What Food Should I Pack for Backpacking?

By Alice Nichols

When you’re backpacking, you need to make sure that you’re packing the right food. Depending on the length of your trip, the type of food you should bring can vary. But no matter how long your trip is, there are several key components you’ll need to consider when deciding what to eat.

The first thing to consider is your caloric needs. You will be burning more calories than usual when hiking and camping, so you’ll need to make sure that your food provides enough energy for all of your activities. Choose nutritious snacks that are high in protein, such as nuts and seeds, and meals that contain complex carbohydrates like whole grains and beans.

The second factor to consider is weight. Since you will be carrying all of your supplies on your back, it’s important to choose lightweight foods that offer a high nutritional value for their weight.

Dried fruits and vegetables are a good choice because they provide a lot of energy without being too heavy. Freeze-dried meals are also an excellent option as they are lightweight and generally provide all the necessary nutrients.

Finally, think about convenience. You don’t want to be spending too much time preparing meals when you could be exploring the great outdoors. Opt for easy-to-prepare foods like oatmeal or instant soups that require minimal effort but still provide essential nutrients.


When preparing food for backpacking trips, it’s important to choose items that are nutritious and lightweight while also being convenient to prepare. Choose snacks high in protein like nuts and seeds, meals with complex carbohydrates such as whole grains or beans, dried fruits and vegetables for added energy without extra weight, and easy-to-prepare items like oatmeal or instant soups. With careful planning and preparation, you can ensure that your backpacking journey is both enjoyable and nutritious.