From our door to Paris with one layover, we had about 14 hours of travel time. I'm a multiple mini-meals lady, so one cardboard box of vegetarian mush on the flight over wasn't going to cut it for the whole stretch. Per request, I wanted to share a typical travel snack pack. I keep a few things in mind when packing food for the road/air. Bear with the stream of consciousness.

First off, food will likely be at room temperature for a few hours so choose items that are alright to be out awhile. This covers most vegetarian options, but worth saying. Those foods should have a good constitution - greens that hold up dressed, like kale or a broccoli salad, rice or noodle bowls packed with vegetables and sauce, wraps or sandwiches with lots of crunchy items inside. I try to keep the choices lower in salt (planes keep you puffy as is). While I am all about reusuable containers on a normal basis, storing food in plastic bags or disposable containers (I steal these from salad bars and tuck them away for circumstances like this) are easiest here. Something you don't mind throwing away or recycling. Lastly, bring an empty reusable water bottle and fill it up past the security check. Sure you get water on the plane, but I like to drink more than that wimpy cupfull once or twice a flight. It's nice to have throughout the trip as well. I loved Sarah of My New Roots recent post about travel foods too. It reminded me that I forgot to make these peanut butter bites.

This likely sounds high maintenance to a few of you, but it is totally worth the few moments of planning ahead to have fresh, light food while traveling. I went to bed at 2am the night prior but at least I had good snacks! Hugh would never take the time to pack food, but appreciates it greatly when the pretzels and peanuts have worn their welcome. Minimal bit of time invested, big reward.

sprouted kitchen

My backpack full of snacks:

kale salad: chopped lacinato kale, hard boiled eggs, parmesan, thinly sliced celery and lemon vinaigrette (extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, white of a scallion, honey, salt and pepper)

summer rolls: recipe to follow

"favorite things" trail mix: roasted/salted pistachios, montmorency dried cherries, dark chocolate chips, toasted coconut flakes

maple chocolate chip cookies: I'll post this recipe eventually, good heavens. A version of these.

good greens bars: these are the emergency snack. Most "energy bars" are full of lots of soy and crap. These have the most virtuous list I've seen. Not my first choice of whole foods focused snacks, but they don't take up a lot of space and plug up hunger when you've gone through your fresh items.

sturdy fruit: apples, bananas, oranges


I made these the late afternoon before leaving, and everything held up fine a full day later. I did not pack a dipping sauce. As you can see my snack bag was quite full as it was, and I have had sauce taken by security (what is my life?) but a peanut sauce would be so tasty if you aren't dining on an airplane.

I made used the end of my homemade sriracha, but the bottled sort works great too. Carrots and beets were the last vegetables in my fridge, a combination of sprouts, cucumber, lettuce or sweet peppers would be great here depending what you have.

sprouted kitchen


  • 6 rice paper wraps (you can typically find these in the asian section of well stocked markets)
  • 1/2 cup cilantro sprigs
  • 1 1/4 cup grated carrots
  • 1 1/4 cup grated beets
  • 1 large avocado
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked lentils
  • 1-2 Tbsp. sriracha (see note above)
  • 1 Tbsp. toasted sesame oil
  • pinch of salt


sprouted kitchen

Set up your roll workspace. You need a large bowl of warm water and a damp dish towel to work on. Set out your cilantro, carrots, beets, avocado and in a small mixing bowl, combine the cooked lentils with siracha, sesame oil and pinch of salt. Taste and adjust heat as desired. Remember this is what flavors the entire roll.

Working one roll at a time. Put the wrap flat into the large bowl of warm water, being careful to not let it curl up, until soft, about one minute. Lay the wrap down on the dish towel. Down the center, like a burrito, layer the cilantro, small handful of the carrots and beets, a few slices of avocado and a modest 1/4 cup of the lentils. Fold over the top and bottom ends over the filling, tuck the right flap over and then roll to close. Repeat with remaining wraps.

Enjoy or if traveling, store in plastic wrap for easy transport.

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Reader Comments (86)

These are fantastic on so many levels: color, practicality, health, and taste. You never cease to impress.

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterNanna

this is so great! i travel lots between italy and the states and you've absolutely covered how i pack my snacks too! the only other thing i bring is a packet of tea bags (herbal for before i want to doze off and green for the morning). can't wait to try these rolls!

