Here are 10 keto travel snacks you can take right on the plane! Learn what snacks pack well, what is TSA-acceptable (and how to know for sure), tips for bringing keto-friendly snacks, and ideas beyond just beef jerky or a hunk of cheese!
It’s not hard to stick to your keto diet while traveling (particularly by plane) if you do a little planning and preparation!
In this blog post you’ll find:
what makes a great keto travel-friendly snack
how to know FOR SURE if your keto snack is TSA-friendly (and links)
10 keto travel snacks you can take on an airplane
some super popular store-bought keto snacks
how to pack your snacks for air travel
But first, what makes a great keto travel snack?
Do you really need to plan keto snacks??
Let’s be real. When we do keto likely we’re not starving between meals so keto snacking on the plane or in general doesn’t have to be a big deal.
If your flight is in the morning, and you routinely intermittent fast, just grabbing a coffee at the airport or skipping breakfast is always an option. This is true keto minimalism.
But I like to bring snacks when I travel, especially on planes, because you never know when your flight will be delayed or cancelled. I just feel more calm and prepared when I have my own keto-friendly food in my carry-on. If I don’t eat it on the flight, I’ll just keep it in my hotel room for whenever I need to munch.
What are good keto snack options for travel?
Choose a keto snack that is portable, will stay fresh, is sturdy and easily packed. An energy bar can be crammed in a carry-on, while smoked salmon with low carb crackers takes a little attention when it comes to packing. (You may also get unwanted attention on a flight when you whip out seafood, but that’s another blog post entirely.)
I personally look for snacks that are easy to pack, don’t need refrigeration, and don’t have lots of added crap like artificial flavors, colors, high fructose corn syrup, etc.
Know what foods you can and can’t pack in your carry-on.
The last thing you want while traveling is a hassle from TSA in the security check. It’s smart to know their rules BEFORE you pack any food (or other items) in your carry-on.
Check the TSA website for its official food rules.
If in doubt, check it out! If you're not sure about a food check with the TSA guidelines. Here's the current guidelines about food: TSA Food Guidelines
Liquids or creamy items abide by the 3-1-1 rule.
Creamy or liquid items (peanut butter, hummus, dips, yogurt, dressings or oils) need to be 3.4 oz or less and go in your one-quart ziplock bag. Need a refresher? Here’s a quick video…. TSA 3-1-1 Rule (3 ounce containers, 1 quart-sized ziplock bag, 1 per traveler)
10 Keto Travel Snacks You Can Take Right On The Plane
Be sure to scroll down for my favorites and lots of variations.
Water (see my work-around).
Keto protein snack bars.
Jerky or beef (or other meat) sticks.
Nuts, seeds, and nut butters.
Cheese - fresh or cheese crisps.
Veggies, with or without dip.
Keto krunchies! Low carb “granola,” crackers or chips, with or without dip, cheese, or spreads.
Sweet treats (store-bought or homemade).
Fresh food purchased at the airport.
Also you can make glorious combinations of these foods for mini (or substantial) keto airplane meals!
Now onto the 10 keto travel snacks you can take on the plane!
1 - Water.
You obviously can’t bring water from home, but you CAN either bring your own (empty) water bottle or thermos and fill it after you go through security or purchase a bottle of water.
Environmentally conscious and well-organized me brings my stainless steel empty water bottle, like this one. It keeps your water cold, the bottle doesn’t sweat, and it’s spill-proof.
Frazzled me is happy to shell out $5+ for an over-priced bottle of water once I clear security so I have it just in case.
It’s not that I’m worried about drinking 64 ounces of water or anything like that – I just want my own water if I need it. If a headache strikes, I can take a Motrin with no worries. If I’m thirsty, I don’t have to wait for in-flight beverage service.
Buy water or bring your own bottle and fill it after security.
2 - Keto protein or snack bars.
Protein bars (thinking 20 or more grams of protein) are substantial and filling, so they can be used to replace a meal in a pinch. These days there are TONS of options.Have some fun shopping at your local grocery or health food store. Or check out Amazon and read reviews. Sample some bars and choose your favorites for travel. Some bars have a good amount of protein, they’re lowish in carbs, but don’t have a lot of fat, so just keep that in mind. You can bump your fat intake later in the day, if you wish.
Keto snack bars have less protein and are best used for, ummm, a snack. Pair with a handful of macadamia nuts and beef jerky for a fun on-the-go meal.
