Updated January 19, 2023
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You have to admit, there is no better pairing than the classic chocolate and peanut butter, and that’s why this backpacking meal replacement shake is a Backcountry Foodie fan favorite! Our chocolate peanut butter shake is great for refueling on the go or when your appetite hits the road.
Why a Backpacking Meal Replacement?
There are many reasons why you might choose a meal replacement while you’re backpacking. Sometimes, you don’t have the time or desire to pull over and get the stove out. Maybe you didn’t even bring a stove on this backpacking trip. Sometimes, you need to keep up your pace so that you can reach your desired campsite before dark. Of course, you brought your headlamp and would use it if you needed to, but let’s be honest; we all enjoy being able to see the trail and the scenery in the daylight! And sometimes, you’re just not hungry. So, as always, we’ve got you covered with our chocolate peanut butter shake recipe below!
Your Appetite is Gone – Why?
While some may not consider backpacking to be a sport in the typical sense, backpackers are athletes without a doubt. Hiking and backpacking can be strenuous, total body activities, and when we perform long bouts of strenuous activity, our bodies release a hormone called cortisol. This hormone is released in response to physical or mental stress (HINT: hiking & backpacking), and one of the effects of cortisol on the body is the suppression of appetite. Hence, you might not be as hungry as you expect on the trail!
Some Other Reasons Why:
- First, drastic changes in the timing of meals while on the trail can play a role in why you might not be so hungry. Most people eat three meals throughout the day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. While on the trail, we need to eat far more often than in our daily lives. So, our eating schedule is thrown off. If you’re hiking 8-10 hours each day and following our recommendation to eat every 60-90 minutes, you’re eating upwards of 8 times each day.
- Next, the foods available while on the trail may not be as appealing as those you would cook at home. Let’s be honest, dehydrated backpacking food isn’t always the best, and you simply may not crave the foods. That’s why we created Backcountry Foodie to supply you with better food for the trails!
- Also, you have less time sitting still while in the backcountry. As mentioned earlier, you are always on the go trying to make the most of the daylight. This leaves less time to think about food and, perhaps, idly snack. That is why we suggest a backpacking meal replacement such as this chocolate, peanut butter shake. You can drink it while on-the-go and not lose any daylight!
- Finally, you may be dehydrated and/or lacking electrolytes. Either of these can cause a loss in appetite, independently of one another. However, in combination, they will suppress your appetite even more. Ensuring that you are drinking regularly and consuming electrolytes either through your meals or beverages is important.
Already a fan of our chocolate peanut butter shake recipe? You might also want to try our Peanut Butter Protein Shake backpacking meal replacement recipe.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake
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NUTRITION (per serving)
- ½ cup milk powder, whole
- ¼ cup peanut powder
- 1 packet (1.26 oz) Carnation Breakfast Essentials™ drink mix, chocolate powder
- 8 oz water
- ½ cup milk powder, non-fat (substitution), reduced-calorie option
- 1 packet Carnation Breakfast Essentials™ drink mix, Light Start chocolate powder (substitution), no-added-sugar option
INSTRUCTIONS (per serving)
- Put all ingredients in a bag or container to be used in the backcountry.
- Add 8 oz (240 mL) cold water to the container. Add more or less water to reach the desired flavor.
- Stir or shake vigorously to mix well. See meal prep tip below.
- Massage the bag with your fingertips or use a utensil to break up any lumps as peanut powder may clump.
VOLUME OF MEAL WHEN PREPARED
- Approximately 1 cup per serving (dry)
MEAL PREP TIP
- Meal replacement drinks often mix better when prepared in a hard-sided container.
- Total sugar (per serving): 45 g, including 12 g added sugar
- For a no-added-sugar recipe, use the Carnation Breakfast Essentials™ Light Start (sugar-free) product.
- We recommend reading food labels and choosing peanut powder containing only peanuts. Many have added sugar.
- To reduce calories by 200, replace whole milk powder with non-fat milk powder.
- This recipe may be used as a meal replacement when consumed entirely.
READY TO SEE MORE ULTRALIGHT BACKPACKING RECIPES LIKE THIS ONE?
We’ve got you covered with unique backpacking meal ideas and other meal replacements!
Backcountry Foodie is your go-to resource for more than 200 backpacking dietitian-created recipes and a one-of-a-kind automated meal planning tool. The meal planner even creates itemized shopping lists for you! Meal prep has never been easier.
Check out this video to see where all the magic happens.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Rick Harrison is an aspiring Registered Dietitian studying at Bastyr University in Kenmore, Washington. He grew up in the Ohio but moved to the Pacific Northwest in 2022 with only a car-full of items and a huge sense of adventure! With a background in culinary and pastry arts, Rick hopes to help shape people’s relationship with food by making it more accessible through increased knowledge of cooking and confidence in the kitchen.
Aaron Owens Mayhew, MS, RDN, CD, is a registered dietitian and ultralight long-distance backpacker with over 20 years of nutrition and backpacking experience. She’s also the founder and owner of Backcountry Foodie, an online ultralight recipes and meal planning platform for backpackers. She also enjoys teaching hikers about backpacking nutrition via virtual masterclasses, YouTube videos, and podcast episodes. You can follow Aaron’s adventures in the kitchen and the backcountry via Instagram and Facebook.