Healthy Snacks to Bring Hiking or Camping

Healthy Snacks to Bring Hiking or Camping

Two common summer activities include camping and hiking. Planning your route or your trip is the easy part, but what do you pack to fuel your adventure? Read on to learn more about grab-and-go options that travel well and are suitable for your next hiking or camping excursion!


Access to clean drinking water will be vital, so be sure to pack enough fluids to avoid dehydration. A good rule of thumb is to consume around 2 cups of fluid for every hour of hiking, so plan accordingly. You should also pre-hydrate with about 4 cups of water in the hours leading up to your hike. 

For a Hike or Day Trip

If you have access to a cooler or the ability to pack a lunch box and ice pack, you can bring along perishable foods such as sandwiches. When hiking, you can only bring what you can carry. Pack nutrient-dense, non-perishable foods that are relatively lightweight and will travel well in your backpack such as:

  • Trail mix
  • Nuts, seeds, nut-based bars or nut butter packs
  • Fresh, whole fruit that doesn’t require refrigeration such as apples, bananas, and oranges
  • Dried or freeze-dried fruits and veggies
  • Energy bars, chews, or gels
  • Granola or granola bars
  • Ready-made tuna salad pouches
  • Whole-grain tortillas
  • Shelf-stable, dried jerky, such as poultry, salmon or meat jerky

For Camping or Multi-Day Trips

Planning food and meals for a longer trip can be a bit of a challenge. Pack a cooler full of perishable foods and eat those first. Then move on to more shelf-stable, on-the-go foods such as:

  • Easy-to-carry foods mentioned above
  • Ready-to-eat cereal
  • Applesauce in squeezable pouches
  • Poultry or fish pouches (packed in water), or canned fish, poultry, or meat in individual or regular serving
  • Individual packets of mayo, mustard, taco sauce, and/or soy sauce
  • Whole-grain pasta, couscous, rice mix, pancake mix, hot cereal, dried soups, and dehydrated foods (if you have the ability to boil drinkable water)
  • Marshmallows – for a campfire dessert
  • Bottled water, and possibly powdered beverage mixes

If you need help planning your next hike or camping trip, come see me for a FREE fitness consultation and we’ll work through all your nutritional needs.

Schedule a Nutrition Consultation

Sarah Brunner Registered Dietician at Elite Sports Clubs

Written by Sarah Brunner, RDN, CD; Elite Sports Clubs Registered Dietitian

Sarah is certified in food allergies/intolerances and nutritional counseling, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics; has a certificate in Dietetics from Mount Mary University; and a BA in Education and Mathematics from the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse.