Potato Cheese Chowder

Looking for a stick-to-your-ribs chowder for cold nights? Using hash browns gives you a chowder that feels more like a meal, versus a soup. It’s full of potassium, helping your body after a long day of sweating.

Potato Cheese Chowder


Pack all the dry ingredients except for the milk/cheddar in a sandwich bag. Mark bag “Add 3 cups water”. Pack the dry milk and cheese in a snack size bag.


In your pot add the water and the potato bag contents, bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir often, lowering the flame as needed.

Meanwhile, if using fresh, dice up the cheese.

Stir in the milk powder, then the cheese. Turn off the stove and let sit for a minute to melt.

We sprinkled dried chives on top before serving.

Serves 2 as a soup course, 1 for a very hungry hiker.
  • For the hash browns, you can find a couple types in grocery stores, often hidden with mashed potatoes so look if you don’t see them. The brand I used had salt added, taste before salting. You can also dehydrate frozen hash browns (with no oil added) at home and use those. As well, Costco and similar carry the dried hash browns in bulk.
  • For the cheese, use freeze-dried for lowest weight/shelf stability or use either shelf stable cheddar, or real cheddar, depending on how long you will be gone – or how hot it is outside. Fresh cheddar cheese will carry decently long. Cut into chunks before leaving, wearing gloves to keep the cheese fresh. Wrap it in a bag, or you can also dip it into paraffin or beeswax to keep it fresh. It may sweat a bit and get oily, but is fine to eat. But, handle fresh cheese as little as possible so you don’t get dirty hands on it!
  • Dried celery flakes can be used, find those in the spice section of grocery stores. They are a combination of celery stalk and leaves.
  • A non-stick 1.8 to 2 Liter pot works best for cooking in.