Thanks to the moderators for moving this to the correct forum.
Wife and I have done a few overnighters recently and are working up to a 3 night stay in Big Bend in September. We're still pretty inexperienced backpacking together though I have backpacked a few times in the past 10 years with friends. As such we've been using my trusty pocketrocket to prep hot meals, coffee and tea .
While no-cook meals during the day are fine, I'm wondering what other options there are for stove cooking instead of hauling 6 of these rather bulky, but tasty, options for our evenings (along with whiskey). Don't get me wrong, some of the meals have been surprisingly good and it's nice to lay down with a belly full of warm food...but...
What are you all doing for meals? Anyone have any favourite freeze-dried meals they'd like to share? Or maybe something you whip up on your own? Any thoughts on lightening to load by using options other than freeze dried meals?
Loc: Eastern MA, USA
Do you have access to a food dehydrator. We all like different things. Some of my best trail suppers were one-dish meals that I enjoyed at home, cooked up with an extra serving or two for the dehydrator. Chili, spaghetti, Thai-style chicken or pork with noodles and vegetables (maybe Pad Thai), Teriyaki flavored ground meat and veggies with a little sauce to rehydrate with hot water and serve over rehydrated rice or ramen noodles. If you like it at home, you may like it on the trail. Dehydrate some, rehydrate the next week and see how things work.
Loc: Eastern MA, USA
MYO backcountry meals are very likely to cost far less than commercially prepared. Most of the latter may as well be restaurant (OK, diner) meals, considering the prices.
I'm a bit on the weird side. I package individual meals in cleaned mylar snack bags, air expressed or sucked out as much as possible, and sealed with a clothes iron. Been expounding on this one for at least 15 years. Mylar bags are lighter, plus more vapor and puncture resistant. I collected them from kids in the lunch room when I worked at a school. Now I just splurge on a club package of chips and save those bags. The air popped corn or baked chip bags are far easier to clean than their greasy cousins. These bags hold up to boiling water (just to cover the food) being dumped into them. I've even added the hot water and later decided that the food could use more cooking,then put the whole bag into my cook pot. One can always add a bit more water if needed, and I'm OK if my food is a little soupier than the original. By mealtime, I can use extra hydration however it comes.
See what works for you. Bulk packaging of staples may save weight and space on the trail as well as home. For shorter trips, though, individual meals that require licking and sanitizing my spoon as clean up are "da bomb."