Travelling with a tot can be an adventure in itself, but keeping them fueled with healthy and convenient snacks can feel like an additional challenge. Long stretches in the car, aeroplane delays, and unfamiliar routines can disrupt mealtimes, leaving little ones cranky and hungry. The key is to be prepared with a selection of travel-friendly baby snacks that are both nutritious and enjoyable.

Planning for Success: Prepping Grab-and-Go Bites

A little forethought goes a long way when it comes to packing travel snacks. Consider portion sizes and choose items that won’t spoil easily or create a mess. Snack pouches filled with cut-up fruits like apple slices, pear wedges, or grapes are a refreshing and vitamin-rich option. Dried fruits such as raisins offer a concentrated burst of sweetness and fibre, but be mindful of sugar content, especially for younger tots.

Packing for Different Age Groups

When selecting snacks, it’s important to consider your child’s age and dietary needs. For babies starting solids at around six months old, pureed fruits and vegetables in squeezable pouches are a mess-free and convenient option. Yoghurt melts, or freeze-dried fruits and vegetables can also be a good choice for this age group, but ensure they are soft enough to dissolve easily in the mouth to prevent choking.

As toddlers explore new tastes and textures, snacks like puffs, round-a-bouts, and yoghurt sticks provide a satisfying combination of crunch and protein. Whole-wheat crackers with cheese slices or mashed avocado offer a balanced blend of carbohydrates and healthy fats. Remember to choose puffs and crackers that are easy for small hands to grasp and sized appropriately to avoid choking hazards.

Beyond the Crunchy Classics: Exploring Variety

While crackers and fruit pouches are reliable options, a little variety goes a long way in keeping young taste buds engaged. For older babies and toddlers, homemade veggie sticks like cucumber or sweet potato cut into finger-sized pieces are a healthy and hydrating option. Hummus or mashed avocado can be offered as a dipping sauce, providing a creamy texture and a boost of healthy fats.

Dehydration Heroes: Keeping Tiny Travellers Topped Up

Dehydration can exacerbate crankiness in young travellers. Offer a spill-proof sippy cup filled with water or diluted fruit juice throughout the journey. Frozen formula popsicles are a fun and hydrating treat for older babies and toddlers. Consider including a reusable straw for older children who may not have mastered the art of sippy cups yet.

Taste Tests before Travel

Before you set off on your trip, do a few taste tests with the snacks you plan to bring. It’s no fun discovering that your toddler hates the flavour of a new snack when you’re miles away from a convenient stop. Plus, familiar foods can be comforting for toddlers in new environments.

Beyond the Basics: Treats on the Move

While sugary snacks should be limited, there’s room for occasional treats. Homemade energy bites made with rolled oats, nut butter, and mashed banana provide a satisfying burst of natural sweetness and complex carbohydrates. Freeze-dried yoghurt bites offer a melty, probiotic-rich treat that’s perfect for on-the-go snacking. For older children, small portions of dark chocolate chips or trail mix (avoiding nuts for those with allergies) can be a welcome indulgence.

Allergy Awareness

Always be mindful of allergies when preparing and selecting snacks. Many toddlers are sensitive to foods like nuts, dairy, and gluten. If your child has specific dietary restrictions, seek out specialised snacks that meet these needs without compromising on taste or nutrition. Many brands offer excellent hypoallergenic options that are safe, wholesome, and delicious.

Keeping It Clean: Sanitation on the Go

Travelling can expose little ones to new germs, so maintaining proper hygiene is crucial. Pack a small bag of wet wipes for easy cleanup after messy snacks. Consider bringing along a small, refillable hand sanitiser for older children who can learn to use it independently.

Remember, it’s essential to maintain a watchful eye over young children during mealtime to minimise the risk of choking hazards. Additionally, be conscientious of any allergies your child may have and select snacks that align with their dietary needs. When starting on long journeys, ensure snack freshness by packing a cooler bag with ice packs. To keep things tidy, consider bringing along a container for used wipes and leftover food scraps, preventing any potential messes.

By planning ahead and making a variety of healthy and delicious baby snacks, you can ensure that your little adventurer stays fueled and happy throughout your travels. With a little creativity and preparation, you can transform travel days into delicious adventures filled with tasty discoveries. Remember, a well-nourished and happy traveller makes for a smoother journey for everyone involved.

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