Going Stoveless – Cold Soaked Meals on the Trail

going stoveless on backpacking trip

Going stoveless is a growing trend among backpackers and other long-distance athletes. By not packing a stove or fuel, you can easily reduce your backpack weight by pounds. Cold soaking freeze dried meals on the trail means rehydrating your breakfast, lunch, or dinner with cold water rather than hot water.

I always bring a stove as I make cowboy coffee with dinner, but the last few trips I’ve become more fuel conscious and try to only burn fuel at night.

Cold soaking your breakfast and lunch not only saves you fuel, but time too. Add water and let your breakfast rehydrate while you pack up your tent; if using a thermos or other portable dish, add water and let your lunch rehydrate while you knock out miles during the morning.

cold soaking breakfast while backpacking

While all our freeze-dried meals can be eaten cold, the dishes I prefer to cold soak are the Citrus Chia Morning Bowl and the Zesty Zoodles. The breakfast bowl rehydrates within a minute or two with cold water (pro tip - give the bottom of the pouch an extra stir!), and the Zesty Zoodles only takes a little longer, clocking in at 6 minutes for the noodles to be at the al dente stage.

(Please note, these times might vary depending on how cold your water is!)

Whether you’re going without a stove, carrying minimal fuel, hiking in extreme heat or a fire restricted area, or simply don’t feel like taking the time to boil water (anyone else a lazy morning person?!), try cold soaking on your next hiking trip!

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