The Best Gas Station Snacks

We’ve all been there. During any road trip longer than four hours, you will inevitably reach a point when a.) the entire car full of people is so bored that the only things that can entertain them are snacks, and b.) the car is low on gas. Luckily, there’s a place where you can solve both problems.

Enter the sketchy site of many a win-win situation, the gas station. I know, I know, not all gas stations are sketchy. But the ones on long road trips somehow always are. One time I was driving down to Los Angeles from NorCal and stopped at a gas station in the middle of nowhere just as the sun was going down and, sure, they had snacks and gas, but they also had a bunch of antique dolls, both for sale and as decorations in the bathroom. It was harrowing. But back to the point: Gas station snacks are essential—to road trips, to morning coffee runs, and to life. That said, here are our picks for the best gas station snacks, in no particular order.

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Hard-Boiled Eggs

Sporked staff writer Danny Palumbo says that gas station eggs are a “benevolent, thoughtful snack that only has your best interest at heart.” And I believe everything Danny Palumbo says, so this has got to be true. If you’ve stopped at a gas station and all you want is some lean protein to keep you going for a couple hours before you stop for dinner, then this is the perfect snack for you. Also, hard-boiled eggs aren’t messy, too salty, too sweet, or too greasy. And, as Danny says, “A hard-boiled egg is almost impossible to screw up.” And that’s just fax.

Related: I’m the Guy Who Eats Gas Station Eggs

David Bar-B-Q Jumbo Sunflower Seeds

Sunflower seeds were banned at my junior high (presumably because the reverend’s son died at a sunflower seed party and so the town outlawed it…wait, no, that’s the plot of Footloose. I have no idea why they were banned). So every time I am on a road trip and get the opportunity to buy some of these bad boys I feel like a bit of a bad boy myself. Thanks, gas station sunflower seeds. These David Bar-B-Q Jumbo sunflower seeds also happen to be Sporked’s top sunflower pick. As Danny Palumbo says, “they are they GOAT” and are “quite smoky, and feel spiced without being spicy.” Add these to your list of the best gas station snacks.

Related: Be a Hit in the Dugout with the 8 Best Sunflower Seeds

Jack Link’s Extra Tender Original Beef Steak Strips

If you’re anything like me, a gas station stop on a road trip is the only time you’ll allow yourself to buy beef jerky (because otherwise, I would blow all my money on beef jerky). These Jack Link’s steak strips are commonly found in gas stations and, ironically, are one of the toughest jerkies out there. But this, as Sporked editor-in-chief Justine Sterling astutely pointed out, is far from a bad thing. “I want it to be an activity,” she said of eating jerky, and as someone who spent most of their childhood trying to make candy last longer, I feel this on a spiritual level.

Related: The 7 Best Beef Jerky Brands

Jack Link’s Original Turkey Jerky

What do you know? It’s more jerky that’s widely available at gas stations, but it’s turkey-based this time! Danny observed that the turkey in this jerky tastes like roasted dark meat, and that sounds like a win to me. He also said this jerky does three things particularly well: “texture, salt, and roasted flavor.” And what else can you ask for in a turkey jerky? Also, I will never stop loving the fact that “turkey jerky” rhymes. We love a meat poem.

Related: We Ranked the 7 Best Brands of Turkey Jerky

Takis Fuego

I mean…just read my bio. Takis ‘til forever and always, baybee! But, honestly, nothing makes me feel more awake than Takis. If I am on a ten-hour road trip and I need to stay awake, there is nothing better than the sharp flavor of citric acid mixed with capsaicin to keep my eyes wide open. As Sporked staff writer Jordan Myrick said, “[Takis are] not for the faint of heart, but they are for the strong of taste buds.” An elite gas station snack, for sure.

Related: Let’s Talk About the Best Takis Flavors

Munchos

Want a potato chip-like product that is pretty much always at gas stations? Well, as the Sporked staff said, “Whatever the hell Munchos are, we love ‘em.” And that seems like a pretty solid endorsement to me. Not quite a potato chip, not a Pringle, and certainly not a Pop-Chip, this potato-based unicorn of a snack is a must try the next time your car and stomach need filling.

Related: The Best Plain Potato Chips

Fritos Flavor Twists Honey BBQ

Want a chip but also you kind of want some rotini but also you kind of want some barbecue sauce? Look no further than Fritos Flavor Twists Honey BBQ, def one of the best gas station snacks you can buy. These things are absolutely PACKED with flavor. As Jordan said, “More grooves mean more flavor retention,” and they would be 100% correct on that.

Related: Put Away Your Grill. These Are the Best BBQ Chips

Peanut M&M’s

Want a sweet snack that is not too sweet and also contains some good ol’ fashioned protein? Well look no further than peanut M&Ms. Whenever my dad went into a gas station to get us road trip snacks while I was growing up, he would come out with a bag of these and a bag of Combos, so in my mind, they are a Gas Station classic. Danny Palumbo calls these “about as close as you can get to a perfect candy” and I couldn’t agree more.

Related: Best M&M’s Flavors

Sour Skittles

Lastly but not leastly, sour skittles. What more is there to say? They are Skittles (one of the best fruity candies), and sour (one of the best ways to enhance a fruity candy). Mythical Creative Executive Santi said “[They’re] super sour, makes you pucker…gives you that bite, has that texture—it’s everything you want.” And I feel this 100%. We love a sour candy that is also crunchewy. I will be getting a bag of these next time I’m at the gas station.

Related: Pucker Up for the 6 Best Sour Candies


About the Author

Jessica Block

Jessica Block is a freelance contributor to Sporked, a comedian, a baker, a food writer, and a firm believer that Trader Joe's may just be the happiest place on earth. She loves spicy snacks, Oreos, baking bread, teeny tiny avocados, and trying new foods whenever she can. Also, if you give her a bag of Takis she will be your best friend.

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  • All good suggestions! One thing I love about going to the gas station is seeing what’s new. Some flavor of soda I didn’t know came out, some weird gas station-exclusive flavor of chips, or, as I found one fateful night in 2021, Reese’s Crunchy Peanut Butter Bar, an absurdly delicious snack that far exceeds its humble PB+Chocolate origins with a variety of textures and peanut flavors.

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