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The Littlbug Blog

Best Foods for Cold Weather Hiking

Posted by Superior Effect Marketing for Littlbug Enterprises on

While hiking and backpacking are fantastic year-round ways to be active and enjoy the great outdoors, you must take extra measures during the cold weather months. The type of food you bring is really important. The meals you pack for a backpacking trip should be simple to prepare while out hiking. They should be filling and nourishing. The secret to getting the nutrition you need to push through is understanding what foods are appropriate for travels in cold weather.

Winter Nutrition

Your body will probably burn several thousand more calories per day when hiking or backpacking in the chilly winter months than doing the same activities in more temperate weather. Main reason why, simply to maintain the internal heat you require for survival. You actually burn 2,000 to 3,000 more calories than usual on a regular cold weather hike. And merely keeping your body temperature constant while you sleep could burn an additional 1,000 calories. Therefore, while preparing for winter walks, account for an increase in daily caloric intake of up to 3,500 to 5,000.

Food To Pack

If possible, you should bring hot food for winter hiking expeditions. Cold food and drinks can chill the body. However, if you spend a lot of time cooking, you'll also become chilly. Consider consuming "just-add-water" meals that require no preparation or cleanup to stay warm. If you want to make your own "just-add-water" meals check these easy recipes. Or if you would prefer to have everything already prepped and ready to add to your pack, these ready to go meal kits great option to save time. 


You need an energizing breakfast to give you the strength to get up and move about each day. Granolas, muesli, and instant oatmeal are the ideal foods for this.

Lunch & Snacks

It's recommended to take quick lunch breaks or simply munch on snacks while hiking in cold weather. Make sure there's plenty of snack food available. Cheese sticks, jerky, dried fruits, almonds, crackers, and chocolate pieces are all good options.


You definitely need something warm and filling for supper. To find one-pot meals with a decent balance of complex carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, look for dehydrated and freeze-dried options. There are many options online and recipes you can make yourself that save money and provide a bit of accomplishment. 


On every trek, proper hydration is crucial, but it is even more crucial in the winter. Soups and other meals with broth are good ways to get your fluids. At night, you can prepare hot drinks like herbal tea, cocoa, or hot chocolate. Both caffeine and alcohol are diuretics and should be avoided as they can cause you to become more dehydrated.

Speed Up Your Cooking Time

You definitely don’t want to take too long preparing and cooking your meal when it’s cold outside. Of course we have the perfect solution! Littlbug stoves heat very quickly, making them a great tool for your winter adventures in the backcountry. Not to mention they are super lightweight and can ultimately help save energy regarding weight of your overall pack. 

What are your favorite cold weather foods?

ICYMI: Littlbug was featured on The Camping Show! Check it out HERE if you haven’t watched our episode yet!

While we add value to your outdoor experience, you are adding value to our planet and all that live here. Littlbug Enterprises donates at least 10% of its profits to help care for the Earth and its inhabitants.