Growing up by the beach is a privilege that not everyone gets to enjoy. I’m so lucky to have been able to grow up on the Jersey shore (no, I don’t know Snooki). Now, I can share my costal foodie knowledge with everyone. We would ride bikes to the beach, and spend all day soaking up the sun with our friends and family. Over the past few years, I’ve learned a ton, and have picked up a few tips along the way. Here’s what us beach kids have come to learn:
1. Seafood is everything
This probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise to landlocked people because it’s all we ever talk about. Beach bums can’t help but love the local seafood, it’s always really fresh and no two dishes are ever the same. We can’t help but drool over fish every time we see it on a menu. So, if you find yourself by the sea, order the fish dish.
2. Popsicles melt, so eat them fast
Popsicles are a summertime staple, but if you’ve eve tried eating them in 90 degree weather on the beach, you know how fast they go. You can’t really walk more than a few feet on the shore without seeing a child with sticky hands and a sugary popsicle stained mouth (which is adorable).
3. Light drinks are the best
Obviously, a bloated beer belly doesn’t really pair well with a bikini (this doesn’t in anyway stop me), so most people know how to drink light when being in the sun all day. Try to find new summery champagne drinks to switch up the daily mimosa, they’re more refreshing than most beverages, and you’ll look like a costal babe in your insta.
4. Sandwiches are a beach day necessity
There’s a ton of different ways to make a sandwich, therefore, everyone loves them. Sometimes, it’s even great to get them in a wrap. You can make them at home or just ride your bike to your favorite deli. Either way, a sandwich is an easy crowd pleaser for any occasion.
5. Tacos are just summery sandwiches
They’re really beachy because they’re always accompanied with rice, fresh veggies, and seasoned meat. It’s like a sandwich with less gluten. We like to keep it light at the beach, and we’re so busy running around that a taco is the perfect quick snack.
#SpoonTip: Fish tacos are loaded with tons of nutrients like Vitamin D, studies show that this vitamin can help protect you against the sun and make you less susceptible to burning.
6. Variety is good for the soul
Beach bums are known for being easy going. This is a really great quality to have, because trying new things is important for enjoying life. You can have your typical order at your favorite restaurant, but don’t forget to try something different a few times a week. Korean barbecue anyone?
7. Eat light
Don’t chow down on a giant plate of carbs all the time. Eating light throughout the day is what most beach goers do. It keeps your metabolism at work, and it’s easier to eat light than to cook a big meal. You can even make eating pasta light (amazing, I know).
8. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day
Start off the day right. By the shore, we love to wake up early and grab a snack before we head to the beach for the day. It fuels you with tons of energy, and stimulates your metabolism. Besides, who doesn’t love breakfast food?
9. Fresh fruit is key
It’s pretty typical for a few kids to eat a whole watermelon in less than 10 minutes. Its a win win because it’s healthy and delicious. Fruit is packed with tons of antioxidants and definitely gives us the energy we need to swim and run around all day. All of our bakeries, delis, grocery stores, and restaurants have fruit salads or mixed berries available for us at all times.
10. How to sneak alcohol on to the beach
There’s nothing more relaxing than sitting in the sand with your friends and a few drinks. We definitely don’t like to sacrifice our fun because of a little rule, so we all learn how to keep beach patrol off our butts. There’s tons of ways to sneak alcohol onto the beach, and it makes us feel badass.
11. Juices and smoothies double as meals
Juices and smoothies cost about as much as chipotle does, so you better believe i’ll justify it as a meal. They’re always refreshing and made with fresh ingredients. I always stop by the local smoothie place, which happens to be across the street from the beach, before I head out for the day.
12. Walking to dinner eliminates any calories from the food
You walked from the beach to the boardwalk to grab funnel cake? Congrats, all that effort really paid off because now you earned that funnel cake. Feel free to eat any beach town food that you want without worrying about calories, because the bike ride there obviously cancels it out.
13. Barbecues bring everyone together
What’s better than a barbecue on a beautiful day? There’s food, friends, family, and games This is pretty much a staple in any beach babe’s summer. The guys talk about how to “properly grill” while the ladies talk about their small town gossip. It’s as sterotypical as it gets, but it’s the most fun of the year.
14. Mandatory clothing signs are more of a joke than anything
Most beach goers know that shoes and a shirt is not required to get quality food near the shore. It’s like a funny saying at this point. Honestly, most places will deliver to you on the beach anyway, so they don’t get upset at sandy customers coming through the door.
15. S’mores, duh
There’s not a lot to add to this besides the fact that they’re amazing. Everyone in the country grew up with these delicious childhood treats, so obviously the beach kids will keep this going. In my opinion, the best s’mores get made at late night beach bonfires with your friends, but that could just be me.
16. A “beach bod” is not necessary to go to the beach
Size two? Great! Size twenty two? Awesome! At the shore, no one cares what size you are, so stop worrying about it. We all deserve the right to be happy and have fun with salty hair and sand between our toes. Don’t ever feel like you can’t go to the beach because of the way you look, because the beach belongs to the Earth and mother nature doesn’t judge.
17. Splurge a little
Treat yo-self. Weather its a giant plate of pasta, or a new bathing suit, we all deserve to splurge a little. It will keep you happy and motivated throughout the summer. We work our butts off so that we can have fun, don’t feel bad for indulging.
18. Drink Water
Everyone everywhere will tell you this, but for us it’s extra important to remain hydrated when being out in the sun all day. We all bring bottles of water pretty much everywhere we go, and drinking water has turned into a habit more than anything. Dehydration is a major issue that tons of people face, so always remember to drink up.
19. Adventure is everywhere
Keep your eyes and mind open. Anything is possible so don’t worry about what might happen when you take a risk. Feel free to adapt all of these foodie beach habits into your life whether you’re from the city or farmland. Enjoy the salty air, and don’t be afraid to get sand in your shoes. Any beach bum will tell you that it’s important to let go and relax. The great thing about being from the coast is being able to let go and open up, so there’s no need to hold back.