30 Best Beach Snacks, Ranked

As the weather warms up, we only have one thing on our minds — the beach. There's nothing quite like sitting with the salty summer breeze hitting your skin, your toes in the sand, and your beach bag filled with resealable bags of your favorite snack foods. Coming prepared with your favorite snack foods is essential to keep your energy levels up at the beach and to ensure you can spend as much time there as possible without getting hangry.

There are many foods you should avoid at the beach — most of which can melt or spoil within a couple of hours in the sunshine. Avoid ingredients like mayonnaise (we're looking at you, pasta salad), chocolate, or raw cheeses to ensure an optimal and safe snacking experience. Here are some of the most satisfying and beach-friendly snacks you can enjoy during your next trip to the water.

Veggie straws

Veggie straws: healthy option or potato chip in disguise? While this hotly contested chip may not be one of the healthiest chip brands, these oily sticks have the strange potential to make us feel slightly better about eating chips. If you're looking for a veggie-forward snack that is less processed and uses "real vegetables" other than potato starch and vegetable juice as its main ingredients, we recommend bringing your sliced veggies to the beach instead of these straws. 

Dried fruit chips

Fresh fruit takes up a lot of space, so packing dried fruit instead is an easy way to keep your beach tote light. Dehydrated fruit is not always a good option for snacking, though. The heat from the dehydration process can disrupt the flavor of the fruit and cause it to lose nutrients over time. Dehydration also leaves some water in the fruit, so it has a shorter shelf-life. We instead recommend bringing freeze-dried fruit. It's crispier than dehydrated fruit and packs in much more flavor. 

Roasted chickpeas

Roasted chickpeas are a crunchy snack with a hefty dose of plant-based protein and fiber. You can make your own easy roasted chickpea snacks at home with the help of seasonings like maple syrup and za'atar. However, if you want all the benefits of chickpeas without the trouble of making and storing them yourself, you can try Biena Chickpea Snacks. They're among the most underrated, delicious nut-free snacks and come in flavors including honey-roasted, barbecue, and habanero. The only downside of this snack is that the taste is a bit mealy and doesn't have the best texture, so snack with discretion. 


Pretzels are an okay stand-alone snack, but they're not the crème de la crème of the salty snack world. Plain pretzels alone won't satisfy you for long, lazy days at the beach because they lack protein and fat.

If you want to boost the satiety of your pretzels, you should consider pairing them with a side like cheese or nut butter. You can also make your a trio of chocolate-covered pretzels dipped in your choice of vanilla yogurt, peanut butter, or dark chocolate. If you want to prevent these treats from melting, try to keep the pretzels in a cooler or with other chilled food.

Fruit leather

We can guarantee that making your own fruit leather isn't worth it. You have to have many kitchen tools to puree, dry, and store your leather effectively — and the process can take up to 20 hours to complete. So if fruit leather is in your must-have beach snack rotation, you should consider buying it pre-made instead. When selecting a fruit leather, take a quick look at the ingredients list; many processed types of fruit leather contain preservatives or added sugars.

Puppy chow

For the unfamiliar, puppy chow is a bite-sized snack made by covering Chex cereal in a mixture of nut butter, melted chocolate, and powdered sugar. You can also make variations on the recipe, like our chocolate-coconut puppy chow that tastes like the Girl Scout cookie of our dreams. 

While puppy chow does deliver on the sweet route, some complications with this snack make it challenging to bring to the beach. Since it's covered in a layer of powdered sugar, you'll likely get your fingers, face, and every piece of fabric you bring covered in powdered sugar too. You also might get stuck in a sticky situation if your recipe contains chocolate, so make sure you've got plenty of wet naps if you pack this sweet treat.

Granola bars

At first glance, granola bars seem like a good option for all-around snacking. Portable? Check. Flavorful? Depending on the brand, check. But who is filled up after eating a single granola bar? 

There are modifications you can make to your homemade granola bars to make them unique and filling. Try making savory granola bars with rolled oats, nuts, seeds, and spices like oregano and rosemary. Add nut butter, dark chocolate, or pumpkin seeds if you want to stay with the conventional sweet route. 

Seaweed snacks

Seaweed snacks aren't for everyone, but they make us think a lot about the beach. The seaweed snack market is booming because of growing interest in Japanese food and a better understanding of the nutritional benefits of seaweed. Nori sheets are rich in B12, antioxidants, and iodine according to Healthline, and can be eaten whole, sprinkled over a salad, or used as a replacement for tortillas or bread in sandwiches. 

Seaweed snacks are indeed an acquired texture, which may not make the sheets everyone's favorite snack. In addition, the taste of the seaweed itself is not fishy but somewhat savory and salty. Just be aware that you may have to pack some toothpicks to pick out the pieces of seaweed between your teeth if you bring this snack to your beach day. 

Kettle chips

Kettle chips are the perfect beach snack as long as you're okay with salty or onion-y residue all over your fingers. Kettle chips are crunchier than regular potato chips, but there is no nutritional difference between the two. We think kettle chips are more satisfying — especially with flavors like sour cream and onion and the beachy sea salt and vinegar. 

