Tag: dehydrated

Veggie Chili

My southern Grandma’s veggie chili is my all time favorite. It’s got tons of healthy stuff in it: zucchini, squash, peppers, tomatoes and beans.

Chili is perfect fall camping food, especially when there’s a chill in the air.

Maybe that’s why they call it ‘chili.’ Or maybe not.

Great Veggie Chili recipe for backpacking or camping

I made a batch of chili and dehydrated half of it for our recent camping trip on the Wisconsin River. Dehydrating is a great way to go, but if you’re planning on car camping you can freeze the chili instead. It freezes well and it’ll keep your cooler cold until you’re ready to thaw it.

To make dehydrated chili, start by cooking up a batch of chili at home. Then leave it in your dehydrator overnight.

Great Veggie Chili recipe for backpacking or camping

At camp start by covering the dehydrated chili with water. Let it soak for about 15 minutes. Lay in the sand, recline in a camp chair, etc.

Great Veggie Chili recipe for backpacking or camping

Then heat it over a stove or fire. So easy!

Dehydrated Veggie Chili
Vegan

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, diced
28 oz can crushed or diced tomatoes
2/3 cup salsa
2 teaspoons chili powder
pinch of crushed red pepper
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 cans (15 oz each) pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 large red bell pepper cut into 1/2″ chunks
1 large zucchini cut into 1/2″ chunks
1 medium yellow squash cut into 1/2″ chunks

At Home:

  1. Sauté onion. Add tomatoes, salsa, chili powder, crushed red pepper and salt. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes
  2. Add remaining ingredients. Cover and simmer 50 – 60 minutes.
  3. Let chili cool slightly and then spread over solid ‘fruit roll’ dehydrator trays. I dehydrated half of a batch of chili, but if you have enough trays you could dehydrate a full batch of chili. Set dehydrator to 135 degrees. Once chili is dry (about 8 hours), put it in an air-tight container or zip top bag.

At Camp:

  1. Cover chili with water and let sit 15 minutes, or until it’s nearly rehydrated. 
  2. Heat and serve.

Camping Recipe - Veggie Chili

Broccoli Noodle Salad

Need a fresh recipe for backpacking or camping? Try this Dehydrated Broccoli Noodle Salad.On our recent camping trip on the Wisconsin River, I made this Broccoli Noodle Salad and it was amazing. I thought it might have just tasted great because we were starving, so I made it again for a party last week. Still delicious. This Broccoli Noodle Salad is ideal for backpacking as well.

Broccoli Noodle Salad - Perfect for backpacking or camping!

I dehydrated the broccoli and green onions. That way I didn’t have to worry about them spoiling. If you’re going car camping, you may want to skip the dehydrator and just make the salad ahead of time at home. It’s the kind of salad that tastes better if it sits for a day in your fridge or cooler.

Broccoli Noodle Salad - Perfect for backpacking or camping!

A few hours before you want to eat, add water to the dehydrated vegetables.

Broccoli Noodle Salad - Perfect for backpacking or camping!

This is the fun part. Crunch up the ramen noodles while they are still in their bag. Get out that pent-up aggression!

Broccoli Noodle Salad - Perfect for backpacking or camping!

Ok. Calm down. You’re on vacation. Add the ramen seasoning packet to the dressing. Add the ramen noodles to the vegetables, along with the dressing, peanuts, sunflower seeds. Stir together and enjoy!

Broccoli Noodle Salad - Perfect for backpacking or camping!

Dehydrated Asian Broccoli Noodle Slaw
Adapted from Allrecipes
Vegan

Ingredients:

  • 12 ounce package broccoli coleslaw mix (I used Trader Joe’s organic)
  • 3 ounce package Top Ramen Oriental Flavored Ramen Noodles (other ramen noodles may not be vegan)
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 1/2 cup unsalted peanuts
  • 1/2 cup unsalted raw sunflower kernels
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

Directions:

At Home

  1. For even dehydrating, slice the green part of the green onions and finely chop the white part. Spread out green onion and broccoli slaw on separate trays of the dehydrator. Set dehydrator to 135 degrees. Once vegetables are dry (about 4 hours), put them in an air-tight container or zip top bag. 
  2. To make dressing, combine sugar, oil and apple cider vinegar. Store dressing in a leakproof container.
  3. Put peanuts and sunflower seeds in a separate container or zip top bag.