Here are some of my favorites…
ONE protein bars. These bars are very highly rated on Amazon. You will find around 20 grams of protein and 13 net carbs per serving, so just keep that in mind. The birthday cake and maple glazed donut flavors are amazing!
Quest bars. Quest bars come in a ton of flavors and they have 20-21 grams of protein each. Just like the One bars, you don’t have “keto” macros in your bar.
Kiss My Keto snack bars. These bars have 19 grams fat, 3 grams net carbs, and 9 grams protein.
Perfect Keto bars. Perfect Keto snack bars have a similar macro breakdown to the Kiss My Keto brand.
3 - Jerky or beef (or other meat) sticks.
Jerky or meat sticks on their own is a great simple snack, or pair it with a fat like cheese or olives for a keto macro-friendly mini meal.
Back in the day you just had Slim Jims – now there are great jerky choices made from a variety of meats, from beef to bison to turkey and good ‘ol bacon!
I personally am not a fan of super hard, rip-your-teeth-out jerky, but I do like meat sticks, especially ones made with ingredients I can pronounce. Since we’re doing keto, look for jerky or meat sticks without added sugar. Grass-fed is a bonus, as is no added nitrates or nitrites.
I actually have made homemade jerky in the past and this is a good reminder for me to make a batch or two!
Chomps Beef Sticks are grass-fed and made without added sugar. They are certified keto and Whole30 approved. They are also individually wrapped and perfect for travel!
Mission Meats Keto Beef Sticks is Amazon’s current best-seller. These are made from grass-fed beef, no added sugar, and no nitrates.
FBOMB Keto Meat Sticks are made from pork, and also have zero added sugar or nitrates. The Salt & Pepper Pork flavor is delish!
And just because BACON, Oberto makes All-Natural Applewood Bacon Jerky.
4 - Nuts, seeds, and nut butters.
Mmmmm crunchy (and/or creamy) healthy fats!
There are lots of brands of nut butters (peanut, almond, macadamia, cashew - or combinations!) that come in single-serve packages which are perfect for travel! (Remember, these go in your quart ziplock baggie.) Eat the nut butters straight up on their own, or use as a dip for fresh veggies, or a spread on low carb crackers
You don’t have to choose a nut butter that specifically markets itself as “keto” but be sure to watch out for added sugars.
FBOMB Nut Butters offers 1 ounce pouches (perfect for travel) and they offer a variety pack that includes Salted Chocolate Macadamia, Macadamia Pecan, Macadamia Coconut, and Macadamia Sea Salt! Mmmmm for healthy fatty goodness!
Performance Nut Butter has individual pouches of delicious Macadamia, Coconut & Cashew butter.
Legendary Foods Chocolate Banana Peanut Butter in squeeze packets. If you love traditional peanut butter you’ll love the hint of chocolate and banana.
Nuts are super portable, often come in individual packages, and it’s simple to throw your favorite nut combos in a ziplock baggie. Just be sure to look for nuts with no added sugars. I love to splurge on macadamia nuts because they’re super delicious and full of healthy fats, but choose your favorite or favorites!
I buy larger packages on Amazon and divide them up into individual serving sizes when traveling. You can click on the links below to find the current price on Amazon.
If you like variety, Oh! Nuts has a nuts and seeds combo pack with individual portions of, ummm, nuts and seeds.
5 - Cheese or cheese crisps.
Cheese is such a delicious and filling keto snack. You can bring solid fresh cheeses like Parmesan, Gouda, cheddar, or mozzarella.
Or try homemade or purchased Parmesan, cheddar or other cheese crisps. Homemade are super simple to make (and this recipe shows you how to do it), but purchased are just EASY.
The only concern is with creamy cheeses or cheese spreads. You can bring 3.4 ounces or less and it must fit in your quart-sized ziplock bag.
Some store-bought cheese crisp options are:
Just the Cheese bars. OMG. These are literally baked cheese and I love the variety pack that includes aged cheddar, grilled cheese, jalapeno, and mild cheese.
Cello Whisps Cheese Crisps. These come packaged in convenient 2.2oz bags. It says each bag is two servings, but I have zero problem eating it all! The variety pack has cheddar, Parmesan, Asiago and pepper cheese.
I’m not really into goat cheese, but if you’re fancier than I am these High Key Goat Cheese Crunches are super highly rated.