There are some downsides to packing kettle chips into your beach bag. The chips will only keep you satiated for a short period and aren't the healthiest snacking option. But when combined with a ham and cheese sandwich, you've got a winning combination. 

Dry cereal

If eating dry cereal makes you feel like a toddler, you may not be the only one. Eating dry cereal as a snack is a somewhat euphoric experience that you can only relate to if you do it shamelessly. Despite its nostalgia, cereals, especially ones ladened with added sugar, may not be as nutritious as you think

If you're looking for snacking cereals with low sugar, we recommend looking for Chex (in wheat, corn, and rice varieties), Quaker Oats' Life, or the classic plain Cheerios. If you want to make your cereal more satiating, consider pairing it with fat or protein or going decadent with rainbow cereal bar treats — just be sure to bring napkins.


Crackers are the plain Janes of the snacking world. No one goes out of their way to purchase bland oyster crackers or Goldfish, but you'll always eat them if they're around. These crackers placed low on our list because pairing them with other spreads is difficult due to their smaller size.

The best crackers are large and contain textural elements like nuts, seeds, and crunchy bits. Our favorite brands for these chips include Mary's Gone Crackers super-seed collection, which includes flavors like everything, seaweed and black sesame, and basil and garlic.

Tortilla chips

Tortilla chips are a mediocre snacking option, especially when you dip them into salsa and lose half of the chip. These chips aren't as substantial as a pita chip and often leave you craving a sweet beverage and, you guessed it — more chips. And unless you have salsa or guacamole, it's not worth bringing chips.

If you're dead set on bringing tortilla chips to the beach, we recommend the Mi Nina Pico De Gallo tortilla chips. You'll get a salty and savory punch in every bite. 

Pita chips

Versatile is the best word to describe pita chips. Brands like Stacy's come in flavors ranging from savory garlic and parmesan to sweet cinnamon sugar. If you pack a dip to take to the beach, you can scoop your sturdy pita chips in without fear of breakage. 

Pita chips are easy enough to find in the grocery store, but you can always make your own. Toss sliced pita wedges with olive oil and seasoning — we recommend paprika and Italian seasoning — and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 to 25 minutes. 

Rice cakes

Rice cakes are the perfect light cracker. Unlike other snacks, rice cakes won't weigh down your beach tote or your stomach. However, if you want to keep yourself full, you'll need to pack toppings for your rice cakes too. Nut butter and banana are always good additions for plain or sweet rice cakes, while savory rice cake flavors pair well with hummus, guacamole, or yogurt-based spreads. If your topping requires refrigeration, though, it may not be the best to bring it to the beach. 

Fresh fruit

There isn't a better feeling than biting into a succulent peach in the summertime. The perfectly ripe peach, plum, or nectarine will drip down your hands and leave a sticky residue in its wake. If you're not feeling the stonefruits, you can bring apples, oranges, or bananas to the beach instead. While fruits are delicious to bring to the beach though, holding on to the pit or the peel all day is not always the most practical, beach-friendly experience.


If you want to keep it light, look no further than freshly popped popcorn. If you pop your own at home, you can add any seasonings, herbs, butter, or sweet elements that your tastebuds desire. One of our favorite ways to change your popcorn routine is to add a 50/50 mixture of peanut butter and neutral-flavored oil instead of butter. This popcorn dressing contains healthy fats and proteins, keeping you fuller for longer than plain, carbohydrate-rich popcorn alone. 

Individually-packaged cheese

While Babybels and plastic-wrapped cheese sticks may not scream "romantic charcuterie on the beach," they are both practical additions to take with you on your next family trip to the beach. Low-moisture cheeses tend to be the least perishable, but you should always store your cheese out of direct sunlight and with an ice pack to keep it cold. Snacking cheeses are good options for the beach because you can combine them with other snacks or eat them on their own. 


Bringing hummus with you to the beach is a smart decision. It's filled with plant-based protein from chickpeas and healthy fats from tahini and olive oil. However, hummus does come with a storage caveat. It needs to be kept cold if you bring it to the beach. If your hummus is improperly stored for over two hours, it can make you sick. Keep your dips cool by packing a sealed cooler with a few ice packs. 

Sandwich roll-ups

Sandwich pinwheels, or roll-ups, are easy to make with tortillas or rolled-out, de-crusted bread. Add your favorite toppings to your pinwheels, including deli meat, cheese, or a spread. If you want your pinwheels to stick together, try cooling them in your refrigerator for at least half an hour before rolling. 

Pinwheels are an excellent sandwich option because you can make several sandwich varieties and eat the pinwheels at your leisure. If you're using spreads or mayonnaise-based sauces, you should always keep ice packs handy to keep your wheels from overheating. 

