By November 2, 2012 Read More →

Survival Recipe: Tasty Hardtack

Looking for a way to use up surplus flour, or make a cheap trail food or durable survival rations? One answer may be hardtack, a baked, unleavened wheat cracker. As a survival food, hardtack has a proven track record.

Check out this Altoid tin survival kit kit with knife!

Check out this Altoid tin survival kit with knife!

Mark's hardtack recipe is tasty and nutritious!

Mark's hardtack recipe is tasty and nutritious!


by Leon Pantenburg

One of the more popular posts on has been how to make hardtack, a basic survival food.  I was gearing up for an elk hunt, so I tried this recipe from Mark, who had commented on the post.

“I’ve been making and enjoying hardtack for years,” Mark wrote.  “I like to use native pecans in mine.”  Immediately intrigued, I made up a batch, using Mark’s recipe as a base.  Using only the ingredients that were on hand, I had to make a few substitutions.

And, as is my wont, I can’t resist tweaking a recipe when there is potential to make it more healthy.  (I always amend flour:  For each cup of white flour, add 1 Tbs of soy meal; 1 tsp of wheat germ, and 1 Tbs of dried milk.  This creates a whole protein!)

The result was wonderful!  Unlike the traditional hardtack recipes which can be nutritious, but REALLY bland, this recipe is tasty!  And it’s kind of like opening a bag of chips – you can’t eat just one!

Here’s the recipe – try it yourself on your next camping trip, or if you have some extra flour you want to put to use.  But while hardtack is renowned for its longevity, we’re not sure how long this particular recipe will last.

To quote Mark:  “I’m not sure of shelf life as they disappear quickly.”

Mark’s Hardtack Recipe

2 cups organic whole wheat flour

2 cups unbleached organic flour

2 cups whole rolled oats (I had to leave this out, since there was no oatmeal, or an appropriate substitute. Next time, I will be sure to add this, since oatmeal’s health benefits are off the charts!)

2 cups pecans (chopped) – (I used peanuts, almonds, and some sesame and roasted pumpkin seeds.)

1 cup raisins or any dried fruit that you like (I didn’t have raisins, but I did have dried cranberries.)

1 cup organic olive oil

1 Tbs baking soda

1 tsp sea salt

2 cups buttermilk (I had 2-percent milk, so that’s what was used.)

Mix the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients separately, then combine them.  Roll out to about 3/8 -inch thick.  Cut into squares or rounds, then bake in the oven at about 375 for about 40 minutes. Let cool and enjoy.


Posted in: Uncategorized

About the Author:

12 Comments on "Survival Recipe: Tasty Hardtack"

Trackback | Comments RSS Feed

  1. This looks like it tastes WAY better than the usual Hardtack recipes I have seen. The only things that would limit it in food storage would be the oil and pecans. Both of which will go rancid. BUT this would be an amazing travel food that would require no refrigeration and would last at least a year I would think.

    • I agree w/Stephanie on the oils and nuts. Also where are you gonna get milk in a survival situation? And, milk also will spoil. I use an old time hard tack recipe. It lives up to it’s name and lasts for over a year easy as long as you keep it dry. I keep mine in an old Saltine tin. Anything water tight would be good.

    • I could see using a Food Sealer, or putting these in a jar and vacuum seal it to keep these longer. Can’t wait to try this recipe; I just printed it up!

  2. Being aware of your surroundings, and staying at a commensurate readiness level is something that has been addressed by many greater writers and instructors

  3. Thanks for the hardtack recipe!

  4. That definitely sounds better than the hard tack recipe I’ve tried in the past. Just not sure how long term this one would be but there’s something to be said for actually wanting to eat it!

  5. Prepper says:

    Thanks for the recipe! It will be a great time to try it out :)

  6. I’m a beginning prepper so I’m sorry if this is a stupid question, but can I store this long term using my vacuum sealer?

    • I imagine you could. I’ve seen hardtack in museums that dates back to the Civil War. I think that if the biscuit was dry and sealed in a vacuum pack it should last indefinitely.

    • RoyG says:

      you can use your vacuum sealer to store this particular recipe but as far as long term you might get about a year at best.. ideally vacuum sealers dont get all of the oxygen out of the bag when sealed and the bag will eventually start to break down and allow air to seep in… But i do use my vacuum sealer to do stuff (dry goods) that im looking to store for up to a year i just keep it in a cool dark space usually and check on them regularly (about every 3 months) its usually a trial and error proccess.. anything that you store that has some kind of oil in it will turn rancid quite fast, within a year so just keep that in mind..

      Also just remember everybody had to start somewhere at some time so welcome to the community and dont ever think for a moment any question is crazy im still asking question on all subjects and iv been doing this for a while… 

  7. The preppers ultimate tool – the WICKED TOUGH Handsaw. Check it out at

    Works as a hammer and a saw – fits in your pocket

The best investment for prepping is your skills

Black Friday $10 300x250