Backcountry Forum
Backpacking & Hiking Gear

Backcountry Forum
Our long-time Sponsor - the leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear
 
 
 

Amazon.com
Backpacking Forums
---- Our Gear Store ----
The Lightweight Gear Store
 
 WINTER CAMPING 

Shelters
Bivy Bags
Sleeping Bags
Sleeping Pads
Snow Sports
Winter Kitchen

 SNOWSPORTS 

Snowshoes
Avalanche Gear
Skins
Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters
Accessories

 ULTRA-LIGHT 

Ultralight Backpacks
Ultralight Bivy Sacks
Ultralight Shelters
Ultralight Tarps
Ultralight Tents
Ultralight Raingear
Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
Ultralight Apparel


the Titanium Page
WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags

 CAMPING & HIKING 

Backpacks
Tents
Sleeping Bags
Hydration
Kitchen
Accessories

 CLIMBING 

Ropes & Cordage
Protection & Hardware
Carabiners & Quickdraws
Climbing Packs & Bags
Big Wall
Rescue & Industrial

 MEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 WOMEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 FOOTWEAR 

Men's Footwear
Women's Footwear

 CLEARANCE 

Backpacks
Mens Apparel
Womens Apparel
Climbing
Footwear
Accessories

 BRANDS 

Black Diamond
Granite Gear
La Sportiva
Osprey
Smartwool

 WAYS TO SHOP 

Sale
Clearance
Top Brands
All Brands

 Backpacking Equipment 

Shelters
BackPacks
Sleeping Bags
Water Treatment
Kitchen
Hydration
Climbing


 Backcountry Gear Clearance

Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#135374 - 06/21/10 11:57 PM Food questions
Jasonite Offline
newbie

Registered: 06/07/10
Posts: 3
Loc: Washington State
Okay, so I'm going on a 3-day, 2-night hiking trip with a few friends over the 4th of July weekend. We'll be going into the Cascade mountains of the northwest, elevation won't be that high though. We'll try a fire and have a propane burner or two along. I'm not sure what some great options are for cooking at night...last time I bought a can of chili and one of those flash-frozen dinners.

My friend is convinced all he needs is top ramen but I'm thinking this won't be enough for my nutritional (or hunger) needs after a day of hiking. What do you recommend?


Jason

Top
#135376 - 06/22/10 01:34 AM Re: Food questions [Re: Jasonite]
ChrisFol Offline
member

Registered: 07/23/09
Posts: 387
Loc: Denver, Colordo
If you guys are carrying Propane burners then my guess is that you are actually car camping-- because I bet that my Coleman 2 burner weighs upward of 10lbs and I know you are not backpacking that thing in!

What is it that you are planning or doing?

Top
#135377 - 06/22/10 02:00 AM Re: Food questions [Re: ChrisFol]
JimmyTH Offline
member

Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 59
Loc: Indiana
Some of the canister stoves are tiny, I think they run on butane though.

Food. At home I like to cook, but I'm just interested in basics when I'm out. Things taste better in the mountains anyway. Ramen noodles aren't anything but carbohydrates and salt, really, you get pretty hungry if that's all you have. Dried instant potatoes are pretty good, I take some bouillon cubes and a small bottle of Parkay for flavor. Instant brown rice, also good. Dried fish or dried beef for protein, any Asian grocery has all sorts of dried fish, some of it's better than beef jerky for flavor (the peppered squid, great stuff). Oatmeal and raisins in the morning, sounds horrible, tastes good. Usually trail bars in the daytime, Tiger's Milk bars really work well for me. That and whatever vegetables you find along the trail, I graze on whatever. I don't remember finding much in the Northwest, though, unless it was berry season. Ate a lot of trout while I was there. Salmon berries, bear berries, blue berries, usually there was something, but usually not much of it.

Everybody has different favorites, I just broke the habit of eating complicated, the basics are good enough. Vitamin pills are a help, you probably won't have a balanced diet otherwise so it makes sense. I've actually never gone hiking with the prepackaged freeze-dried meals, guess I ought to try it sometime.

A buddy of mine out there would go hiking with me, and all he'd take was a case of beer. We worked out a system after the first time, but that first time was a little dicey. I'd take extra food after that, but hiking on half rations and beer isn't all that great.

