Lite Kamper | Light Camping
Tasmania Overland Track


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Food Here are some food tips for hiking when you have to carry it all.

Some food safety tips for car camping and hiking. See also drink options

Ready to eat

Fresh fruit - apple

Fresh fruit such as apples, oranges, peaches, bananas. Consider careful packing to preserve these items.

Also vegetables such as carrot travel well and can be eaten with no preparation or cooking required.

  Some fresh vegetables are ready to eat and can last a while at ambient temperature. Some careful packing may be necessary. eg. Beans, tomato, carrot

Single serve breakfast cereals are available which in many cases act as their own bowl if one follows the instructions carefully for opening them. Try and find a high fibre option if possible.  Muesli is recommended.

UHT Milk has a long shelf life.  It is available in low fat or full cream versions.  Soy options are also available.  Where I live there are 150 ml, 250 ml and 1 Litre size options.

Note if water resupply is expected on your trek then powdered mild is a more light weight option.



Nuts such as almonds, peanuts, pistachios - the list is endless.  Watch out for high levels of salt.  If traveling with others consider leaving peanuts behind as many people have an allergy to peanuts.

Dried fruits such as sultanas, currants, raisins, apricots, dates, figs.  Some hikers create their own trail mix comprising mixed nuts and dried fruit.

Canned meals

Tinned meals/soups. These may not even need heating.  Cans themselves add more weight - don't forget you need to carry them home.  Also try to find examples that include a self opening ring pull.  Otherwise make sure you pack a can opener.
  Processed meats such as beef jerky, salami sticks
  Happy Camper Gourmet Meals

Made in Australia from Australian meat, these meals are pressure cooked in their own sealed pouches, and are not dehydrated or freeze dried. To prepared while camping, simply place them in hot water for 10 - 15 minutes and they are ready to eat.

Best of all, these meals require no refrigeration, and have up to an 18 month shelf life. These delicious meals include:
Red Wine & Rosemary Lamb Shank
Traditional Mint Gravy Lamb Shank
Veal Shank in Creamy Mushroom & Pink Peppercorn Sauce
Tomato & Basil Meatballs

  Single serve diced fruit Single serve diced fruit containers are a great way of adding some vitamins, fibre and interest to a hiking diet.  Note the packaging is fragile compared to cans - but is more convenient when packing your rubbish to carry out.
  meusli bars Meusli bars are a good way of getting fibre into the diet.  Make sure you read the pack and find ones with high levels of fibre eg. 8% or better.


Cheeses are an option.  Ambient temperature is an issue.  For a hot Australian summer a processed cheddar might be the safest bet.
Preparation required Pasta Dried pasta lasts well. Look for short cooking time.
  Dried bean mix Dried peas or bean mixes.
  Rice is a staple for many. Just consider the relatively long cooking time.  Same issue with potato - you may use more fuel than you think cooking them.

Instant rice is an option which will use less fuel - see below.


Fruit cake

Fruit cake is rich, sweet and lasts well under most conditions except for very hot and humid.  Note that this is heavy food.
Army ration packs - two types - either ready to eat - which are heavier or others contain some freeze dried components - normally the main meal.  The latter are a bit lighter to carry.
Freeze dried meals

Just add hot water

Back Country freeze dried meals

Freeze dried complete meals are a  surprise. I was surprised at how tasty my first one of these meals (a curry) actually was.  Simply add water and let stand for 10 minutes.  Don't forget you need to plan on carrying additional water when you are planning on including freeze dried in your meal plan.

See Adventure Food, Backpackers Pantry, Travellunch, Back Country Cuisine, Expedition Foods, Mountain House,

  Instructions for Uncle Ben's Instant Rice

Bring to a rolling boil. Cover and REMOVE FROM HEAT.
3. Let stand covered 5-7 minutes or until water is absorbed. Fluff with fork and serve.


Instant potato

Noodle cup

There are plenty of noodle cups around - just fill to the line and wait for a few minutes.  While these containers are a little bulky and fragile they are convenient and may mean you do not need to carry a bowl - more weight saved.
Boiling required

2 minute noodles

2 minute noodles do not come in a container so must be boiled over a flame for 2 minutes, add the flavour and or freeze dried vegetables and serve.