I like to get frozen rice/veggie meals from Trader Joe's. They have a large selection of very tasty fully cooked and hydrated (but frozen) dishes. I just pour each bag onto a tray in the dehydrator and you are ready to go. Usually takes at least 30-40 mins to fully rehydrate and cool down enough to eat. Bring a bottle of oil and squirt some in right before you eat it - makes them taste so good . Sometimes i'll eat these at home if i'm busy and don't have the time to cook. I made pouches to hold the quart sized bags out of reflectix insulation - comes in a huge roll for about $20. It keeps the food well insulated and the pouch stands up on its own.
I try to avoid the meals with mushrooms. I haven't had luck dehydrating them; they turn black and goey. I don't really care for them anyways but it can be done if you're a fan.
Also, fake meat products are great - even if you are a meat loving slaughterfestomaniac. Get ground beef crumblers and fake chicken or beef strips to dehydrate. I also like to chop up baked/marinated tofu into small 1/3" cubes and dehydrate them. They are good plain (chewy) or added to food. You can dehydrate all of these at 135* since they are not real meat products. I usually just turn on the machine and come back in 10 hours or so though if you are impatient you can stir it up midway etc. Sarahs site has alot of good info on this sort of thing.
Angel hair pasta meals are great and easy to dehydrate. Alfredo, tomato sauce, or pesto with some meat thrown in and thats livin'!
I can't eat GORP or hummus etc ad infinitum - traumatized at a young age backpacking haha. Jerky is the way to go for me - all meat all day snacking. Add it to your soups or meals. Never gets old for me.
You can also bring protein bars... you can get them with anywhere from 5g to 30g of protein. You could also bring protein shakes or weight gainer mix. You can end up fitting like 2 weeks of food in a bear can if it is all bars/shake. I usually starve a day or two on the trail before I can manage to eat the vile shih of it but i'm kind of a freak.
Also, stock up on asian noodle dishes - there are alot of tasty ones out there nowadays really cheap and easy last minute food. Just repackage from styrofoam into quart ziplock.
MASHED POTATOES are the shiizzz on the trail. They come in foil pouches with a bunch of flavors and crazy toppings all you do is add water. Definitely bring these - I eat them all the time at home. Idahoan brand but double check you only have to add water.
Find some granola cereal you really like then measure out the amount of it and milk you normally eat for breakfast. Then put it in a ziplock with the reqd amount of instant milk powder plus store bought dehydrated (usually cheaper and always easier) fruit topping of your choice. I like to add sugar at home because the milk isn't so great.
Other good ideas for breakfast: Oatmeal packets w/ toppings of your choice, maybe a little powdered creamer/milk. Dehydrated hobo style potato cubes or flakes (peppers, onions, etc). Dehydrated eggs and bacon. Put lots of paper towels in the dehydrator to catch the massive amounts of bacon grease, then freeze until your trip - you can eat them like chips without any prep on the trail.
Also, when at the grocery store keep an eye out for the ethnic foods section and near the soups. Alot of good mixes in there. Couscous is good. I've noticed alot of dehydrated meals - usually with 'Just add water!' on the label. These are just like expensive backpacking meals only 1/2 to 1/3 the price and usually labeled 6-8 servings (in other words 2 'real' servings).
I'll share a little secret desert I have yet to read about for backpacking. I'm sure some of you have discovered these. They sell these cake mixes that only require you to add water then microwave (or just add hot water and insulate - no need for a portable oven or anything). They come with syrup packets and are VERY delicious. Other sweets are honey, tubes of pb&j, or white/brown cane sugar. I like to have powdered drinks like gatorade as well.
You may want to keep some sort of database or journal of the nutritional content of each food and meal plans for each day. Record your thoughts, how you felt, energy levels, degree of physical exertion that day. When you get back from your trip this information may be useful for next time. Write it down so you can recall when it comes time to pack for another trip a month or a year later.
This is some of what works for me. Your experience will certainly vary, but for me and my girl/friend/s this is the BOMB and as good as it gets for lightweight delicious easy to prepare backcountry food. If anyone has any other man-status foods (when bullshih snacks just don't cut it and you want real meals) then serve them up, I want to hear it!
Here's a few pics from some of the delicious 'backpackers pantry' ready to go the distance, last minute trips, car camping, roadtrips, weekend getaways etc.