How Do You Dehydrate Food for Backpacking?

By Alice Nichols

For the avid outdoorsman, nothing is better than packing a healthy, ready-to-eat meal that’s easy to prepare and delicious. Dehydrating food is an excellent way to do just that. Not only does dehydrating food allow you to save time in the kitchen prepping meals for your backpacking trips, but it also helps preserve nutrients and eliminates the need for preservatives or artificial ingredients. Knowing how to dehydrate food for backpacking can help you enjoy your next adventure with healthy, tasty meals.

The first step in dehydrating foods for backpacking is to choose which items you want to include in your meals. Most fruits and vegetables can be dried with great results. You’ll want to select fruits and vegetables that are ripe but not overripe, as they will dry more evenly and quickly. If you’re looking for a little variety on your trips, meats such as chicken and beef can also be dried with excellent results.

Once you’ve gathered the ingredients for your meals, it’s time to start the drying process. To begin, preheat your oven or dehydrator at a low temperature (usually around 140°F) and then spread out your ingredients on baking sheets or racks. If using an oven, turn off the oven light and keep the door slightly open while drying so you don’t overheat the food.

When dehydrating fruits, they should be dried until they are leathery but still pliable– if they are too dry they will become brittle instead of Chewy when rehydrated later on. Vegetables should be dried until brittle–if they are too moist when you try to store them after dehydration, mold may form before long-term storage.

Once all of your food is adequately dried, transfer it into an airtight container or vacuum seal bag for long-term storage until you’re ready to use it. You’ll then want to rehydrate each item separately by soaking them in warm water or broth until soft before adding them into recipes or eating them plain.

By learning how to properly dehydrate foods for backpacking trips, you can ensure that all of your meals are both healthy and delicious! Now all that’s left is finding a beautiful spot in nature where you can enjoy them.


Dehydrating food for backpacking trips is a great way to save time in the kitchen while still providing yourself with delicious, nutritious meals during your adventures! All it takes is selecting ripe produce or meats of choice followed by preheating an oven or dehydrator at a low temperature before transferring everything into airtight containers after adequate drying. With these tips in mind, anyone can easily learn how to properly dehydrate food for their next outdoor excursion.