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munchkinette

Camping Food- What Kind Of Protein?

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I want to get into backpacking. (in the woods, with just a pack, no car) I have a friend who has offered to teach me, who knows nothing about gluten free foods.

What do I do for protein? I would normally do something like pouches of tuna when I travel, but the empty packets would attract animals from miles around. I love trail mix, but I really don't feel full unless I eat enough to be sick.

Suggestions?

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I want to get into backpacking. (in the woods, with just a pack, no car) I have a friend who has offered to teach me, who knows nothing about gluten free foods.

What do I do for protein? I would normally do something like pouches of tuna when I travel, but the empty packets would attract animals from miles around. I love trail mix, but I really don't feel full unless I eat enough to be sick.

Suggestions?

You can still use packets of tuna (not cans, but the pouches). You just have to put them in your trash bag (usually a good ziploc) and hang your trash with your food anyway. (BTW, an Ursak is GREAT for food.) (ALL food you bring is going to attract animals. Hence food is put in its own bag, and hung from a tree. I use a combination of odor proof bags and an Ursak and haven't had a problem. Of course, there are a few places - Olympic National Forest, Yosemite - where you are REQUIRED to use a bear canister.)

I just make my regular meals and dehydrate them. Chili is GREAT for this. A lot of friends bring cheese. Some folks bring beef jerky (there are a few gluten-free ones, but I prefer the homemade stuff :) ). Eggs dehydrate well for breakfast, and if you can do dairy, you can buy freeze dried eggs. Nuts and seeds can also provide protein.

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peanut butter :D

I don't care for it, but beef jerky might be a good option.

Have fun!

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We camp up in the Boundary Waters near Canada where there are plenty of bears. We use packets of chicken and make meals like chicken tacos and chicken and rice. We also make grilled peanut butter sandwiches on Udi's bread and eat Gluten Freeda's gluten-free oatmeal packets for breakfast. We wrap the garbage up well and hang it from a tree in a 5 gallon paint bucket. This is what we pack our food in for the canoe, so it works really well.

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Gary West Meats has several gluten-free meat sticks.... protein bars, Comfort Bars, Zing Bars, Pure-Fit bars are wonderful. Freeze-dried survival foods also just select the gluten-free varieties. Granola. hth

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Thanks! I didn't know some of the prepared meals were gluten free. Where would I find the right brands? REI?

How on earth would I dehydrate chili? Does something liquidy like that work in a food dehydrator? Maybe I should get one.

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Thanks! I didn't know some of the prepared meals were gluten free. Where would I find the right brands? REI?

How on earth would I dehydrate chili? Does something liquidy like that work in a food dehydrator? Maybe I should get one.

I make my chili rather thick, and there are teflon sheets you can put on trays (or use saran wrap or wax paper) so nothing leaks through if you like. It takes about two days to dry, but reconstitutes fabulously. (I tend to do "freezer bag cooking". Boil water in your stove, pour into freezer ziploc bag, insulate (with fleece or what have you) for 20 minutes, eat. Cleanup is as easy as closing the bag! No pot to clean, no plate to clean - which also means no smelly cleaning water on the ground, even if you are eating a couple hundred yards away from your campsite.)

Chicken rice soup (again, cooked thick) works. I've also done thin rice noodles with a bit of boullion, dried veggies (you can get them at some healthfood stores - it's just mixed dehydrated veggies, you can also use "Just Veggies" which are freeze dried, but more expensive), and dried tofu (harder to find, but still available). I tend to alternate between eggs and potatoes (again, dehydrated at home) and hot cereal (usually a combination of cream of rice, quinoa flakes, flax seed, a bit of brown sugar, and cinnamon) for breakfasts.

I generally don't cook lunch, so gluten free crackers (homemade flax crackers are great for fat/protein, and you can doctor them with whatever you like), dried fruit, almonds (I generally don't mix them together for trail mix, though), some variety of bar form food (I'll do things like LaraBars, but I try to also get ones like Zing that have more protein), and chocolate.

For me, the packaged meals tend to not work - if they don't have gluten, they have dairy. And they tend to be bulky and expensive - I'm small enough that my pack is *not* that large, and trying to get five days worth of food in that thing with the rest of my gear is reaching it's limit! :)

That means I have to make more of my own backpacking food, which takes time, but you can make large batches at once. (When I prepared for my last five day trip, I ended up with enough food for about 10 days. I have stored the extra in the freezer, and I'm ready to use it... aside from the whole baby thing. :P)

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Tastybites are great -- they don't use up too much fuel to heat (just put into a pot and boil with some water that you can use to cook instant rice or pasta with) and have protein already in them.

Hard cheese (like a block of cheddar) works well too -- it'll be ok for a few days, although I wouldn't bring it to the desert (ok for at least up a few days in NE August summers).

Otherwise, I echo what everyone else here has said -- you'll probably have to bear bag anyway, so I think using tuna packets shouldn't be a huge issue (depends where you go, of course).

Have fun!

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practice tying up your food in a tree before you go! That's the trickiest part to backpacking. ;) It's got to be high enough up that a bear standing on it's hind legs can't reach it, (and remember, black bears can climb trees!) and it's got to be a sturdy enough bag/canister that a raccoon can't climb into it and eat all your food while you're asleep!

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