What are Good Hiking Foods With a Long Shelf Life?

Have you ever found that your food is running low in the middle of a long hike or trip?

If you’re looking for food with a long shelf life that you can store in your backpack, here are some good options.

With a little planning, you can make sure you always have enough food to get you through even the longest trip.

Differences between perishable and shelf-stable foods

There are many differences between perishable and shelf-stable foods.

Perishable foods, such as fruits and vegetables, need to be refrigerated and consumed soon after purchase.

On the other hand, shelf-stable foods can be stored at room temperature or in the pantry for an extended period without spoiling.

Some common examples of shelf-stable foods are canned goods and cereal boxes.

Which type of food is better for you?

It depends on your needs and preferences.

Perishable foods tend to have more nutrients than their shelf-stable counterparts, but they can also spoil faster.

If you want to get the most nutrients for your money, you should choose fresh produce over canned.

But if you’re on the go and don’t have time to refrigerate your food, shelf-stable produce is a great option.

One of the best things about shelf-stable foods is that they are relatively inexpensive. You can buy a big box of cereal or a few soup cans for less than you’d spend on perishables.

There are some trade-offs to consider when deciding between perishable and shelf-stable foods.

  • Perishable foods are more likely to contain more nutrients than shelf-stable products, spoil faster.
  • Shelf-stable foods tend to be cheaper than perishables, but they contain fewer nutrients.
  • Perishable foods must be refrigerated, while shelf-stable foods can be stored at room temperature.

List of foods that last forever

Some foods last forever.

No, not as forever as you might imagine. But they never go bad, so you can stock up on them and be sure they’ll be there for you when you need them.

They’re perfect for hikers or travelers who want to make sure they have a reliable food source no matter what.

So if you’re looking for some good ideas for long-lasting foods, read on.

Cereal, preferably whole grains

Cereal is a great source of energy, and if you choose the right one, it also contains many nutrients.

Whole grains are the best choice because they contain more fiber, which helps keep you full longer.

They have a long shelf life, but they are easy to transport and can be eaten with water – perfect for when you’re on the go.

Legumes have a long shelf life

Legumes are another great option for long-lasting foods.

They’re high in protein and fiber and come in various forms like beans, lentils, and peas.

You can buy them canned, dried, or even freeze-dried.

No matter which forms you choose, legumes are a great source of energy and nutrients.

Nuts and seeds

Nuts and seeds are a good source of healthy fats, proteins, and minerals.

They also have a long shelf life, making them good for hikers or travelers.

They come in whole and ground forms, making them easy to pack and prepare.

Nuts and seeds are a versatile food that can be used in various dishes or eaten as a snack.

Dried fruit for breakfast

Dried fruits are a great way to sweeten and flavor your breakfast cereal or oatmeal.

They are also a good source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber.

Dried fruit has a long shelf life and can be found in most supermarkets.

Check the label, though, as some brands contain sugar or other additives.

However, you should keep them cool, dry, and in an airtight container, so they don’t spoil.

Cereal bars (power snacks)

If you’re looking for a quick and easy snack that will energize you, cereal bars are a great choice.

Most bars are high in carbohydrates and protein, making them ideal for athletes or active people.

They also have a long shelf life and are easy to transport.

Just be sure to read the label to choose a bar that is low in sugar and other unhealthy additives.

Ready-to-eat meals from a bag (trekking food)

If you’re planning a long hike or trip, it’s good to bring a few ready-to-eat meals.

There are various options, including freeze-dried meals that only need to be rehydrated with water.

These light meals are easy to carry, making them ideal for trekkers or backpackers.

They also contain many proteins and nutrients, making them good for active people.

Just make sure you pack enough food for your trip.

Canned vegetables and fish

Canned vegetables and fish are a great way to get nutrients without cooking.

They’re also easy to store and have a long shelf life.

Canned vegetables are usually packed in water or tomato sauce, so they are already cooked.

You can heat it and eat it plain or add it to other dishes.

Canned fish is a good source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids.

Usually, the fish is packed in water or oil, so it’s ready to eat right away.

