Trail Food and Texture

There’s a lot to think about when choosing food for backpacking trips. Nutrition matters, weight matters, and flavor matters, too. Something that people sometimes forget to consider, however, is texture. Think about the textures of trail foods next time you’re planning a backpacking trip.

Foods can get boring

Eating the same foods over and over gets repetitive and tedious when you’re on the trail. Backpacking burns a lot of calories, so you must eat a lot.

You can load up on Clif bars and head out for a three-day backpacking trip, but you’re going to get sick of eating them. Meals will be a chore rather than a treat, and you may never eat Clif bars again after the trip is through.

Maybe you’re the type that can eat the same thing for lunch every day; there’s a big difference in eating the same lunch, and the exact same trail food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Adding bars with different flavors, and even different brands, won’t be enough, either. The texture will inevitably get to you. Sure, you can rough it and you’ll be fine, but ultimately you won’t enjoy meal time.

Mix it up to improve your mood

Make it a point to include trail foods with different textures to help break up the monotony of mealtime. This is one of the reasons trail mix exists. Getting a variety of textures will also help add some variety in the flavors and nutrients, too.

Remember the 4 C’s when thinking about textures with backpacking foods: crunchy, chewy, creamy, crispy. Make a point to have at least one thing from each of these categories.

Here are a few examples of foods from these categories.

  • Crunchy – almonds, peanuts, granola, and carrots
  • Chewy – dried mango, food bars, jerky, and raisins
  • Creamy – peanut butter, hummus, applesauce, and oatmeal
  • Crispy – pretzels, crackers, chips, and wasabi peas

Also, think about combing foods and textures, such as adding some chips to a dehydrated backpacking meal. Dehydrated backpacking meals fall into the mushy category of trail food textures, which gets old fast.

What are your tips for bringing excitement to meal time on the trail? Let us know in the comments. Stop by Uncle Sam’s Safari Outfitters for backpacking meals, and everything you need before your next backpacking trip.

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