When you want to bring meats, pasta salads, and other perishable foods on a road trip, you’ll need to keep them frozen for as long as possible. This is the only way they’ll stay fresh by the time you’re ready to eat them. If you don’t keep them frozen, they’ll spoil and rot within hours. You cannot eat food that is spoiled and rotten or else you’ll get sick.
A cooler is the main item you will be using to keep food frozen while traveling. This is basically a large insulated container which can keep cold temperatures trapped inside it for extended periods of time. Traditionally, you create these cold temperatures by storing lots of ice in them. Once the cooler is closed, the insulation keeps the coldness trapped inside so that the ice doesn’t melt as quickly.
When you prepare food and beverages for the cooler, it is a good idea to freeze or refrigerate them beforehand. For instance, if you want to bring bottled water or soda with you on your trip, keep them in the refrigerator for 24 hours before putting them in the cooler. This will make it easier for the bottles to stay cool when they’re transferred straight into the icy cooler. And if you’re going to bring meat, milk, or juice, it is better to freeze these food items in your freezer before putting them in the cooler.
To prevent food from perishing quickly, the temperature needs to be at least 40°F or less. You can sustain this temperature by packing your cooler until it is full. Don’t just fill up your cooler halfway because the temperature will drop faster. The more ice and frozen foods that are in the cooler, the longer they will stay fresh.
If you follow this advice, your perishable foods should stay fresh for between 2 to 4 days. There are some other factors which influence this timeframe, such as the temperature outside and where the cooler is stored. For example, if you’re going to a tropical location like Florida, then the cooler may warm up a lot faster. You also shouldn’t keep your cooler in the trunk of your car. It is better to keep in inside the cabin where the air conditioner can help keep it cooled off.