Healthy Foods to Pack for a 5-Day Backpacking Trip


Going on a five-day backpacking trip means taking plenty of food along with you. When you consider how bulky food can be, carrying the right types is imperative. The good news is that there are a number of different foods you can take along on your trip.

Types of Food:

You are looking to take along food that provides plenty of protein, slow-burning carbohydrates, and fats for energy. Avoid sugary foods save perhaps for small treats. Plus, bring only food that is non-perishable. While apples may last for the first couple of days, they may not last longer under the heat or conditions of the trip.

You can also dehydrate food such as meats, fruits, and vegetables. Storing them properly will allow you to expand your meal choices.

Four Foods You Must Take:

Here are four simple foods to take on your backpacking adventure. They are all lightweight, easy to carry, and will last a long time if protected.

Beans: Dried beans are perfect because they are light, easy to carry, and provide plenty of protein to replenish the muscles. All you need is water to boil the beans and serve once they have been properly cooked. Beans have been a staple for hiking and backpacking trips for good reason. They taste good and provide what the body needs to press on.

Jerky: You can choose from beef, chicken, or even turkey jerky. Jerky provides plenty of protein for muscles and fat for energy. You will need to store it in plastic, but it does last for a long time. Also, because of the salt content, you only need to eat a little at a time.

Mixed Nuts: Nuts are a great food to take on trips. They also provide plenty of protein and fat. Plus, they are easy to carry in cans, plastic, or canvas bags. Nuts are the perfect snack as a handful will give you a boost of energy. However, beware the salt content and do not eat too much at one time.

Protein Bars: This is concentrated food where one bar provides plenty of calories to keep you energized. If you choose a fruit or nut protein bar, then you are getting a balance of nutrition that helps keep you going.

Special Conditions & Situations:

If you are backpacking during the heat of the summer, you will need to take extra care of your food. The good news is that winter conditions should not affect the food you take along. In fact, in certain respects, it might preserve the food for a longer period. However, hot, humid summer weather may adversely affect some of the food you bring.

  • Dried or Dehydrated Food: Store in breathable containers to avoid condensation
  • Air Out Food in Plastic Containers: This balances the temperature
  • Store Separately: Place your food at the top of your backpack or in a separate container to avoid contamination

By following these steps, you can carry plenty of healthy food with you on your trip. Remember to bring a variety of foods to enjoy your backpacking adventure.


John Orlando