In the wilderness, food is the fuel your body burns to keep you warm and provide energy. You must be able to carry enough calories with you to offset those you’ll burn up. It’s like putting gas in your car: Without fuel, you won’t be able to go far. When your energy “tank” runs dry during an emergency, you will feel weak, cold and not have enough energy
Take healthy, high nutrition snacks along whenever you go into the wilderness.
to save yourself. Food, like your survival knife, is one of the Ten Essentials, and should be included, in some form, in your survival kit.
There are essentially three catagories of wilderness cooking. My hard-core foodie friends in the Central Oregon Dutch
Oven Society represent one extreme. Their idea of a good time is to take their Dutch ovens Lodge Logic 8-Quart Camp Dutch Oven
and related gear, find a beautiful spot outdoors and cook meals that would please a gourmet. At the other extreme is the hunter or backpacker. When I’m doing either of those activities, all I want is fuel. Taste is secondary to calories. Meal Ready to Eat (MRE), 12 Pack Case, Ration
When it comes to backpacking or survival food, most of us want to be somewhere in the middle. We want high-calorie, good-tasting food that doesn’t weight much. Cost and long shelf life is also a consideration. There are many excellent commercial energy bars, Clifbar Builders Protein Bar – 12 Pack
but you can make your own much cheaper. An added benefit is that you can tweak the recipes to your tastes, and you know where the ingredients come from.
Even if you don’t go camping or backpacking (If that’s the case, you have my sympathy!) tasty energy bars, with a good shelf life, are great additions to your prepper supplies. Good taste and variety in survival food can be very important in survival situations. Anything you’re forced by circumstances to eat day-after-day will get really boring. Small children may refuse to eat at all unless the food tastes good. Short of force-feeding the kids, there may be no other way to get them to eat. Clif Bar Clif Kid Z Bar – Box of 18
Here are some homemade energy bar recipes that are full of good ingredients and will help supply that needed energy
Hardtack is easy to make, has a long shelf life, and the texture of a fired brick! It is definately a survival food for times when enough calories are the big concern!
boost. Wrap the bars individually and make extras for tucking into school backpacks, survival kits and daypacks.
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- l tsp. vanilla extract
- l cup granola
- 1/2 cup raisins (or any chopped dried fruit)
- 1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts (or your favorite nut)
- 1 1.69-oz. pkg. M&M’s chocolate candies (or you can substitute carob chips)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Generously butter or oil an 8- x 8-inch square pan (preferably nonstick). Crack the egg into a medium-sized bowl. Add the sugar and vanilla extract and mix thoroughly. Stir in the granola, raisins, hazelnuts and M&M’s and mix until combined. The M&M’s can be replaced with carob chips, which will cut down on the sugar content.
Transfer to the pan and distribute evenly over the bottom, pressing firmly with your hands. Bake for 25 minutes. Cool and cut into bars or squares. Serves 8 to 12.
The trick here is to let the homemade energy bar cool! Getting those “hungry peddlers” in your home to wait long enough might be a chore! Your chances are better if these are made when they’re not around, but only if you can resist the temptation yourself.
Emergency Ration Recipe
By: various survival sites
- 3 cups rolled oats, barley, or wheat
- 2 1/2 cups nonfat milk powder
- 1/2 package Jell-O powder, citrus
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoon honey
- 3 tablespoon water
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Heat together water and honey, stir in Jell-O powder. Stir dry ingredients together, stir in Jell-O water, mix well. Then add additional water 1 tablespoon at a time, just until mixture can be formed into two bars. Dry in oven, wrap in foil to store. Each bar is 1000 calories. May be eaten as is, or cooked in a pint of water.
Apricot Bar Recipe
Chop in a food processor:
- 1 cup apricots
- 3/4 cup almonds
- 3/4 cup walnuts
- Mix fruit and nuts with:
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 cup wheat germ
- 2/3 cup flour
- 2 tablespoons oil
Add: Enough liquid (2 to 4 tablespoons juice) to form thick batter.
Mix well. Press into an 8-by-8-inch square greased pan. Bake 30 minutes or until firm. Cut into 12 bars but leave in the pan to cool. Later, package individually and store in a refrigerator or freezer. Makes 12 bars with 220 calories/bar.
No-bake power bites recipe
- 1/2 cup chopped dates
- 1/2 cup figs (stemmed)
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/4 cup wheat germ
- 5 tablespoons nonfat dry milk powder
- 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
In food processor, combine first five ingredients. Process until dough forms a ball. In small bowl, mix the crumbs and lemon juice. Roll dough into 1″ balls and coat with crumbs. Store in an airtight container for up to two weeks. Makes 4 balls. Nutritional info per ball: 240 calories; 54g carbohydrates; 2.5g fat; 5.5g protein Dried fruit provides the bulk of the carbohydrates and calories in the bites. Because it contains a significant amount of fiber (more than 8 grams per serving), they are best eaten before and during sports that do not stimulate the gastrointestinal tract. These sports would include cycling, swimming, and hiking.
They may not settle in your stomach if you’re going to participate in high-impact types of activities such as running or aerobics. So in order to keep it all in, these would not be a good idea when participating in a triathelon!
Surviving a Wilderness Emergency
Smart Cookies: 80 Recipes for Heavenly, Healthful Snacking (Jane Kinderlehrer Smart Food Series)
Cooking the One Burner Way, 2nd (Cookbooks)
For more related SurvivalCommonSense.com tips and stories, click on the highlighted words:
- STOP: Use this exercise to reduce stress and focus your thoughts.
- Take your Ten Essentials on every outing.
- Dress with the right fabrics.
- Have a plan to make a tarp shelter.
- Carry lightweight, compact firestarter.
- Find the most effective fire ignition system.
- How to make charcloth, a material that can catch a spark from any source.
- Use charcloth as an effective method of catching a spark to make a fire.
- It can kill you: Hypothermia
- Hardtack: A great emergency food
- About Leon Pantenburg