At Camp

  1. A few hours before serving, add enough water to dehydrated green onions and broccoli slaw to cover.
  2. Once the vegetables are rehydrated, pour off the excess water.
  3. Take the bag of ramen noodles and crunch it up. Add ramen noodles to the vegetables. Add  ramen flavoring packet to the dressing. Shake or stir the dressing.
  4. Add peanuts, sunflower seeds and dressing to vegetable noodle mixture. Shake or stir to combine.

10 Dehydrated Recipes for Camping

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

Billy and I are planning a camping trip to Yatesville Lake in Kentucky. Our site is a boat-in site, so we’re bringing our kayaks. We’ll need to pack light so we can fit everything into our kayaks’ hatches. There is an access trail to our site, but we think it would be more fun to boat-in with all our gear. Our campsite is primitive, but within the state park there are also sites with RV hookups, hot showers and even a golf course. I keep joking that I am going to sneak off and take hot shower while Billy is roughing it.

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

If you’re headed out to the backcountry or you just want to pack light, dehydrated meals are the way to go. I am planning on bringing an assortment of dehydrated meals for our trip. I don’t want to weigh our kayaks down with heavy cans and jars of food. I’m dehydrating a jar of our favorite spaghetti sauce right now. It’s really easy, and when it’s done dehydrating, it will be small enough to fit in my pocket.

You don’t even need a dehydrator to make dehydrated foods. You can just use your oven on its lowest setting, with the door cracked slightly. If you don’t mind spending a little more, REI has some freeze-dried meals that are pretty good, though I tend to prefer my own cooking. I think the Mountain House meals are the best of the bunch. I really enjoyed their dehydrated eggs when I went backpacking in Sequoia and King’s Canyon National Parks. I just topped the eggs with some Taco Bell taco sauce and they were awesome. The Mountain House Pasta Primavera was decent as well. Another option is to find dried foods at the supermarket or bulk food store.

Readily Available Supermarket Dried Foods

  • dried tortellini
  • soup packets
  • dehydrated chili mix
  • ramen noodles
  • sun-dried tomatoes
  • wasabi peas
  • dehydrated onions (spice aisle)
  • dried fruit
  • oatmeal
  • cous cous
  • minute rice

If you decide to dehydrate foods at home, there are three rules you should follow.

3 Rules of Dehydrating

  1. Prevent Spoilage: Keep all dehydrated foods in the freezer until you are ready to head out. Oil causes dehydrated foods to quickly become rancid. Try to cook with a minimal amount of oil. Rinse greasy foods like ground beef with water before you dehydrate them.
  2. Don’t Mix Flavors: For example, don’t dehydrate bananas at the same time as onions – you’ll end up with banana-y onions and onion-y bananas. Nasty!
  3. Use the Right Temperature: Foods like meats have to be dehydrated at a higher temperature to make them safe to eat. Other foods like fruits and vegetables can be dehydrated at a lower temperature. Refer to the manual that came with your dehydrator for the exact settings.

Hungry yet? Here are some recipes that look especially tasty.

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

Dirty Gourmet has a lot of really good recipes for dehydrated meals and snacks including this Coconut Curry Soup.

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

Ramen noodles aren’t just for broke college students. Check out Dirty Gourmet’s Not Your Average Ramen.

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

These Maple Olive Oil Apple Chips look delicious as well.

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

Dehydrated Bushwalking Food has some great dinner ideas, including this Tikka Masala.

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

Check out this savory Roasted Red Pepper, Garlic, and Goat Cheese Rotini from Happy Tramper.

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

Or try this healthy Lentil Soup from Powered by Plantz.

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating  10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

Laurie Ann March authored two backpacking cookbooks. Take a look at her recipe for Sunny Garlic Hummus.

Backpacker’s Packable Dehydrated Salads look great if you can’t live without salad when you’re on the trail .

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

Their Spicy Curry Noodles look great as well!

10 Dehydrated Food Recipes for Camping & Backpacking, Plus 3 Rules of Dehydrating

This One Pot Vegetarian Chili mixes wet and dried ingredients and looks incredibly healthy.

Check out YouTube for tons of step-by-step videos on food dehydration.

Do you have any go-to recipes for packing light? I’d love to try them out on our trip!

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