Four trips. How to make it happen without hunger. Or gluten.

girlWe’re planning our big 2-week vacation for this summer, an RV trip through Tennessee.  I love the romantic idea of traveling down the road, pulling over at our leisure to see all the cute antique stores, finding the best family run BBQ joints, and having secluded campsites to park at overnight. I’m dreaming, of course.  Nothing goes that smoothly. But the advantage of traveling in an RV when you’re gluten intolerant is you can bring all of your favorite foods with you! 

Now, we don’t all have the luxury of traveling this way, and at the end of this year, I won’t either (the RV is just a 1 year experiment).  So if you’re traveling by car, plane, or cruise ship (lucky you!), what are the essentials you should bring with you?
Everyone will have their favorites, below are some of mine.  And please, by all means, leave comment and let us know your must-haves!

Car, day trip:

  • Water, I like mine plain.  We don’t drink much soda anymore.
  • Some type of protein munchie- nuts are great to kill a starving appetite and no refrigeration needed.
  • Gluten free crackers – Crunchmaster Multi- Seed Crackers. They can make a small snack from the gas station go much further.  Cheese stick, anyone?

Car, overnighter:


  • Just leave the water at home.  Trust me, it won’t go well!
  • I like Pamela’s bars here.  Anything you can snack on without having to ‘touch’ the food is a win when you’ve been in an airport!
  • Cheese stick, if you don’t mind them warm.
  • At the terminal, I’ll look for a fruit cup without granola.  Always look at the bottom to make sure it’s fresh.  It’s nice to have something sweet on the plane that’s not full of calories.

Cruise Ship (my preferred mode of travel):

Check with your cruise line.  Although most are getting better at working with those with food intolerances, they all handle it differently.  Even better than searching their website or talking to 4 people on the phone who don’t know what gluten is, try one of the cruise review websites.  Lots of people are looking for the same thing you are.  But just in case…

  • Bread.  Don’t try to toast it, but you can make a nice sandwich at lunch from something at the Lido deck so long as the meat is ‘clean’ (aka- not cross contaminated).
  • Crackers again- bring your favorite.  It’s a great filler between meals AND to bring on excursions.
  • When you need something more substantial for excursions, and you don’t trust the water, let alone their understanding of gluten contamination, I suggest bringing a pouch or two of ready-to-eat Tuna.  The Starkist ones are gluten free EXCEPT the Herb & Garlic flavor.  These go great with the crackers!  Try these: Starkist Tuna Creations 2.6oz Pouch  Zesty Lemon Pepper
  • A full box of Pamela’s (or your own favorite) granola bar.
  • I’m a salty snacker, and the pretzels at the bar won’t do.  I’ve brought my own GF pretzels and peanuts to the lounge.  They fit nicely into a ziplock bag.

I could go on and on about what to bring on a cruise ship.  You would think I’d get a discount since they don’t have to feed me much!

Where ever you go, just do some research and planning ahead.  When you’re away from home, it’s always good to have a backup in case you just can’t find a safe menu item.  Always ask, and if there’s doubt, just say no!

Happy trails to you!


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