How to Travel Healthy….a Trip to the Central Coast

Vacation…mmm…a time we all live for. Traveling is one of my favorite things to do. Anthony and I try to get out of LA at least three times a year to explore, meet new people, and break away from the day to day routine. This vacation was to a home away from home for me….to the central coast. I was lucky enough to live in San Luis Obispo for four years during college and everyday I dream of moving back! It is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to…the beach, the mountains, the fresh air, and the people….the pace of life is just perfect and it is amazing how people not only acknowledge each other (not very common in LA) but actually strike up conversations with each other. We met so many interesting great people on this trip and learned just where to go!

I used to think of vacation as a time to go all out and eat whatever I wanted…to throw the diet and fitness plan out the window.  But I found that by day two I would have no energy and felt overall pretty crappy. And who wants to feel like crap on their vacation?! Not me! So last year I started experimenting on what are the best traveling snacks! We still enjoy a lovely latte in the AM and Anthony enjoys the continental breakfast, special little sweet treats we find at local bakeries (if they cater to the GF&DF), and of course an over the top dinner! Packing snacks, breakfasts and lunches is not only great to give you more energy and nutrition but also save a ton of money….more $$ for shopping or fancy dinners out!

Yes this does require some planning and prep work but trust me it is worth it! Here is what I brought with us~

Drinks:

  • 2 large bottles of water
  • 2 gallon jugs of water
  • 1 refillable water bottle
  • 1 bottle of Champagne/Sparkling Wine

    Toast

    Toast

  • 1 bottle of red wine

Breakfasts:

  • Fresh fruit…apples and bananas
  • Homemade Granola
  • Almond milk (love the Trader’s boxed…no refrigeration needed until opened)
  • Protein powder and shaker bottle

Snacks:

  • Trail mix
  • Pop chips
  • Snack Bars- Luna, BeKind, Pure….
  • Banana Chips
  • Dried Fruit
  • Cut up raw veggies and hummus

Lunches:

  • Chickpea salad and Salami with mustard
  • Quinoa Chicken Salad and Goat Chevre with Spicy Red Pepper Jam

Sweets:

  • Chocolate covered almonds
  • Chocolate Stuffed Raspberries

Recipes of Health and Deliciousness!

Homemade Granola:

Ingredients-

  • 2 c Gluten Free Oats
  • 1/2 c raw almonds
  • 1/2 c raw walnuts
  • 1/4 c sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 c flax seeds
  • 1/4 c dried cranberries
  • 1/4 c yellow raisins
  • 1/4 c shaved coconut flakes
  • 1/4 c agave
  • 2 tbsp grapeseeds oil
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ginger
    Almond,, Walnuts, Sunflower Seeds, Yellow Raisins, Dried Cranberries, Coconut Flakes

    Almond,, Walnuts, Sunflower Seeds, Yellow Raisins, Dried Cranberries, Coconut Flakes

    Flax Seeds, Grapeseed Oil, Agave, Cinnamon, Ginger

    Flax Seeds, Grapeseed Oil, Agave, Cinnamon, Ginger

    1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil.
    2. In a large bowl mix oats, almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, and coconut flakes. In a small bowl mix grapeseed oil, agave, cinnamon, and ginger.
    3. Mix the liquid ingredients into the dry, thoroughly.
    4. Spread mixture thinly onto baking sheet.
    5. Bake for a total of 3o minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Until golden brown.

      Dig in!

      Dig in!

