20 Best Hunting Food For Backpacking 2024

Welcome to my guide on high-protein and high-calorie hunting foods that are perfect for packing in your backpack. As an experienced hunter who has spent countless hours in the wilderness, I know firsthand the importance of having a well-stocked and nutrient-rich food supply.

Hunting Food For Backpack

In this guide, I will share with you 25 of the best hunting foods to pack in your backpack, each with its respective calorie and protein content. These foods will provide you with the sustained energy and nutrients you need to stay sharp and focused during your hunt, whether you’re out for a day or a week. From classic jerky and trail mix to canned beans and energy gels, I’ve got you covered.

List Of 20 Best Food To Take Hunting


1. Bananas & Apples


As you know bananas are loaded with vitamins and potassium and apples are a powerhouse of vitamin C. These are superfoods for hunters and can provide that needed energy when in emergencies. You don’t have to chop, just peel and eat!

  • Calories In a Banana:- 89/per fruit
  • Calories in Apples:- 52/per fruit

2. P & B Jelly Sandwich


You know that peanut butter is a healthy fat and can fuel your energy swiftly. You don’t have to carry them in jars instead pack them in foil or weightless containers.

  • Calories:- 350/per slice
  • Protein:- 12 grams
  • Sugar:- 18 grams

3. Granola Bars


Protein bars or granola bars can keep you energetic for long hours. If you have a sweet tooth, then this will definitely satisfy your craving in the middle of the woods.

These can also enhance your mood and makes you feel focused and relaxed. Granola bars are also rich in fiber as well.

Just throw a few of these in your hunting backpack and you are ready to go. These are pocket friendly as well and also available in sugar-free versions.

  • Calories:- 300
  • Protein:- 10 grams
  • Fiber:- 7 grams

(These figures might vary depending upon the brand; make sure to read the package to get the exact information)

4. Nuts


You can take walnuts, cashews, peanuts, and sunflower seeds for hunting, these are calorie dense and high in Omega 3 fatty acids as well. Mix all together in equal portions and carry!

  • Calories:- 160 to 185 per ounce
  • Protein:- 20 grams

5. Freeze-Dried Meal


For an intense hunt, you need the right amount of calories! Freeze-dried meals are available in a wide range of meal options that need to be boiled in a small amount of water. Some of these are lasagna, Mac and cheese, spaghetti, and others.

  • Calories:- 500 to 900
  • Protein:- 15 grams to 40 grams
  • Fiber:- 3 grams to 35 grams

6. Crackers


For a light snack to fuel your crabs then crackers are an excellent choice.

  • Calories:- 504/100 grams
  • Protein:- 7grams

7. Bagels


Carry a mini bag of bagels just to munch on to keep your energy levels high. You definitely need carbohydrates to keep you stable while hunting and this can provide you with that.

  • Calories:- 250/100 grams
  • Protein:- 10 grams/100 grams

8. Dried Fruits


To maintain your sugar level, dried fruits or dehydrated fruits are a must to have. There are apples, mango, pear, and others available.

  • Calories:- 350/100 grams
  • Protein:- 1 gram/100 grams
  • Sugar:- 58 grams / 100 grams

9. Mac & Cheese


Mac and Cheese is also an excellent option to consider as they give you so much for crabs needed for the day.

  • Calories:- 164/100 grams
  • Protein:- 7 grams

10. Cup Noodles


If you have more space in your backpack, then consider packing cup noodles o ramen. They can make you full and can keep your energy high which is what you want in the woods.

  • Calories:- 221 per cup
  • Protein:- 7 grams

11. Sports Drink


Sports drink or not just for the sportsmen! Hunter can also devour it as it might have high caffeine or electrolyte content to keep you energetic. Keep sipping throughout the day instead of water!

  • Calories:- 11 per 100 grams
  • Protein:- Nil

12. Snicker Bar


Chocolate covered in peanuts can also keep you energetic by busting your hunger and satisfying your cravings. Just a few of these on your backpack can really mean a lot!

