If you are vegan, or a serious vegetarian, eating while traveling can be challenging. Some tips for bringing your own food when traveling are included here. Of course, when you are crossing boarders, or traveling by plane, you have another set of issues to deal with. This information is for those who travel in the United States, and who have access to grocery stores.
An easy way for me to bring food with me when I travel is to prepare granola I make at home. Some oatmeal, a few raw sunflower seeds, and some raw nuts, (I prefer walnuts) can be mixed together in measurements you choose. One complete recipe is at the end of this article.
Dried fruit and nuts are another must when you have to be on the road, and don’t want restaurant foods. Although this won’t be something you will want to do for weeks on end, you can get through several days with just a few items.
When eating in a restaurant, salads and vegetables are usually available. However, if you are concerned about what is added to your food, or the dressing given with a salad, ask questions. Be specific. Let the server know you can not have milk or eggs, or whatever item you are trying to avoid. Be aware that some condiments contain anchovies. This includes bottled salad dressings. Servers who swear the dressing is made on the premises can find out what is actually in what you are eating. This is especially important if you are vegan due to allergy or health concerns. Watching someone go into shock because they were given something they asked not to be served is never a good time.
With three or more grocery stores in almost every town in the United States, fresh foods are plentiful. It is easy to purchase some bananas, apples, and nuts to use as part of your meal. You can also find prepared green salads in grocery stores that could be to your liking.
Consider canned vegetarian soups or vegetarian beans when you travel. Some people warm these in their engine compartment while driving. Funny, though-if you are hungry enough you may enjoy such products straight from the can! Are we all just too picky?
My granola to go: Mix 3 cups of whole oats with 1/2 cup of raw sunflower seeds. Add 1 cup of your choice of raw nuts. Sprinkle with a tablespoon of ground flax seeds if you have it. A tablespoon of wheat germ may also be used. Drizzle with one tablespoon of liquid sweetener of your choice. Some like corn syrup.
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Oil a baking pan or cookie sheet with olive or canola oil. Sprinkle your mixture on the pan or sheet. Toast in the 250 degree oven for about 30 minutes, stirring at 15 minutes. All ovens are different. Be sure to note how you mixture looks at 15 minutes. Your oven may require less time.
Once cooked and cooled, this mixture can be placed in a container for traveling. For a meal anytime of the day, mix the granola with raisins or other fruit pieces of your choice. The granola can also make a great snack combined with soy yogurt.