What to Eat When Hiking or Camping – A Guide to Adventure Food

Going hiking or camping can be a thrilling adventure, but one of the biggest challenges is deciding what food to bring along. The right food choices can help you fuel your body for the journey, while the wrong choices can leave you feeling sluggish and tired. In this guide, we’ll cover what to eat when hiking or camping, so you can stay energized and ready for any adventure.

Plan Ahead

The first step in preparing for your hike or camping trip is to plan ahead. This means thinking about what kind of food you’ll need for each day, as well as any special dietary needs. You’ll also need to consider the weight and size of the food, as you’ll be carrying it with you throughout your trip.

The Right Mix of Nutrients

When you’re out on the trail, your body needs a mix of nutrients to keep you going. This includes carbohydrates for energy, protein for muscle repair and growth, and fats for sustained energy. Ideally, your meals should include a balance of all three.

Here are some food choices that can help you get the right mix of nutrients:

Carbohydrates: Whole-grain bread, oatmeal, pasta, rice, quinoa, fruits, and vegetables are all excellent sources of carbohydrates.

Protein: Canned fish, jerky, nuts, peanut butter, and protein bars are all easy to pack and can provide a good source of protein.

Fats: Nuts, cheese, olive oil, and avocado are all good sources of healthy fats that can provide sustained energy.


Staying hydrated is essential when you’re hiking or camping. Dehydration can cause fatigue, headaches, and even heat exhaustion. Make sure to bring enough water for your trip, and consider packing electrolyte supplements to help replace lost fluids.

Easy and Portable

When you’re out in the wilderness, you want to keep your food choices as easy and portable as possible. Here are some food ideas that are easy to pack and can be eaten on the go:

  • Trail mix: Mix together nuts, dried fruits, and chocolate chips for a quick and easy snack.
  • Energy bars: Look for bars that have a good mix of carbohydrates, protein, and fat.
  • Instant oatmeal: Just add hot water and you’ve got a warm, filling breakfast.
  • Sandwiches: Choose whole-grain bread, lean protein, and lots of veggies.
  • Jerky: Beef, turkey, or even vegetarian jerky can be a great source of protein and can last for days without refrigeration.
  • Instant noodles: These can be a quick and easy meal that just requires hot water.
  • Fruit: Apples, oranges, bananas, and dried fruit can all provide a quick energy boost.

Cooking Equipment

If you plan on cooking on your camping trip, you’ll need to bring the right equipment. This may include a stove, fuel, pots and pans, utensils, and a cooler for storing food. Consider the weight and size of your cooking equipment, as well as the type of meals you plan on preparing.

Safety First

When packing adventure food for your hiking or camping trip, it’s important to prioritize safety. Make sure to pack your food in airtight containers to keep it fresh and prevent contamination. Also, be sure to properly store any food that requires refrigeration to prevent spoilage.


Choosing the right food for your hiking or camping trip is essential for staying energized and enjoying the adventure. By planning ahead and packing a good mix of carbohydrates, protein, and fat, you can fuel your body for the journey. Keep your food choices easy, portable, and safe, and you’ll be ready to take on any adventure that comes your way.