The first incredible season of Expressway Balladeer wrapped up a little while ago but I still want to share my favorite moments of my tours around the nation as I prepare new music and new places to visit for the next season. So here’s my first compilation of the best road trip food I ate while on tour. Bon appetit!

Most of the burgers and other amazing plates I had the pleasure of consuming came as a part of my compensation of performing. So of course I made the best of it and got the most interesting thing I could find to share with all of you. This is how I came to try a burger topped with peanut butter, kangaroo jerky, lakeside leftover ribs and more! I have to be honest… while I was editing this video I was seriously wondering how I don’t weigh three thousand pounds. But then I remembered all the skimpy meals I had while on the road too and I remember that it definitely all equals out.

The Boinker Burger (bacon and peanut butter) at Firehouse Pub in Buckley, WA

I would often arrive early to many of my shows just to have enough time to have a great meal and chat with locals and others who may be traveling through. Great food definitely brings people together and makes it easier to swap stories. I learned so much about the areas I was performing and about locals living there. So I always left the area with a better understanding of the town or city which definitely made my overall experience much better than if I hadn’t arrived early.

The Secret of Road Trip Food

This is the secret of a great road trip. Certainly focusing on road trip food can be a good way to approach it but it doesn’t always have to be the case. The main thing to remember if you want to have a similar experience when visiting places is to do the following things:

Take Your Time

Arriving early to a location or spending an extra day at a place that’s super interesting is the only way to road trip. If you’re in a hurry to get to the next place on your list, what’s around you at that moment will pass by so quickly it will be like you were never there at all. When it comes to road trip food, try to sit at a communal area like at the bar or long table where others will sit nearby. You’ll find that some interesting conversations will come up with complete strangers…

Talk To Strangers

I know… we were always told as children: “Don’t talk to strangers.” This may be sound advice for a child but not for us adults. Keeping to yourself and not talking to strangers will surely make your road trip one of the loneliest experiences in your entire life. Trust me. Not only does a good conversation with someone new pass the time but, more importantly, talking with strangers can give you insight to someone else’s life in a different part of the country, get you out of your bubble and help you learn more about secrets in the area that may not be promoted on travel websites and blogs. Here’s the best part… at the end of the conversation, they’re not strangers anymore.

Try New Things

You’re doing yourself an enormous disservice by going to a franchise like McDonald’s or Taco Bell while you’re on the road. Each town and city has a unique restaurant with a signature plate. Try these signature plates! This is a part of being on the road, right?! Experience new things! And not only with what you eat. Explore and get out of your comfort zone in everything you do. Your road trip will be so much better as a result.

So while you’re planning your next road trip, remember these tips to get the best experience with your own road trip food and other adventures!