Backpacking Fare: Dried Mushrooms

Backpacking Fare: Dried Mushrooms


When planning meals for a backpacking trip, it’s nice to be able to work in some variety.   If you are going on a longer trip, this is especially true, and lightweight foods are essential. For everyday cooking at home I prefer fresh mushrooms over dried, but things have a way of tasting so much more amazing after a day in the outdoors. Dried mushrooms are OUTSTANDING after a long hike!

Dried mushrooms lend an earthy, meaty taste to a meal, and make a nice addition to soups, noodles, rice, or grains. With the right seasonings, you could even serve them up as a side dish!  We always take them on our trips to the Boundary Waters.

Cooking tips for dried mushrooms:

  • If you have the luxury of time, soak the mushrooms in hot water before cooking them (use purified water!). The beauty of this is the water you soaked the mushrooms in makes an excellent base for soup, or can subsequently be used to boil noodles in.
  • If you like softer mushrooms, dice them up before cooking them. We often like to leave them be; it’s fun to be able to easily identify the different mushroom types as you eat them (if you happen to be using a variety of dried mushroom types).
  • It will take longer to cook your mushrooms if you leave them whole – plan your cooking timing accordingly.
  • The rehydrated mushrooms can be sautéed in cooking oil (we prefer canola). The addition of dried, minced onions makes for an irresistible aroma when cooking!

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