Backpacking Fried Rice

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Combining quick-cooking instant rice, freeze-dried vegetables, powdered eggs, and soy sauce packets, this fried rice recipe is a great backpacking idea that relies entirely on store-bought ingredients. No dehydrating required!

Megan holding fried rice in a backpacking pot

As so many backpackers do, we often get food cravings while out on the trail. While pizza is always high on the list, close behind is a carb-loaded favorite: fried rice. And not authentic fried rice, either. We’re taking super Americanized, food-court-at-the-mall-style fried rice. (You know the kind!) We don’t really know why we love it, but we keep coming back.

So we figured we’d come up with a backpacking version that would satisfy our desire for “fried rice” while still being lightweight, calorie-dense, and quick to cook.

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What’s great about this recipe is that it relies entirely on store-bought ingredients. So if you don’t have a dehydrator (or don’t have time to dehydrate), this is a great recipe to have in your back pocket. You can pick up instant rice, veggie bouillon, and dried spices from your local grocery store. You can purchase the Just Veggies dehydrated veggie mix and OvaEasy egg from REI or Amazon.

We made this fried rice vegetarian. However, if you want to up the protein in this meal, you could cut up a jerky bar and add it to the mix. We recommend the Epic meat bars – particularly the sriracha chicken!

How To Make Backpacking Fried Rice

At home, combine the veggies with the dried spices in a resealable container and place a cube of vegetable bouillon and two soy sauce packets inside. If you can track down individual soy sauce packets, you can also fill a small resealable container with soy sauce. You’ll need at least 2 tablespoons for this recipe (but why not bring a little more for extra flavor?)

Backpacking fried rice ingredients in reusable bags

Store the instant rice in a separate container. If this is the only meal that includes eggs, you will also need to store the OvaEasy in a separate container, but more often than not, we just bring the whole bag as we use eggs for other meals, too—like our Breakfast Scramble.

Scrambling ovaeasy eggs in a backpacking pot

At camp, the first step is to cook the eggs. In the bottom of a pot (with the heat off), mix the appropriate amount of egg crystals with water until the mixture is smooth. Then turn the heat on low to scramble. Add a little cooking oil if you’re worried about them sticking. Once the eggs are done, transfer them out of the pot into a bowl or cup.

Rehydrating vegetables in a backpacking pot

The next step is to rehydrate the veggies. Pour the veggies and spices into the pot, add the vegetable bouillon cube, soy sauce packets, and water, and let this all simmer for a few minutes until the veggies are rehydrated and the bouillon cube is fully dissolved.

Then pour in the rice, turn off the heat, and cover. The rice is usually ready in about 5 minutes. All that’s left to do is stir everything up, mix the eggs back in, and enjoy. If you brought a little extra soy sauce, this is a perfect time to drizzle a little on top.

Equipment & Ingredients

  • Cook Pot: A good, nonstick cook pot helps prevent the eggs from sticking to the bottom. We like this one from MSR which is non-stick due to its ceramic coating.
  • OvaEasy Eggs: You’ll have to try them to believe it, but OvaEasy really does have the taste and texture of scrambled eggs once cooked. You can find them at REI and Amazon.
  • Veggies: Any dehydrated or freeze-dried veggies will work for this recipe.
  • Minute Rice: Don’t try to bring along regular rice for this, it will take forever to cook. Stick with white or brown Minute Rice which you can find at most grocery stores.
Megan holding backpacking fried rice in a pot
Megan holding backpacking fried rice in a pot

Backcountry Fried Rice

Craving takeout on the trail? This easy Backpacking Fried Rice should do the trick!
Author: Fresh Off the Grid
5 from 12 ratings
Pin Rate
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 13 minutes
2 servings


In one bag:

  • 1 cup dehydrated or freeze dried veggies
  • 1 vegetable bouillon cube
  • ½ teaspoon brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt, (omit if your bouillon is super salty)
  • 2 soy sauce packets

In a second bag:

  • 1 cup instant rice

In a third bag:

  • ¼ cup OvaEasy egg crystals


  • At home, assemble all ingredients in bags as listed above.
  • In camp, mix ¼ cup OvaEasy egg crystals with 3 oz. water in your cookpot and stir to blend. Place the cookpot on your stove over low heat and scramble, stirring frequently so the egg doesn’t stick to the bottom. Once cooked, remove and set aside.
  • Add 1 ¼ cup water and the contents of the veggies + spices bag to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the veggies are soft, about 5 minutes.
  • Add instant rice, stir, and remove the pot from the heat and cover. Let sit for 5 minutes.
  • Return the egg to the pot and stir to combine and re-warm the eggs.

Nutrition (Per Serving)

Calories: 365kcal | Carbohydrates: 61g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 8g | Fiber: 6g

*Nutrition is an estimate based on information provided by a third-party nutrition calculator

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This recipe was first published on 7/8/2016 and updated on 5/4/2020

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  1. KJ | Omnomherbivore says:

    Can’t say I could eat the food but those VIEWS!!! Unreal!! Talk about a killer spot to whip up some lunch 😀

    1. Fresh Off the Grid says:

      I bet it’s tough to find vegan backpacking food! I’ve been trying to think of vegan backpacking recipe ideas to create for this space and it’s definitely a challenge.

      The views were phenomenal. I could spend days hiking up there!!

      1. KJ | Omnomherbivore says:

        For backpacking more than a night it can get heavy or I just eat alot of TVP sloppy joes lol I’ve brought corn on the cob along before too haha. Car camping is a bit easier but sometimes all the recipes are realllllly similar! I really need to explore more of the PNW!

  2. SO easy to make! I found all the ingredients cheap at a grocery store in Moab just before camping, and halved the measurements to make just 2 servings. I will say planning ahead for food storage for extras ahead helps a ton, either if you cooked too much, or if you have half the cans or tomatoes and garbanzo beans left over from halving the measurements. At higher elevation, it will all take longer to cook, but it’s totally worth the wait. And make sure your cookwear is big enough to accommodate all the ingredients! 🙂5 stars

  3. Hello, the Just Veggies package is no longer available through REI…any other similar products you recommend for this recipe? Thanks!

    1. Fresh Off The Grid says:

      Thanks for letting us know! They sell the mix packs on Amazon, although sizing is limited. If you have a Natural Grocer near you, they sometimes carry them. Harmony House also offers a different mixed veggie blend that would work too.

  4. What kind of bouillon do you like to use for this recipe?

    1. Fresh Off The Grid says:

      I haven’t been super picky with bouillon, so it’s usually whatever is in cube form at the grocery store. I’ve used Knorr and Not Chick’n before. If you have a powdered bouillon that you already use, you can just add it into the baggie with the veggies!

  5. Stephanie Bendinelli says:

    Going to be trying this recipe next weekend! Quick question, if we wanted to add dehydrated chicken, at what step in the cooking process would you recommend adding it? Or, do you think it’d be better to add bagged chicken and if so, at what step would you recommend adding it? Thanks!!

    1. Fresh Off The Grid says:

      Hi Stephanie! I’d add the dehydrated chicken at the same time as the vegetables, so it has some time to simmer and then will continue to rehydrate after you add the instant rice. We haven’t tried it with chicken yet but I would love to hear how it turns out! -Megan