Plan ahead. Go to roadfood.com to map out the best small-town eats on your route.
Skip the rest stops. “The point of road-tripping is not to see the interstate,” says Pauline Frommer, creator of the Pauline Frommer Guidebooks. “Get off the highway to explore, and patronize local eateries―clam shacks, barbecue huts, and soda parlors.”
Stick to a meal schedule. “The hungrier you get, the worse choices you’ll make. Skip lunch and Pizza Hut looks like the gates of heaven,” says Carll Tucker, who spent nine months road-tripping to write The Bear Went Over the Mountain: Finding America, Finding Myself ($10, amazon.com). If you stop at regular intervals, you’ll be less likely to settle out of desperation.
In a pinch, find a grocery store. “Supermarkets offer plenty of safe and healthy foods,” says Tucker.