2 Free Issues and 3 Free Gifts!
Full Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
Zip Code:
Email: (required)
If I like it and decide to continue, I'll pay just $12.00, and receive a full one-year subscription (9 issues in all), a 73% savings off the newsstand price! If for any reason I decide not to continue, I'll write "cancel" on the invoice and owe nothing.
Your subscription includes 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Or click here to pay now and get 2 extra issues
Offer valid in US only.

Also on

Enter Zip Code

Backpacker Magazine – May 2013

Backpacker-Friendly Noodles

Noodles are easy-prep crowd pleasers. Learn about the trail-worthiest types and cooking methods.

by: Becky Kivlovitz

PAGE 1 2
GSI's PackTongs (Photo by Ben Fullerton)
GSI's PackTongs (Photo by Ben Fullerton)
Evernew's Ti UL Pasta Pot M (Photo by Ben Fullerton)
Evernew's Ti UL Pasta Pot M (Photo by Ben Fullerton)

Use Less Cooking Techniques Best-bet noodle Tip


Rather than following package directions, add only enough water to fully cover your noodles. Heat to a rolling boil (stirring and adding a spoonful of water at a time, if necessary, to prevent burning and sticking). Check to see if the pasta is done at the package-recommended cooking time, and continue to cook (stirring frequently) until al dente. Small, nesting shapes require less water for full immersion; try orzo, macaroni, rotini, or bowties in lieu of spaghetti strands. Don’t discard the precious cooking liquid; use the starchy leftover water as the base for powdered sauce mixes or for cooking oatmeal.


Add noodles to a pot of cool water (you’ll be boiling it, so you can use treated or untreated water); the liquid should cover the noodles. Stir occasionally as you bring the water to a boil. When the water is rolling, remove the pot from heat, put a lid on it, and soak noodles for 20 to 25 minutes until al dente. Cold day? Wrap the pot in insulating extra clothing while noodles soak. Use standard or thin spaghetti; thicker noodles (like rigatoni or penne) take longer to cook, and will stick together if not stirred. Resist the urge to check cooking progress until noodles have soaked for 20 minutes; lifting the lid allows heat to escape.
Water and fuel Three hours before your meal: Add water to a densely packed zip-top bag of noodles (enough to coat them, ²/³ to 1 cup for a 1-quart bag). Let them soak while you hike. At mealtime: Add a few tablespoons of water (to cover a pan’s base) and heat while stirring; noodles should cook to completion in 60 seconds. Soaking diminishes wheat noodles’ nutty flavor; use rice noodles or flavored wheat varieties. Avoid spills; double-bag your soaking pasta or seal it in a watertight bottle instead.

PAGE 1 2

Subscribe to Backpacker magazine
Sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter
Address 1:
Address 2:
Email (req):
Reader Rating: -


Your rating:
Your Name:


My Profile Join Now

Most recent threads

Best all-around sleeping bag tem
Posted On: Jul 28, 2014
Submitted By: Owen571
Trailhead Register
Posted On: Jul 28, 2014
Submitted By: RedDoug

View all Gear
Find a retailer

Special sections - Expert handbooks for key trails, techniques and gear

Check out Montana in Warren Miller's Ticket to Ride
Warren Miller athletes charge hard and reflect on Big Sky country, their love for this space and the immense energy allotted to the people who reside in Montana.

Boost Your Apps
Add powerful tools and exclusive maps to your BACKPACKER apps through our partnership with Trimble Outdoors.

Carry the Best Maps
With BACKPACKER PRO Maps, get life-list destinations and local trips on adventure-ready waterproof myTopo paper.

FREE Rocky Mountain Trip Planner
Sign up for a free Rocky Mountain National Park trip planning kit from our sister site

Get 2 FREE Trial Issues and 3 FREE GIFTS
Survival Skills 101 • Eat Better
The Best Trails in America
YES! Please send me my FREE trial issues of Backpacker
and my 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Full Name:
Address 1:
Zip Code:
Address 2:
Email (required):
Free trial offer valid for US subscribers only. Canadian subscriptions | International subscriptions