Today I am sharing a ton of keto backpacking food ideas that would be great for hiking or camping. We are avid campers who love spending as much time as possible in the wilderness. When I began following a ketogenic lifestyle, I converted many of our favorite camping recipes to lower carb versions with much success. We now have many delicious keto camping recipes on the blog.
When I turned forty last year I decided that I would hike the West Coast Trail to celebrate. Deemed “the hike of a lifetime” this 86km trek would take six nights to complete with only what we could carry on our backs. At this point I had been committed to keto for a good year and a half so there was no going back for me. I set out to find the best possible keto backpacking food options.
Why yes, I AM cooking bacon over a campfire on the West Coast Trail. Because when you are keto, bacon is life!
What makes backpacking foods different?
Finding keto friendly backpacking foods can be somewhat challenging compared to camping meals because of the unique weight and packing restrictions. Backpacking foods need to be lightweight, easy to pack and simple to prepare. Typical camping essentials are usually not available when backpacking.
Here’s what I packed to eat each day:
- Two Quest bars. I found Quest bars to have the highest amount of protein and the most keto friendly ingredients of any protein bar that I looked at. They are quite tasty in my opinion too.
- One Starbucks Via Instant Coffee (aff link). We didn’t always have time for coffee in the morning but boy was it nice when we did!
- 1 Tbsp powdered MTC creamer (aff link) and 2 packets of stevia sweetener.
- 1 packet of chai tea.
- Homemade dehydrated egg scramble. Find the recipe below.
- 30g of beef jerky from our local butcher.
- 25g of parmesan cheese whisps from Costco.
- 30g of gouda cheese (not pictured).
- 50g of homemade keto trail mix.
- 1 packet of miso soup.
- 1 dehydrated low carb backpacking meal.
Finding dehydrated camping meals that are low carb can be super difficult. I chose meals from Backpackers Pantry and Good to Go (aff links) that had the lowest carb counts and cleanest ingredients that I could find. Many backpacking meals are filled with carbie ingredients like rice, beans and noodles.
I am absolutely thrilled that Next Mile Meals now offers shipping to Canada. This was not available when I hiked the West Coast Trail. The minute that I found out that these dehydrated keto backpacking meals were available in Canada I ordered a sample pack. I cannot wait to try them out on our next backpacking adventure.
More keto backpacking food ideas:
It is possible to take meat and cheese on your excursion. Dry cuts of meat like salami, pepperoni and beef jerky are the best options. I pack pre-cooked bacon on many of our trips as well. Keep times will vary depending on the length of your trip and temperatures during your hike.
Hard, dry cheeses are best for backpacking. I chose gouda because it’s my favorite and I simply wrapped it in tinfoil for extra durability and protection. This felt like an absolute treat to eat each day during our hike!
Trail mix is essential for hiking in my opinion. I made my own keto trail mix using roasted almonds, cashews, pumpkin seeds and Lily’s chocolate chips.
Don’t forget to pack electrolytes while backpacking. Nuun has electrolyte vitamin tabs (aff link) that are sweetened with Stevia but not all of them are so be sure to check the labels!
Make your own dehydrated meals!
I made my own dehydrated scrambled egg packs because it was a lot cheaper than buying them. All you need is whole egg powder, dehydrated vegetables and dried cheese. All of the ingredients for these scrambled eggs can be found at your local health food store. Experiment with serving size and quantity until you come up with a recipe that you like.
Simply add water to the dehydrated eggs, allow them to soak for ten minutes and then cook them on a backpacking stove. I seriously love, love, love this Jetboil Stove (aff link) and could not recommend it for backpacking more. If you don’t already have a backpacking stove, buy a Jetboil, you won’t regret it! It has been the most essential and lightweight piece of backpacking equipment that I own.
The best way that I have found to organize my meals for backpacking is to place all of my keto foods for each day into a large freezer bag. This way I only have to pull one bag out of my backpack for meals every day.
Of course the best keto food is that which is caught and eaten directly from the source like this crab at the Crab Shack at Nit Nat Narrows.
Do you have anymore keto backpacking food ideas? Please share them, I am always looking for new keto foods to try and to pack into the great outdoors.