Single-serve nut butter

If you're strapped for dinner options or stuck in a college dorm room, you've likely indulged in a few spoons of peanut butter in your lifetime. Nut butter, including peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter, and nut-free sunflower butter, have a ton of healthy fats that promote satiety more than just carbohydrate-rich chips or fruit. 

If you want to bring nut butter to the beach (provided that no one in your party has a nut allergy), you'll want to pack single-serve containers or pouches to take with you. The pouches or dippable containers make adding nut butter to your other beach snack favorites easy. We also won't judge if you eat the nut butter straight from the packet. 

Pudding cups

Pudding cups are a sweet, shelf-stable snack perfect for the beach. Since the cups are individually packaged and made with ingredients that don't require refrigeration, you won't have to worry about packing bulky, dessert-filled Tupperware with your other beach goods. We recommend bringing a pudding snack as a sweet treat; it's cheaper than the ice cream sold at many beaches and won't melt all over your fingers and bathing suit. Just don't forget your spoon! 

Shelled peanuts

Shelled peanuts are entertainment and a snack in a single legume. Peanuts contain the highest amount of protein per serving compared to other nuts and can be roasted and salted for a more robust peanut flavor. 

If you're a responsible beachgoer (like we would expect and ask everyone to be), you might be a bit peeved about taking the shells with you when you leave the beach. If you want to take up less space in your tote, either purchase pre-shelled peanuts or make an activity out of de-shelling them before packing up the car. 

Sliced veggies

Sliced veggies are crunchy, refreshing, and the perfect snack to take to the beach. In minutes, you can chop up a medley of bell peppers, celery, carrots, and snap peas. However, once you slice up your veggies, place them in an airtight storage container or plastic bag with a cool pack. Leaving cut vegetables exposed to room temperature (or ambient temperatures at the beach) for more than two hours can increase your risk of pathogen exposure and potentially make you sick, per the United States Department of Agriculture

Protein bars

Although you might not want to look like the gym rat who brings a protein bar everywhere they go, this beach hack has some utility. Protein bars come in several flavors and can come with upwards of 30 grams of protein, but some brands don't taste as good as the package looks. Protein bars can be dry and taste too artificial — almost to where you feel like you're eating corrugated cardboard. Our favorite protein bar brands include BUILT and Quest, which come in flavors designed for every palate. 

Tuna packs

If you're trying to increase your daily protein intake, StarKist has you covered. The brand offers several varieties of pouched tuna in flavors like ranch, buffalo style, and Thai chili.  

Some differences between pouched and canned tuna make the pouched variety a better option for the beach. The pouches tend to have a firmer texture and fresher taste because the tuna is cooked less. In addition, no additional water or oil is added to pouched tuna, and the containers are less bulky than the cans. 

Trail mix

Trail mix is the perfect customizable snack, provided that you make it yourself. You can add your favorite mix of roasted nuts — roasted almonds or honey-glazed peanuts are our favorites — and dried fruits. While a staple in sweet trail mix varieties, chocolate candy can quickly melt and taint the rest of your snack. You can purchase packaged trail mix brands in types suited to your palate — like Peanut Butter Lovers or Tropical Medley.

DIY Snack Mix

Snack mix is a customizable, savory blend of cereal, pretzels, and other crackers. You can get fancy with homemade chicharrón Chex Mix or a duck fat Chex Mix, or stick to buying pre-packaged varieties from the store. Our favorite popular Chex Mix flavors include Bold — made with extra garlic powder, onion powder, and Worcestershire flavoring. The Traditional and Cheddar flavors are also delicious, salty options that will have you reaching for a cool glass of lemonade beside the shore. 

Frozen grapes

When you freeze grapes, you'll find they taste like candy. But, even when the grapes start to melt, you'll still find this snack refreshing on a hot summer day. 

The best way to freeze grapes is to wash and blot them dry before freezing them on a single layer overnight. This will prevent grapes from clumping together. If you're packing several snacks that you need to keep cool, use your frozen grapes as a mock freezer pack. 

Nut butter-stuffed pretzel nuggets

Nut butter-filled pretzel nuggets are a safe, satiety-inducing option to bring to the beach. You won't have to worry about storage — but you will have to worry about eating the entire container in a single sitting. One of our favorite products is Trader Joe's Almond Butter Chocolate Pretzels; these tiny pretzels are covered with a decadent layer of dark chocolate and a hefty serving of almond butter inside. If you want to avoid getting sticky fingers, we recommend bringing a pair of chopsticks to eat your new favorite beach snack. 

Beef jerky

Beef jerky is one of the most satiating and protein-dense foods you can pack for the beach. Jerky only takes up a little space in your beach tote, and it will satisfy your savory snack cravings for the entire day. You can make your beef jerky at home or pick up a bag at almost any convenience or grocery store on your way to the shore. 

To reduce your environmental impact with a protein other than beef, you should check out eco-friendly tuna jerky made with fresh, dehydrated tuna. Since tuna has a lower environmental footprint than beef, you can snack confidently knowing you're getting all the protein and nutritional benefits of fish while lowering your impact on the planet.