View Full Version : Making Your Own Prepackaged

2005-11-07, 15:51
I have some of those Enertia Trail Foods mixes and have been quietly wondering how to build something similar that best fits my dietary restrictions.

I can change the pasta to whole grain with no hassle.
I can formulate the meal itself.
I can vacuum seal the whole deal into a bag that it could cook itself in.

What I don't have is the ability to reseal the vacuum bag. Does anyone know where you can get that kind of packaging?

Yes, the solution could be to either cook it in the snowpeak kettle, or to put all of it into something like a plastic tub with a lid, but I also have a lot of good uses for resealable packaging like this for other things.

2005-11-08, 01:22
Almost any k-mart/walmart/hardware will sell you a vacuum food sealer (seal-a-meal or similar).
The sealers cost about $60.00.
New roll of bags around $15.00.

You could also just buy the bags and seal them with an iron (I set mine on permanent press when I did this - you may need to experiment though).

This requires more effort and is slightly less sanitary but it works.
- If you want a vacuum seal you need to seal bag up to an inserted straw, then suck out the air, pinch off the opening, withdraw the straw (without losing vacuum), and seal the opening.

You can also find them at your local Goodwill/Salvation Army/Deseret for a couple bucks.

Hint: what ever way you go, save and clean the used bags, as they can be sanitized, resealed, and reused (as a slightly smaller bag).

Or you could just suck the air out of a regular plastic bag/ziplock/oven bag and skip the fancy bags and sealer.

bird dog
2005-11-10, 20:04
I picked up a CHEAP dehydrator at Wal-Mart for around twenty bucks. It works fine for fruits and the like, but I have never tried jerky. Works fine for trail mix. BD

2005-11-21, 17:26

Is a great site for making your own meals.

I considered using my vacuum sealer to do the Intertia Trailfoods trick (boy I love their food), but recently I decided to see about finding paper lunch sacks that I can put meals in 1)because I prefer to cook/eat out of my pot 2) you can burn them when done and not have to carry them out.

More when I actually do some experiments with them holding food.


2005-11-21, 18:26
Why do you feel you need to vacuum seal your meal bags? For the trail, ziplocks should do just fine. For long term storage, keep 'em in the freezer.



2005-11-21, 20:00
Just had an odd thought.
When I was a kid we used to use wax paper sandwich bags. I wonder if you could still get them?
You could put your food in them, and seal it with an iron. Would keep as well as a in a ziplock.
Couldn't cook in them, but wouldn't have to pack them out either.

Another thought- What if you threw in a small piece of dry ice before you sealed it?
Wouldn't do anything about anarobic bacteria* but it would kill or limit the growth of anything else.
--We use dry ice for storing grain in the home.

*Anarobic bacteria: botulism, gangrene, and a few others that don't need oxygen to live, thought to be first life on planet. Oxygen actually kills botulism.

2005-11-22, 02:28
*Anarobic bacteria: botulism, gangrene, and a few others that don't need oxygen to live, thought to be first life on planet. Oxygen actually kills botulism.
If you filled the container with CO2 or similar, it would probably keep the food a bit more fresh a bit longer - Like if you buy half-baked bread, it's always packed in a "protective atmosphere".

You would also have to worry about fungi, some are pretty nasty.
The Swedes makes sandwiches, frequently based on crispbread with fat cheese, salami, canned liver pâte, cheese on a tube, dried meats (eg. reindeer) or canned fish (avoid "surströmming") all with good shelf-life.
This food is a bit heavier than what most of you use.

It should also be a good idea to vaccum sandwich bread, reducing volume and increasing "keepability". I guess this should be one or two slices in a pack.

2005-11-22, 20:13
I have a vacuum sealer and use it to prep my dinners. I like chili, stews, soups for cold weather.
Just boil water, drop the bag in and let it heat up. Open the bag, eat out of the bag, burn the bag. No dishes!

2006-08-27, 09:40
Check out yard/tag sales and 2nd hand appliance stores.

My brother (a yard sale junkie) found 3 dehydrators for $10, $8 and $1.75.

He also got 3 vacuum sealers for $5 each. Two of them came with bags. Avoid the the Deni model sealers (they are not that good), and look for a FoodVac model.

2006-08-27, 17:21
I pack everything bulk in 500g increments. In summer and short trips this means less variety but thats OK and makes me more likely to look about for flavours and stuff to scavenge. I like this method because it is simple and packs better and faster gives me more thinking to do in the field. I will sometimes pack chocolate chips with raisins to keep the chocolate chips from melting and globbing together and still pack it tight, but otherwise I like to keep everything separate to mix and match. My main travelling staples seem to be skim milk, oats, honey, and some sort of dried fruit like raisins or currants or dates. This is also a very cheap way to go.

5kg or 11 pounds for 5 days Winter:
Skim Milk = 1kg = 3600kcal (11 litres prepared)
Oatmeal = 1kg = 3750kcal (25 cups prepared)
Honey = 500g = 2000kcal
Raisins = 500g = 1500kcal
Dates = 500g = 1400kcal
Almonds = 500g = 2900kcal (or chocolate chips)
Beef Jerky = 500g = 1500kcal
Olive Oil = 500g = 4500kcal
Plus Tea, Coffee, Citrus Powder, Baking Soda, sodium/pottassium salts, Cloves, Nutmeg, stuff from woods. The beef jerky is mostly because its nice to chew on something now and then. After 5 days I would still have 500g Oatmeal and most of the Olive Oil also. The olive oil is just emergency fuel/food, but it allows me to fool around with oil lamps, granola bars, and maybe substitute flour and bacon for half the oatmeal and the beef jerky and olive oil and then maybe do a little cooking or make biscuits or pancakes.

3.5kg or 7.7 pounds for 5 days Spring/Fall.
Skim Milk = 1kg = 3600kcal
Oatmeal = 500g = 1875kcal
Honey = 500g = 2000kcal
Raisins = 500g = 1500kcal
Dates = 500g = 1400kcal
Beef Jerky = 500g = 1500kcal

2.5kg or 5.5 pounds for 5 days MidSummer.
Skim Milk = 500kg = 1800kcal
Oatcakes = 500g = 2000kcal (or maybe a big chunk of hard bread)
Honey = 500g = 2000kcal
Dates = 500g = 1400kcal
Beef Jerky = 500g = 1500kcal
In summer I bring citrus gatoraide mix for sure, but still drink mostly tea/milk/honey while hiking, and plain water also now and then.
I alternate to suite the moment.

For containers I use a combination of ziplocks, the plastic honey jar with the spout, and these very light plastic cylindrical jars that flax powder comes in that my wife gets. They come in two sizes and are both 4" in diameter and very cylindrical and they rollup nicely inside of a blue foam pad, or fit in a bottle holder, or losely in a sack with all the other food bags. Also good for carrying all the spices and stuff, and for picking berries. Also good for first aid/repairs/sewing kit. They also fit perfectly inside my mess cup, which then fits perfectly in a standard bottle carrier. Many possibilities.