Food for Hiking and Camping

Good Eats for the Trail or Campsite

Heading out this fall for an afternoon hike to take in the changing leaves? Setting up camp for the night (or several)? Whether it’s one of these or both, make sure you’ve got the right supplies – especially food and water. And while it may not be hot out anymore, you still have to take steps to ensure your food and water are safe. Here are some tips for your outdoor adventures.

  • Plan ahead. Think about the length of your trip and how much food and drink you’ll realistically need.
  • If bringing perishable food, pack it securely in plastic wrap or containers. Keep everything chilled (under 40° F). You can freeze juice boxes and/or bottled water, which will keep your food cold while thawing for later use. Frozen gel packs work well, too.
  • If possible, pack foods in a cooler. If you’re car camping, keep the cooler in the car, not the hot trunk. Use plenty of ice packs.
  • Never leave perishable food unrefrigerated for more than two hours, or only one hour if outdoor temps are 90° F or above.
  • If you’ll be cooking raw meat, be sure it’s cooked to a safe internal temperature. That’s 160° F for ground meat, 165° F for hot dogs and poultry, and at least 145° F for things like chops and steaks.
  • Keep raw foods and cooked foods separate to avoid cross-contamination.
  • Bring antibacterial wipes, biodegradable soap, and/or moist towelettes.  Wash your hands often, especially before eating.
  • If you won’t have access to clean drinking water, pack purification tablets or a portable water filter. Boiling water for at least a minute is another option.
  • Stay well hydrated, even if it’s not hot out. Drink at least four cups of water before setting out — that way you won’t have to carry as much water with you. After that, drink about two cups of water for every hour you’re hiking or otherwise active.
  • Get creative with seasonal foods. Apples, pears, sweet potatoes and squash, for example, are at their delicious peak in the fall. Check online or in cookbooks for recipes.

Great foods to pack

Not sure what to pack when venturing out? Think lightweight, nutritious, and filling. Things like nuts, dried fruit, and energy and granola bars (or just plain granola) all pack a punch. Jerky and pouches of tuna are great protein sources. If you’ll be cooking, oatmeal, pasta and grains like quinoa, rice or couscous, and dried soups are perfect (just make sure you use clean water). And don’t forget the makings for s’mores, if you’ve got room.

Leave it like you found it

Don’t spoil the natural beauty you’re enjoying by leaving litter behind. Even leaving food scraps isn’t a great idea, because wild animals shouldn’t eat human food. Bring along something to stash your garbage in, and then dispose of it properly once you’ve left the trail or campground.

Watch the weather report and plan accordingly. Keep safety top of mind. Then sling on that backpack and head out to enjoy the season, the beauty of nature and the satisfaction that comes from being active.



Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. 5 food tips for camping and hiking. 8/2/2017.

https://www.eatright.org/food/planning-and-prep/snackand-meal-ideas/food-tips-for-camping-and-hiking (Accessed 7/9/18)

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Hiking and camping with food safety in mind. 7/3/2018. https://www.eatright.org/homefoodsafety/safety-tips/outdoor-dining/hiking-and-camping-with-food-safety-in-mind (Accessed 7/9/18)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Camping health and safety tips. 12/23/2015. https://www.cdc.gov/family/camping/ (Accessed 7/9/18)

International Food Information Council Foundation. Nutrition for the trail. 4/27/2015. https://www.foodinsight.org/best-hiking-snacksnutrition-lightweight (Accessed 7/9/18)

International Food Information Council Foundation. Keep the great outdoors great: reducing food waste on a hike. 7/11/2016.

Next Post Previous Post

Your email address will not be published.

The Benefit Company
Based on 13 reviews
powered by Google
Michael Taylor
Michael Taylor
15:28 07 Feb 20
I have been working with The Benefits Company for more than 3 years and our organization has been a client for many... more. Every member of the team is very responsive and professional. The often present to our C-Suite and the C-Suite values the partnership.TBC goes above and beyond with any request that we have as it pertains to our benefits or HR programs. Every year they present us with various considerations to consider for the next year. John Hearn is has great knowledge industry. Our account manager, Stacy Cook, is very responsive and is an extension of my team.read more
19:21 05 Feb 20
I can't say enough good things about my experience. During my cancer diagnosis, the last thing you want to worry about... is how your Insurance Company is going to actually work for you. I of course, had many questions, which were always answered in "full detail". Amy Towe, our Insurance representative could not have been more helpful. She would check on things for me and always got me an answer promptly. Amy was always available when ever I had a question. She defiantly made the entire process easier. I truly can say enough about her. Her caring was so appreciated throughout my entire journey.Angela Adamsread more
Anne Lalinde
Anne Lalinde
19:09 05 Feb 20
Have worked with The Benefit Company for years through different companies. I appreciate the boutique level services... provided. The Benefit Company is a class act.read more
Marilyn Wiederhold
Marilyn Wiederhold
17:36 05 Feb 20
I have worked with The Benefit Company for over 8 years. They are the best!! Amy Towe and Christine Muro are so... helpful. they make my life so much easier!!read more
Andrea Glass
Andrea Glass
17:30 05 Feb 20
My experience working with the benefit company has been SENSATIONAL! They are truly customer driven, and go above and... beyond to deliver amazing customer service!read more
See All Reviews