  • Calories:- 488
  • Protein:- 7 grams

13. Meat & Cheese Sticks


These are perfect snacks to carry for hunting; these are low in fat, and high in protein. Available in various flavors and some of these are available in lean meat as well.

  • Calories:- less than 100
  • Crabs:- 2 grams
  • Protein:- 26 grams per 100 grams

14. Jerky


These are thin meats that are dehydrated to prevent decay. Jerky can give you a lot of energy as this contains more calories.

  • Calories:- 410 / 100 grams
  • Protein:- 33 grams

15. Tuna Pouches


These are designed to save space and are loaded with protein and healthy fat. Though this does not have carbohydrates or fiber yet can be the ultimate meal option for hunting.

  • Calories:- 145
  • Protein:- 26.77 grams
  • Fat:- 4 grams

16. Powdered Lemonade


If the sun is scoring high then you must definitely do something refreshing. Powered lemonade comes in small packets with no artificial flavors. Quench the thirst with these to feel refreshed!

  • Calories:- 100/per serving
  • Protein:- Nil
  • Sugar:- Refer to the brand you purchase

17. Hot Cocoa


Also, a drink to keep you refreshed and warm! If the climate is chilly then you must have something to keep you warm. Hot cocoa is also a healthier option to consider.

  • Calories:- 77
  • Protein:- 3.5 grams

18. Soup Packets


To sort dinner soup comes to the rescue. The soup packet is also calorie-rich and comes with small chunks of veggies in it.

  • Calories:- 77/20 grams
  • Protein:- Depends on the brand

19. Oat Meal


For a healthy dinner, Oatmeal comes in handy! These are available in easy-to-carry or travel pouches and all you need to do is to add warm water and it’s ready in a jiffy!

  • Calories:- 68 per 100 grams
  • Protein:- 2.4 grams

20. Sausage


A great alternative to jerky, there is a wide range of these available in various flavors as well. The softer and less dry one is the German-style sausage preferred for hunting and it is an excellent source of fat and protein.

  • Calories:- 200 per serving
  • Fat:- 14 grams per serving

Frequently Ask Questions

1: What are the best hunting foods for backpacking?

The best hunting foods for backpacking are lightweight, non-perishable, and provide high energy. Some popular options include energy bars, trail mix, jerky, dried fruits, nuts, dehydrated meals, instant soups, and freeze-dried foods.

2: How do I choose the right hunting food for my backpacking trip?

When choosing hunting food for backpacking, consider factors such as weight, nutritional value, taste, and ease of preparation. Opt for lightweight, calorie-dense options that are easy to pack and require minimal cooking. Additionally, choose foods that you enjoy eating and that provide a balance of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats.

3: Are there any specific dietary considerations for hunting food?

Yes, dietary considerations are important when selecting hunting food. If you have any dietary restrictions or food allergies, be sure to choose foods that accommodate your needs. Additionally, consider any special dietary requirements based on your hunting activities and personal preferences, such as high-protein options for muscle recovery or low-sodium foods for individuals with high blood pressure.

4: How much hunting food should I carry in my backpack?

The amount of hunting food you should carry depends on the duration of your trip and your personal caloric needs. Calculate your daily caloric requirements based on your activity level and multiply it by the number of days you’ll be hunting. Aim to carry lightweight, high-calorie foods that provide around 3,500 to 4,500 calories per day.

5: What are some examples of lightweight and high-energy hunting foods?

Some examples of lightweight and high-energy hunting foods include energy bars, granola bars, nuts and seeds, beef jerky, dried fruits, nut butter packets, instant oatmeal packets, freeze-dried meals, and dehydrated soups. These options provide a good balance of nutrients and are easy to carry in a backpack.

6: Are there any cooking methods suitable for backpack hunting?

Cooking methods for backpack hunting are typically simple and require minimal equipment. Some popular methods include using lightweight camping stoves, compact cookware, and boiling water to rehydrate freeze-dried or dehydrated meals. Additionally, you can choose “just add hot water” options that don’t require cooking at all.


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