Healthy Snacks for Plane Trips

by Tammy Dray

About Tammy Dray

Aside from writing experience, I also have coaching/teaching experience, both as an writing coach (currently teaching three workshops at and an ESL (English-as-a-Second-Language)teacher abroad. I'm a certified Nutrition Consultant and fitness trainer and a longtime contributor to health/wellness publications, from Self to Marie Claire. I am fluent in Spanish and have worked as a translator and a language instructor. I also have two books forthcoming in 2008.


Some people simply give up on healthy eating as they go away. Others simply believe that you can’t eat healthy while flying. The truth is that it’s possible to find healthy snacks to have during your flight, but you might need to do it on your own. Some airlines are better than others when it comes to offering healthy fare, so call in advance to check what a typical menu is like.

For Adults

A small bag of pretzels or nuts are a good choice if you prefer salty snacks. If you want sweets, get a box of raisins or some dried fruits. They’re better than the small cakes or cookies you would get on the plane. Small snack bags are always a good choice, but skip potato chips, which are high in calories and fat. Plantain chips are a healthier option. Don’t be afraid to try something different as well. Try filling a small plastic container with snap peas, edamame or olives. For the kids you might want to stick to peanut butter and jelly for a sandwich, but you can try something different and more nutritious. Almond or cashew butter are healthy choices, especially if you choose the reduced-fat option.

For Kids

Bring snacks you know your kids will like. A plane trip is not the right place to deal with a cranky, hungry child. If your kid likes one particular type of fruit, such as bananas or pears, bring a piece of that fruit. Granola, cereal bars and low-fat mozzarella sticks are also good options. Look for individual servings of peanut butter, honey or other spreads kids might like. Bring some crackers or a few slices of bread, so you can use them with the spread as needed.


If you’re on a long flight, drink plenty of water. This will keep you hydrated and help control hunger. Although you’re not allowed to pass liquids through security on most airports, you can always buy drinks before boarding. Look for small boxes of apple or orange juice or pick a small carton of milk. Even chocolate milk is acceptable and better than getting a can of soda on the plane.

In-Flight Meals

If you’re taking a long flight, you’re likely to get meals on the plane. Depending on the length of the flight, this could consist of a main meal and a couple of snacks. Many airlines allow you to choose meals in advance of your flight. This process was instated to cater to people with special dietary requirements. For example, vegetarians or those with a dairy allergy can request dishes that fit their needs. If you choose the vegetarian option, you’re likely to receive a piece of fruit or peanuts, which are better than the cake or bread and butter that are often given as common snacks.

Photo Credits:

This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or