Outdoor Federation

What To Eat Before Going Hiking

For you to get through your hiking journey, you have to eat things beforehand that’ll provide you fuel, power, and energy to achieve what your goals are. Below are the best foods to eat before a hike and the foods you should avoid before hiking.

Best Foods to Eat Before Your Hike

Lean Meats

Protein is an essential macro nutrient, particularly for hikers. It helps repair the tired muscles and increase metabolism that are inevitable when climbing steep mountains. To reduce the soreness of the muscles, try eating lean meats before going for a hike.


It’s one of the good breakfasts you could eat on regular days, yet would be beneficial before your long hike. Due to its carbohydrate and high fiber content in oatmeal, it’ll keep you energized throughout your journey. If you aren’t the number one fan of oatmeal, try adding in fruits, brown sugar, and honey.


These another protein-filled breakfast option. Combine them with a carbohydrate to improve your performance, boost recovery better than the carbohydrates alone, and lessen muscle damage.

Nutrition Bars

These are ideal pre-hike meal replacement if you do not have time to prepare for something. But, eating any bar will not cut it because several have as much nutritional values as chocolate bars. Pick one that contains some real ingredients and lots of carbs, proteins, and minerals or vitamins to propel you through hikes.


It’s the most crucial thing to consume before you hike since hydration is the key particularly if you are hiking on a hot day. Even if you aren’t thirsty, ensure to drink water consistently before setting out to start. Water will also keep you cool during a hike for the reason that it helps regulate the body temperature.

Foods You Should Avoid Before a Hike

Fries and Burgers

Greasy fast food is probably the worst food you may eat before you go hiking. Fatty and deep-fried foods will just cause you to crash mid-hike and slow down hike. It’s because foods that have high fats are turned into energy than less efficiently than protein and carbohydrates. You will need energy while hiking.

Fun Outdoor Quiz


It’s a magical food that could make any dish amazing, yet if you eat it before a hike, it could make your experience worse. Since it is high in fat, it slowly digests in your stomach and it will end up feeling like bricks weighing you down, which makes it tougher to conquer hiking steep mountains.


The spicy foods can burn more calories, yet they fail to do this job once you eat them right before a hike. Seasonings and spices in your Mexican food could cause indigestion or heartburn, which causes halt to your climb due to long digestion time.

There are many foods that you may or not eat before a hike. Make sure that you know the best foods you should consume before you go hiking for you to fuel up your body and achieve your hiking goals.

Best Foods to Eat While Hiking

Do you need a snack, or maybe even some lunch? How about a dinner or breakfast on the trail? Food is essential to staying energized and healthy while hiking. Some people go with granola bars and trail mix, but if you’re looking for something more substantial, here are some of the best options.

Instant Oatmeal and Dried Fruit Packs

If you had planned ahead and brought these snacks with you, this would be a perfect time to enjoy them. You can make it easy by packing instant oats in individual bags that will keep fresh until they’re needed. Dried fruits like raisins, apricots, apples, bananas, etc., add fiber and nutrients to any meal. They also help prevent cramps from dehydration.

two people and brown dog hiking on mountain under blue sky during daytime

Ready-Made Tuna Salad Pouches

Tuna is an excellent source of protein and omega 3 fatty acids. It’s high in B vitamins as well. This makes it ideal for hikers who want to pack their own lunch or eat on the road.

Whole-Grain Tortillas

Tortilla chips are great when hiking but not so much if you’re trying to avoid excess sodium. A whole grain tortilla has less than half the amount of salt per serving compared to regular ones. Plus, it contains more fiber which helps regulate blood sugar levels.

Dried Jerky

Jerky can be a lifesaver during long hikes where there isn’t access to food. Dried meat provides energy without adding extra calories. The best part? You don’t have to worry about spoilage since they last up to two years.

Best Carbs for Hiking

Hiking is a great way to get exercise and enjoy the great outdoors, but it can also leave you feeling tired, dehydrated, and hungry. When hiking for long periods of time you need the right snacks to keep your energy levels up.

Carbs are important for energy because they are broken down into glucose which the body uses as fuel. Carbs, such as those found in cereal, rice, and breads, are best for replenishing lost energy. Honey contains sugar which helps fuel muscles.

Best Breakfast for Hiking

Hikers always need to maintain their energy levels, especially when they are months into a long hiking trip.

A big, filling breakfast that will give you energy without weighing you down because it will be difficult to carry much food when you’re hiking.

A great breakfast that will keep hikers going is oats with powdered milk, raisins, dried apricots, mixed nuts, and honey or maple syrup. This high-energy cereal that the hiker can eat on the go will last for hours and won’t spoil as quickly as other foods.

Pancakes are a hearty breakfast that will give you sustained energy for hours after you’ve eaten them. They are also easy to pack and don’t need any additional ingredients.

baked pancake with blueberry and slice of banan

Hiking Recovery Food

Adventure lovers are often faced with the reality of being outside in remote areas for days at a time. Bringing food for this length of time can be difficult, so hiking recovery food is an option that many have found to be beneficial.

It can help to keep hunger at bay during strenuous hikes when it’s difficult to stop and cook. There are many types of hiking recovery food available, from convenience foods like granola bars, dried fruit, or nuts to more complex meals requiring prep time.

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