3 Tips for Traveling on an Airline with Freeze-Dried Food

traveling on airplane with freeze-dried food

If you're like me, a few times a year you find yourself waking up at 0-dark-thirty, stumbling to the airport an hour later, and finally shuffling onto an airplane for an early morning flight. My stomach always seems to grumble in time to the plane's engine as we take off, reminding me that I never ate breakfast and I have a five hour flight ahead of me. 

Or, you catch that awesome late afternoon flight, but as you stand comparing McDonald's to D'Angelo's, you are left wondering if going hungry might be better than all that grease on a long flight. 

alternative airport food

Did you know that freeze-dried food is a great airport food alternative that is TSA approved!

Because freeze-dried food is considered a solid food (ie not a gel or liquid), it is allowed on your carry-on (or as checked luggage). I've personally travelled with over 15 meals in my carry-on without issue!


To make traveling with freeze-dried food super easy, here are 3 things to know before you tear open your pouch!

#1 Bring Your Own Spoon

Airlines no longer carry plastic utensils on flights, so make sure you either bring your own eating utensil or snag a spoon from the airport cafeteria prior to boarding. 

I strongly encourage everyone to have their own travel utensils to cut down on single use plastic objects. I own a few of these fork/spoon sets, and I find them super easy to eat with. The utensil is long enough to reach into pouches and the spoon shape is deep enough to scoop food. 

alternative freeze-dried food for travel

#2 Secure Hot Water

This one is actually easier than it seems as there are two convenient options for securing hot water to rehydrate your meal. 

The first is to find a place in the airport selling tea. Some places will give you a cup of hot water for free while others will charge a nominal fee. If you explain it is to rehydrate a meal and give them the pouch to fill up, you can rehydrate your food before even getting on the plane (and save a cup!)

My preferred option is to wait until I am on the plane and the drink service has finished. On most airlines, you can walk to the back of the plane where they store the drink carts and ask for one or two cups of hot water (or you can give them the pouch to fill directly! Up to you!) and then pour that hot water into the pouch once you are back at your seat. Instant food! YUM!


#3 Don't Panic if the Pouch Puffs 

Okay, so not necessarily specific to freeze-dried food but it's good to know ... when food is packed in sealed pouches such as potato chips, the change in pressure on a plane can sometimes cause a pouch to puff out. It's unlikely your pouch will burst even though it looks like it will.

Now, this isn't likely to happen with a Bushka's Kitchen meal since all of our pouches are vacuum sealed with an oxygen absorber inside the pouch as an extra security measure to remove any residual oxygen. However, if you open the pouch and then use the zipper to seal it up (prior to adding hot water), you may notice that the pouch puffs. Don't panic! Your food is perfectly safe to eat. 

freeze-dried food carry-on luggage airport airline travel

So those are my 3 tips if you are traveling with freeze-dried food on your carry-on! Happy eating :)


Bushka's Kitchen provides ready-to-eat, lightweight food for every type of busy lifestyle, whether that's backpacking, traveling, parenting, or just plain ol' business. Browse our nutritious, gourmet food and stock up for your busy life!

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