The Ultimate Guide to the Best Hiking Food For Energy in 2023

best hiking food for energy

Hiking is an activity that can freshen you up physically and mentally by letting you feel like you’re a part of nature.

If you resort to hiking whenever you want a reprieve from the hustle and bustle of city life, then you know it is a physically demanding activity that requires a lot of energy. 

Human bodies need a lot of energy from food when engaging in endurance activities that rapidly burn calories. This means you’ll require more energy from nutritious snacks if you don’t want your energy levels depleted.

After all, you could get to the end of your hike, but you must also have enough energy to return home. 

You can’t eat junk food and expect it to feel good – all that oil will weigh you down, make you tired, and make strenuous hikes even harder; this is especially true if you aren’t a frequent hiker. 

Eating healthy meals regularly and engaging in daily physical exercise before trying to hike is important. You need a combination of healthy foods in your diet – foods that offer an abundance of protein like lean meats, eggs, dairy, lentils, and green leafy vegetables. 

Different foods will offer different protein content – three boiled eggs will give you a different kick of protein compared to a cup of brown lentils. 

Proteins are necessary for your body to function. If you want less fat and more muscles in your body, you need to burn energy during workouts for two reasons – so the fat burns and the muscles in your body are strained.

This strain forces protein in your body to fix it, which is how you can become leaner and stronger. 

However, to get energy during workouts or daily hikes, you can’t just rely on protein. You also need quick energy sources, which come from complex carbs.

Complex carbohydrates include starchy foods like potatoes or the natural sugars found in fresh fruit that raise your blood sugar and give you a healthy boost of energy. 

For sustained energy, you need fatty foods that your body will slowly burn through without the risk of a sugar crash that will leave you feeling depleted. 

In this guide, we’ll review some of the best hiking food for energy and help you make informed choices. 

1. Honey Stinger Waffle

It’s not always easy to combine healthy snacks with something delicious. These honey stinger waffles are the perfect choice if you’re looking for high-energy backpacking food made from organic ingredients. 

This is a highly recommended natural energy bomb – a popular choice for hikers primarily because of its taste. It’s sweet and provides an energy and mood boost. Plus, it comes in different flavors. 

This is one of our choices for the best hiking food for energy because it’s packed with energy-giving carbs to help throughout your hike.

The waffles are individually packed and portable, so they won’t make your pockets or backpack sticky by leaking and destroying everything inside. 

These waffles are also a great source of protein, and you may prefer them to a protein bar, especially because protein bars can get dry and hard to gulp down during a hike, even if you drink plenty of water. 

These waffles are easy-to-digest energy that won’t raise your blood sugar and lead to a crash. 


  • Delicious 
  • Balanced meal
  • Contains fiber 
  • Will keep you full
  • Comes in honey, vanilla, and chocolate flavors


  • Somewhat high in sugar 

2. CLIF BLOKS Energy Chews

The CLIF BLOKS energy chews are an excellent solution if you’re looking for a convenient and effective way to sustain your energy reserves on a hike.

These chews are designed to provide a quick energy boost and are packed with all the necessary nutrients and electrolytes to keep you going. 

CLIF BLOKS energy chews are easy to carry around and come in resealable packaging, so you can eat what you need and save the rest for later. 

One of the standout features of these energy chews is that they come in various flavors, including caffeine, which can offer a quick energy boost and lift your mood when you’re almost about to give up on reaching new heights! They also have fruit options if you prefer those. 

These energy chews have more health benefits than other options on the market. Despite the wide variety they offer, they are made of simple ingredients, which means no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives, which makes them a durable snack. 


  • Healthier than other snacks 
  • Resealable packaging 
  • Various flavors 
  • Plant-based/vegan
  • Packed with electrolytes 
  • Better than energy gels


  • These chews are expensive 

3. CLIF BARs Energy Bars

CLIF BAR Energy Bars are a great option if you’re looking for a tasty and nutritious snack for your next hiking adventure.

These bars are packed with protein, dietary fiber, and essential nutrients that help you stay fueled and energized during your hike.

They are available in chocolate chip, white chocolate macadamia, oatmeal raisin walnut, and more, so you can try them out and find a suitable flavor.

What’s even better than variety is that none of the bars are overly sweet, they have an appetizing chewy texture and are a filling portable snack. 

CLIF BARs energy bars deliver a healthy dose of protein, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, and even vitamin D, iron, and calcium. They’re also organic, just like the Clif energy chews. 

All in all, they’re another great addition to your backpacking food. 


  • No high fructose corn syrup 
  • Natural sugars 
  • Good tasting flavors 
  • Fast-acting and long-lasting carbs 


  • Some flavors are hit or miss

4. Kate’s Real Food Bars

Kat’s Real Food bars are healthy, gluten and soy-free snacks made from all-natural ingredients. They provide a variety of nutrients to keep you fueled and energized throughout your hike.

They come in various flavors, including peanut butter, dark chocolate, dark chocolate cherry almond, mango coconut, cranberry almond, and mint – all made with organic ingredients.

They come in packs of six or 12, and you can opt for a variety pack instead of just one flavor to try them all! 


  • Delicious flavors
  • High nutritional content 
  • Portable 
  • Great packaging 


  • One bar counts as 2 servings

5. Bonk Breaker Bars

Like the other options in this list, Bonk Breaker bars are another nutritional option for stellar taste, energy content, and, especially, if you’re looking for gluten-free content.

They’re made to enhance athletic performance by offering a 4:1 carb-to-protein ratio, making them a perfect before, during, and after hiking high-energy snack. 

The fun part about this bar is that it was created by an NBA athlete, an NCAA quarterback, and a competitive long-distance triathlete for other athletes or sports enthusiasts and is perfect if you want to go hiking, running, cycling, etc.

It’s also great for soccer, football, hockey, or sports that demand consistent endurance over a long period. 

They don’t melt in your pockets because they use nut butter, and while they can become slightly chewy, they’ll last through a hot day. 

They’re also great for kids as a snack between meals or something special for their lunch boxes. 


  • Organic ingredients 
  • Delicious 


  • The size of the bars are smaller than they used to be 

Final Thoughts

Now you have a great list of the best hiking food for energy. We can’t emphasize the role of a good diet in improving your lifestyle by maintaining energy levels and giving your body what it needs most. 

Remember to incorporate daily movement into your life so your body remains in optimal health – you need the right kind of food and exercise to maintain physical and mental health. 

Hiking is an excellent idea for family or friends to bond over, or even as a solitary activity when you need alone time. Just ensure you’re prepared with meals high in energy content, nutrition, and lots of water. 

We hope to have delivered some excellent food choices for your next hike to boost and sustain your energy the whole time you’re out in the wild. 

Don’t forget to have fun while trying out these flavors, and happy hiking!