Last month I went on a four day backpacking trip and had an amazing time, but I have to admit: I was lazy at planning meals. By the end I was sick of trailmix, protein bars, and dehydrated pasta meals. It's a lot easier to incorporate fresh, savory, satisfying foods when you have a cooler or refrigeration (and we've got some great options available! Check out our Portable Vehicle Refrigerator, American Standard Car Refrigerator, or Collapsible Grocery Cooler Bag).
Sometimes, though, whether you're backpacking, horseback riding, hunting, or fishing, you're out in the backcountry without refrigeration and only a small campstove to make your meals. Backcountry nutrition can be especially challenging for those on vegan, vegetarian, low-carb, low-sodium, and other restricted diets. Dehydrated meals are typically packed with meat, carbs, and sodium! After my recent, unappetizing experience, I've been picking the brains of all the outdoorspeople I know about how they pack fresher, healthier, tastier foods on their backcountry pilgrimages. Here are three delicious suggestions:
Egg burritos. Oatmeal and cereal works fine for some people, but I need my protein in the morning. I always bring OvaEasy Egg Crystals and small containers of spices, which weigh almost nothing. Burritos are a common backpacking food because they don't take up much room. Try wrapping scrambled eggs in a burrito with Mexican spices and dehydrated beans for a strong start to your day.
Hummus and veggies. Two expert wilderness guides shared their favorite meal of cut-up veggies and dehydrated hummus (available in bulk sections of grocery stores like Winco). The trick to delicious trail hummus, they said, was to bring a small amount of olive oil to mix with the hummus and water when you reconstitute it.
First night frozen stirfry. Another friend says she always tosses a frozen bag of veggie stirfry in her pack for the first night. Of course, when packing fresh veggies or frozen foods, follow safe handling guidelines. Here's a helpful list of foods that can go a day or more without refrigeration.
Now I've shared what I'm taking on my next wilderness trip. What tips do you have for gourmet backcountry cuisine?