Backpacking Breakfast Ideas: 9 Easy & Yummy Options

Heading into the wilds on a backpacking adventure doesn’t have to mean roughing it with uninspiring food. Here you’ll find some amazing morning meal ideas that are quick, easy, and delicious.

Jolanda Lapegna Avatar
Written by: | Reviewed by: Kieran James Cunningham
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Tired of pop-tarts and instant noodles? Too broke for fancy, pre-made dehydrated meals? Then you’re in the right place! 

We know first-hand how important a hearty breakfast is when you’re getting ready for a long day on the trail. When you’re backpacking or wild camping, you also need to consider the weight, size, and packability of your food. It’s a lot to think about!

To help you on your quest to find the ultimate backcountry brekkie, we’re sharing 9 easy and delicious morning meal recipes to get any backpacker started. 

These breakfasts are not only hearty and nutritious, but they’re also easy to prepare wherever the trail takes you! 

1. Instant Oatmeal (With a Twist!)

It’s hard to beat the versatility and convenience of instant oatmeal. Not only is oatmeal a nutritional powerhouse, but it’s also inexpensive, lightweight, shelf-stable, and quite tasty if you know a few cooking tricks! 

You can find cheap instant oatmeal packets for sale at most grocery stores. Instant oats can be cooked in under 10 minutes at your campsite from either powdered milk or plain old boiling water. 

The trick to turning oatmeal into a scrumptious morning meal is to add some flavor-boosting toppings. Try a shot of brandy, a scoop of nut butter, maple syrup, nuts, and seeds, or dried fruits. 

Brew up some instant coffee and you’ve got yourself a tasty and nutritious morning meal for your next backpacking trip!

Man cooking porridge on a camping stove
Instant porridge is great for packing and easy to prepare.

2. Beefy Breakfast Sandwich

When it comes to backpacking breakfasts, it’s hard to beat the taste and convenience of grab-and-go brekkie sandwiches. Breakfast sandwiches provide a hearty and filling meal that will keep you energized and satisfied for hours.

You can pre-cook your ingredients and assemble your sandwiches at camp or you can use protein options like foil pouch meat and fish, freeze-dried meat, or cured sausage and bacon.

Don’t forget to add some lightweight and shelf-stable toppings to boost flavor like dehydrated or fresh veggies, cheese, spreads, and hot sauce.

Grab-and-go brekkie sandwiches are the ultimate convenience on the trail.

3. Egg and Hashbrown Skillet

Looking for easy, first-thing options that will deliver carbs for energy and satisfying protein?

It isn’t as complicated as it sounds! 

All you need is powdered eggs, dehydrated hash browns, and a couple of toppings to really make the dish sing. You can even find shelf-stable bacon bits (usually in the salad aisle) to add a nice, smoky flavor to your meal. 

If you want to skip the cooking, you can find ready-to-go meal pouches online made from dehydrated eggs and hashbrowns online. They’re usually called “breakfast skillets”. 

4. Superhero Breakfast Scramble

Consider swapping out your morning instant oatmeal with a bright and savory brekkie scramble. It’s not always easy to incorporate veggies into your backpacking meals, but this superhero scramble is a convenient way to get your 5 a day

Don’t worry, you won’t have to haul fresh eggs around. Powdered eggs are a surprisingly tasty alternative that whips up in a breeze. Once you’ve got your eggs cooking, simply add your favorite freeze-dried or dehydrated veggies like dried tomatoes, spinach, or artichokes. 

Scrambled eggs and vegetables cooking on grate over an open fire
A simple cooked breakfast when you are camping out.

5. Cheesy Grits With Bacon Bits

How does a savory breakfast on a chilly morning sound? Grits make a nutritionally-sound brekkie that can easily be tweaked according to your taste buds.

Simply cook up some instant grits with hot water according to the package instructions (or go rogue and add your own twists and seasonings) and fry up some crispy bacon in a pan. 

Then, chop up the bacon and mix it into the grits for a smoky, savory flavor that will make your taste buds sing. Some cheddar or parmesan cheese would make a great addition as well! 

