Some Simple Tips For Food On Hikes

Some Simple Tips For Food On Hikes

07/07/2021 Off By chadmin

What Makes For Good Backpacking Food?

There are a few factors to keep in mind when determining whether a food is good for backpacking: shelf-stable, weight, calorie density, and cook speed.

Shelf-Stable: It’s important to use ingredients that can be stored at room temperature. You can get away with bringing some things like cheese or salami if you eat them in the first few days, but for the most part, you want to skip anything perishable.

Lightweight: Since you have to carry it every step of the way, backpacking food should be as lightweight as possible. Dehydrated and freeze-dried foods tend to be lightest, though there are plenty of grocery store options we’ll review as well.

Calorie Dense: Backpacking takes a lot of energy, so you need food that can properly refuel you. When we plan our backpacking food, we try to average 125+ calories per ounce to keep the weight down.

Cooking Time: Consider how much patience you have to cook your food and how much fuel you will be bringing. Quicker cooking foods tend to be preferred by most backpackers for fuel conservation.


How Much Food Should You Pack For Backpacking?

Most backpackers who plan on hiking all day with a heavier pack should aim for 25 – 30 calories per pound of body weight, per day. If you’re going to do a shorter day of hiking (less than 2 hours) or covering less strenuous terrain, you can scale it down to 21 – 25 calories per pound of body weight, per day.

Instead of eating just three meals per day like you might at home, aim to eat throughout the day and consume 30 – 60 grams of carbohydrates per hour (source) to keep your energy high and prevent hitting the wall.

These, of course, are just a starting point and you should adjust based on your own experience. If you’re going to do a longer backpacking trip, do a few weekend shakedown trips to get a sense of what your appetite is like.


Backpacking Cookware

The type of backpacking cookware you need will depend on your group size and style of cooking. Most store-bought “just-add-water” backpacking meals require between 350 mL – 500 mL of water to rehydrate.

If you are adding your own dehydrated meals to the pot, you need to account for the volume of the water and the dehydrated food. Properly sizing your pot can be one of the trickiest parts of any backpacking kitchen.

Be Aware: the stated capacity of many pots is often less than the recommended max fill!