Things to Eat When You Go Backpacking

Updated - 08/27/18

On the trails, I tend to look for foods that taste good, are easy to prepare, and vegetarian (although I've included some non-vegetarian foods that my buddies will eat and seem to enjoy).  I've been using a system of a foods that take no preparation for breakfast and lunch, and then eat a hot meal for dinner (that only requires hot water and waiting).  At least that's what I do when we hike all day long.  

Breakfast - I try to start the day off with a tasty breakfast with about 500 calories. 

  • Coffee (instant)
  • Granola with or without powdered milk
  • Mountain House Granola with Freeze Dried Blueberries & Milk
  • Instant Oatmeal

Energy for the trail - Either shortly before we start hiking or shortly after, I try to get something that gives me some energy and a little sustenance.

  • Honey Stinger Organic Energy Chews (strawberry flavor rocks)
  • Clif Shot Bloks Fastpak
  • Mixed Nuts or Trail Mix

Morning Snack - After a couple hours of hiking, I'll eat something to hold me over until lunch.

  • Justin's Nut Butter Packets

Lunch - I'll usually try to consume 600 to 700 calories with any variety of foods.

  • Jerky (Louisville Vegan Jerky is amazing)
  • Nuts / Nut Mix / Trail Mix (GORP)
  • Dried Fruit (dried strawberries are amazing)
  • Tortilla with filling (peanut butter, tuna, etc)
  • Oranges (also better to eat earlier in the trip)
  • Dried hummus mix and pita bread
  • PB&J (makes for an easy lunch; just use the Justin's peanut butter packets)
  • Cheese (probably should be consumed the first day or two)
  • Crackers (ritz are good)
  • Gum (fresh breath!)

Afternoon Pick Me Up - After the lunch food settles, I'm usually looking for some more energy.

  • Gu Sports Gel
  • Honey Stinger Organic Energy Chews

Dinner - After a long day hiking, a warm meal tastes pretty damn good. Don't forget to bring some extra spices to add to your meals.

  • Outdoor Herbivore meals (Most are amazing including the Blackened Quinoa and the Basil Walnut Penne )
  • Dehydrated freezer bag meal (combine dehydrated vegetables with intant rice, noodles or mashed potatoes)
  • Mountain House meals (Potatoes and Cheddar with Broccoli, Wild Rice and Mushroom Pilaf, Mac and Cheese, Pasta Primavera)
  • Seasoning/Salt/Pepper
  • Spices (Tony's)

Desert - And a meal can never be complete without some sweets.

  • Hot Cocoa (Godiava)
  • Crème brûlée (Backpacker's Pantry)
  • Cookies
  • Peanut M&Ms
  • Oreos