Let’s get ready for long hot summer days on the lake with all the best inspiration for boat snacks! Boating food should be simple to make (and pack) but it can also be delicious, of course.

We’re here to guide you with inspired recipes and the best tips for sandwiches, wraps, snacks and more. Save this recipe collection for your next boat day, and you’ll be glad you did!

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We’ve been so lucky to get to enjoy the best of city life with our home in St. Louis and our little modern lake house on Table Rock Lake in southern Missouri.

Our girls have grown up enjoying life on the boat, and soaking up warm days in the water with friends and family. Between swimming, cliff jumping, tubing and more, we often spend entire days on the water.

That’s where this guide to boat snacks comes in – we’ve got so many fun ideas for spending a day on the lake (or ocean)! Save these ideas for your next water adventures so you’re sure to be inspired with new family favorites.

A boat with a built in table for boat snacks.

Lake Life

  • 23 Things To Do On Table Rock Lake – Things to do on gorgeous Table Rock Lake in southwest Missouri – a close drive from St. Louis and Kansas City and a quick flight from Chicago and Denver!
  • Table Rock Lake Restaurants – Here’s a guide for all the best places to enjoy a meal on the water if you’re visiting our favorite lake!
  • Lake House Decor – Now you’re just steps away from clear blue skies, spectacular water views and the relaxation you’ve been craving – and you’ll have the lake house interior design to match!
A charcuterie display inside a kraft paper box for a boat snack idea.

Boat Snacks

I hope you’re feeling inspired as you pack your bags for a day on the water!


  • No Bananas Allowed – Bananas have long been thought to be bad luck on a boat. Superstition or not, just don’t bring them!
  • Avoid “Orange” Foods – This means no Cheeto or Dorito dust, which can easily stain seats, paint and floorboards.
  • Avoid Chocolate – And other foods that can melt and create messes.
  • Pre-Cut Everything! If you’d like to bring veggies, fruit and sandwiches on board, be sure to slice everything ahead of time for easy serving.
A charcuterie display inside a kraft paper box for a boat snack idea.

Boat Food Storage Essentials

Frequently Asked Questions

What foods should you avoid while boating?

Avoid chocolate (for messy reasons) and bananas (for superstitious reasons). You should also avoid foods that create orange dust, like certain brands of potato chips!

How do you warm food on a boat?

Many boats are not equipped for this, though you will find microwaves and kitchens on larger boats! That’s why we bring snacks that fit into our coolers, tote bags and various storage compartments, without a need to reheat.

A boat in the water at sunset

20 Boat Snack Ideas

Snackle Boxes

If you love to snack, you’re going to love snackle boxes! They are everything you love about charcuterie boards, wrapped into the cutest container for travel. Tackle box charcuterie for the win!

A tackle box charcuterie display on a white table with water in the background.

Tortellini Pasta Salad

Pasta salad is great to take on the boat because it’s wholesome, filling, and can always be made ahead! If you really want to think ahead, package it in individual containers for each family or friend.

We’ve got so many wonderful Pasta Salad Recipes in this complete collection – you’re sure to find something for every summer occasion!

A white serving bowl full of tortellini pasta salad, gold serving spoon on the side.

Frozen Grapes

These frozen grapes marinated in wine are the most refreshing adult treat you’re going to love! Light on calories and bursting with fresh flavor, this is a decadent dessert without the guilt.

They are perfect for holidays, pool days, and of course boat days too! Don’t miss these Sugared Champagne Grapes for another version of this classic treat.

easy sugar champagne grapes recipe perfect for showers, NYE or poolside snack!

Drunken Strawberries

Get the recipe for drunken strawberries, perfect to eat by themselves or top a dessert. Easy to make with just three ingredients, you are going to love these boozy frozen strawberries!

Drunken strawberries rolled in sugar in a white bowl, with a bottle of wine in the background.

Vanilla Fruit Salad

This fruit salad is a family favorite with a light and flavorful fruit salad dressing. It’s easy and perfect for snacks, sides and boat lunches!

Ready to eat in a matter of minutes, this healthy snack can be easily customized to include your favorite fruits. (Just remember – no bananas on the boat!)

vanilla fruit salad recipe - a long time family favorite and great back-to-school lunch

Strawberry Muffins

We’ve got so many amazing muffin ideas in this Muffin Recipe Collection, too – they are a perfect snack for breakfast on the boat, or any time of day!

These sweet strawberry muffins have a tender crumb and crunchy sugar muffin top. They’re made from scratch in just minutes!

strawberry muffins on a platter

Charcuterie Jars

While we don’t bring glass on the boat, these little servings of charcuterie are easy to make ahead and package in any type of container! Try them in the kraft paper boxes I’ve linked at the top of this guide.