6 - Veggies, with or without dip.
Veggies are a great travel snack and adding salad dressing, oil, or dips will give you yummy fats to hit your macros! Choose raw, hard veggies like celery, zucchini, carrot, radishes, or mushrooms to munch on. Salads are a go as well.
Just remember any dressings or dips must be in a 3 ounce container and fit in your one-quart ziplock bag for liquids. It’s hard to find individual packets of dressings or dips, so these reusable plastic leak-proof squeeze bottles are perfect for travel: Yinggg Squeezable Salad Dressing Containers To Go
7 - Keto protein shakes.
If you love your keto shake, you can bring it on the plane - but with a work-around. Just throw a scoop or two of your favorite low carb protein powder in a shaker bottle and add water after you go through security. Easy peasy!
Some popular keto protein powders are:
Perfect Keto Chocolate Protein Powder. This protein powder (10 grams protein per serving) also has collagen and MCT oil so you get lots of good stuff in one serving.
Orgain Protein Powder is a plant-based protein that is low in net carbs (8 per serving). It has 21 grams protein and is vegan and lactose-free.
8 - Keto krunchies! Low carb “granola,” crackers or chips, with or without dip, cheese, or spreads.
Crunchy keto snacks are perfect for the plane and there are so many options. Choose from the old standby, pork rinds, low carb chips, or keto crackers. Make it a keto mini meal by adding cheese, dips, a mini tub of guacamole. Just be sure you put any creamy or soft toppings in your quart-sized ziplock baggie.
Here are some delicious options:
Primal Thin Crackers by Julian Bakery. So tasty and they come in Salt & Pepper, and Parmesan flavors. Only 5 net carbs per serving.
KetoLogic Keto Crisps come in several flavors, including Buffalo, Ghost Pepper, Chili Lime, and Pizza.
Quest Tortilla Style Protein Chips are super popular. They have 14 grams of protein and only 4 net carbs, and come in several flavors including Chili Lime, Ranch, Taco, and Nacho.
Diabetic Kitchen Cinnamon Pecan Keto Granola. Before I went keto I loved my granola! If you like a slightly sweet, crunchy keto snack, this is perfect. Eat with a spoon or with your fingers. Only 3 net carbs per serving.
9 - Low carb sweet treats, purchased or homemade.
Keto cookies, fat bombs, or brownies? Yes, please! If baking low carb treats is your jam, do your thing. Or, purchase packaged desserts, protein cookies, or even candy.
If you make keto sweets, you probably have your own favorite recipes. I don’t personally make many low carb goodies because they trigger my sweet tooth, but I love me some 90% dark chocolate!
Here are some store-bought sweet keto options, perfect for the plane.
90% Dark Chocolate. I usually buy Lindt brand and not chocolate that is specifically marketed as “keto” or “low carb.” The net carbs are low enough for me (about 2 per square) and I’d rather not mess with sugar alcohols which bother my stomach.
Bulletproof Fudge Brownie Collagen Protein Bars. I was shocked at how much I loved this bar! It has grass-fed collagen and lots of quality fats like cashew butter, XCT oil, and coconut oil.
HighKey Mini Chocolate Chip (or Snickerdoodle) Cookies. They’re keto-friendly cookies. Need I say more??
10 - Fast food, restaurant meals or other food purchased at the airport.
Lastly, most airports have a ton of restaurant options once you pass through security. You can grab a burger (obviously skipping the bun and fries!), a fresh salad, a tub of hard-boiled eggs, or even a pizza. (Ok, probably not a keto pizza, but I’ve been known to grab a mini pizza and eat just the toppings!)
I totally love grabbing a coffee and the Bacon Gruyere Egg Bites from an airport Starbucks when I travel. I don’t generally do Starbucks at home (too cheap, ha ha!) but it’s a splurge when I travel.
It’s quick to run in and out of an airport “mini mart,” but definitely allow enough time if you plan to grab a take-out order for the plane. If you have your heart set on bringing a yummy hot or cold meal, look at the airport’s website to see what restaurants are available in your terminal.
There you have it, 10 keto travel snacks you can take right on the plane. Spend a little bit of time thinking about what you’d like to bring with you next time you travel. Have fun checking our your local grocery store or browse snacks on Amazon. Or, pick up a little something right at the airport.
Or, you can be a true minimalist and fast. But that’s no fun.
—The Keto Minimalist
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