18 Gluten-Free Snacks to Take With You

Curb your hunger pangs with snacks that travel well without refrigeration

gluten-free trail mix
Gluten-free trail mix with M&Ms makes a great take-along snack. Nancy Nehring / Getty Images

One of the challenges of a gluten-free diet is being able to get your hands on a healthy, tasty snack when you need one. Although you'll see many snacks that are labeled gluten-free, finding something can be tricky when you're at work or school unless you plan ahead.

Here are some ideas for snacks you can keep on hand for when you get the munchies, and for places you can go to find a gluten-free snack if you're caught hungry and empty-handed.

Easy Take-Along Gluten-Free Snacks

These snack ideas are shelf-stable, needing no refrigeration. You can stash them in your car, desk, or bag and pull them out when you need them.

Gluten-Free Snacks That Need Cutlery

You'll need at least a spork for these:

  • Canned fruit with flip-top lids
  • Individual cups of applesauce or fruit cocktail
  • Snack packs of nut butter (Justin's offers gluten-free single serving packages) plus gluten-free crackers

Gluten-Free Snacks That Need Refrigeration or Heating

If you have a microwave and/or can store foods in the refrigerator, you can broaden the list to include:

    You also can pack yourself a cooler with a freezer gel pack to keep food cold, if you're going out for the day and want something that needs refrigeration.

    Gluten-Free Snacks from Restaurants and Coffee Houses

    If you have celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity you need to make a special effort to make sure you have enough safe food to eat with you, since it can be difficult to find something on the spur of the moment. However, some fast food and coffee houses now carry gluten-free snacks, ranging from safe french fries to pre-packaged gluten-free chips. It also helps to know what is gluten-free at Starbucks and at Dunkin' Donuts so you can be prepared with what to expect to be available.

    Snacking While Traveling

    Travel, of course, requires some additional considerations.

    • Airport: If you're traveling by airplane, you'll have significant restrictions on what you can legally bring through airport security. Unfortunately, many of the above snacks—especially the refrigerated snacks—will get tossed in the garbage by security personnel because they're considered liquids or gels. Fresh fruit and chips, crackers, and cookies are allowed, as are energy bars.
    • Car Trips: Car trips are easier, since you can plan entire meals and take a large cooler. But if you're planning a long road trip, you might want to consider booking an Airbnb or hotel room with a kitchenette so that you can cook along the way. Alternatively, you can take a camp stove, but be sure to follow all safety precautions to prevent fires or carbon monoxide poisoning.

      Regardless of your mode of transit or how long you plan to be out and about, it never hurts to stash something edible in your bag or car. You never know when you'll get delayed and hungry.

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