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Wilderness Tripping - BWCA & Beyond New Topic Printer Friendly Version

  Food Ideas
  Posted by: Beaverjack on Jun-05-14 8:02 AM (EST)

I'm looking for some interesting ideas and sources for meals. I'm taking a dutch oven, but I want dehydrated and freeze dried foods, mostly. I've got rice and beans covered. Anyone know of a source for freeze dried chicken breasets?

Gorp is another area where I'm covered. Gorp and rice get pretty old, even when augmented by fresh fish.

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Messages in this Topic


  Posted by: mutan on Jun-05-14 2:15 PM (EST)
Freeze dried is available, but I suggest you look at your local supermarket for chicken in a foil pouch. It is white meat chicken and easy to store- light weight and needs no refridgeration.
  you can dry your own
  Posted by: kayamedic on Jun-05-14 5:23 PM (EST)
but there isnt a freeze dried chicken breast. Nuggets yes and ground.

Or take a can of chicken and dehydrate it. Chicken needs to be pressure cooked before drying and canned chicken is.

If you dehydrate leftovers from a chicken dinner you wind up with tough pieces that resist rehydration.

Sources for fzdr chix that alas looks like dog food.

Pack it Gourmet

Mountain House. diced or ground but a number 10 can which is a LOT

Backpackers Pantry

I'm sure there are others. Pack it Gourmet tastes best to me.
  make your own
  Posted by: paddletothesea on Jun-05-14 6:29 PM (EST)
How about drying your own chicken breast and then rehydrate hours in advance.
  Posted by: markk on Jun-07-14 9:53 PM (EST)
Just go with protein bars and PB sands. Simplify.
  For five weeks??
  Posted by: kayamedic on Jun-08-14 11:14 AM (EST)
I dislike chemical bars anyway. The Yukon race has air evac facilities for those that try to subsist on those for the endurance race. The old timers and winners eat real food

PB is fine. The issue with chicken is that you cannot dehydrate a whole breast does not work. Chicken has to be pressure cooked then dehydrate to rehydrate well. Thick slabs of any meat case harden and the interior never dehydrates properly. Hello salmonella
  Posted by: ppine on Jun-08-14 12:54 PM (EST)
-- Last Updated: Feb-06-15 2:08 PM EST --

If you are using a DO, bring real food for at least the first 3 days or more.

A good grocery store has plenty of good food that doesn't weigh that much. I avoid backpacking dehydrated food like the plague.

I like canned meat, dried meat and fresh fish.
Dried fruit and vegetable work well. I bring some fresh ones that don't spoil like carrots, cabbage, potatoes, apples, and oranges.

  Posted by: Varmintmist on Jun-14-14 7:55 AM (EST)
4 cheese potatoes, pre mix with butter buds, garlic, onion, and parsley. Dehydrate ham and crumble it into a baggie to add, tastes like bacon.
  Freeze-dried chicken
  Posted by: pikabike on Jun-15-14 12:17 AM (EST)
This is for diced white meat rather than whole breasts, but AlpineAir used to sell plain freeze-dried chicken, in addition to their prepared dinners. I bought and ate some on a long trip 10 years ago; I mixed it with green chili. I did not see it listed on their website, but try calling them. It's possible that they still make it but don't market it.
  Posted by: Varmintmist on Jun-15-14 9:46 AM (EST)
-- Last Updated: Jun-18-14 2:00 PM EST --

This is a short overview of what I packed for the trip with the scouts. I vacuum seal a day to a bag and put a bag of apples in the front hatch on the bottom to stay a bit cooler.
Drinks Folgers coffee bags and a Starbucks via. A MIO energy and a serving of gatoraid per day. I carried a platypus under the front rigging.

Bfast - oatmeal with raisins, cinnamon, and a little dry moo (2c water). Or a cup of min rice, dry moo, a little sugar cin, and nutmeg. (1.1/4 water)
Lunch is a vacuum seal a everything bagle (it looks cool) a string cheese stick and a pepperoni stick and a apple. Uncle Bens premade rice. You dont have to heat it but it is better if you do.
Dinner -
jambalaya, "rice sides" (by Knorr) red beans and rice, 1/2 can of shrimp, and a 1/2 small can of spam. You need 2 people to split it, the shrimp and spam, i red beans pouch per. Seems like a lot until you paddle all day.
"Pasta sides" alfredo or garlic shells with dry milk, butter buds premixed in a ziplock (2 c water) add a 8oz can of chicken or a pouch of beef crumbles (wally world)

Snacks were gorp, apples, jerky, and I tried the pouch apple sauce (not recommended)

  Posted by: nightriver on Jun-15-14 6:16 PM (EST)
Here's a shameless plug for one of my new favorite kayak camping luxuries: Trail Rations honey, its in a soft sided bag with a sealable screw top. Discovered it at an art fair in Indiana ( wildflower ridge honey).

