Do you remember what you ate on your last camping trip? Chances are a combination of campfire staples like hotdogs and prepackaged goods like trail mix and cereal. Great food and camping aren’t always easy to pull off together, but a fabulous outdoor meal can be one of the most satisfying parts of your trip. The key is planning your menu carefully, stocking up on the right ingredients in the right portions, and prepping as much as you can before you leave the kitchen.
You’ll need a healthy dose of protein and carbs to start an active day of hiking, swimming and miscellaneous adventuring. There’s probably no better time to eat a burger for breakfast than when you’re camping.
These campfire breakfast burgers ditch traditional packaged buns for black pepper biscuits, which you can prep ahead of your trip. Then simply add water to your biscuit mix and cook with eggs, sausage or burger patties. Drop biscuit pans are also the perfect way to shape your eggs for breakfast sandwiches.
If your family is excited about burgers for breakfast, then they’ll probably be ecstatic about breakfast pizza too. This dutch oven deep dish breakfast pizza is also like a campfire Quiche, complete with eggs and refrigerated crescent rolls for the crust. Pre-whisk your eggs to save room in your cooler and play around with different mix-ins and pizza toppings.
Why should meats and veggies have all the fun?
Grilled French toast skewers are the perfect grill-friendly twist on this sweet breakfast staple. The recipe even uses stale hotdog buns, which are usually plentiful near the end of a camping trip.
Oatmeal is an ordinary, hearty breakfast for backpacking trips and busy school mornings alike. DIY oatmeal packets help you spice up your morning meal on the road or before you head out on the trail. You can make individual portions or large batches of your family’s favourite flavours. Adding dried fruits, nuts, sweeteners, spices, and even powdered milk to plain rolled oats is more affordable and healthier than store-bought flavoured oatmeal.
You’ll need plenty of snacks to fuel your group’s wanderlust. So add these treats to your stash of granola, trail mix and protein bars.
This fresh guacamole appetizer is ideal for camping. None of the ingredients need special cold storage except for the cilantro, which can be left out (especially if you have picky campers) or stored in water in a cool place.
Make sure to pack extra firm avocados, so they’re not overripe by the time you’re ready to cook with them. Avocados are also the creamy addition you’ll crave with grilled breakfast burritos, which are satisfying for any meal or snack.
Popcorn, bonfires and summer nights go together. So whether you’re watching a movie in your tent or watching the night sky, you can’t go wrong with healthy, crunchy, salty campfire popcorn.
Finally, campfire strawberries are sure to be a hit. All you need to do is dip fresh strawberries in marshmallow fluff and toast them—a simple toasty treat for tired campers.
Lunch & Dinner
When you’re camping, a hearty breakfast and snacks aren’t enough to get you through the day. So whether your go-to meal is burgers, hotdogs or freshly caught fish, these recipes will help you add an unexpected burst of flavour and fun to the menu.
Mountain pies are essentially tasty grilled sandwiches. They can be savoury or sweet, but our favourite is pizza mountain pie because, with plenty of cheese, sauce and your favourite pizza toppings, they’re a complete hand-held meal.
We love walking tacos for the same reason, especially if you want to make individual portions so you can change up ingredients for different dietary restrictions or so you can customize the spice level of each serving. Foil packet nachos are another fool-proof option for serving larger groups.
If you have access to a variety of freeze-dried ingredients, pre-made meals in a jar or tin are an excellent way to save time and keep food from spoiling. Check out this no-fuss recipe for chicken camping quesadillas in a jar:
Even when you’re making a traditional meat and potato meal cooked over the campfire, you can add simple, nutrient-packed sides like:
- Mexican three-bean salad
- Rainbow grilled veggie kebabs
- And caramelized brown sugar cinnamon grilled pineapple
These sides use ingredients that don’t require refrigeration and are usually already on hand for other meals and snacks.
Nothing beats summer desserts. Unfortunately, frozen confections aren’t a convenient option for camping trips. You can’t bring ice cream camping unless you have an RV freezer, but you can marry crisp waffle cones with gooey marshmallows to make a delicious hand-held, s’more-inspired treat.
Jump out of the box and into unexpected orange flavour with campfire orange cinnamon rolls. Oranges travel well and add an extra punch of vitamin c to your breakfast or dessert. Use your hollow oranges for baking probably the most scrumptious Pillsbury cinnamon rolls you’ve ever tasted. Mix the icing with fresh orange zest for an added brightness that pairs perfectly with the heat and warmth of cinnamon. It tastes like Christmas, but outside and in July.
If you’re trying to get your kids to eat more fruit with dessert, try this easy pound cake and berry campfire skillet that’s sure to satisfy any after-dinner sweet tooth.
Are you looking for a showstopping dessert crowd-pleaser? Do you anticipate being tired from cooking meals over the camp stove all day? Look no further than this ultra-decadent and sharable giant Oreo skillet cookie! You only need two prepackaged ingredients that you can probably pick up from a local general store and your trusty camp skillet, of course.
While we’d never get sick of enjoying a traditional s’more by the campfire, these recipes are guaranteed to make you the best chef around for miles. Remember that eating outside after a long day of exploring nature makes everything taste better, so prepare for your fellow campers to ask for seconds!