Jarcuterie snacks in small glass jars

Watermelon Salsa

Fruit salsas are perfect for boating because they give you the cool, refreshing flavor of fruit, with a little heat and salty chips, too!

This fruit salsa recipe embraces the fresh flavors of summer blending watermelon with bell peppers, jalapeño, cilantro and lime. Don’t skip my Pineapple Salsa, too!

A bowl of watermelon salsa on a plate of tortilla chips.

Picnic Sandwiches

A favorite on this list, we have our family’s best boat sandwiches! Learn how to make the ultimate picnic sandwiches that are customizable, craveable and incredibly easy to make (and transport)!

Simple is simply the best… and that couldn’t be more true in this sandwich story. Keep the ingredients simple, but take your picnic sandwiches to a whole new level with these simple tips and tricks.

Picnic sandwiches on a wooden cutting board, wrapped in brown paper with a white string.

Chicken Wrap

Wraps are the perfect boating food! Customize to each person’s preferences, or simply make a variety to pack for the day.

Keep it light with this easy and delicious chicken wrap recipe. It’s filled with fresh lettuce, grated cheese, juicy chicken, tomato, red onion, optional cilantro, and more!

A chicken wrap recipe on a white plate, cut in half.

Ranch Dip

This is such a classic, and it’s a healthier, more wholesome way to snack on the boat, too. This creamy ranch dip recipe is the perfect party appetizer, but also great for tucking into your boat cooler for an afternoon snack.

It’s a cinch to make and it tastes so much better than the store-bought version! In fact, we’ve got 35 Easy Dip Recipes in this amazing recipe collection – check it out.

Lifting ridged potato chip from ranch dip in bowl set on serving platter with veggies

Cheese and Crackers

Cheese and crackers are a classic snack with so many fun variations! This timeless combination is so easy to customize.

It’s fast, easy and nutritious, and makes an effortless appetizer for boat days and beyond. Use these fun tips and tricks to elevate your cheese and cracker display!

Cheese and cracker display with apples stacked on top of cheddar.

Fresh Fruit Skewers

These darling fruit skewers are the ultimate EASY way to serve festive fruit for every occasion! Perfectly bite-sized and oh-so-charming, you’ll have guests oohing and aahing over your clever display of fruit kabobs.

fruit skewers placed in a white container,  in a guide to boat snacks.

Mascarpone Fruit Dip

There’s nothing better than cool, refreshing fruit on a hot boat day. But if you pack this mascarpone fruit dip (or my favorite, this peanut butter fruit dip) you’re going to be the hit of the party!

A white plate full of strawberries and a bowl of mascarpone fruit dip in the center.

Trail Mix Without Raisins

It’s okay, you can add raisins if you want. But we always find that trail mix is a great hit on board the boat and beyond! If you’ve got friends or family with allergies, this is a great customizable option, too.

Get the secrets to creating a balanced, nut free trail mix that is perfect for boat days.

trail mix with m&ms, butterscotch chips and pretzel sticks

Cheddar Cheese Tarts

Breakfast on the boat is always so much fun, and in our neck of the woods it’s often the quietest time of the day. These little tarts can be made ahead, and serve beautifully hot, cold, or room temperature.

A variety of mini cheese tarts on a muffin tin.

Deviled Eggs

Classic deviled eggs are always a hit. They’re beautiful, easy to eat and are another protein packed option which is ideal when you’re serving just a few options or making a meal of them.

deviled eggs on a white platter

Pimento Cheese

Pimento cheese is perfect for the boat because you can use it as a dip with chips, add it to tortillas or crackers, or even slather it on a sandwich. This homemade version is the chef’s kiss!

a bowl of pimento cheese surrounded by crostini


Any type of homemade cookie will go over well on boat days, but this one is a classic and beloved by many! Like I mentioned, avoiding melting chocolate is always a good thing, and these cookies are perfect.

a stack of snickerdoodles on a white surface.

No Bake Granola Bars

Learn how to make delicious no bake granola bars in just 10 minutes with only four ingredients! These peanut butter granola bars are the perfect make-ahead breakfast or snack that you’ll feel good about.

They are packed with protein and easily made gluten-free. Don’t miss all our favorite No Bake Desserts in this complete guide!

4 ingredient easy no bake granola bars recipe

Bacon Popcorn

Who can resist this salty explosion of flavor? Not me! It feels like such a treat but it’s so easy to make with just two ingredients. It’s so easy to add a little extra flavor to your homemade stovetop popcorn.

Package it up into bags for the boat, and you’ve got a snack made in heaven!

A white bowl filled with popcorn with bacon pieces

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