One thing that modern homesteaders, campers, and survivalists share in common is we’ve all got to eat. Whether you have had years to get your homestead together and you have a kitchen and a garden or you find yourself hungry while you are huddled under a tarp in the mountains, you can prepare a meal if you’ve taken the time to get a few basics together ahead of time. You don’t need a kitchen or even power to eat well, but one thing you may need is patience, because cooking in the great outdoors is often time-consuming, with extra steps and lower cooking temperatures involved.
Basic Staples You’ll Need
When it comes to basic foods everyone should have on-hand, the most important factor to keep in mind is that it’ll need to be easy to store, and the longer the shelf-life, the better. Think jarred, freeze-dried, canned, and dehydrated foods, pasta, ramen noodles, and bouillon is always a simple but effective way to add flavor to your soup and vegetable dishes. If you are able, it’s worth the time and effort to learn how to freeze-dry and jar foods yourself and to set up a root cellar, which is a fantastic low-maintenance and easy-to-use way to keep your food.
Easy Off-Grid Recipes
You can cook pasta over just about any heat source, and jarred and canned sauces make flavor and variety simple. Powdered baking mix can be mixed with water and a few other easy-to-keep ingredients like butter, eggs, and oil to make pancakes, biscuits, and even shortcakes. You can create a delicious soup using dehydrated vegetables, seasonings, and canned meat. If you are lucky enough to have fruit trees, you can always whip up a fruit salad using nothing but a knife, and if you are on the go, consider bringing canned meat, freeze-dried veggies, bouillon cubes, and ramen noodles along.
Cooking Without Power
When you live off-grid, you never know when you may suddenly find yourself without power, so it’s important to know a few basic recipes that do not require it. One popular option is a Dutch oven over an open fire, but if you are hiding and you can’t risk producing smoke that will make you visible, sun cooking is a popular option. In your solar oven, you’ll be able to make everything from ribs to chili to sun smores. You can order a commercial solar oven or build your own, and they are perfect for hot days when you don’t want to heat up the house.