Frying off bacon on a propane stove
Liven up your breakfast grits with some cut up bacon.

6. Breakfast Burritos

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day on backpacking trips, so start your day off right with a nutritious and filling breakfast burrito. 

What really makes breakfast burritos a standout choice for backpacking is their versatility. You can customize them to suit your tastes and dietary preferences, whether you’re vegan, vegetarian, or a meat-lover.

Some great fillings include scrambled eggs or tofu, black beans, cheddar cheese, avocado, salsa, onions, peppers, and sausage or bacon. You can also add some hot sauce or spices to give your burrito a little extra kick. 

The options abound, and the only limitation is how much food you’re willing to carry!

Close up of a breakfast burrito in foil
Breakfast burritos are a hearty option for a camping breakfast.

7. Peanut Butter Energy Bites

If all you’re eating is trail mix, it can get real old, real fast. Peanut Butter Energy Bites have all the same wholesome ingredients as trail mix in a small, bite-sized portion that makes a great backpacking brekkie or snack.

While they often sell pre-made versions at fancy grocery stores, energy bites are easy and inexpensive to make at home. Simply mix rolled oats with peanut butter until the mixture forms a consistency that can be rolled into a palm size ball. Store in an air-tight container. 

Feel free to add other mix-ins like dried fruit, nuts, chia seeds, flax seeds, coconut shavings, or chocolate chips.

Protein balls on a wooden tray
Quick, versatile, and easy to make at home.

8. Yogurt Breakfast Bars

Yogurt bars prove that backpacking food doesn’t have to be boring! Made from a base of peanut butter and dates with a delicious yogurt topping, these bars provide the perfect mix of filling protein and vitamin-packed cranberries.

In a food processor, combine peanut butter, dates, cranberries, milk, and flaxseed until a soft dough forms. Add your cranberries and press the mixture into a baking dish with parchment paper. Pour some yogurt over the base, sprinkle some dried fruit on top, and place the dish in the freezer for at least 3 hours. 

Take them out on the morning of your trip and marvel at your creation!

Close up of cereal bar
Protein-packed breakfast bars are convenient camping breakfast fodder.

9. Hard-Boiled Eggs With Guac and Bacon

If you’re looking for low-carb breakfast ideas, they don’t come much better than hard-boiled eggs with guacamole and bacon.

This option is easy to whip up on the mountain or trail and is sure to prove an upgrade on whatever other fodder is in your current repertoire. 

To create this tasty hot meal, simply boil some eggs, cut them into small pieces, and mix them with fresh guac and bacon. Don’t forget to sprinkle your favorite cheese on top! 

We know that when it comes to bringing your own food while backpacking, eggs aren’t exactly the easiest ingredient to throw into a pack. One of the best ways to pack eggs for camping is to take a wide-mouth Nalgene bottle, fill it carefully with eggs, and pour dehydrated rice in until it’s full. The rice will act as a cushion and keep your eggs from exploding in your pack. 

Backpacking Breakfast Ideas: Bon Appetit! 

Starting your day with a nutritious and satisfying breakfast is essential for any backpacking trip. The best breakfast ideas when backpacking are those that are easy to prepare, packable, and provide the energy and nutrients needed for the day’s activities.

Whether you’re hitting the trails for a day or embarking on a multi-day backpacking adventure, these backpacking breakfast recipes will fuel your body and help you make the most of your outdoor experience. 

Let us know if you try them in the comments section below, and please feel free to share this post with your friends! 

Last update on 2024-06-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Jolanda Lapegna Avatar

Jolanda is a full-time writer and life-long outdoor enthusiast. Growing up on a small island off the Eastern Canadian coast, she spent most of her childhood hiking, swimming and fishing in the Atlantic ocean.

After a short stint in the corporate world, Jolanda quit her day job to write full-time and check out what lies beyond the Canadian shores. Ever since, she’s been hiking, biking and kayaking her way across 11 European countries and counting.

Jolanda currently lives in the beautiful, Tuscan countryside. When she isn’t hanging out in the woods or at the beach, you’ll catch her foraging for mushrooms and truffles with her truffle-dog, Red.

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