You can add it to salads or pasta dishes or eat it plain.

Canned ready meals

Canned ready meals are a good option if you don’t want to cook but still want a good meal.

They usually contain a lot of protein and vegetables, making them a healthy choice.

Just choose a brand that doesn’t contain too much sugar or other unhealthy additives.

Most brands also offer a variety of flavors, so you can find one that you like.

Canned prepared foods are easy to store and have a long shelf life.

Canned sauces and dressings

Canned sauces and dressings are a great way to dress up your meals.

They’re also convenient and easy to store.

You’ll find a variety of sauces and dressings in most supermarkets.

Canned sauces and dressings have a long shelf life, so they’re a great choice if you want to stock up.

Rice and pasta

Rice and pasta are two of the most commonly consumed staple foods globally.

They are a good source of energy and nutrients and have a long shelf life.

Pasta comes in both whole grain rice and white varieties.

Whole grain pasta is the better choice because it contains more fiber and nutrients.

Rice and pasta are two of the most versatile foods in your pantry.

You can use them in various dishes or eat them cooked up.

I like to cook the pasta before my hike and eat it as a quick snack with a sauce of my choice that I bring along.

Sausage and cheese

Hard sausage and cheese are good sources of protein and nutrients.

Hard sausage and cheese have a long shelf life, so they’re a good option if you want to stock up.

Dried milk

Dried milk is a good alternative to fresh milk.

It is easy to store and has a long shelf life.

Dried milk is also a good source of protein and nutrients.

You can use it for baking or add it to your coffee or tea.

I like to eat some dried milk with my cereal when I hike in the morning. The taste is a little weird at first, but you get used to it.

Root vegetables

This isn’t usually my first choice when backpacking, but some people like to eat it.

Root vegetables are a good source of nutrients. If you’re vegan or vegetarian, it can be a good source of protein.

Root vegetables are also a good option if you’re looking for something filling and hearty.

Just make sure you store it properly, so it doesn’t spoil.

Other foods that will keep forever

Ever wonder what other foods have a shelf life of forever?

Here are some common staples you may not have known are practically immortal.

  • Sugar: Sugar is great for sweetening foods and drinks and can last indefinitely if stored properly.
  • Honey: Honey is a natural sweetener that will keep for years. It is also a good remedy for coughs and colds.
  • Salt: Salt is a great way to season food. It can also be used as a preservative.
  • Vinegar: Vinegar is a versatile ingredient used in cooking, cleaning, and cooking.
  • Cornstarch: Cornstarch is a thickener that can be used in cooking. It can also be stored indefinitely.
  • Olive Oil: Olive oil is a healthy cooking oil that can also be used in salad dressings. It has a long shelf life.
  • Flour: Flour is the main ingredient in many recipes. If stored properly, it can keep for months.
  • Dried Beans: Dried beans are a healthy and filling food. If stored properly, they will keep for years.

How do you refrigerate food for on-the-go?

Whether you’re going on a day hike or a longer backpacking trip, it’s important to know how to keep your food safe and refrigerated.

By following these simple tips, you can enjoy cold, fresh snacks and meals no matter where your trip takes you.

  • Use a cooler: A cooler is the best way to keep food cool and fresh. Pack plenty of ice or frozen gel packs to keep your food at a safe temperature.
  • Store food in airtight containers: Air is one of the main enemies of refrigerated foods. Store all foods in airtight containers or zip-top bags to keep them fresh.
  • Pack food in layers: When packing a cooler, pack food in layers. This keeps cold air from escaping and warmer foods from spoiling.
  • Don’t open the cooler too often: Every time you open your cooler, warm air flows in, and cold air escapes. Open it only when needed, and close it as soon as possible.

These are just a few tips on keeping your food safe on the go.

You can also watch the following video. In it, you will find more interesting tips.

Happy hiking!

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Hi, I'm Dave. I'm an avid outdoors and sports enthusiast who loves to share my passion with others. I publish the experiences I've gained over the years on Outdoormeta to give beginners helpful tips and bring people closer to the outdoors.

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