10 Best Dehydrated Camping Foods (Review) in 2021

Brad Robinson
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If you are a camper or sports enthusiast, you must be aware of this term — Dehydrated Food. But are you aware that dehydrated food is the future of travel foods? They are not only great for camping but also for outdoor adventure activities and perfect for a picnic session.

Dehydrated food is becoming popular among campers, hikers, survivalists and sports enthusiasts. So to make your outdoor trips enjoyable, without searching for a kitchen for cooking, this list of 10 best dehydrated camping foods is a great choice to pack with you.

So, let’s roll up our sleeves, and explore the world of dehydrated camping foods.

NameCategoryProduct
GOOD TO-GO Classic MarinaraBest OverallGOOD TO-GO Classic Marinara
Mountain House Beef StroganoffBudget PickMountain House Beef Stroganoff
GOOD TO-GO Thai CurryUpgrade PickGOOD TO-GO Thai Curry

1. GOOD TO-GO Classic Marinara

Our rating: 9 / 10

GOOD TO-GO Classic Marinara

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Pros:

  • Rich and authentic taste. No one at our local camp ground noticed that it wasn’t fresh made.
  • Can adjust the quantity of seasoning per package
  • Nice storability
  • Good size portions. Each package provides two servings
  • Spices and flavors are authentic and delicious

Cons:

  • Can be a little salty if you get a little more than a single serving
  • Taking the rehydration process too far can make it a little mushy, but as long as you make sure to stop at the right time it’s fine.

Even if you don’t consider yourself to be an avid backpacker, taking a trip every now and then is a great way to hike off more pounds. One of the most important pieces of gear for these kinds of trips is the backpack.

It was hard to choose just one of these products because there are so many great companies offering backpacks. In order to narrow down the list, we’ve only chosen backpacks that have been well reviewed. Here are the best overnight backpacks for backpacking or hiking.

2. Mountain House Beef Stroganoff

Our rating: 7 / 10

Mountain House Beef Stroganoff

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Pro:
* The beef stroganoff is excellent!

Con:
* Instructions are very complex in a lot of steps for an average person.

It takes about 10-12 minutes to prep them, but the taste is instant and it makes you feel like you’re getting a home-cooked meal. This product is a must for camp or survival. I would definitely recommend it to everyone who wants to enjoy eating in the woods.

3. Mountain House Freeze Dried Breakfast Skillet Can

Our rating: 7 / 10

Mountain House Freeze Dried Breakfast Skillet Can

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Pros:

  • Great taste though it does seem weird at first for some people
  • Easy to prepare, just add water and wait for a few minutes.
  • Lightweight, only 18oz.
  • Can be stacked inside a backpack, which is more convenient than a plastic pack
  • Resealable cover for ample storage

Cons:

  • Does not come in a steel pan which is somewhat of a disappointment as it is advertised that way.
  • You need to add a lot of water for it to be edible
  • The food inside is mostly orange

The Mountain House Breakfast Skillet is a great addition to any camping trip. It comes in a pack of four servings which means you could potentially have 12 servings of breakfast right in your backpack.

This freeze-dried meal comes with a freeze-dried egg patty, hashbrowned potatoes, crumbled bacon, sausage, and cheese.

As you can see, there are several ways in which you can prepare it. Each serving of the skillet has about 420 calories. Though we don’t know about the long-term effects of freeze-dried foods, it’s important to stick to the recommended calorie count to ensure you don’t gain weight due to lack of exercise during the trip.

4. Mountain House Beef Stroganoff

Our rating: 6 / 10

Mountain House Beef Stroganoff

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We found the Mountain House Beef Stroganoff benefited from browning the beef and onions. This brought out the true taste of the beef.

This is a delicious meal although rather bland, which is why we recommend doing this. This meal could be supplemented with some spices or even with some chopped red pepper and cucumber.

We enjoyed reheating this meal. The meal was easy to prepare.

5. Backpacker's Pantry Pad Thai

Our rating: 6 / 10

Backpacker's Pantry Pad Thai

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Pros:

  • Menus are based on seasonings
  • Uses local sourced ingredients
  • Uses no “fake” flavors or ingredients

Backpacker’s Pantry is best known for their dehydrated camp food, or dehydrated backpacking food, although they do a full line of MREs and extended emergency kits.

These meals are expensive, but when you realize the cost-per-meal-per-calorie that they offer, they’re right in the range of what you’d expect … and they do taste good.

They’re the best-known dehydrated camping foods on the market, and many of their products have been featured on TV and in popular shows like “Man vs. Food” and “Man ’ vs. Child “ in a car.

6. Mountain House Lasagna

Our rating: 6 / 10

Mountain House Lasagna

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Pros:

  • It tastes like the real thing.
  • Super light

Cons:

  • a little expensive for just 4 servings.
  • Too big to fit the typical backpack.

When people think backpacking food, they often think dried food. But dehydrated food offers some convenient advantages over dried food like a shorter cooking time, fewer ingredients, and better flavor. Most backpackers also find dried food needs to be rehydrated, which is going to take time.

If you’re tired of the standard backpacking meal, then you may want to try a dehydrated meal. It’s a lot like having a super easy-to-fix meal at home.

