Delicious No-Cook Foods to Fuel Your Adventures

Ali Becker


It took me a long time to realize that breakfast, lunch, and dinner didn't have to look like traditional "meals" while out on the trail; as long as I was getting quality calories, I could fuel my adventure just right.

Ever since then, I've been testing out a variety of different foods and snacking approaches in order to keep my energy levels up, help in my recovery, and make it easier on my body to digest while I keep moving.

Lately I've been finding that eating smaller meals more frequently has been better for digestion, consuming my proteins and fats before my carbs helps keep my blood sugar from spiking too rapidly, and having a more well-balanced meal that includes all the macro categories, keeps me satiated for longer. 

As much as a hot meal can lift the spirits at the end of a hard day, especially when is been cold on route, I tend to lean more towards foods that are pre-cooked, don't need to be cooked, or can be cold-soaked.

I find the no-cook approach to be quick and convenient, making me more likely to stop and top up my energy stores when they start to dwindle, and it often comes with little to no clean-up, which is a time, energy and resource saver.

With all that in mind, here are a few of the ways that I've been fueling myself along the Great Northern Bikepacking Route this summer. 

1. Tater Boost Trail Mash


Tater Boost is a savory, instant mashed potato mix dressed up with delicious herbs and spices that is conveniently packaged in a resealable pouch that you simply add cold (or warm water) to, stir with a long handled spoon, or reseal and squish together to mix. 

I find the complex carbs from the potato flour, balanced out with the healthy fats from the coconut milk powder are the perfect combination to fuel me for hours without getting the blood sugar spike and subsequent bonk that can often come from straight, simple carbs. 

While Tater Boost is delicious all on its own, I've been experimenting with making Tater Boost breakfast bowls by adding in chopped up, store bought, hard boiled eggs and chunks of cured meats, or adding flaked tuna for some added protein. 

2. Nut Butters + Carriers


Nut butters are super delicious, but they also add a boost of healthy fats and extra calories to anything you drizzle them over.

Apples, crackers, and wraps with bananas tend to be low in calories and high in carbs, so the added fatty fuel source of the nut butters gooey goodness is a great way to balance out the macro intake for a more well rounded and calorie dense snack. 

Plus, it doesn't get much easier than scooping or squeezing a satisfying stream of healthy, nut butter onto any fruit, cracker, or oatmeal bowl concoction - or directly into your mouth for that matter.

I really like Trail Butter's blends of nuts, avocado oil, and scrumptious add-ins like maple syrup, honey, coffee, or chocolate.

3. Yumbini


Part way through the day, I tend to crave something more substantial than just a snack, which often leads me to something like Yumbini.

While originally designed to be made with boiling water, the pre-cooked and then dehydrated rice, beans, and lentils that make up these hearty mixes cold-soaks really well, and relatively quickly.

I'll add cold water to the Yumbini mix as soon as we stop, and then snack on a few other foods first while I wait 10 - 15 minutes for my desired tenderness to be reached.

While Yumbini is already brimming with plant based protein, I'll sometimes add some flaked tuna to the mix for extra nutritional goodness and some omega 3s. 

4. Hiker Hummus


I love hummus but can't handle the weight and guaranteed spill factor of the plastic containers it comes in. 

That's why I like Hiker Hummus by uBu Foods which is made from fresh ingredients that are then freeze dried, packed into small, resealable pouches, and are ready to rehydrate trailside in an instant with just 3 - 4 oz of water.

These lightweight, convenient to pack, classic chickpea mixes have a great macro profile with a nice balance of carbs and proteins, and while I can (and do) eat it by the spoonful, I also like the Everything Bagel flavor on veggies, chips, crackers, and tortilla wraps. 

5. Trail Cookies


Trail cookies are a scrumptious and simple way to get some quick calories down the hatch and top up dwindling fuel stores before one hits the proverbial wall.

Made from a balanced blend of macronutrients, trail cookies are designed to be lightweight, calorie dense, and durable enough to handle being jostled around in your pocket or pack without turning to cookie dust.

While there are so many great options to choose from, Heather's Choice Lemon Lavender and Orange Vanilla Packaroons as well as Alpen Fuel’s Maple Pecan Trail Cookies are some of my absolute faves.



As someone who tries their best to steer clear of food that contains processed sugar, I appreciate the subtle move of many trail cookie makers towards using healthier sweeteners in their snacks.

These bite-sized energy hits are something I look forward to snacking on in the morning and mid to late afternoon, when I need a wee pick me up.

6. Enercheez


These dehydrated curds of artisan cheese are one of my favorite snack fuels to bring along as they're lightweight and loaded to the brim with protein and fats, some nice added spices, and a good bit of salt.

No artificial flavorings or preservatives, no need to be gentle with or refrigerate them (read: no sweaty cheese at the end of a hot day), just crunchy, cheddar cheese goodness that travels really well. 

Enercheez is one of the things I reach for first before getting into more simple sugar snacks like dried fruits or a swig of maple syrup. 

I also love a good hard cheese that I can bite right off the block, chop into my Tater Boost breakfast bowl, or roll into a wrap.

7. Cured Meats


Last but very not least is a high quality, easy to eat, go-to protein snack: a cured meat stick.

The issue with most pepperoni style sticks is that they are loaded with nitrates and sweetened with glucose, which is why I rejoiced when I found Buff bison sticks.

Buff sticks are a delicious, bison meat snack stick with no added nitrates, no need for refrigeration, and are naturally sweetened with maple syrup. 

They are conveniently packaged, lightweight, easy to carry, and, along with Enercheez, are one of the first foods I grab when we stop to snack because of their high protein content. 

Parting Words

As long as I maintain a good balance of healthy, nutrient dense food intake throughout the day, I am able to maintain longer days in the saddle than ever before and have been having some of the best, deepest sleeps of my tenting career, leading to greater recovery and the all-important ability to keep moving forward day after day with a smile on my face.


Ali Becker is a freelance writer and adventure storyteller who spends half the year backpacking and bikepacking and the other half sleeping in strangers' beds as a professional house sitter. She and her partner, Mathieu, share their ups and downs on their IG channel at @trip.longer and hope to inspire others to get outside, adventure in nature and find their own freedom. You can learn more about them here:


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