Our Favorite Three-Ingredient Backpacking Meals
…For When You Hate Everything in Your Food Bag
The first few hundred miles of your hike will be a blissful, face-stuffing party of Snickers and pasta sides, but soon that mail-drop of ramen and power bars sent by your oblivious pre-trail self is going to look pretty unappetizing, and you’ll be combing the stores looking for something you still want to eat. Burning up to 6,000 calories a day on a thru-hike means you have to eat a lot, even when everything starts tasting like paste.
These are meals we made—or saw other people making—starting around mile 700 when our food bags made us want to cry. These ingredients can be found in most trail towns, and some you already have in your food bag… they just need a little flavor boost. The combinations might wrinkle your nose now, but it’s amazing how much your standards tastes change after months of hiking.
You can also read more about our favorite commercial backpacking meals.
3 Ingredient Backpacking Meals
Low-Cash Lo Mein
Ramen + beef jerky + soy Sauce
Piggy Von Spartacus
Tortillas + cream cheese + bacon bits
Shelterside Chicken Alfredo
Alfredo pasta side + chicken packet + sun-dried tomato
Crackers + almond butter + freeze dried apple slices
Crackers + sharp cheddar + salami
Thru-Hiker’s Carb Bomb
Angel hair pasta + salt and pepper + olive oil
Tuna Fish Crunch Surprise
Pita bread + tuna + Doritos crumbs
White Blazin’ Thanksgivin’
Mashed potatoes + gravy + bacon bits
Calorie-Bomb Mouth Glue
Peanut butter + honey + trail mix
Fire-in-the-Hole Backpacking Bowl
Couscous + freeze-dried veggies + curry powder or Tabasco or bullion
In-tents Breakfast Thing
Cereal / granola + powdered milk + dried blueberries
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