Top
#135378 - 06/22/10 06:53 AM Re: Food questions [Re: Jasonite]
Glenn Offline
member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 2617
Loc: Ohio
I'm assuming that you've got breakfast, lunch, and snacks covered, and are asking about dinner. I'm also assuming you're using backpacking stoves (butane or isobutane, not propane, cylinders.)

For simplicity and decent portion sizes, try the Lipton/Knorr Side Dishes - they come in a variety of rice and noodle flavors. Just read the instructions to make sure you don't need milk (or take powdered milk.) A very simple dinner is a Noodles and Chicken Side Dish, with a pouch of chicken meat added (the foil pouches, like tuna and salmon come in, usually sold with the canned meat.) If you like tuna and salmon, you can add a lot of variety. The broccoli-cheese rice variety is also good.

Just remember to stir frequently, and watch your flame - since you actually cook this (as opposed to "boil water, remove from flame, add food pack"), you have to be careful to avoid having it burn onto the bottom of the pot. It's not fun to try to clean the pot in the backcountry when this happens.

Top
#135381 - 06/22/10 09:33 AM Re: Food questions [Re: ChrisFol]
finallyME Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/07
Posts: 2710
Loc: Utah
They have propane backpacking stoves. I had one when I was in high school. When you compare the weight to all other backpacking stoves, they are heavy. When you compare the weight to two burner car camping stoves, they are very light. They are probably a pound.

Anyways, to the OP. Ramen will be fine for a night or two. Bring some tuna or salmon,or other meat in a foil packet and put it in the ramen. Plan on two ramen packets per person.
_________________________
I've taken a vow of poverty. To annoy me, send money.

Top
#135383 - 06/22/10 10:14 AM Re: Food questions [Re: Jasonite]
Cstolworthy Offline
member

Registered: 12/30/07
Posts: 74
Loc: American Fork, Utah
I actually find ramen quite good when backpacking. I only make it with a half packet of seasoning. There is a LOT of sodium in them. I also typically will get a fish, and I have wild onions, tubers, etc that I find while hiking. Put it all together and you have a pretty good meal.

I HIGHLY recommend getting some books, or taking classes on foraging for food. There is an absolute abundance of it once you know what to look for!


Edited by Cstolworthy (06/22/10 10:15 AM)
_________________________
A tent is a bad place for an argument, because when you are angry you walk out and slam the flap. How are you supposed to express your anger in this situation? Zip it up really quick? ~Mitch Hedberg

Top
#135402 - 06/22/10 06:25 PM Re: Food questions [Re: JimmyTH]
CrowKel Offline
member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 30
Loc: Alberta
I have used Freeze Dried food.

Recommendation : NEVER EAT FREEZE DRIED EGGS.

Just dont do it! I will eat anything, everything, whatever, and there are some yum-yum-yum-O! things to get freeze dried.

I have had: Beef Stew - soo good! it tastes like beef, like actual i just boil a half a cow on the stove top!

Spicy fajita chicken and veg. - Pretty good, little spicey. I get the heartburn real bad, and thats no fun in the woods.

Potatoes with cheese and chives - look like pkg'd scalloped potatoes, add water to pouch, add cheese & chives. Find a good stirin stick, give it a whirl. Zip up the top - comes in a foil-ish zip bag.

Peach Cobbler - oh.....so.....good.....un...believable.....

Apple pie - meh, not so great. Not so bad tho! Better than Ramen noodles!

I dont bring plates, forks, spoons etc. I bring a cup, and I find a poking stick on the ground, and just suck it out that way!!! smile

Top
#135403 - 06/22/10 06:26 PM Re: Food questions [Re: Cstolworthy]
CrowKel Offline
member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 30
Loc: Alberta
Originally Posted By Cstolworthy
I actually find ramen quite good when backpacking. I only make it with a half packet of seasoning. There is a LOT of sodium in them. I also typically will get a fish, and I have wild onions, tubers, etc that I find while hiking. Put it all together and you have a pretty good meal.

I HIGHLY recommend getting some books, or taking classes on foraging for food. There is an absolute abundance of it once you know what to look for!



Can you recommend some books please? I live in Alberta Canada tho,...

