Many of the rules you follow for dining out on a long road trip are similar to the ones you use at home, however, expect the challenge to be turned up several notches. We’re all too familiar with the sudden exhaustion and hunger that can overwhelm us on the road, teasing our temper and increasing the desperation to eat to a level where we’re tempted to consume something irresponsible. You want to avoid hitting this point, then having to wander around in an unfamiliar city trying to find something you can eat. Aimlessness can cloud your judgment and weaken your willpower, plan ahead to avoid doing something unsafe.
Begin by mapping out your route at home, then research the restaurant scene in the cities you’ll be traveling through and go ahead of time to find the options you can live with. Submit a post to the online celiac community asking if anyone knows of a gluten-free friendly restaurant in the city you need. Your strategy for both small and large cities will be the same, but expect the ratio of options to decrease in small towns. If the dining options in a city don’t yield to what you’re looking for, always be able and willing to shop for foods you can eat at a grocery store and eat in your car or hotel room, or subsist on the foods you brought with you.
Tip: Look for natural foods stores when researching your cities. These stores cater to the natural food customer, many of whom purchase gluten-free products, and it’s possible there will be dining options nearby that follow suit because of the local market demand. Conversely, if the town does not have a natural foods store, it might be harder to find gluten-free dining options as well. And most importantly, never leave home without a plan and some gluten-free food!