How Do You Carry Food On a Motorcycle? [ Easy Solutions ]

A Person Driving a Motorcycle with Crates

For most people, the idea of carrying food or drinks while riding a motorcycle sounds like a recipe for disaster. However, for the growing number of motorcyclists who use their bikes as their primary mode of transportation, the capacity to carry lunches, drinks, and groceries has become a need rather than a luxury.

Although a motorcycle is convenient for daily commuting, when it comes to carrying food and drink, they’re just not built for it. So, if you’re new to owning and riding a motorcycle and thinking about ways to load your groceries onto your bike, we’ve come up with some creative solutions. Read on to learn how.

How to carry food on your motorcycle

You can use a saddle bag, backpack, cargo rack and straps to easily carry food on your motorcycle.

Carrying food on a motorcycle is no different than carrying any other items.  However, there are some things you should keep in mind to make sure your food doesn’t get damaged or thrown off the motorcycle or that you don’t get into an accident.

The Backpack

Because most riders already have one, using a backpack is the most cost-effective solution to the problem of carrying groceries on your bike.

Because of the limited space offered by a backpack, you only have room for the bare necessities. If you go this route, you may have to return to the grocery store to buy the other stuff you need.

The bag’s weight rests on the rider’s shoulder, not the bike, which is the other problem with backpacks. Because of this, you will need a large backpack to sit on the pillion seat, which will alleviate the pressure from your back and shoulders. If you have a sissy bar, you could strap the backpack onto the seat.

The Tank Bag

Another easy, affordable, and convenient solution is the tank bank. Many tank bags are equipped with magnets, and if your tank is made of metal, it’s a stick-and-go situation. Otherwise, you will have to use straps to secure the tank bag. One advantage this type of bag offers is that you have easy access to everything in the bag. Plus, it keeps the weight out of your shoulder. Still, you have the issue of limited space with this type of carrier. 

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The Saddle Bag

Most modern motorcycles today have room for a saddle bag installation. While others will require a luggage rack, most are just throw-over bags secured on the passenger seat using straps. With a saddlebag, you have ample enough space that’s good for transporting food or grocery. It’s also suitable for a weekend trip somewhere. There are many different types of materials for saddlebags. Just make sure you get the weather-proof, lockable, and easy to remove if you need to walk away from your bike for a long time. 

Underseat Storage

It’s common for motorcycle manufacturers to include a helmet storage area under the seat of scooters and large touring motorcycles. This is not something you can expect from dirt or a sports bike. Although limited in space, this is a great place to store your groceries.,

Hard Luggage

Some motorcycles, like the Honda Goldwing, come with hard luggage. Other motorcycles, particularly adventure models, offer more storage capacity through aftermarket hard luggage attachments. This allows you to carry more food, groceries, or even riding gear for longer trips. The advantage of hard luggage is that they are lockable and weather-proof. Be careful when you have hard luggage; they are mostly made from hard plastic or aluminum and are supported by metal brackets. They are known to crush a rider’s legs if they happen to be pinned down after a fall. 

Top Box

A top box is basically a big box with a lid that locks and is installed at the rear of a motorcycle. It’s usually made of metal and can be used for storing all kinds of things. Without a doubt, the best place to put your groceries is in the top box. It keeps the groceries safe from the elements, keeping your groceries from being damaged. 

Top boxes are sturdy, easy to install and remove, weather-proof, and can be easily locked. Some full boxes are also equipped with a basket, which is excellent if you have a lot of food or groceries.

Panniers

You might think this is redundant because I already mentioned saddle bags above. However, the difference between the two is that saddlebags are made from a more durable, heavier material (e.g., cowhide). In contrast, panniers are made from a more lightweight synthetic material like Cordura fabric, polyester, or faux leather. Like the saddlebags, a pannier could be secured via brackets or straps. 

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Furthermore, panniers are designed to be removable. If you need to walk away from your bike for an extended period, you can remove the pannier and take it with you.

Duffle bags

Duffle bags are lightweight, so they’re easy to carry. If you need to carry a lot of stuff, a duffle bag strapped on your motorcycle’s back seat is a good choice. Just make sure that it’s waterproof (in case of a downpour) and that you secure the duffle bag with quality straps so it doesn’t wobble or fall. 

Bags Hanging on the Handlebars

This is a terrible idea. If you do this, you put yourself in danger since the bag might be stuck on something, making you lose your balance, resulting in a slide or crash. Furthermore, your groceries may fall through the bottom of the bag and could hit the rider or the car following you. So, if I were you, I would avoid doing this.

The footboard of a step-through scooter

You can put a bag or two of groceries on the footboard on certain scooters because of their step-through space. The best thing about this is that both of your legs protect the bags. Your grocery items will not fall if the bag handles are tied securely.

The Crate Method

This is pretty straightforward. You have a crate that’s big enough to be placed comfortably on the back seat of your bike and secured with straps. On the whole, this method is very effective. You can buy a crate from your local bike shop or build one yourself. 

The Sidecar or Trailer

Attaching a sidecar or trailer to your bike is the ultimate way to transport groceries if you need more space, especially if you haul food frequently. The advantage of a sidecar is that it keeps your groceries safe from the elements and keeps your groceries from being damaged.

Get your buddy to hold the groceries/food

If all else fails or you don’t have the resources to buy or install any of the above suggestions, get a buddy to help you. The buddy will hold the groceries and food while you ride in this situation. You’ll need to make sure that you’re not riding too fast, or your buddy will get knocked off their feet.

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Straps

As you can see from the above list, there are many ways to carry groceries on your motorcycle. However, another method of securing your groceries on your bike is by using a strap. This is a sure-fire way of securing your backpack, duffel bag, or grocery bag to your bike. Just be mindful of your speed and the bumps on the road, especially if your grocery is just wrapped in plastic.

If you’re using straps to secure your bag, hook them to sturdy mounting points like those on luggage racks or frames. If you don’t, your bag could slip off the bike and be damaged.

The Combination

Depending on your motorcycle, you can combine several of the methods above. An example of this would be to have a tank bag, saddle bag/pannier, a top box, and pull a trailer at the back of your bike. 

No matter which way you use, make sure that you only carry the number of groceries that your bag and bike are capable of transporting.

Conclusion

The truth is, despite the limited space offered by a motorcycle, transporting food or groceries using your bike is possible. In brief, the methods I’ve outlined above are the most effective. You simply need to ensure that the bag or box is securely fastened or attached to your motorcycle to ensure that you do not fall off, that your groceries don’t get damaged, or that you do not lose your balance while on the road. Also, you may have to ride slower than usual to avoid tipping over.

I hope you have found this information to be helpful. I’ve tried to include all of the information you’ll need to get the most out of your motorcycle and its storage space in this article.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below. 

Thank you for reading.