We can all agree on one thing: dehydrated backpacking food is meh at best. It serves its purpose–massive amounts of calories in the system when you need them the most–but rarely is it tasty. And how nice would it be if you were as excited to eat your dinner as you were to devour the post-meal s’mores?!
Good To-Go food not-so-surprisingly fills this glaring void. Created by Jennifer Scism, Good To-Go is quite possibly the world’s first gourmet backpacking food. Jennifer is an accomplished chef, regularly cooking at 4-star restaurants, and co-owner of Annisa, a recognized restaurant in Greenwich Village. And, if you’re an Iron Chef fan, know that Jennifer even beat Mario Batali!
After meeting her husband, David, the two of them started exploring the outdoors. Subsequently, Jen began exploring kitchen concoctions, realizing that she couldn’t handle the current backpacking food options. And thus, Good To-Go was born.
As of now, the dehydrated wonder meals come in four flavors: Classic Marinara with Penne, Thai Curry, Smoked Three Bean Chili, and Herbed Mushroom Risotto. I was sent the parcel of goodness back in December, which was perfect timing for our Nokhu Hut adventure. Instead of packing in my good ol’ standby foods, I trekked the Good To-Go bags up the mountain and into the hut.
I’d heard amazing things about the Thai Curry–the most popular flavor–and I couldn’t contain myself. I boiled up some water and dove into the bag on the first night. And y’all, it was so good!
Traditionally, I’m not willing to brave Asian foods in dehydrated form; I’ve had bad luck and vividly remember almost gagging over one while packrafting in Alaska a few years back. But this Thai Curry wasn’t anything like those foods in the past; it honestly tastes like real-life curry. The flavor is a testament to the fresh vegetables, whole spices and pronounceable ingredients listed on the bag.
I tested out the Three Bean Chili the next night and while I wasn’t quite as blown away, I’d still choose it any day of the week–even when eating in my house. We followed up with the Herbed Mushroom Risotto and Marinara with Penne on subsequent trips and were equally happy. Bottom line: these dehydrated meals are in a class of their own. They’re that good.
Insider tip: Make sure you follow the instructions to the minute, otherwise your food may end slightly crunchier than you want. And if you’re cooking at altitude, I’d tack on another few minutes. Individual bags start at $6.50.