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Food and Nutrition



Raising the Bar: Best Energy Bars for Backpackers

We tested 40 new energy bars flavors and culled these five top picks.

Editors' Choice 2013: Sweetwood Cattle Company Beef Jerky

This small-batch, baked (not dehydrated), Colorado-made protein snack is a cut above the rest.

Editors' Choice 2012: Hungry Hikers Murray's Hurried Curry

Yes, it's the journey that counts. But every trip is better with fast, delicious food like this.

Adventure Upgrade: Cook Like a Pro

Pack and prepare a week's worth of mouth-watering meals.

Recipe Upgrades

Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even desert recipes that are easy and tasty campground meals.

Recipe: Gado-gado Spaghetti

A spicy peanut butter sauce makes this a light spaghetti dish that is excellent either hot or cold.

Recipe: Cashew Beef Curry

Boil-in-the-bag rice and beef jerky make this recipe a snap.

Recipe: American Chop Suey

Make a double batch of this at home. Have it for dinner with your family then dehydrate half for your next few backpacking trips.

Dirtbag/Gourmet: Hot Cereals

Fuel your day with these energy-packed twists on classic breakfast bowls.

Gear Review: Mary Janes Farm High Attitude Six Pack (Bulk Dehydrated Food)

Stock your backcountry pantry for a full season of chowing down on delicious, satisfying, organic (and vegetarian) trail food.

The Biggest Winner: Why Backpacking Burns Fat

Your body is an engine. It runs on a mix of carbohydrates, fats, and a very small amount of protein. And it's a finely tuned engine, using the best fuel for every need.

After Burn: Staying in Shape Off-Trail

How to keep off what you've hiked off.

The Wrong Way: Top 52 Hiker Mistakes

Your guide to 52 common mistakes hikers make--and how to avoid them.

Dirtbag Recipe: Tuna with Olives and Capers

Try this quick and easy fish recipe.

Gourmet Recipe: Grilled King Salmon with Porcini Mushrooms

Take your fire-side fish skills to the next level with this savory salmon recipe.

Trail Chef: A Brave New S'more

Switch things up with these twists on the classic treat.

Trail Chef: High Country Poppy Seed Cake

You can bake this yummy treat even at altitude, and you and your mates will be fighting over the last crumbs.

Readers' Choice Issue 2011: Reader Recipes

BACKPACKER readers submitted scores of simple, delicious recipes. Here are 21 taste-tested favorites.

Trail Chef: 4 Hearty Sandwiches

For your next backcountry lunch, don't just munch on an energy bar. Try one of these tasty options.

Recipe: Drunken Choco-Berry Fondue

A top-ranked dessert in the 2004 REI/BACKPACKER Camp Cook-Off

Recipe: Omelette in a Bag

May 2000 readers' favorite

Recipe: Stick Cookies

March 1982 readers' favorite

Recipe: Angry Red Lentil Tortilla Soup

First-place entrée winner of the 2004 REI/BACKPACKER Camp Cook-Off

How to Do Everything - The Master Chef

Temper our recipe for Earthworm Patty Supremes with a little Drunken Choc-Berry Fondue. Plus, other recipes and cooking skills.

Survival: Famished But With...No Cooking Pots

Doing more (fresh-baked pizza and rumaki hors d'oeuvres) with less (a canister stove and a frying pan) is the essence of backcountry cooking. But when you're stuck without pots, pans, or utensils for more than a week, knowing how to cook and boil water with these four stand-in containers can be a vital, calorie-providing skill.

Fall/Winter Gear Guide 2010: Backcountry Kitchen Accessories

Everything you need to stay sated in the backcountry.

Dirtbag/Gourmet Recipes: Fondue

Add rich, cheesy flair to your backcountry fare.

Recipe: Savory Gruyere Fondue

Wow your campmates with this restaurant-worthy appetizer.

Recipe: Beer and Pretzel Fondue Dip

Cheese and beer make this a camp favorite.

Trail Chef: No-Burn Chocolate Fondue

A fast, simple way to make silky fondue that's easy to clean

Trail Chef: Crazy-Easy Craisin Chicken

After a long day on the trail, I am in no mood for gourmet slicing and dicing. Here's a delicious, sweet, and savory dish that lets you leave your cutting boards at home.

Recipes: Perfect Pancakes

Batter up for these trail-ready pancakes.

Dinner Party: Cooking for a Group

Plan and cook for a group with these time-tested tips.

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