Cruising Tips: What Food To Buy For a Sailing Trip

What food do you have to buy for a sailing trip? Follow these cruising tips! The amount of food you are going to take to your boat depends upon the number of people and rough estimates of how much each person can eat in a day times the number of days of your sailing trip. The rule of thumb for the sailing food is to take a little bit extra.

That refers to non-perishable food. Buy perishables in quantities that you can use before they go bad since you can get them every other day, or whenever you are in port. There are no restrictions on which food you may take on board. Do not forget to get snacks and enough drinking water.

It is a good idea to make a list according to meals – breakfast, lunch, dinner. So for breakfast, you would normally buy milk, cereals, bagels, eggs, ham, jams, butter and bread. For lunch, you can have anything you want. But if you want to keep it simple, buy foods that can be assembled into some light salads or sandwiches.

That includes lettuce, different vegetables, canned tuna, pasta, cheese, and some meat, like chicken for example. Dinners usually require a bit more planning. You need to comply with everyone’s tastes and habits – whether they are vegetarian or not – and also, you should keep in mind the very groceries you are going to buy.

They need to last, especially if you are not going to be able to go grocery shopping during your sailing holidays, and they also need to have a short preparation period, the last thing you want on your sailing holiday is to spend hours cooking. We suggest you buy tomato sauce, mincemeat, steaks, vegetables, pasta, rice, and beans.
Snacks are also important to have on your sailing food list, especially if you are taking children with you. Potato chips, granola bars, cookies, chocolate, and dried fruit all fall into that category.

When it comes to drinks, the rule of thumb is 1.5 liters/person/day. Also, do not forget to buy enough (or some more) soda and beers. You will most definitely end up drinking more of both than you do at home. Coffee and tea should also be on the list.

Quantities of food to buy for your sailing trip are difficult to estimate, especially considering the fact that at sea people get hungry and eat more than on dry land.
A 400 g tin will serve 2 – 3 people; 120 – 220 g of meat per person; up to 300 g of potatoes per person; some 100 g of fresh vegetables per portion; 120 g of dry pasta per person and half as much of rice per person.

Thanks to Sailing Europe for this advice.


  1. Nice tips! My husband and I are going on a sailing tour in a few weeks and now I am trying to understand what we might need during this trip. Definitely, I do not want to spend time cooking there, so rice and beans sound perfect, especially as far as my husband’s taste is concerned. Hopefully, these little moments will not spoil our impressions from the tour 🙂

  2. That’s exactly what I am looking for. Thanks for this post. I love your blog and all the ideas you shared about outdoor experiences. Keep it up!

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