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commentermarissa @ the boot

Hi there, I've been following for a while, and I am a great fun.
I like your recipes ideas and simple but effective styling.
The pics are always awesome. Full of life, colours and movement!!

I'll try this recipe whenever I find the rice paper wraps (unluckily I can't find them where I live)
Anyway, thanks for sharing, best wishes!!!


April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterRoberta

Oh wow! These loo beautiful! I've been making plenty of rolls lately but never thought to put lentils in them. I just might have to try these on my next trip... and I'm totally checking out your homemade sriracha sauce!

Those summer rolls look incredible! in fact your whole plane snack picnic looks amazing!

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJenny @ BAKE

Have you had any trouble with security? Do you declare these fresh produce/nut filled snacks at customs?

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterEmily

oh these rolls look fantastic! I would love to take that bag of delicious foods on a picnic!

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSimply Life

@Emily - they're gone by the time I get to customs. No problems yet :)

April 11, 2013 | Registered CommenterSara

Those things are addictive.

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterthecitygourmand

I love seeing others' snacks! I myself pack: pistachios, dried plums and an orange. Thanks for the tip about a virtuous bar!

I'm a lentil fiend. Truly, ask my husband. This recipe is going on the rotation! :)

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDessertForTwo

You are amazing. This is how I dream of packing for trips, but never do and end up eating crap and feeling gross. You've inspired me, yet again. And, Iove those photos of you making the spring rolls - so pretty! The colors are gorgeous. I hope your trip is so lovely. xo

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersarah

Wow, I love this idea! Airplane food is such a disappointment, these snacks would be so refreshing and delicious. To be honest, I can't wait to make the summer rolls just to eat at home! I'm definitely coming back to this post next time I have a long flight ahead.

P.S. Paris! Hope you are having a blast.

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMegan

Ha, this post made me smile. I always pack a bag full of snacks because I find plane food so utterly bland and disgusting. Mine are always raw food/veggie based (with the odd treat) and my boyfriend's always revolve around what has the most protein. Plus a few treats, of course :-) Your snack pack looks pretty much perfect, although I worry that I'd eat it all before I even got to the airport!

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterthelittleloaf

i always bring my own food when travelling- flying's bad enough as it is so you've got to make it fun with food which is tasty and makes you feel good.
Love the look of your rolls- great idea to add lentils to make them more substantial then just with veggies.

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterEmma

Oh how I love the idea of lentils in the rice rolls! I do so love these travel posts. And yes please on posting the recipe for the cookies!!!!

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterrachel

I definitely could have used these ideas on my last trip. I ended up eating mostly Pringles.

Beautiful colours, as always.
Eating well during travel can be hard! This is a good reminder...too often I find myself barely surviving on airplane pretzels and overpriced airport bananas.

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterIrina @ wandercrush

Oh now these are fabu! Red lentils inside summer rolls? GIT OUT.

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBev Weidner

Looks delicious. Lentils, great idea :) Tanja

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterT Franklin

I think I would be the happiest person alive to open my bag on the plane and pull out those vibrant lentil wraps while everyone else was eating meatloaf mush and biscoff cookies. They look superb! I am a major travel snack planner as well. I just love seeing it all laid out in the first photo and adored Sarah's post on this topic as well. I haven't tried those bars yet am going to check them out. Always looking for short ingredient list bars for traveling days, snowboarding, hiking, etc. I think I develop a 2nd stomach on travel days, eating about 2x the amount of food I normally do. :)

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

I need to travel with YOU! These snacks rock!

These rolls look really healthy and tasty!

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterami@naivecookcooks

This post couldn't come at a better time!!

These are so beautiful. I love the idea of adding lentils. I love making summer rolls. You make them look like a breeze. I have made them several times and I usually manage to make them look so terrible by the time I am done man handling them.

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBeth @ Tasty Yummies

oh my gosh, these look amazing!! i want to eat one right now.

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMegan Lane

Really wish I could've witnessed the time you got de-sauced by security. That sounds hilarious.

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commentercourtney leduc

Genius! I can't believe I've never seen a lentil spring/summer roll before because this is clearly brilliant. Must try.