Top
#135409 - 06/22/10 08:39 PM Re: Food questions [Re: Jasonite]
Wolfeye Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/07
Posts: 413
Loc: Seattle, WA
Jasonite,

I agree with you that ramen won't be enough after a day of hiking. For activities that burn a lot of calories, you'd be better off choosing dishes that will give you a blend of carbs, protein, and healthy fat. You'd have to add a lot to ramen to make them do that.

I usually make my own dinners by starting with a base that cooks with boiling water, like cous cous, instant rice, or noodles. I generally follow recipes from regular cookbooks but substitute fresh veggies with freeze-dried ones, and fresh meats with ones that come in pouches or cans. Even bacon bits or sardines will work. You can usually premeasure everything including spices and put it all into a ziplock, then when you're at camp you can cook it in one pot.

If you don't feel like working that hard, you can just cook one of those flash-frozen dinners you mentioned and dilute it with instant rice so it isn't so salty. You can make one package feed two people that way. Same deal with beans.

One thing I don't really recommend are military MRE's. They work, but you have to throw away all the extra packaging first, and the meals are usually very low in fiber.

Top
#135413 - 06/22/10 08:51 PM Re: Food questions [Re: Jasonite]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6760
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Try Sarbar's (regular contributor here) website: Trail Cooking

She has lots of recipes for making up backpacking meals using supermarket ingredients. You don't have to dehydrate (unless you want to, and I do) and you don't have to buy the expensive sawdust known as freeze-dried backpacking meals. She even has a calculator so you can figure out how much you need for your group.

There's also the Lite Food Talk section on this forum.


Edited by OregonMouse (06/22/10 08:54 PM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

Top
#135444 - 06/24/10 01:57 AM Re: Food questions [Re: Jasonite]
verber Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/04
Posts: 269
Loc: SF Bay Area, CA
As others have noted... just ramen would be a lot of carbs, fat, and salt, but little protein. Ramen + some foil sealed chicken (found in many grocery stores) can work pretty well. Personally, I like cous cous better... but ramen is cheap.

--Mrk

Top
#135448 - 06/24/10 10:55 AM Re: Food questions [Re: CrowKel]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By CrowKel
Originally Posted By Cstolworthy
I actually find ramen quite good when backpacking. I only make it with a half packet of seasoning. There is a LOT of sodium in them. I also typically will get a fish, and I have wild onions, tubers, etc that I find while hiking. Put it all together and you have a pretty good meal.

I HIGHLY recommend getting some books, or taking classes on foraging for food. There is an absolute abundance of it once you know what to look for!



Can you recommend some books please? I live in Alberta Canada tho,...


I wouldn't recommend that at all. Doesn't anyone remember Into the Wild? Some of those plants look a lot alike... Go foraging with someone who can tutor you in the differences between edible and non-edible plants, or take some full color, high quality prints of the edibles and their look-alikes if any, before you use that skill backpacking. Especially if you are looking for mushrooms. Very difficult to identify if you have not been with someone who can show you the differences.

Take real food if you want to spend the time hiking. You will have to choose between hiking and foraging.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#135490 - 06/25/10 12:35 AM Re: Food questions [Re: lori]
Cstolworthy Offline
member

Registered: 12/30/07
Posts: 74
Loc: American Fork, Utah
Originally Posted By lori

I wouldn't recommend that at all. Doesn't anyone remember Into the Wild? Some of those plants look a lot alike... Go foraging with someone who can tutor you in the differences between edible and non-edible plants, or take some full color, high quality prints of the edibles and their look-alikes if any, before you use that skill backpacking. Especially if you are looking for mushrooms. Very difficult to identify if you have not been with someone who can show you the differences.

Take real food if you want to spend the time hiking. You will have to choose between hiking and foraging.


I would take heed of this warning. I was fortunate enough to be trained by someone personally on identifying edible plants. I have used books to expand that knowledge quite a bit, but there are inherent dangers.

As lori points out, plants can look extremely similar and eating an inedible plant that you *think* is edible can be a very unpleasant experience. On the topic of mushrooms, I have only one piece of advice, DON'T.

If you are resigned to trying to teach yourself here are some books I have used. Also familiarize yourself with the proper way to test plants before consuming them:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/039592622X/wildfoodadven-20%22

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0878423591/wildfoodadven-20%22
_________________________
A tent is a bad place for an argument, because when you are angry you walk out and slam the flap. How are you supposed to express your anger in this situation? Zip it up really quick? ~Mitch Hedberg

Top
#135502 - 06/25/10 12:05 PM Re: Food questions [Re: Cstolworthy]
CrowKel Offline
member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 30
Loc: Alberta
I saw this guy on tv (yeah, i know dont believe everything you see on TV) Its that Les Stroud guy, who goes out for a week with no food/ survival situation yadda yadda.

