If you’re a parent, chances are you’ll be spending more than your fair share of time in the car this summer. Between road trips, driving to camp and other summer activities, it may be a smart idea to keep your car stocked with munchies for the kids, and for you!

The last thing you want is something that will go bad or melt into a sticky mess in the hot summer sun. Here’s a list of nutritious, kid-friendly snacks that won’t melt in the car, so you can always be prepared when hunger hits.


Look for brands made with just popcorn, oil, and salt. Although flavored popcorn is tasty, powered cheese covered fingers and cloth seats is not a good combination, and sweet flavored popcorn will get sticky and melt in the sun. If you’re making your own, try a sweet or spicy recipe from the Luvo blog.

Trail Mix

Look for brands that combine nuts and dried fruit sans chocolate, which won’t stand up to heat. You can even make your own and store it in snack bags. I usually use a combination of 3 parts unsweetened whole grain cereal, 2 parts nuts, and 2 parts dried fruit. Here are a few allergy-friendly recipes you can try.

Freeze Dried Fruit

Fresh fruit won’t do well in the car if left for too long, but freeze dried fruit makes a delicious crunchy and sweet snack. Mango, strawberries and blueberries are three of my personal favorites.

Banana Chips

Another delicious and crunchy fruit snack to keep on hand. If your kids prefer something savory, look for plantain chips.

Whole Wheat Pretzels

For fiber and crunch, you can’t beat whole wheat pretzels!

Single Serve Nut Butter

Turn pretzels, banana chips or crackers into a more substantial snack with single serve nut butter. The single serve tubs may be a bit easier for kids to eat unassisted than squeeze packets.

Unsweetened Applesauce Cups

I love to serve these topped with crumbled graham crackers.

Fruit and Vegetable Squeeze Pouches

Shelf stable fruit and vegetable pouches are a great way to squeeze in (pun intended) some nutrients into snack time.

Beef Jerky

Although beef jerky is too tough for younger kids, older ones will enjoy this protein rich snack. Look for all natural beef jerky or make your own!

Energy Bars

Your best bet are energy bars made with nuts and dried fruit. Energy bars made with grains and nuts held together by honey will likely melt, as will anything coated in chocolate.

Roasted Chickpeas

A protein and fiber rich snack that will satisfy! If your kids like potato chips, they’ll love the salty crunch of roasted chickpeas, try this delicious recipe.

Tuna Salad Kits

With crackers and everything you need to make tuna salad, these kids are perfect for the car, but you might want to pull over for this one, since the last thing you want is tuna water spilling in your car in the summer!

Water Bottles, Coconut Water and/or Fruit and Vegetable Juice Boxes

Don’t forget about hydration! Mix up your usual water routine with this list of unique and hydrating plant waters or try one of these spicy water recipes.

What are your favorite snacks for summer? Share your comments below, and be sure to download Luvo’s 7-day meal and fitness plan for more nutrition tips and recipes.

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