Chickpea Salad:

Ingredients-

  • 1 can rinse and strained chickpeas
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 1 c chopped cherry tomatoes
  • 2 c chopped spinach
  • 1 c chopped cucumber
  • 4 stalks of diced green onion
  • 1/3 c chopped cilantro
  • black pepper
  • pink sea salt
  • 2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tbsp grapeseed oil

Lemon Basil Dressing-

  • Juice 2 small lemons
  • 1/3 c extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp crushed garlic
  • 2 tbsp dried basil
  • black pepper (to taste)

Dressing Directions-

  1. Mix all ingredients in a salad dressing shaker (If you don’t have one get one!). You will use this for both salads!

Salad Directions-

  1. Marinate chickpeas in black pepper, salt, basil and grapeseed oil for 2 plus hours (best overnight) in a large tupperware.
  2. Mix all other ingredients into marinated chickpeas.
  3. Top with lemon basil dressing. Mix and taste. Add more if desired.
    Chickpea Salad with Salami @ Tolosa Vineyard

    Chickpea Salad with Salami @ Tolosa Vineyard

    Best place to picnic among the vines!

    Best place to picnic among the vines!

Chocolate Stuffed Raspberries:

Ingredients-

  • Clean and dried raspberries
  • Trader Joe’s Semi Sweet Vegan Chocolate Chips

Directions-

  1. Stuff individual chocolate chips in the center of each raspberry. Enjoy 🙂

    Chocolate Stuffed Raspberries

    Chocolate Stuffed Raspberries

Quinoa Chicken Salad:

Ingredients-

  • 1 baked chicken breast, chopped and cooled
  • 10-14 spears of asparagus, baked and cooled
  • 1 c cooked quinoa, chilled and mixed with 1 tbsp grapeseed oil and 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 c chopped marinated artichoke hearts
  • 1 chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/3 c crumbled goat cheese
  • 1/4 c chopped cilantro
  • black pepper

Directions-

  1. Mix all ingredients in a large tupperware.
  2. Top with crushed black pepper and the lemon basil dressing. Mix. Taste. Add more if needed.
    Quinoa Chickpea Salad

    Quinoa Chickpea Salad

    Quinoa Chicken Salad with Goat Chevre and Spicy Red Pepper Jam and Rice Crackers

    Quinoa Chicken Salad with Goat Chevre and Spicy Red Pepper Jam and Rice Crackers

    Some Fun at Mitchella Winery after lunch

    Some Fun at Mitchella Winery after lunch

    Breathtaking Backyard

    Breathtaking Backyard

Tips!

  • Make and chop as much of this stuff before hand!
  • Plan and plan…make it fun!
  • Make dishes that you are proud to serve

Must Have Equipment-

  • Cooler (for everything you are bringing on the trip)
  • A good picnic basket/backpack complete with full set silverware and napkins
  • Ask the hotel if you can get a fridge in the room…most have this available…you just need to ask
  • Cutting board, wine opener, small sharp knife

Have fun! Enjoy yourself and Explore 🙂

Laetita- Arroyo Grande

Laetita- Arroyo Grande

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Tolosa- Edna Valley

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My ladybug friends in Pismo

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Watching the sunset off the rooftop…love Seacrest Inn

Dinner Buona Tavola in downtown SLO

Dinner Buona Tavola in downtown SLO

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AM workout…our walk for a delish latte…of course some exercise

Tobin James

Tobin James

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Calcareous- Paso Robles

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Ventana Grill…Pismo Beach

Wondering Avila Beach before our appointment at the Sycamore Hot Springs :)

Wondering Avila Beach before our appointment at the Sycamore Hot Springs 🙂

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Monday morning walk on the beach…freezing but had to get some work in… and what a better place?

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Amazing view from gazebo in Pismo…our hawk friend in the tree

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Great views even in the fog- Pismo Beach

A trip to New Frontiers...Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake and GF DF chocolate cake...our sweet trip for the drive home

A trip to New Frontiers…Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake and GF DF chocolate cake…our sweet trip for the drive home

We had such an incredible trip! Our healthy snacks made it easy for us to do as much as we did and feel as good as we did! Of course we loved our fancy dinner out, enjoying all the wine, amazing hot springs and some delicious desserts! The money we saved made a fun shopping trip on our way out in downtown SLO ;).

Til the next trip 🙂

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