Where to Buy Dehydrated and Freeze-Dried Ingredients for Backcountry Meals

Whether you’re in a time crunch, don’t have the equipment, or simply want to skip the work, there’s many options when it comes to shopping for dehydrated and freeze-dried foods.

What's the difference between dehydrated and freeze-dried food?

Dehydrating is a process that removes moisture from food by circulating heated air, at low temperatures, over longer periods of time. This causes the moisture to more or less evaporate from the food. 

Pros: Cost-effective and easy to do at home

Cons: Texture, and some flavour, can be lost in the process

Freeze-drying is a process that also removes moisture from food, but does so by circulating extremely cold air to freeze the food in a vacuum chamber. Some heat is then circulated, while the vacuum sucks out the frozen water. 

Pros: Better texture and maintains flavours; rehydrates very well. 

Cons: Machines are very expensive. It’s possible to “freeze-dry” without one, but involves more complex processes, some of which could take weeks

Tips for buying ingredients for backcountry recipes:

  1. In certain occasions, store bought freeze-dried fruit is a better choice than dehydrated/dried (ex. strawberries, pineapples). I have found many dried fruits in stores to be chewy and have added sugars – almost like a gummy candy versus a natural dried fruit. 
  2. Check out the bulk section – and organic section – at your local grocery or natural foods store. They often have tons of great options too!
  3. For instant noodles and rice, read the labels to ensure it has a very short cook time (5 minutes or less) or only needs hot water added.
  4. Remember that spices are great friends!  

Canadian Shops & Brands That Specialize in Freeze-Dried & Dehydrated Foods:

Briden Solutions

Briden Solutions has it all. In addition to freeze dried fruits, vegetables and meats, they sell branded meals, outdoor survival, camping, hiking and preparedness gear.

They operate out of Springbank, AB (5 mins west of Calgary), but offer shipping across Canada.

Good2Go Co.

Good2GoCo.  is a three generation family-owned and run business based out of Kelowna, BC. 

Not only are they passionate about their family business, they’re passionate about the outdoors. They even carry gear and dehydrated food for dogs!

Light Cellar Super Foods

Light Cellar offers the highest quality superfoods, superherbs, nuts, seeds, dried fruits, medicinal mushrooms, friendly ferments, elixirs & chocolate making ingredients (and more!).

Although based in Calgary, they offer shipping across the country.  

Total Prepare

Being located in the most active earthquake zone in Canada, Total Prepare specializes in emergency food and survival kits. 

Their products, however, are equally suitable for outdoor enthusiasts who are looking for food with extended shelf life – and gear designed to work off the grid. 

Bulk Barn

Have you heard of Bulk Barn before? Most likely. They’ve been operating since 1982 and now have over 275 stores across the country. 

From spices, to soup mixes, to dried produces and treats, Bulk Barn carries a ton of product that work wonders for backcountry meal prep. 

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Have you ever shopped at any of these places?

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The Foodie Behind the Screen

Hi there! I'm Bri.
I create and share nutritious and flavourful recipes for outdoor enthusiasts and adventure seekers.

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