The 4 Best Ways To Preserve Meat In The Wild

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Are you a huntsman or going to live in an isolated part of this world? You are maybe worried about preserving your food or meat without the electric-powered equipment.

Our ancestors faced the same problems, and they figured out how to preserve their food for a long time. Those ways worked well and are still used by people to preserve food. You can also use them to preserve your food in wild and isolated areas, where electric-powered food preserving equipment is not available.

Even if you are living in a house with all luxury of the modern world, you still need to know these methods and techniques of preserving food and meat in the wild. Because unexpected things can happen, and a person should know these techniques to survive in unexpected situations.

You can preserve your food for a long time in wild areas by following the methods given below.

  1. Smoking.
  2. Salt curing.
  3. Drying.
  4. Cooling.

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Most of the time, when you are out there hunting in the wild for food, you are left with some extra meat after a hunt, and you have to quickly preserve it. Otherwise, it will rot and become inedible in no time.

One of the simplest and easiest ways to preserve meat in the wild is by smoking it. Meat can be preserved for a long time by smoking it. Smoked meat has a very delicious flavor and aroma.

But the downside of this process is that it takes a long time to complete. It takes about 6 to 8 hours to smoke the meat properly.

You can smoke your meat by following the instructions given below.

Building a fire pit.

If you are going to live in the same place for a long time, I will recommend building a dedicated structure for smoking meat. For this purpose, you have to construct a structure that is about 8 feet tall and 4 feet wide.

This structure will have a mono-pitched roof and have an opening in the wall near the upper side of the slope. Heat and smoke will escape from this opening.

But if you are not living permanently in the same place, then you can smoke your meat in makeshift a fire pit. Although this process is not as efficient as a dedicated meat smoking building. But will do its job.

For making a fire pit, you have to dig at least a feet deep pit. This pit will shelter the fire and direct its heat and smoke toward the meat.

Choosing a wood.

Once the fire pit is ready now, you have to collect wood for lighting the fire. You have to be extra careful while choosing wood for the smoking process because the type of wood you will use to smoke the meat will impact the flavor of the meat. So never use wet wood or wood with a bad smell. Dry hickory or oak wood is preferred.

Preparing meat for the smoking process.

Once the fire pit is ready and you have collected the required wood, then you have to prepare meat for the smoking process.

You have to cut meat in long thin stripes so that meat will get smoked evenly and quickly. Remove all fat from the meat.

Smoking process.

Once everything is ready, then light the fire in the pit and hang the meat about 2 feet above the fire with the help of sticks and metal wires if available. Put some saplings and branches of trees with leaves around the fire to direct the smoke and heat from the fire directly toward the hanging meat.

Remember that we are not cooking the meat, so avoid the use of excessive heat. Left it there for about 6 to 8 hours and then check it. If the meat bends under pressure, then it is not smoked fully and needs some more time, and if it breaks under pressure, then it is fully prepared.

Smoked meat doesn’t need to be cooked before use. But we will recommend to cock it so that harmful bacteria on the meat will die due to heat and meat will be free of harmful bacteria and safe to eat.

Smoking meat is one of the oldest and convenient ways to preserve meat in the wild. This technique is still used by peoples in different areas of the world to preserve meat.

Salt curing.

Salting is another technique used by peoples for centuries to preserve meat and is still used by people to preserve meat in the wild, where modern equipment is not available.

There are two types of salting techniques used widely today. Here I will share both of them with you.

Wet curing.

In this technique, you have to prepare a solution by mixing salt, a little sugar, and spices in the water and then put thin strips of meat in this solution in a way that they are completely soaked.

Now take these soaked strips and hang them at some sunny place, so that water from the solution will evaporate, and tiny crystals of salt and sugar will be left on the surface of the meat. Salt and sugar will provide a hostile environment for bacteria and prevent them from thriving on the surface of the meat, thus stop them from spoiling the meat.

Dry curing.

In this technique, you have to mix salt, sugar, and spices and then rub them on the surface of the meat and then put this cured meat in a container and seal it.

If you are placing multiple layers of meat strips in the same container, then put some salt mixture between each layer of meat, so that they don’t touch each other.

Now this meat will not spoil for a long time.

you can use this technique to preserve the meat in the wild, if you don’t want to spend a lot of time smoking it.


It is another great method to preserve meat in the wild. In this process, water from the food is evaporated by placing it under sunlight. This dehydration of the meat will decrease the bacterial activity on it, and slows down the activity of enzymes. Thus meat remains preserved for a long time.

Since only water is extracted from the meat, that’s why there is no change in the quality and nutritional value of meat. Dried meat is lighter in weight and convenient to store. You can use it when needed.

Drying process of meat.

In order to dry the meat, you have to cut the meat into thin strips, so that meat will easily dry. If meat stripes are thick, then the meat will look dry from the outside. But will be moist from the inside, so bacteria will thrive inside the meat and spoil it.

Once you have cut meat into thin strips, then select an area where the Sun shines for most of the day and hang these meat strips there.

Once the meat is dried out, then you can store it in a dry place for a long time without the danger of its spoiling. It is one of the easiest ways to preserve meat in the wild.

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Drying of fruits and vegetables.

The drying process of fruits or vegetables is not much different from the drying process of meat. Both of them are simple and follow similar rules.

In order to dry your fruits or vegetable, you have to cut them into slices, and every slice should not be thicker than ¼ of an inch. Thin slices will dry quickly and properly.

When slices are ready, then you must choose an area where the Sun shines most of the day. Now take a cloth or something else and lay it down, then put those slices of fruit or vegetable on it and leave them to dry there.

Once dried out, you can store them in any dry place or a container. You can use dried vegetables for preparing soup and can eat those dried fruits when needed.

In this way, you can store a lot of fruit and vegetables in the wild for later use.


This process of food preservation may not be as good as others. But it is best to keep meat preserved for a short time in the wild. Before you can properly smoke or dry it.

The meat of freshly a hunted animals is hot due to the body temperature of that animal. This hot meat can spoil very quickly, because meat has moisture and heat in it, and both these factors are ideal for the growth of bacteria.

So, you have to quickly cool it down by cutting the meat off the bone and by removing fat from the meat.  Cutting meat in smaller pieces will also help in cooling it down.

After that, you can dip the meat in a nearby stream or pour some water on it. If this option is not available, then you can cool it by placing it in a cool breeze.


These are some ways and techniques you can use to store and preserve meat in the wild. You can use them to preserve meat if you have no access to modern meat or food preserving equipment due to some reason.

It is always important for a person to be ready for difficult and unexpected situations. We are living in a world, which is full of conflicts and tensions. These conflicts and tensions can quickly escalate to a full-fledged war. Situations like these can force you to leave the luxury of your home for your own safety. If you know the techniques of how to store and preserve food or meat in the wild, then it will be a great help for you in that situation, because in those days food will not be readily available and you had to store it when available.

These skills and techniques will also prove help full for you if you are a hunter. Because sometimes during hunting trips modern preserving equipment is not available or they stopped working, due to some malfunction or power outage, and these things oftentimes happen. When you are out there in the wild. Then you can use any of the above-given techniques to preserve meat in the wild.


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