We eat out a lot. Let me clarify that; we out in the backcountry a lot. So we were stoked last year to work out a sponsorship with Backpacker’s Pantry, makers of high quality dehydrated and freeze-dried meals. We spend about a third of the year camping out on the trail backpacking, biking, or climbing. Typically, we don’t have much time for extravagant meals and Backpacker’s Pantry makes mealtime simple.
Weight and carrying capacity is a premium for us. Our packs are usually loaded with gear and camera equipment. We don’t have the luxury to pack fresh vegetables and all the utensils for a gourmet meal. With a simple Reactor® stove we can have boiling water within minutes and a hot meal soon after.
Most days we are up early to capture first light. Then we spend much of day exploring and traveling to our next destination. Once at our destination there is usually more photography with camp setup or we are off positioning ourselves to capture sunset. Like all dehydrated meals, Backpacker’s Pantry are just add (hot) water; prefect for early starts and a savior when everyone is tired and hungry at the end of a long day.
Backpacker’s Pantry has over three-dozen different hot and cold entrees. Most packets are made to serve two with 200-500 calories per serving. On shorter days we usually split a high calorie packet like Pad Thai (920 cal). Then on big days depending on our hunger level we’ll chow down on our own dinner packet. All Backpacker’s Pantry meals meet our 100 cal/oz. criteria (125 cal/oz. is the Holy Grail with ultralight backpackers). And now for the best part – Dessert! If dinner left you a little empty there are a handful of dessert options that will be sure to fill you up.
Now, lets not forget the most important meal of the day. Who is sick of oatmeal packets for breakfast? It seems like the only option, but Backpacker’s Pantry has added some variety to our mornings. Their granola, which can be eaten hot or cold, is our favorite for a high calorie breakfast. The packets are giant and usually satisfy both of us for a big day. Sometimes we mix it up by adding cheese and bacon to a packet of their mashed potatoes. And if we have to, their oatmeal includes quinoa, which helps make it more hearty and not leaving you hungry an hour later.
As you can expect we have pretty much sampled all the meals Backpacker’s Pantry has to offer. Here are some of our favorites:
- Louisiana Red Beans & Rice with cheese and tortillas
- Pad Thai is the most filling option on the menu
- Hot Granola with Bananas and Milk for breakfast
- For dessert nothing is more satisfying then Crème Brūlée
And for all those with special diet requirements Backpacker’s Pantry has meals for vegans and options that are dairy, gluten, peanut, soy, and tree nut free.
Happy Camping & Bon Appétit!