s what matters!

There are even some great options for those of us who have a little sweet tooth. When I’m on the road for 14 hours, I like to have a little something sweet to get me through the journey!

When it comes to road trips, you don’t have to just stick with the same routine. By taking time and care, you can have natural options on the road for your family. Pack fresh snacks before you leave. Make positive choices at rest stops. And, select restaurants with natural ingredients for your meals. This will ensure you’ll have a great time on the journey, at least when it comes to eating well.

What’s your best tip for making positive eating choices on road trips?

Let me know in the comments below! Don’t forget that you can grab $3 off of a $10 purchase the next time you’re at Fazoli’s® with this coupon. You can learn more about Fazoli’s®, including finding the locations that are closest to your road trip route, by visiting their website.

More Road Trip Tips

Great road trip snacks
End-of-Summer Road Trips from Kansas City
Spring Break Travel Tips that Will Save Your Sanity


This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Fazoli’s®.

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