Giada De Laurentiis Avoids Airplane Food And Eats This Simple Snack While Flying Instead

Airplane food doesn't have the best rap. It's often heavily processed and bland and always seems to exacerbate that dreaded post-flight bloat. Some foodies won't even touch the stuff — including Giada De Laurentiis. In 2009, TMZ caught up with the celebrity chef at the airport and asked for her thoughts on inflight meals. In the clip, Laurentiis first sarcastically says she loves airplane food before turning to the camera and bluntly uttering, "Just don't eat it."

Over a decade later, the former Food Network star hasn't changed her tune one bit. In 2019, Laurentiis revealed to Forbes that she still doesn't eat the food served on planes. However, don't take that to mean she goes hungry during her flights. "I travel with snacks, always," she explained. "Trail mix. Walnuts, almonds, Marcona almonds, chocolate chips, cranberries. I take little bags of that with me. It really helps."

While the culinary master is certainly capable of making complex, five-star meals, this is one simple recipe that even those of us who aren't so skilled in the kitchen can easily recreate.

Trail mix is healthy flying fuel

Giada De Laurentiis' trail mix is super simple and nutritionist-approved. Jonathan Valdez, owner of Genki Nutrition and spokesperson for the New York State Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, told HuffPost that trail mix is an ideal plane snack thanks to its protein, fiber, and unsaturated fats. The combination keeps you full for hours, even if you do decide to skip the airline's lasagna and bread roll.

The chocolate often found in Laurentiis' go-to snack also offers its own benefits. Besides being delicious, chocolate may help reduce jet lag — seriously. Research conducted at the University of Sydney found that, along with certain lighting, sleeping schedules, and movement practices, travelers who followed a controlled meal schedule that included chocolate experienced less fatigue, better rest during their flights, and improved cognition two days after flying.

Note that there are many ways to craft your own Giada-esque mix. The chef shared a formula on her website, Giadzy, that works regardless of what ingredients you have on hand: four parts of "healthies" for every one part of "goodies." Healthies include nuts, seeds, and grains (think granola, popcorn, corn nuts, or even whole-grain cereal), while goodies consist of dried fruit, chocolate, and other sweet treats.

Giada De Laurentiis sticks to light and healthy airplane snacks

Trail mix might not be enough to hold you over on a long-haul flight, but thankfully, Giada De Laurentiis has a few other snack ideas for travel days, with sliced apples being singled out for praise, according to Travel & Leisure. Sliced apples are a staple snack during flights, which, like trail mix, are packed with satiating fiber. To add some protein and healthy fats to the fruit, bring a little peanut butter for dipping, though be sure to follow TSA's liquid rules.

Laurentiis is also a fan of fennel, an unexpected but wholesome airplane snack. Cut the veggie, leave it raw or roast it, and pack it in a plastic travel bag once it cools. For a ready-to-go snack, the foodie icon also likes packaged crackers (Pan d'Aria Tradizione Puffed Crackers from Italy are one of her favorites).

No matter what food Laurentiis munches on, she never forgets water. When Forbes asked the star for her best travel beauty tip, she responded simply, "Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate." Sipping on water and other fluids while en route to your destination can help stave off dehydration and jet lag, according to Mayo Clinic.