Monday, October 3, 2011

Backpacking Food Suggestions

When picking and buying food for your backpacking trips it is important to pick food that will be nutritional and efficient for backpacking trips. You should focus on dehydrated foods, because food can easily account for 1/4 or more of the bulk and 1/4 or more of the weight of your pack. A very good general estimate for food quantities is 1 1/2 to 2 pounds per person per day. This quickly adds up on trips of one or more weeks, where half the load of your pack may be in food.
Make sure you get your planning done first, decide how many meals are needed and what can be carried. Food prepared for backpacking needs to be packaged and organized (rationed) out to balance weight against not having enough food for your trek. Food and menus can easily become the most complicated and time-consuming part of trip planning! Do it wrong, and it will make for a miserable trek.

Here's a list of foods I've used on backpacking trips in the past. Some are obviously too heavy to take in large quantities, and some are meant for shorter trips or for cold weather trips where you will want warm food full of calories.

Breakfast Backpacking Foods

· instant oatmeal packets (different flavors for different days)
· MaltOMeal (add raisins/dry fruit)
· powdered eggs/egg whites
· rice (add cinnamon, raisins, and dried milk)
· granola (with dried milk)
· fruit cocktail/mandarin oranges (plastic cups)
· pancakes (need small pan,spatula, low-heat option on stove, lots of fuel, syrup in small container)


Lunch Backpacking Foods (many of these items are great for quick no-cook breakfasts)
· Wheat Thins / Triscuits
· Cheeses (string cheese, small cheese wheels, etc)
· bagels (cream cheese)
· Pita bread
· Logan Bread
· granola bars
· candy bars
· dried fruit
· GORP (nuts, M&M's raisins, yogurt peanuts, crackers, dried fruit, etc)
· Pringles
· crackers (the dense kinds at health food stores)
· lunch meats/deli meat (Soy based for vegetarians.)

Dinner Backpacking Foods
· Cup O Soup
· Cup ONoodles/Ramen
· Lipton Rice or Noodles
· vegetable soup packets
· potatoes and gravy (3-5 minute gravy mix)
· potatoes, onions, carrots and peas
· couscous with dried veggies
· ramen with dried veggies
· spaghetti with dried veggies(use McCormick sauce mix packets)
· burritos(toritillas, refried beans, cheese, peppers, salsa, onions)
· Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP) is lightweight and can be added as a meat substitute.

Liquids
· powdered lemonade/Gatorade/Crystal Lite/Tang
· hot cocoa (w/marshmallows)
· apple cider
· tea bags (variety - Earl Grey/Chai's/Greens/Etc.)

Hope this has given you some ideas for your next backpacking trip!  Sit back, put your feet up and enjoy your meal!
                                                      - Backcountry Gear @ Gear&Gadgetry

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