Hiking Spaghetti Bolognese

We went for an overnight hike the other weekend, suitably stocked with dehydrated meals from our local camping store. I chose something labelled “Lamb and Mushroom Risotto” which you apparently just add boiling water to and voila – risotto! Hmmm… not any kind of risotto I have ever had. Probably doesn’t help that I make an awesome mushroom risotto. What I was facing for dinner was a watery , ricey mixture with bits of spam-like lamb (apparently – could have been anything really). It was horrible. As hungry as I was after a 7 hour hike, I couldn’t eat more than a couple of mouthfuls. Epic fail.

So, I decided to research hiking meals and found that my trusty food dehydrator could facilitate home-made dehydrated meals. So I watched a few videos on You Tube and found a great blog that listed a whole heap of recipes using dehydrated recipes. I tried the Spaghetti Bolognese. Not expecting it to be very good, we tested it at home as an entree to a slow-cooked dinner I had on the go. I used the pots and bowls we would have available on a camping trip so I could test how to put it together. It was great! Better than the slow-cooked lamb that was a bit of a disaster…

Serves 2 (maybe double for hungry hikers)

Tomato Sauce
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 carrots, chopped finely
  • 1/2 brown onions, chopped finely
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1.5 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 60ml chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon of chilli flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Dried oregano
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  1. Gently fry the onions and carrot in the oil.
  2. Add the tomatoes and their juice and all the other ingredients.
  3. Simmer for up to 2 hours. Remove bay leaves before drying.
  4. Spread out as consistently as possible on the fruit leather drying tray.
  5. Dry for around 8 hours.

NOTE: This dried a funny separated consistency. It wasn’t much like a fruit leather. The carrots gave it too much texture. I’d consider blitzing it before drying it next time, even though the rehydrated result was good.


250g lean mince beef

  1. Put mince in a pot and break it up with a wooden spoon as it cooks.
  2. Once the mince has no pinkness left and is broken up into small grains remove from the heat.
  3. Put the mince in a mesh strainer and run cold water through it till the water no longer feels greasy (apparently if you can click your fingers, you are good to go).
  4. Using a mesh tray, spread the mince out breaking up any larger bits you find.
  5. Should take about 4-5 hours and will look like freeze-dried coffee when done.

250g of raw mince beef dried to 40g.


  1. Boil a pot of water and put the sauce leather in one pot and the mince in another pot.
  2. Pour some boiling water in the sauce and mince pots. If you are not sure put less and add more later.
  3. Cover the pots and leave to absorb the water.
  4. Top up the pot of water and bring back to the boil.
  5. Add Soba Noodles and boil according to instructions.
  6. When done drain the water off with the lid and put aside.
  7. Put the sauce on the burner and stir till back to its original consistency.
  8. Drain any excess water from the mince and add to the sauce.
  9. Stir the sauce and mince mixture till it looks like bolognese should. A few minutes will be good.
  10. Separate the noodles into 2 bowls and then add the bolognese sauce.
  11. Enjoy!
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Posted in Cooking, Dehydrated Meals

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