Residents of Berkeley can literally go in any direction when they feel it’s time for a road trip. From here one can go north to Portland, Seattle or Vancouver; east to Yosemite, Las Vegas and Lake Tahoe; west to Ocean Beach and various locations in San Francisco; south to Santa Barbara, Los Angeles and San Diego. The list goes on. And one of the best parts of the trip, besides the wonderful, unchanging scenery of hills and deserts, is the food taken along for the ride.
Since it’s road trip season, we’ve thoughtfully put together three road trip food packages — all with their own perks and drawbacks — for you to take along your journey because the journey matters as much as the destination.
(Note: this list was compiled ideally for two people on a trip the distance from Berkeley to Los Angeles and can be adjusted accordingly.)
Package No. 1: “Light and delicious”
Coffee, sunflower seeds, dark chocolate, blueberries, grapes, cherry tomatoes, mandarin oranges, Chex Mix
Nothing sucks more than feeling groggy in a long car ride. This package will give you plenty to snack on while feeling light and energetic throughout the entire ride so you can sing and dance to that summer road trip playlist while chatting away with your friends.
The constant chewing you have to do while eating sunflowers seeds has been known to keep you awake, with coffee playing the same role. Blueberries, grapes and cherry tomatoes are all small enough to eat in one bite and without leaving any residue anywhere. The Chex Mix can fill you up when you feel hungry and dark chocolate is there for your sweet tooth.
Package No. 2: “I don’t care about my health, I just want a good time”
Coffee or any soda and sugary drink of your choice, Hot Cheetos and your favorite selection of chips, sour candy, beef jerky, gum, chocolate bars, water
Your favorite snacks are essential to a great road trip, where you can just eat nonstop because chips are so addicting and there’s not much else to do. You can start with those potato chips, and once they get too salty, you should switch over to some Sour Patch Watermelon candies, and once that gets too sour you can balance the sourness with the sweetness from a Twix bar or Kit Kat. Once you’re full you can stop eating, maybe take a nap and repeat the process when you wake up hungry — maybe some beef jerky this time instead of the potato chips, though.
Take water, because you will get thirsty.
Package No. 3: “Wholesome and full”
Banana/dried fruits, sandwiches (cut into halves or fourths with a toothpick down the middle) or a cheese and ham croissant, iced tea of your choice, pretzel chips, baked sweet potatoes, juice box or Capri Sun
This package is like a picnic, but in a car. It’s great if you want to eat a decent meal without feeling too full because you’ll have to sit for a long period of time. Bananas make you feel full, and a cheese and ham croissant is easy because you don’t have to worry about things falling out. An iced tea will keep you feeling refreshed and light and when you want to snack, you can munch on pretzels for less sodium than potato chips. Baked sweet potatoes are great for fullness and a sweet tooth, and a juice box or Capri Sun are not only convenient, but also will help you adjust your portions.
If none of the three packages sound appealing, I would suggest simply going to a liquor store or local 7-Eleven and picking the first five things that catch your eye. Or you can always go to the closest In-N-Out Burger, the classic road trip stop.
Contact Christine Lee at [email protected].