Podcasts for the Road

I love a good road trip in the summer, but my patience with traffic is non-existent. Mt family has been vacationing in the Outer Banks for years, and while I always declare that time my favorite three weeks of the year, I also have too many memories of being bored on long car rides. My grandma used to pack me and my brother little totes filled with new books and toys to keep us busy, but now that I’m an adult, I’m supposed to be able to entertain myself.

A couple of years ago, I started listening to podcasts on the drive to the beach, and I found that the time passed in the blink of an eye. Since then, podcasts have become part of my everyday life. I listen while keeping the laundry moving, on my morning walk to Starbucks, and anytime I’m going to be behind the wheel for more than an hour.


(image via.)

There are so many great ones I’ve added to my queue over the years, here are my favorites in a few categories.

Food: 

Spilled Milk: Hosted by Matthew Amster Burton and Molly Wizenberg, these are short (15-20 minute) episodes, in which the hosts try a certain type of food and give you their take. They’ve talked about regular foods like heirloom tomatoes and rhubarb, but my favorite episodes are where they get into more niche snacks like breakfast cereal, puffy snacks, or more recently, convenience store staples of the Deep South.

America’s Test Kitchen Radio: If you’re a cookbook hoarder like me, no doubt you have at least one volume from America’s Test kitchen in your collection. Christopher Kimball and his team meticulously test recipes, kitchen gadgets, and other food-related products, so you don’t have to. While I never got into the show on PBS, I can binge on his podcasts like there’s no tomorrow.

Friends: 

The Joy the Baker Podcast: Let’s all pause, for a moment of silence, in memory of this show. Joy and Tracy are best friends, who hosted a weekly podcast for years. Though they’re both food bloggers, the topics they covered on their shows ranged from summer bucket lists, to moving to a new city, to irrational fears. Episodes are still in iTunes, and every so often, I check back just in case a new one shows up.

Spawned: This one is newer to me, but after listening to just a couple of episodes, I’m totally hooked. The hosts run a mom blog, and their podcast covers a whole bunch of parenting topics like screen time, people who don’t understand reply-all (ugh, listservs!), and what to do when one parent travels all the time and the other is at home. One of my favorite episodes is the one where they interview Jessica Lahey, author of one of my favorite books, The Gift of Failure. You can tell the hosts are great friends, so their perspectives never come across in a negative, or preachy way.

This and That:

What Should I Read Next: This is one of the few podcasts I am completely up to date on. Every Tuesday, Anne Bogel, or Modern Mrs. Darcy, releases a new episode, in which she asks her guests to share three books they love, one book they hate, and what they’re reading right now. She analyzes each guest’s picks, and comes up with 3 suggestions for their next read. I’ve added so many books to my “to read” stack from Anne’s podcaSt, and a few of her guests have called it book  therapy.

The Awesome Etiquette Podcast: Call me old fashioned, but I love etiquette and all rules of decorum. This one is hosted by Lizzie Post and Daniel Post Senning, who work at the Emily Post Institute. In each episode, they tackle any number of listener questions, and will keep you refreshed on modern etiquette (phones at the dinner table, anyone?), and the rules that never change.

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