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Travel food

We will be going on a 3 week road trip with kids to the National Parks. We want to bring food, BUT won't have access to a fridge, micro, or stove. Any ideas on lunch and dinners that we can have without refrigeration? I don't want to be on PB&J the whole trip!! We will bring a cooler to keep a few things in but I don't know about access to ice either. HELP is appreciated! Thanks

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  1. Is it food for lunches, or suppers as well? will you have any cooking equipment with you?

    1. lunch and supper. We will be staying in the cabins in the park and you aren't supposed to "cook" in them. I have heard ideas to bring an electric kettle so maybe we could do that. I guess we could bring a camp stove and find a place outside to use that? We will also be staying in "camping cabins" along the way that are basically just cabins with beds - no bathroom, etc.

        1. Beef jerky or any jerky. Jerky is full of protein and is compact. Of course, jerky shouldn't be your only meals, but they are great compact foods, especially for snack.

          1. Isn't ice readily available in camping areas? It might be a little more expensive than at hometown grocery stores, though.
            The deli counter at some large supermarkets might have salads and sliced meats available for quite suppers. And our neighborhood Safeway has hot soup -- have you considered taking thermos bottles? Or even an inexpensive microwave?
            Friends of mine take an immersion heater when they travel, and therefore are able to make tea, coffee, hot oatmeal cereal, instant soup...
            What is the main motivation for wanting to bring your own meals? Economics or food allergies, or...?

            2 Replies
            1. re: KarenDW

              The main reason is economics. There are 6 of us. Also, the reviews of the park food are not great at all, so I hate spending more money on sub-par food. I am thinking of taking a micro and will look into the immersion heater.

              1. re: skemaj

                You do want to avoid the foods at the parks - they are WAY overpriced and not that good - Captive audience, kwim?

                Even a cold bologna sandwich and chips would be better. Go with prepared fruits, cut up vegetables, chips, crackers, dips, cheeses, granola bars, sandwiches. Good ideas on the dehydrated, jerky as posted above. If the weather is warm, depending on when you go, foil wrapped burritos can be heated up on the dashboard.

                You said your trip is going to be three weeks? At some point, you'll need to re-stock not just on ice but on perishables as well. Don't forget the easy stuff like cold cereal and milk or yogurt. I'd be more concerned about how you're going to get clean dishes than a menu. Good luck and let us know about your agenda!