Aside from being easy to fix, dehydrated meals are also convenient to store. You can pack it in a small storage container and it won’t take up much space. The only drawback is that dehydrated meals still need to be cooked, but it’s easy enough to combine it with fresh ingredients and cook it in a pot, or in the case of the Mountain House Lasagna with Meat Sauce, the food pouch.

7. GOOD TO-GO Thai Curry

Our rating: 6 / 10

GOOD TO-GO Thai Curry

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Pros:

  • Premium quality, delicious meal
  • Contains no dyes or anti-caking agents
  • Easy to prepare
  • Great taste
  • 100-calorie packets
  • Contains all the essential nutrients for a 1-day trip
  • Packets are lightweight
  • Consistent flavor
  • Contains 70 calories with 3 gm fat in each packet
  • MRE-like meals

Cons:

  • Small bag
  • Difficult to open packets at times
  • Requires knife to open
  • Some flavors lack meat

(10 Servings)

8. Backpacker's Pantry Louisiana Red Beans & Rice

Our rating: 6 / 10

Backpacker's Pantry Louisiana Red Beans & Rice

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Pros:

  • Very easy to chew and swallow
  • Good taste
  • Can be eaten warm even when the other food is cold
  • The texture seems very real
  • Can be made into a filling meal

What we really like about this kind of dehydrated camping food is that it tastes like the real thing. There is no chemical aftertaste that you can sometimes find with other dehydrated meals. The kid approves of this dish, and it really is a filling meal, much like a home-cooked meal.

It’s not hard to make, just add hot water. Though, it is difficult to cook when it’s just you. It also is a little expensive. So you may want to try to find a group camping meal.

This product’s packaging is high-quality, and it can be used again and something else. It’s pretty durable plastic, and we can’t wait to use the bag even after the food is all gone.

9. Wild Zora Canyon Chicken Chili Freeze Dried Gluten Free Paleo Meal

Our rating: 5 / 10

Wild Zora Canyon Chicken Chili Freeze Dried Gluten Free Paleo Meal

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Pros:

  • Overall heat is second only to Backpackers’ Camp Chili.
  • Better appearance and taste than Backpackers’ Camp Chili.
  • Sweet.
  • Well blended.
  • Good tomato flavor with a roasted undertone.
  • Great color.

Cons:

  • Excessive grittiness.
  • Weak chicken flavor.
  • Not much else below the sweet tomato flavor and chile spice.
  • Wierd, unnatural aroma.
  • A bit pasty.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the best freeze dried camping food?

Freeze dried camping foods tend to have a shelf life of up to 25 years. They are incredibly lightweight and easy to carry in your pack or your food storage. They are incredibly easy to prepare, just add warm water and wait for about 5 to 10 minutes. Most freeze dried foods have a small amount of sodium to preserve the flavor and freshness of these foods.

Which is the best freeze dried camping food is it hard to say since there are a lot of great options in the market. Each brand of freeze dried foods has its own advantages and disadvantages. Are you looking for a food that contains carbohydrates such as rice and potatoes? Are you looking for a product that can provide your body with all of the essential amino acids, fats, and vitamins? Are you just looking for something that tastes good and is filling? Then here are some of the top twelve best freeze dried camping foods in the market today.

Who has the best freeze dried food?

It is more or less the same with these freeze dried foods, but of course, you need to check the ingredients. They are just like the dehydrated foods, but these are much more expensive like the freeze dried. The good news is that you can find more of these items on the market, and some of the popular brands that sell them are Mountain House, Wise Food, and Emergency Hunter.

However, the freeze dried food is much more popular as many reviewers claim that they are delicious, but they are also cost effective.

The freeze dried food that is offered by the companies above are mostly packed in their own pouches, so all you need to do is to follow the instructions on the package and add hot water. Some of them can be eaten right away. It is better not to add sugar because you want to taste the food in its natural state. Just add some hot water and wait for 5 to 10 minutes.

Is freeze dried food tasty?

Dehydrated foods are not as tasty as fresh fruits, but as long as they are eaten with fresh fruits, they are acceptable. Of course, fruits like bananas are not dehydrated, so they have a natural sweetness that is hard to match.

What are good meals to make while camping?

Make sure you have some canned goods in case there is an emergency. Canned goods don’t need to be heated. They can be eaten right out of their can. (don’t forget a can opener!) You can stock up on whole grains that don’t need refrigeration and can be used as part of any meal. That’s why you can find some whole wheat pasta.

Canned Tuna works well as a sandwich filler. A small bottle of mayonnaise will add flavor and help your tuna go further. Plan on making a hearty salad to go with your meal.

Conclusion

Possibly one of the best things about dehydrated camping food is that it is delicious. The texture of dishes prepared from dehydrated ingredients is often mildly different than something comparable that is prepared with fresh ingredients. Dehydration allows for food to stay fresh for much longer than if it were prepared with fresh ingredients. The flavor and nutrients from fresh foods are retained in the product. You will not notice a huge difference if you have never tried it before, but it is worth trying to see if you like it.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
GOOD TO-GO Classic MarinaraBest OverallGOOD TO-GO Classic Marinara
Mountain House Beef StroganoffBudget PickMountain House Beef Stroganoff
GOOD TO-GO Thai CurryUpgrade PickGOOD TO-GO Thai Curry