Road Trip Breakfast Ideas

They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and that is especially true on road trips. A good breakfast will give you the fuel you need to get the day going and keep you satisfied as you trek on. So what are some good road trip breakfast ideas?

A good road trip breakfast is hearty enough to keep you full until lunch (and, we all know that sometimes on the road that lunch often comes later than we expect), but light enough to not make you regret what you ate an hour later. Try to choose something light and protein rich, like a veggie omelet or fruit and yogurt parfait, over a big stack of Belgian waffles. But, since you’re traveling, we’ll forgive you if you just can’t pass up those once-in-a-lifetime cinnamon roll pancakes.

At the end of the day (or, I suppose, the beginning), there is no wrong option for what to eat for a road trip breakfast. Whether you’re a grab and go girl like me who usually takes her breakfast in liquid form, someone who seeks out the best local diner in every state, or someone who prefers to save money and time by packing make ahead breakfasts in the cooler, the best road trip breakfast is the one you’re eating today.

So what are your options? Read on for some of our favorite road trip breakfast ideas.

Road Trip Breakfast Ideas

Pancakes with butter and maple syrup and a side of bacon at Lou Mitchell's Restaurant on Route 66 in Chicago, Illinois
Pancakes with butter and maple syrup and a side of bacon at Lou Mitchell’s Restaurant on Route 66 in Chicago, Illinois

Local Diner Breakfast

There’s no better stop for a road trip breakfast than the all-American diner. Stacks of fluffy buttermilk pancakes loaded with maple syrup and butter. Crunchy waffles with soft centers. Omelettes stuffed full of vegetables and cheese. A heaping side of crispy bacon. And the all-important coffee with unlimited refills. With filling meals and a local ambiance, diner make the perfect place to stop for breakfast on the road. Try to opt for protein friendly meals that will keep you going through the days. And as tasty as those stacks of pancakes, waffles, and French toast look, go easy on the heavy carbs that will weigh you down in the car. But, who are we kidding, go ahead and order those chocolate chip pancakes topped with chocolate sauce and whipped cream. You’re on vacation.

Chicken biscuit from Bojangles
Chicken biscuit from Bojangles

Drive Through Breakfast

The most convenient meals to have on a road trip are those you can eat without ever leaving your car. That’s why drive-throughs are a popular choice when choosing a road trip breakfast. Get a buttery biscuit sandwich with sausage and egg, bacon stuffed between two halves of a croissant, a loaded breakfast burrito, or bite-sized hash browns. Drive through breakfasts from a fast food restaurant are convenient, cheap, and delicious. Just be sure to grab some extra napkins to keep your steering wheel bacon grease free.

Texas shaped waffle at Shamrock Country Inn motel in Shamrock, Texas - Route 66 motel
Texas shaped waffle at Shamrock Country Inn motel in Shamrock, Texas on Route 66

Hotel Breakfast

A free hotel breakfast means money saved for activities (or gas) later in the day. Many chain hotels offer up a free breakfast buffet in the morning. Quality and selection vary, but you can often find prepackaged pastries, bagels, yogurts, scrambled eggs, biscuits and gravy, and, often, a waffle maker. If you’re staying at a hotel that offers free breakfast, be sure to fill up before checking out. And maybe even grab an apple for the road.

Casey Coffee Company in Casey, Illinois
Casey Coffee Company in Casey, Illinois

Coffee Shop Breakfast

If you’re like me, your morning breakfast probably looks more like an iced latte than bacon and eggs. Luckily, many coffee shops nowadays offer both. Swing by your favorite coffee shop chain or try a new local place for a grande dose of caffeine and, if it’s your thing, a breakfast sandwich, doughnut, or croissant.

Pink donuts at The Simpsons 7-Eleven Kwik-E-Mart in Chicago, Illinois
Pink donuts at The Simpsons 7-Eleven Kwik-E-Mart pop up in Chicago, Illinois

Gas Station Breakfast

Fuel your car, and yourself, for the day to come. Multitask by filling up your car with gas and grabbing breakfast at a gas station. Many gas stations have multiple options for coffee, hot or cold, in sizes from small to jumbo. They also might serve a specialty like breakfast tacos, breakfast burritos, or breakfast pizza. If you like a sweet breakfast, you can also surely find some donuts.

Road Trip Breakfast Recipes

If you’re trying to save money or time on the road, packing your own road trip breakfast is a must. You can pack travel-friendly breakfast items like cereals and granola, cook make-ahead options like protein-packed muffins, or travel friendly freezer meals that can easily be stored in a cooler and heated up in your hotel room’s microwave.

Our Favorite Road Trip Breakfast Recipes

More Road Trip Breakfast Ideas

  • Fruit
  • Yogurt
  • Cereal
  • Muffins
  • Bagels and Cream Cheese
  • Banana Bread
  • Croissants
  • Granola
  • Instant Oatmeal
  • Hard Boiled Eggs

Road Trip Granola Recipe

Here’s one of my favorite quick and easy recipes for a road trip breakfast: road trip granola. This basic recipe is a great starting point to add different flavors. I used blueberries, inspired by a road trip to Maine, but you can use other fruits and nuts to match your tastes or destination. Driving through Minnesota? Try dried apples. Driving through California? Sub in all four of their state nuts: almonds, walnuts, pistachios, and pecans. A homemade granola keeps well in an airtight container and can provide breakfast in the car for the entire length of your trip.

Print
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Road Trip Granola Recipe


  • Author: Val
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x

Description

This road trip granola recipe is a great morning treat for breakfast on the go. It’s a nice base to experiment with flavors. Feel free to substitute the pecans for different nuts and the dried blueberries for other dried fruits. 


Ingredients

Scale
  • 3 cup rolled oats
  • ½  cup shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • ⅓ cup maple syrup
  • cup apple juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1½ cups dried blueberries

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or lightly coat with a neutral cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the oats, coconut, pecans, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
  3. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the oil, maple syrup, apple juice, and vanilla.
  4. Pour the syrup mixture over the oat mixture and stir until evenly coated.
  5. Spread the oat mixture onto the prepared baking tray. Place in preheated oven.
  6. Bake for around 30 minutes, until granola is toasted, stirring every five minutes.
  7. When the granola is toasted to your liking, remove from oven and let it cool, stirring occasionally.
  8. Once cool, stir in the dried blueberries. Store in an airtight container.
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
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They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and that is especially true on road trips. A good breakfast will give you the fuel you need to get the day going and keep you satisfied as you trek on. So what are some good road trip breakfast ideas? These road trip breakfasts, from diners to fast food to homemade road trip breakfast recipes will give you the fuel you need for your road trip. #RoadTrip #Recipe #BreakFast #RoadTripFood #RoadTripMeals #RoadTrips #RoadTripBreakfast
They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and that is especially true on road trips. A good breakfast will give you the fuel you need to get the day going and keep you satisfied as you trek on. So what are some good road trip breakfast ideas? These road trip breakfasts, from diners to fast food to homemade road trip breakfast recipes will give you the fuel you need for your road trip. #RoadTrip #Recipe #BreakFast #RoadTripFood #RoadTripMeals #RoadTrips #RoadTripBreakfast

VAL BROMANN

Founder & Head Road Tripper

Val is the founder and head road tripper at Silly America. Having grown up near Berwyn's famed car kabob, The Spindle, and a restaurant with a cow on its roof, her fascination with roadside attractions started early. Today, Val has visited hundreds roadside attractions across the United States and is constantly on the lookout for the next BIG thing!