By R. Maxine Lundquist
Not everyone wants to spend time creating haute cuisine at camp. Most want good food that’s easy to make and good to eat. But easy camping meals are daunting for some, and even the best camp cooks run out of inspiration from time to time. Here are some hints, tips and ideas for making breakfast, lunch and dinner at the campsite, plus some menu ideas. The Recipes can be found on the Recipe Index Page, under “Recipes For Easy Camping Meals”.
Hints, Tips and Ideas
- Remember that you can elevate any camping meal with a little preparation. Throw pre-cut meat in a Ziploc bag with marinade a week or two before the camping trip and just toss it in the freezer. When you pack up, put it in the cooler and you have the main part of the meal ready to go.
- Buy your salads premade! Many grocery stores carry bags of salad with all the fixings and dressing included in the kit. There couldn’t be an easier way to add a nutritious salad to a meal than that. Plus, the variety is great–you may find yourself trying different salad combinations you wouldn’t want to spend time making otherwise.
- Give your potatoes a quick soak and scrub before the camping trip. Pre-wrap them in squares of foil. If you want to elevate it a little, spread some butter on each square and sprinkle with herbs before wrapping the potatoes. At the campsite, and hour before dinner, toss the foil-wrapped potatoes in the coals of the fire and bake.
- Invest in one or two camping toasters for a couple of dollars each and bring along a box of freezer waffles. Breakfast couldn’t be easer.
- Make this home-made instant biscuit mix before leaving on your camping trip. It doesn’t need refrigeration and it makes delicious biscuits, fritters, pancakes, and just about anything else you can think of.
- Make a stew or soup at home the day before leaving and put it in a bowl with a tight-fitting lid and refrigerate. On the day of the trip up to the campsite, pack it, well wrapped in newspaper to keep cold, in a plastic bin along with a bag of buns, butter (place in a Ziploc bag and seal), plastic bowls, plastic knives and plastic soup spoons, and a pot big enough for re-heating the soup or stew. When you get to the site, break out the camp stove and put the soup or stew on to heat while everyone is setting up camp. Makes a great first lunch or dinner with little or no prep at the campsite.
- Plastic plates and bowls are cheaper because they can be re-used. Paper plates and bowls are easier because there is no washing-up after–just toss on the campfire.
- Buy your cheese pre-grated and your fruit and vegetables pre-cut.
- Freeze your cartons and cans of juice and iced tea and use them in your cooler instead of, or to augment, the ice you are using to keep your food cold.
- Filling a small cooler with icecubes will keep people from opening the food coolers for ice for their drinks, and you can put it out where they can help themselves without getting in the way when you are trying to get a meal together in the kitchen area.
- Marinated Beef Skewers, Salad & Baked Potatoes
- Chicken Strips, Vegetable Stir-fry & Lemon Rice
- Chili Pot Pie
- Pork chops With Fried Apples, Buttery Hash-Browns & Baby Bok Choy
- Fast Turkey Soup