I grew up on these: and since then, love the rice skins; sometimes I just eat the skins plain. Great idea to make wraps to go!

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTia Stockton

I have to say that I love all your travel tips and recipes and I used some when I flew recently and they really helped me.
Following your suggestions, I did pack some healthy snacks for the road (nuts, vegetables) but I also ordered a vegan meal on the plane which was basically a lot of fruits and vegetables - most fresh, some grilled or cooked. It was really good and I think I'll choose a vegan meal next time I fly too.


April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterElle

This looks like perhaps the best possible array of travel food! We usually bring sandwiches, a bag of nuts and dried fruit, and the ubiquitous water bottle--but I would far prefer this spread. Using lentils in a summer roll is such a great idea! I love it.

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterEileen

I always pack my own snacks when travelling. For some reason, travelling makes me feel hungrier and I don't want to submit to those salty peanuts and airport food. Not only do these rolls look incredibly colorful, but they sound delicious as well! Question: are the grated beets raw?

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKimberly

What a great post! Thanks for the idea on take out containers from restaurants. I always end up with containers that I then have to lug around with me for a few weeks. Will make these soon for sure. Hope you are having a fabulous trip!!! Enjoy! :)

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLindsay Frélot

@Kimberly - yes! Raw. So good and crunchy.

April 11, 2013 | Registered CommenterSara

Sigh. I don't think I'll ever be able to roll spring rolls that have enough integrity that they won't fall apart right away after packing them. But, these look amazing and are such a fantastic travel food idea! Happy travels. There is nothing like April in Paris!

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterEmily

Love these healthy travel snack ideas!! Thank you for sharing and inspiring... Leaving me thirsty for more with each post :) Bon Appetite!

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterShelby

paris! oh, you. enjoy every dog stencil and tiny pocket park.

i am in awe that you can do a spring roll. i adore them. mine are a mess.

also, i'd like a batch of that salad, please and thank you. right now. waiting...

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commentermolly

I love bringing my own food on the plane and, frankly, it's made so many journeys so much better. I like to bring a container that I can pitch if need be but that is sturdy enough to keep with me while I'm traveling. A sturdy plastic tub with a lid has come in handy more then once. I also love sriracha and am pretty excited to make my own. I'm wondering if you have a vegetarian sub for fish sauce? Thanks!

April 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterElizabiete

@Elizabiete - try a bit of soy sauce. Not quite as deep a flavor but will work for the salty aspect!

April 11, 2013 | Registered CommenterSara

These rolls look amazingly beautiful - thanks for sharing - I cannot wait to make!

April 12, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterfoggyland

I am all about bringing your own food on planes. This is absolutely wonderful...

April 12, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJade Sheldon

This is one of my favorite things to eat and so much fun to make. So healthy! Yours look beautiful.

April 12, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJustina

I would have been the one sleeping in but these snacks are completely worth the lost few hours of sleep. I can not stop thinking about you guys on your trip! I'm dying to hear about your adventures.

April 12, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Thanks for the light and healthy recipe. The rolls look great. I've never had lentil rolls. They can be great tea-time snack too. I'll make them tomorrow.

April 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAmy Renold

This is a great post and I love these summer rolls! Happy to see they incorporate that yummy sriracha. I hope you're having a lovely trip and big congrats on the Saveur nomination. xoxo

April 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterWinnie

Your summer rolls look superb.

April 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDenise | Chez Danisse

Thanks for this we have a trip to Tokyo coming up, roughly 12 hours, while food on Air Japan is better then it's American counterpart. The boredom of the flight makes me what to snack. And I would love to it healthy! This is the prefect tip at the perfect time. Thanks.

April 15, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterE Grace

I love using rice paper wraps for quick on the go snacks, this is such a great recipe! Thanks for sharing ;)

This looks so delicious!!

I have made these twice in the past three days with my boyfriend and other friends. They are so delicious! We also added wild shrimp to a few of them! They are very tasty, healthy, and fulfilling - thanks so much for the recipe!

April 15, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKarina Nagy

This is an outstanding picnic, I would be delighted to have this at any time but more so on a plane when the food is usually disappointing. I will absolutely make a note of this spread, thank you!

April 15, 2013 | Unregistered Commenteranna @ annamayeveryday

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