Pre-packaged foods aren’t usually a popular topic when it comes to healthy eating. If you’re like me, you instantly think about Gushers, Dunk-A-Roos, and Lunchables. All delicious items… but not exactly super foods. The problem is that sometimes pre-packaged food is a must. Forgetting lunch and you can’t leave your desk, so you hope you have something (literally anything) in your desk drawer. Traveling and spending hours on the road or on a plane, so you don’t want to eat a million bags of Delta mini pretzels. Going out of town for a week and you know the best options include pizza and donuts, so you want some snacks to help stay on track. For all of these reasons and more, I have figured out my favorite pre-packaged items that live in my desk, purse, car… everywhere.
Bars are my go to snack. They are easy and last for quite some time. I stick to Larabars and Tone It Up Protein bars. Larabars are made mostly of fruits and nuts. This keeps them super flavorful, naturally sweet, and full of protein. I also like that they have lots of dessert flavors. Chocolate chip cookie dough, apple pie, and chocolate chip brownie are some of my favorites. Since they remind me of dessert, they usually help the sweet cravings when everyone else in the office is eating cupcakes during happy hours. Tone It Up Protein bars have more of a carb-ish (is that a word?) base, which mentally makes me feel like they are a meal replacement. Blueberry Coconut is definitely my favorite, and is such a good breakfast flavor. These are my go to for a quick breakfast or lunch when real food isn’t exactly an option. Whatever type of bar you like, I just recommend keeping one in every bag you own.
Justin’s Almond Butter
Who doesn’t love nut butters?! They’re so yummy and delicious and creamy and a treat. Justin’s makes that are perfect for traveling and storing for emergency hangry moments. I often use these when I’m still hungry with a planned meal. That may mean adding peanut butter to the top of muffins, on an apple, or with some toast. This means the individual servings also go well with food you find on the road. I often grab a banana or fruit from a hotel or make some not so good hotel oatmeal and mix in almond butter. Then there is always the option to just eat plain almond butter because that is great too.
I discovered these delicious apples at the LaGuardia airport. Such a normal place to be food shopping. Anyway, I was starving at the airport and facing a sea of pizza, burgers, and candy bars. I just wanted real food that wasn’t a whole meal. Is that really so hard in an airport?! Well, yes, it is. I picked these up once I saw that they were apples. I mean, at least that was a fruit. The coolest part is that they have all normal ingredients and taste delicious. It is so hard to travel with and keep fresh produce, but this gives you produce anywhere! I now look for these in airports and pack them for trips whenever I can!
These little oatmeal cups are one of my favorite easy breakfasts. Probably because they are so versatile. I can make one at home and top it with fresh berries. I can make it at work and eat it at my desk. I can take it with me on trips to have as a hotel breakfast. They are just so easy! All these cups require is hot water… and that is easy to get just about anywhere! I may or may not have used hotel Keurig machines to get hot water into these cups. Regardless of where I am, I can make some delicious oatmeal.
There are times in life I just want chips. Something crunchy and salty to snack on. My go-to option would be some tortilla chips and queso, but that is not always the best option. Chickpea crisps help with these cravings and provide some protein. The plain flavor is the best when it comes to nutrition, but I am a big fan of ranch flavored options. The flavor helps me pretend I’m really eating some chips.