Trail Cooking

Three Trail Ready Recipes

As I walked our property this morning, I listened to birds in the trees, and realized the birds are early this year. Not only has it been un-wintery, it has been warm. I keep watching the trees and bushes pushing on buds. If it continues this path, spring will be early.

Evergreen Huckleberry buds showing. Quite a bit early.

Which leads me to dreams of hiking and backpacking coming soon. Maybe sooner than later. In the years before we had more boys, I often backpacked in winter. But I won’t lie….hiking in Spring is a lot nicer – and warmer.

These three recipes are favorites of ours, and are in Freezer Bag Cooking: Adventure Ready Recipes. All about the comfort food, these are all carb-fests: potatoes, pasta, and rice…and they also work well for emergency food prepping – and can be stored in mason jars for long-term food storage.

Alfredo Mashers

In a quart freezer bag:

  • ¾ cup instant mashed potatoes (plain)
  • 2 Tbsp dry milk
  • 2 Tbsp shelf stable Parmesan cheese (green can)
  • 1 Tbsp dry Alfredo sauce mix
  • ¼ tsp granulated garlic
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • Also take:
  • 1 Tbsp or 1 packet olive oil

FBC Method:

Add 1 cup near boiling water and the oil, and stir well. Seal and let sit until cool enough to eat. Stir before eating.

One Pot Method:

Bring 1 cup water and oil to a boil in a small pot. Take off heat. Add in dry mashed potatoes, stir well. Let cool a bit before eating.

To make heartier meal, with a dose of protein, add a 3 to 5 ounce can (make sure it has a pop top), or 7 ounce pouch, of chicken breast (include any broth) with the water.

Serves 1.

Dry weight is 4 3/8 ounces. If adding in a 7 ounce pouch chicken, 11 3/8 ounces.

Beef Stroganoff

In a quart freezer bag:

In a leak-proof bottle take:

  • 2 tsp ketchup
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp low sodium beef bouillon powder
  • Couple grinds black pepper

Also pack:

  • 1-ounce tub or foil packet cream cheese

FBC Method:

Add 1½ cups nearly boiling water to the past bag, seal tightly and put in a cozy for 15 minutes. Drain off most of the remaining water carefully, leaving about a Tablespoon behind (this actually is pretty good tasting broth). Add in the cream cheese and sauce blend. Stir till blended.

One Pot Method:

Bring 1½ cups water to a boil, add in pasta bag contents. Cover tightly, take off stove, and let sit for 10 minutes. Drain and proceed as above.

Serves 1.


A 3-ounce package of ramen noodles can be substituted, or chuka soba noodles. Gluten-free ramen noodles can also be used. Discard flavor packet and break up the noodles a bit.

Hungry teens/men may want to use as much as 1/4 cup hamburger.

You can take ketchup packets instead, and dry Worcestershire sauce powder can be found online. Shelf stable cream cheese is also sourced online. If you carry regular cream cheese, you can find small tubs or packets by the bagels in grocery store bakeries. It is good for 2 or so days carrying in a pack, unless it is super hot out. Otherwise, you can also use Laughing Cow cheese wedges, which are shelf stable (even though they are sold chilled often).

Meaty Marinara Pilaf

In a quart freezer bag:

FBC Method:

Add 1¼ cups near boiling water and stir well. Sal tightly and put in a cozy for 15 minutes. Fluff up.

One Pot Method:

Bring 1¼ cups water to a boil in a small pot. Add in ingredients, stir well and cover tightly. Take off stove and let rest for 10 minutes. In cooler weather, or at altitude, stash pot in a pot cozy.

Serves 1.


To boost calorie count, add in 1 Tablespoon or 1 packet olive oil. Add more cheese on top if desired. For larger appetites, use up to ¼ cup dried meat (Add in a Tablespoon more water for each Tablespoon dried meat).


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