On Sunday, I traveled from Washington, D.C. to San Diego, California. While I usually plan ahead and pack snacks so I don’t have to forage for healthy airport food, the 4:20 am text message from United telling me that my 12:22 flight was three hours delayed “due to awaiting aircraft” set me off kilter as I scrambled to rebook to a different itinerary so I could make my dinner meeting.
I did pack a small bag with granola bars, almonds, and packets of Starbucks Via while I was talking to the United agent, but apparently I put it back in the pantry instead of in my bag! So, here’s a look at the relatively healthy food I found at the airport, and the other things I ate during my very long day.
When you figure out at 5:15 that you need to leave the house for your business trip at 6:30 instead of 10:30, that doesn’t leave much time for breakfast. I sucked down two cups of coffee and had two of these breakfast cookies with a schmear of peanut butter to get me to the airport and through security.
I was at the airport when I realized that I had forgotten my snacks (and called my husband to confirm). I had grabbed a yogurt just in case TSA would be more lenient in the TSA Pre-Check line, but it triggered a “bag check” and was confiscated. 🙁
There was a Starbucks near my gate and a newsstand with the usual convenience food snacks. Since I had planned on eating one of these crunchy peanut butter granola bars from my stash of snacks, this is what I went with for my first relatively healthy airport food meal.
While I was at Starbucks, I also picked up a packet of this Evolution Harvest nut and seed mix with pecans and pepitas. I nibbled on some of these on my first flight to Chicago, and ate the rest on my second flight to San Diego.
It was weird flying into Chicago without actually being on my way to Chicago. (I usually avoid flying through O’Hare at all costs!). It was even weirder when Chicago looked like a sunken city in the low clouds!
I had a two hour layover at O’Hare and was ready for some real food. Most places were still serving breakfast, and this bacon and egg sandwich sounded good. It qualifies as relatively healthy airport food because I got it on wheat bread instead of a giant “croissant” and skipped the cheese. 😉
Before boarding my next flight I stopped at a newsstand for more snacks, in case the in-flight lunch options were not appealing.
I ate one square of this Godiva dark chocolate bar while waiting for our plane to take-off, but never got around to the Cliff bar because there was an Asian chicken salad on the menu that sounded good.
I was pretty disappointed at the small portion of chicken, but the salad mix was much more flavorful than it looks. I think there was some bok choy in there that gave it an interesting taste.
I skipped the nutritionally vacuous “won ton strips” and finished my Evolution Harvest pecans and pepitas.
As we landed in San Diego and were greeted with this view, I knew that having a few free hours in this city would be worth my hectic morning!
After I checked into my hotel and registered for my conference, I decided to walk around to counteract all those hours of sitting on an airplane. I had a dinner meeting at 7:00, but I was really hungry at 4:30 and knew I had to eat something.
I wasn’t in the mood for cookies, ice cream, or funnel cake, but also didn’t want nachos or fries. When I found a little Greek place, I thought a side order of falafel would make a good snack. Somehow I also ended up ordering a local IPA and sesame cookies.
The falafel was meh (it looked and tasted like it was made in a factory–maybe that’s why they tried to drown it in that sauce), but the beer was yummy and I had no trouble just enjoying being outside on a gorgeous Sunday afternoon!
That brings us to my last meal of my very long day. We were at a lovely restaurant in Del Mar, dining on a rooftop patio, so anything would have been good, but this halibut was fantastic.
I really should not have ordered dessert, but since everyone else did ….
This “Bon Bon” was a huge ball of vanilla ice cream coated with a thick chocolate shell. It was delicious, but my stomach really did not need all that!
Do you bring snacks with you when you travel?
Do you have a go-to convenience food snack?