Author Topic: Hot food without a stove?  (Read 14249 times)

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Offline Stealthyone

Hot food without a stove?
« on: March 06, 2020, 09:56:43 am »
Whether or not to bring a stove is something many, if not most bike tourers grapple with.  For me having a stove is worth the weight because of how much money it saves, to say nothing of the improved nutrition and flexibility a stove confers. Just the oatmeal and coffee alone is worth it.

Since most of the stuff I cook requires little more than boiling water, I decided to try cooking with large Hydro Flasks.  What I do, is find large convenience store with a newer coffee apparatus and ask if I can have some hot water, which I've never been refused (usually I buy something), and fill my flasks. I always put some hot water in, shake them up, and dump them before I fill them , so the water will be as hot as possible.

Since I prefer steel cut oats, but they take a while to cook, I put them in immediately,  shake the bottle, and ride to a nice spot for breakfast. At that point the oats are done, then I make coffee with a camping french press.

Other meals I've done this way is veggie dogs, frozen beans and veggies, and couscous with tofu. Since I still carried my stove, sometimes I'd pre-cook lentils in a flask and finish them on the stove in minutes. Other times, just having super hot water sped things along for when I cooked,  and the fuel savings was huge. The flasks also double as extra water capacity, with the added bonus of being able to keep it super cold almost indefinitely.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2020, 07:22:30 pm by Stealthyone »

Offline gottobike

Re: Hot food without a stove?
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2020, 02:46:59 pm »
Oatmeal and coffee... breakfast of champions! Seems the reduction in fuel volume/weight/cost and the additional functionality of the thermal flask would contribute greatly to eating on tour.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Hot food without a stove?
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2020, 05:05:32 pm »
The whole whether to carry a stove thing isn't something I have ever grappled with.  My whole stove and cooking gear setup an weigh as little as 7 ounces including burner, stand, pot, windscreen, utensils, and all.  I have heavier incarnations but they are generally well under a pound.  That doesn't include fuel which I buy 12 ounces at a time, but it still isn't all that much heavier than taking some eating utensils, a cup, and a bowl.  Add a thermos and it might be a wash.

The burner itself is less than a half ounce and the stand can be about the same.  Add a wind screen and you can still be at an ounce and a half.  So taking a stove really isn't a weight handicap even for a gram counter like myself.  I went coast to coast camping and cooking with a 14# base and have packed lighter and have never been tempted to skip the stove.

Obviously you don't need to go that light, but my point is you can go very light if you choose to.  Light enough that the weight is pretty negligible.  The only significant part is a 12 ounce bottle of yellow Heet and it gets lighter every day.

Offline froze

Re: Hot food without a stove?
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2020, 06:35:59 pm »
That's great unless you're out in the middle of nowhere!  Todays stoves are so lightweight and small you could put one in your pants pocket and forget it's there, what takes up a bit of space and weighs a bit are the fuel canisters, even at that I want the convenience of having it with me.

I'm not real proficient at this stuff yet, but I'm figuring it out, learned a lot from YouTube concerning food.  I try to get most of my food just going down the aisles in a grocery story and getting stuff in pouches meant for the microwave, yes, I carry a microwave...just kidding.  I take those MW foods and add hot water into the pouch and it cooks, there's all kinds of meats in pouches you can take that won't spoil till you open it then you'll have to eat it all in one setting.  Powdered eggs these days are quite good; powdered milk isn't bad like it was when I was a kid, if you're allergic to milk they have powdered malted milk made of barely.  All of this stuff can be found at Walmart.  If the container is too big or bulky, I just pour the contents into a ziplock bag.  You guys already know this stuff.

I won't buy backpacking food, it's stupidly expensive and loaded with too much salt.

Offline canalligators

Re: Hot food without a stove?
« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2022, 11:04:35 pm »
I just don't cook.  Couldn't be bothered, I basically don't love to cook and it means lots of equipment I don't have to haul.  I toured with a group that cooked this summer, and it only reinforced this to me.  I buy something no-cook for dinner, and if needed, for breakfast, before I get to camp.  I prefer to buy breakfast at a local diner.  Carrying PB&J and some english muffins or bagels for lunch is ok.

No stove, pots, fuel, utensils, and (as I learned this year) no unused food to carry.  No hour spent cooking.  Sure it costs a little more, and if you're concerned about better quality food, you have more control when cooking. 

Offline liggth

Re: Hot food without a stove?
« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2022, 11:56:44 am »
Let me share my experience.
A friend recommended an interesting solution for long trips. These are military rations. 8)
They don't weigh much, but they contain a full daily ration.

Offline jamawani

Re: Hot food without a stove?
« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2023, 09:31:36 am »
It's more than just the weight/volume of cooking supplies.

There is the consideration of whether your are riding solo or with others.
In a group, cooking and clean-up is a social activity after the ride.
I find that when solo riding, it is often just a chore.
(And I am a gourmet cook at home with lots of folks over for dinner.)

I do a granola bar and apple before packing up in the morning.
Then I often stop for a mid-morning breakfast at a cafe.
In small towns, there's often a "liar's club" table where you can talk with the locals.
Chinese restaurant buffets and Sunday midday buffets are always big hits.

It seems that everybody has a different "zone" on how to eat on tour.
But, I can assure you, if you stop by a church pot-luck
you won't be able to get back on the bike for days.
And the ladies will make sure you have lots of cookies and brownies for the road.

Offline battistadonati

Re: Hot food without a stove?
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2023, 06:14:20 am »
Let me share my experience.
A friend recommended an interesting solution for long trips. These are military rations. 8)
They don't weigh much, but they contain a full daily ration.
I agree, it's a very cool solution, I've used it a couple of times.
The point is that they come with a special bag with a chemical mixture. You put food in the bag and fill it with any water (even cold water). After a few moments the food is magically heated!

Offline septoxid

Re: Hot food without a stove?
« Reply #8 on: July 27, 2023, 10:31:38 am »
It's incredible how your cooking method with Hydro Flasks for hot food without a stove still stands out even after three years! Your creativity and practicality are commendable!
Using convenience store hot water to prepare meals on your bike tours is a brilliant idea that saves money and adds flexibility to your diet. The combination of steel-cut oats and coffee sounds like the perfect energizing breakfast!
If you ever plan to explore new flavors, don't forget to check out Healo Broth's offerings for some tasty and nutritious options! Happy reminiscing about your past adventures and may your future ones be just as exciting!
« Last Edit: July 31, 2023, 06:22:39 am by septoxid »