He eats like a tonne of Wild Ed. Like this lettuce stuff he ate in the Can. Rockies?? This is something I want to get into, look into and start into. But I dont wanna die.

I would most definitly NOT be testing out Mr Fungus. That is best left untouched in every form and fashion.

Top
#135552 - 06/27/10 02:36 PM Re: Food questions [Re: Cstolworthy]
GDeadphans Offline
member

Registered: 12/26/08
Posts: 382
Loc: Maine/New Jersey
Originally Posted By Cstolworthy
I actually find ramen quite good when backpacking. I only make it with a half packet of seasoning. There is a LOT of sodium in them. I also typically will get a fish, and I have wild onions, tubers, etc that I find while hiking. Put it all together and you have a pretty good meal.

I HIGHLY recommend getting some books, or taking classes on foraging for food. There is an absolute abundance of it once you know what to look for!


This is one of the most useful things to have on the trail. BUT BE SURE what you are picking is what the book is saying is edible. Some look very close to others. I studied plants in the North East and now I know what to look for, I realize there is so many wild edibles to eat out here, carrots, onions, sea peas, sarsaparilla, wintergreen, the list goes on! Not to mention blue berries, black berries, and raspberries. I forage along the trail and end up having a feast! I love picking blueberries and bringing pancake mix that doesnt require butter and milk (or bring powdered milk) and cooking up blue berry pancakes in the morning. MMM.

Tom Brown's book is great, mentions that you can eat the inside of spruce tree bark after boiled, and the needles have a lot of vitamin C and to steep it as a tea.

Also with the Ramen...I am a huge Thai food fan, I bring a small packet of peanut butter and cook the ramen as instructed, but save the flavor packet which in its place I put peanut butter to make some delicious trail thai.
_________________________
"To me, hammocking is relaxing, laying, swaying. A steady slow morphine drip without the risk of renal failure." - Dale Gribbel

Top
#135608 - 06/28/10 05:16 PM Re: Food questions [Re: GDeadphans]
CrowKel Offline
member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 30
Loc: Alberta
I really like to go in the fall and get berries - saskatoon berry tea!!! However, I am not the only creature outbound for this berry, I would rather know what produce to eat. like onions, and lettuce, and there are some tubers out there I know too. I got a website actually that is kinda neat, jsut by looking around.

http://www.wildmanstevebrill.com

His website is kinda funny, the NYC police arrested him for "EATING CENTRAL PARK" to an extent!!

Top

Shout Box

Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
 
Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
 
Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
Boil in a bottle?
by DustinV
07/23/21 06:29 PM
Gas Stove Vs Wood Stove Cooking System Comparison
by walkingnatur
07/19/21 07:52 AM
smartwater vs bladder for water
by nwguy
07/15/21 03:45 PM
Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
Is it dangerous to burn lantern fuel in the open?
by 4evrplan
07/26/21 02:21 PM
Feeling young again in our National Parks
by 41253
07/17/21 07:49 AM
How we take a Warm Shower in the Wilderness?
by walkingnatur
07/03/21 04:17 PM
Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
Carrying My Dog LOL
by Hey
07/07/21 09:20 PM
Featured Photos
Spiderco Chaparral Pocketknife
David & Goliath
Also Testing
Trip Report with Photos
Seven Devils, Idaho
Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
Dark Canyon - Utah
Who's Online
0 registered (), 150 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
Hassan Tamur, Sheener, JOYAL, Mblandry211, Jan H
13045 Registered Users
Forum Links
Disclaimer
Policies
Site Links
Backpacking.net
Lightweight Gear Store
Backpacking Book Store
Lightweight Zone
Hiking Essentials

Our long-time Sponsor, BackcountryGear.com - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

Backcountry Forum
 

Affiliate Disclaimer: This forum is an affiliate of BackcountryGear.com, Amazon.com, R.E.I. and others. The product links herein are linked to their sites. If you follow these links to make a purchase, we may get a small commission. This is our only source of support for these forums. Thanks.!
 
 

Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum