Are you looking for the best airplane snacks for toddlers? Or perhaps you have older children and are on the hunt for some unique airplane snacks for kids? Are you wondering what snacks can I bring on the plane? Airplane travel can be stressful for parents. But it does not have to be!
One of the best ways to keep young kids entertained while on a flight or a road trip, is food!
If you are looking for the best airplane snacks for toddlers or snacks for kids on a plane, this is the right post for you.
I usually pack A LOT of good travel snacks. I mix it up between healthy travel snacks and some treats but make sure you do not pack too much salty stuff. Salt makes kids thirsty, which means more bathroom trips (and we all know these always happen at the most inopportune time – when the seatbelt sign is on, or when the plane is headed down the runway!). Keep reading below for my favorite kids travel snacks, whatever their ages!
2021 Guide to the Best Airplane Snacks for Kids
Travel snacks for toddlers and the best snacks for toddlers on plane are the most popular searches I have come across. Maybe because from about ages 1 to 5, snacks make great entertainment on a road trip or a flight! With more and more flights not offering meals, I also include kids, teens and something for mom and dad!
Travel Packing Containers for Kids
I wanted to start off with the container we use on our toddler airplane snacks. When I first wrote this post, our boys were 3 and 1, we loved the Innobaby products, especially the Packin Smart snack cups for toddlers, for its compact size and its clear plastic.
Innobaby storage containers for kids snakcs are great for small quantities of raisins, cheerios, puffs and melts (always cater to your child’s age when choosing snacks). My three year old loves the tall tower and getting to choose what he wants to eat. My one-year-old is occupied with trying to pull out the snacks through the small hole of the Innobaby toddler snack cup.
These containers fit great into the side of a backpack or any water bottle holder! With separate containers, the Innobaby containers gives a few options for travel snacks for toddlers, and they do not spill when dropped, compared to a traditional bowl.
Every extra minute you can occupy them while traveling is usually a good thing!
I also like that my toddler can’t dump them everywhere; because of the small hole, they come out slower than using a bowl. It also works great for formula so you can pre-measure what you will need for your trip! After you go through these airplane snacks for toddlers, check out my popular post on airplane activities for babies, toddlers and preschoolers!
Travel food for toddlers is a popular topic for any parent planning a vacation. Whether it is road trip food or plane snacks for toddlers, keep this list handy. I have started with good airplane snacks for toddlers as it is a pretty popular search category. Feel free to skip to the next section if you have babies or older kids!
These are fun to pick up one by one and they melt easily (but they are a bit sticky). They are popular airplane snacks for a 1 year old.
Some younger babies love these too! Pack up one or two tiers of your innobaby packing smart with puffs and you have a snack and entertainment for your little one. Do not forget the wipes for the tray table and their fingers afterward!
#2 Cut up Grapes
This one was a favorite of my little ones.
It was something that kept my toddler’s full and did not make them thirsty! Fill a small container with these on your next road trip or flight! We slice ours into quarters to minimize any choking risk. If you are traveling internationally, do not pack any fresh fruits as they may cause issues at immigration!
Even 3 year olds will have apple sauce and other snacks from a pouch when we travel!
These make great airplane snacks for kids and have way less chance of spillage (plus you don’t need to carry a spoon).
A word of caution: beware of toddlers squeezing them before they get to their mouth! (yes we have had that happen on occasion!). I tend to put the spout up to their mouth then give them the rest of it! Here is one of our favorites: Fruit and Veggie Variety Pack
Fill yourInnobaby Packin Smart with cheerios for your toddler, it’s a popular one! These are the easiest airplane snacks for 1 year old as most people already have them at home!
They do not make much of a mess and are staples for kids. A Tupperware container will make sure they don’t get squished in your toddler’s carry-on. We usually do grilled cheese as there is no chance of sticky jam going everywhere. I also try and stay away from peanut butter as much as possible in case there are any passengers with allergies on board!
#6 Gold Fish Crackers or Annie’s Bunnies
A staple in most mom’s kitchens, this travel food for toddlers came on every trip with us when my boys were young! If your little ones like Gold Fish crackers, ensure you bring some on your travels!
#7 Granola bars
Granola Bars and cereal bars make great snacks for kids on planes. Make sure to pick the kinds that do not get squished (and mom and dad can munch on them too). We like the cliff kids bars (oatmeal cookie are my kids favorite and I am happy to munch on one too!)
#8 Dried fruits
These toddler snacks for airplanes are light, and take up less space than packing an apple! But be careful on international flights about their policies on food and make sure to always declare them to customs if you pre-clear customs before your flight! (or on arrival if you haven’t eaten them all!)
#9 Freeze dried fruits
Trader Joe’s freeze dried strawberries are my kid’s favourites! They almost melt in your mouth so are great for toddlers, and the big kids love them too! These have quickly become my healthy snacks for kids on the go when I can’t get my hands on fresh strawberries!
#10 Pre-Packaged Crepes
Pre-packaged crepes: These are new in our arsenal for snacks for traveling in the car! But they are also great snacks for kids on airplane.
Yes, a bit sweet and not part of our healthy plane snacks, but something for your kids to munch on and they come in individual packages! I hope they are something that you have not thought of and that they will refresh your snack arsenal.
#11 Cheese Strings or Babybel Cheese
While I do not always pack these if it is going to be a long day, they are perfect snacks for traveling in the car, while waiting at the airport or on the plane! They are mess free, and the little ones love the little string cheese octopus!
#12 Yogourt Covered Pretzels
Yogurt Covered Pretzels While I consider these a for older kids, they make good airplane travel snacks for kids, or even for adults! Pack a couple small bags in your carry-on on your next trip!
#13 Special Toddler plane snacks they do not get a home
Flights are long and boring. Keeping kids entertained means less stress for mom’s (and dad’s). Maybe yogourt or chocolate covered raisins, or other snacks from the junk section of the grocery store.
Airplane Snacks for Babies
When you are flying with babies, you are going to need to bring your own snacks. It is almost impossible to get baby food unless you are flying internationally. But even then, an unfamiliar brand might not appeal to your little one! Pack some of these baby plane snacks for your flight.
These are fun to pick up one by one and they melt easily (but they are a bit sticky). They are popular airplane snacks for babies who are learning how to pick up things. Pack up one or two tiers of your innobaby packing smart with puffs and you have a snack and entertainment for your little one.
Avoid the glass jars and lids when you can squirt these right into your baby’s mouth. Worst case scenario, you squirt onto a spoon, but it is easier to transport, and lighter than a baby food jar! Here is one of our favorites: Fruit and Veggie Variety Pack
Fill yourInnobaby Packin Smart with cheerios for your baby that wants a bit more texture than a puff.
#5 Baby Mum Mums
A staple in the pantry at home, bring some mum mums with you on your next flight. Keep the wipes handy for sticky messes afterward. These entertain babies, help with sore teeth, and can be good descent if they do not want to suck on a bottle to help with ear pressure changes.
#6 Freeze dried fruits
Trader Joe’s freeze dried strawberries are my kid’s favourites! They almost melt in your mouth so are great for babies, but toddlers and the big kids love them too! These have quickly become my healthy snacks for kids on the go when I can’t get my hands on fresh strawberries!
#6 Cheese Strings or Babybel Cheese
While I do not always pack these if it is going to be a long day, they are perfect snacks for those who like to really knaw on something. I like that they do not leave sticky messes!
Traveling with Milk and Liquids
A note about liquids and traveling with your child. I have never had a problem bringing liquids over 100ml through security, whether in the United States or International destinations. SOMETIMES, they want to open things to test, which is annoying if you need a product sealed. But do not despair, if you are traveling with formula, you can bring water bottles, you can also bring tetra packs of milk or bottles with milk.
When it comes to food pouches, I always try to get the ones under 100ml to be safe, but I have brought the larger ones through.
Sometimes extra screening of parents and children is required, but I find this really varies by airport. Just be patent, the agents are only doing their jobs, and many have kids, they understand the stress of traveling families!
Travel Snacks for Teens and Parents
Now that the toddler snacks for planes are out of the way, let’s move on to mom and dad and the older kids. Keep older kids occupied with a bit of technology and snacks and your flight should be a breeze. Also, consider adding these to your bag to make sure you are not hungry during the flight!
- Mentos – these are great for take-off and landing
- Starburst – these are good and bad, they are single packed, but that occupies kids to open them. I pack a ziplock bag for garbage and keep it at our seat for the flight, it handles all of the wrappers
- Sandwiches – pack yourself a sandwich for your flight
- Pre-packaged crepes – I mentioned these in the toddler section, but they are great for older kids and mom and dad too!
- Pringles – these travel well, they fit in a backpack’s water bottle holder
- Grapes – these offer a little extra moisture, I do not recommend a lot of fruit as international travel has restrictions on fresh foods coming into the country. If you do preclearance, you even lose these fresh fruit items before you leave the airport (and are subject to additional screening)
Additional Tips for Flying with Kids
- Whether babies, toddlers or older kids Always pack more than you think you will need. Flight delays or baggage delays can happen at any time, and we try to avoid hungry kids at all costs! An extra snack to sit them down while you grab the bags off the carousel will go a long way and keep your stress-level down!
- Keep in mind that you may be on a flight where someone has a peanut allergy and you may be asked not to eat or open anything with nuts. While this is rare, I have had it happen to me twice and learned the hard way not to pack peanut butter M and M’s. So while I do mention sandwiches and peanut butter travels so great, ensure you have something else in hand just in case!
- If you are bringing a car seat on vacation, check out our guide on choosing the best car seat travel bag. We always choose to bring our car seat and booster seat when we will be renting a car because I know how to install them, I know they are comfortable and clean and I know they are not expired and meet current requirements.
- Do not forget the Sippy cup or Water Bottle! We travel with this one for water. We use this onefor drinks on the plane because it cleans easily. Those cups of water that the flight attendants provide do not stand a chance against a toddler and a tray table and will make a big mess! Even for my almost 4 year old, it’s much easier to put his drink in a sippy cup, and he can drink at his leisure. Everyone knows that those tray tables are up and down and up and down again when you are traveling with toddlers and kids!
- Pack a change of clothes. Because sometimes spills and accidents happen when you are traveling with children. And do not just pack for the kids, ensure you have a change of clothes for yourself, because those spills are not always just on your little ones!
- Dont forget the neck pillow. This one has a ton of great reviews!
- Ok now that food is taken care of, check out the best airplane activities for kids here.
- If you are planning your first vacation with your little one and are looking for the best carry-on luggage for them, you can check out this post on the best kids luggage. I go through ride on luggage like the popular Trunki, toddler sized backpacks and even scooter luggage! Have you ever seen a kid whiz by on a scooter in the airport! It turns a lot of heads!
- Bring your patience. Travel days are going to be hard. But you CAN DO IT! Just take a deep breathe, leave your expectations at home, and enjoy your trip with your little ones! Make sure you take lots of photos and use these quotes about traveling with family when you share them on Instagram with your family and friends!
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Lindsay Nieminen hails from Vancouver, Canada and shares her love of travel on this website. She is passionate about showing others that they should not put off traveling the world just because they have young children or are single parents. She aims to encourage them to seek out adventure, whether it is at home or abroad by providing information on how just about everywhere can be a destination to explore as a family.