  Posted by: kilifiman on Jan-29-15 2:25 AM (EST)
I was introduced to this by a paddler on the Missouri who was finishing a short trip at James Kipp in MT. He gave me a small plastic bottle. From then on (another 1800 miles) I had a bottle of honey in my PFD pocket. Instant energy when battling the headwinds on the Missouri lakes.
  Posted by: richardp on Jun-16-14 9:29 AM (EST)
-- Last Updated: Jun-19-14 2:02 PM EST --

Chicken, tuna, shrimp and salmon in foil pouches, canned chicken in Ramen Soup, precooked vacuum packed bacon (needs no refrigeration), cured sausage with pasta, deviled ham and chicken on pita bread (especially if you don't like pb &J, precooked vacuum packed country ham, Knoor pasta side dishes, corned beef hash with a fresh egg. Olive oil makes almost everything taste better. Yes, I do take some canned foods with me. After the meal (usually dinner) I put the empty cans in a hot fire to burn all food remnants and odors and then stomp them flat and place in my garbage bag (and carry it out, of course).

  Posted by: mike on Aug-18-14 7:24 PM (EST)
In addition to beans and rice, bring flour, cornmeal, and yeast and make fresh yeast breads.

Learn the basics of wild food foraging in your area so you can make fresh salads. Bring salad dressing.

Pudding,,, research old recipes Check out these cool vids on youtube that shows how to cook colonial USA style. Also shows how to find and prepare wild foods.

I think that cast iron Dutch ovens are over-rated and don't justify the weight or space. A better, more versatile, efficient, lighter-weight option is the GSI Outdoors Halulite Pressure Cooker (or lower cost similar offerings). Cook dried beans in under 25 minutes with no soaking.
  good with rice
  Posted by: datakoll on Aug-18-14 7:56 PM (EST)
  Posted by: nablats on Jan-15-15 3:44 PM (EST)
All I ever take is freeze dried food the best is expedition foods veg tikka is proper! It should be at 6:50 UK pounds a pop.....
It takes about 10 days before you want a steak badly!
My trips are never more than this, I am seriously gnarly by then.
  Posted by: QCHiker on Jan-17-15 2:52 PM (EST)
Check out and, also

If you have a food saver vac sealer you could get a #10 can of Mtn House chicken and do individual servings of it. That's what I've done numerous times.
  What about....
  Posted by: voyageur47 on Jan-18-15 11:41 AM (EST)
JERKY ? Beef or bison ? Didn't see any mention of it here ? Light weight, lots of varieties, you can eat it as a snack or break it up and add it to a pot of whatever sounds good. Major protein source. Just sayin'...
  Posted by: kilifiman on Jan-29-15 2:36 AM (EST)
Dehydrated ground beef, with dehydrated tomato sauce, dried onions and garlic powder. Cook it up with some pasta. You can make your own freeze drier with an ice chest, dry ice, a vacuum pump, some tubing and a suitable container. Then you could try freeze drying your own chicken breasts. But as others have said they are a bit thick to FD whole.
  Dehydrating chicken does not work
  Posted by: kayamedic on Jan-30-15 8:15 AM (EST)
you have to pressure cook it first otherwise the rehydrated result is inedible.
Freeze drying is not synonymous with dehydrating.

I have about a thousand dehydrated recipes.. I got them from books. There are a lot of backpacking dehydrating recipe books out there.
  Just a couple of books
  Posted by: yknpdlr on Jan-30-15 8:52 AM (EST)
Just a couple of books is all you need to get the idea of dehydrating your own food. After that they all repeat the same thing. Different ingredients maybe, but the process is all the same. If you are at all adept in the kitchen, you soon realize what you can dehydrate (and rehydrate) successfully and you are not far from wild experimentation with your own recipes.
  Posted by: kilifiman on Jan-30-15 10:17 PM (EST)
I am well aware that freeze-drying and dehydrating are fish of very different kettles.
I have dehydrated cooked chicken in small pieces successfully (ie it was edible when rehydrated).
But fully agree that it is safest to pressure cook first, and anyway chicken is not my first choice of dried (any method) meat.
Regarding freeze-drying: itis possible for the DIY fanatic to make themselves a working freeze drier. However, it is probably not practical for most. sells bulk quantities of
  Posted by: alpalmer on Jan-29-15 8:30 PM (EST)
of freeze-dried meat, a variety of types. See the following link. If you use a vacuum-sealer unit, you can break down the large amounts into individual servings, at what I think is a pretty good price.
  dehydrating food
  Posted by: troutstalker on Feb-01-15 1:35 AM (EST)
I found that one of the easiest meals to dehydrate and prepare in the camp is pasta and sauce.You can get creative and add dehydrated hamburger,mushrooms,peppers and onions.I brown hamburger,rinse with hot water.Cook the pasta.Mix sauce,hamburger and angel hair together.Portion on dehydrator trays at 2 cups each.When dry,Put in ziplock freezer bags.Rehydrate in camp by adding 1.5 to 2 cups boiling water.You can also spread just the sauce on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.Set oven on lowest possible setting,insert cookie sheet and prop the oven door slightly open to allow the moisture to escape.May take 6 to 8 hoursbut when ready,just peal the sauce off the paper.Experiment!


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