How to Make Hardtack

Hardtack is a classic survival food, one that can last for years, even dozens of years. It used to be made on ships because it would never rot, and it was found among Civil War relics and placed in museums. It’s said to still be edible, even all these years later.

It’s a great food to make at home and keep in your survival rations. It can be made very cheaply and easily with ingredients and tools you probably already have at home.

What it is is essentially thoroughly dehydrated dough. All it takes is flour, water, and some salt. You don’t even need exact measurements!

Ingredients and tools

  • Flour
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Pizza cutter
  • Fork

What to do

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Fill your mixing bowl about halfway with flour.
  3. Mix in a tablespoon or so of salt; this will help with the drying and preservation process.
  4. Add water until you have a cohesive dough; add flour if it’s too sticky.
  5. Once your dough is ready, sprinkle some flour on a clean countertop, and roll out the dough with your rolling pin
  6. When it is about 1/2″ thick, cut the dough into 2″ squares with your pizza cutter (doesn’t need to be exact).
  7. Transfer your squares onto a clean cookie sheet.
  8. Bake in your preheated oven for 30 minutes.
  9. When the 30 minutes are up, take the hardtack out and flip it over.
  10. Bake for another 30 minutes.
  11. When it’s done baking, take out of the oven, and allow to cool completely before storing.

To store, keep in an airtight container like a Tupperware or tin. Before eating, you’ll want to soak in milk or water for about 10 minutes.


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