Trail Cooking

Recipe Review: Eggless Eggnog

I was intrigued by a recipe I saw in the most recent issue of Backpacker Magazine in the “Backcountry Feast: Holiday Recipes For Camp” for eggless eggnog.

In our cookbook Trail Cooking: Trail Food Made Gourmet, we have a couple of recipes for eggnog, in which we use powdered eggs. An egg free version would be good for egg allergies and similar, so I went on a 5 mile walk to the store for instant pudding mix this morning.

I picked up a pack of the Jell-O Simply Good pudding, as it contains no artificial coloring. Any instant vanilla pudding will work however. I followed the recipe, and realized it had one huge flaw upfront: it contained a lot of dry milk. If you cook on the trail with dried milk, or make smoothies with it, you know it has a very strong flavor and aroma. The recipe calls for 3¼ CUPS of it. Yikes. But needless to say, I made up a batch of the dry mix. In the recipe they have the reader make the entire recipe at once. You better have a lot of chuggers around the camp fire. Instead, I broke it down to 4 servings. And played with each section, to work on the taste.

Note to self: Sometimes those fake dyes sure make pudding look better. Hahaha. It was really this gray in real life.

The best version was the chocolate eggnog. Only downside was the cocoa powder really showed any milk lumps. Oh boy.

I also made a version and added in coconut cream powder, which while tasting better, clumped up badly.

Maybe there was a reason Backpacker told you to add booze to the recipe. A few sips in you wouldn’t notice the heavy-handed dry milk aroma and lumps…….so it is worth it? Maybe. It didn’t wow me over. It has potential, but I need to figure out how to lower the dry milk amount.

Eggless Eggnog


  • 3¼ cups dry milk
  • 1 pouch or box instant vanilla pudding (3.4 ounces)
  • 2 pinches ground cinnamon
  • 3 pinches ground allspice
  • 3 pinches ground nutmeg


Mix the dry ingredients together well. For best results, process in a blender, to finely grind the milk powder, or work it with a fork.

Divide into 4 equal packets, in a snack size zip top bag. You will have about ¾ cup + 1 Tablespoon dry mix per serving.

To Prepare:

Add the dry mix to ¾ cup cold water. For best results, prepare in a water bottle. Put on lid tightly, and shake for 1 to 2 minutes. Drink will thicken upon sitting for a few more minutes.


Stash the sealed drink container in a cold stream or snow bank for 15 to 30 minutes, to chill the drink. The flavor of the milk goes down.


To make a chocolate eggnog, add in ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder with the original mix. Be sure to process the dry mix well, to avoid clumping.

I use these measuring spoons for “pinch”.

Makes 4 servings.