When summer rolls around, sleeping bags unroll, tents are pitched and the campouts under the starry night begin. Camping is one of the best summer pastimes, one that countless Americans embark on with the kids or with friends to reconnect.
Camping helps us escape from the confines of technology and remember how to have fun the old-fashioned way. It also forces us to get creative with cooking. With the best camping food hacks, you don’t have to suffer with soggy sandwiches anymore though.
What should you plan on for your best camping food? These days, you can go gourmet even if you don’t have a fancy RV or grill to see you through. Here are some ideas for you!
– Cook it before you go
When you plan your best camping foods out before you leave and get them cooked up for the adventure, the possibilities are truly limitless. Plus, you don’t have to really cook a thing once you get out there. You only have to maintain proper food storage and have methods for heating things up. Things like chili do really well this way, and to be honest, few things are better than eating chili around a campfire.
– Bring the barbecue classics
If you’re only going for a short camping excursion, you can’t go wrong with burgers and hotdogs. Shape your patties before you leave and pack them well in your cooler. Then toss them on the grill when it’s time to eat. Another idea is to pre-cook the burgers and hotdogs first so you can just sear them over the fire for that cooked-over-a-fire flavor.
– Stock up on ready-to-eat foods
Foods that aren’t perishable are also a must-have on your best camping foods list. Anything goes with these because you don’t need to keep them cold or cook them to enjoy them. This is the way to go with snacks and treats. Even baked treats like banana bread or cookies bode rather well out in the wild. Keeping things simple when you’re camping allows you to enjoy the experience with those you’re camping with rather than spend lots of time preparing your food.
– Stick to it
Foods that are on a stick are by far some of the most fun foods around. But when it comes to camping, they just make things downright easier. Consider throwing together some kabobs before you go with hunks of steak, chicken, or pork sandwiches between veggies. You can put them in a marinade and fire up the grill. You can also keep it purely veggie without any meats. Hotdogs on a stick are great fun too, and well, by that thought, you can stick anything to it and have a fun meal.
– Pack it in foil packets
Another great way to have a great meal while camping is to package it up in foil packets. You can save loads of time by making them up ahead of your trip and then stacking them neatly in a cooler. When you’re ready, just throw them over the fire or on top of the grill. Everything inside gets cooked up nice and juicy with no scorching. Put steak and potatoes with cheese in there, sausages, and more. If you’re planning on fishing and cooking up what you catch, you can bring foil along to wrap it up with too!
– Put it in cones or tortillas
Something else that will help make it easier to eat and clean up during your campout is to use ice cream cones or tortillas for multiple applications. Tortillas can turn grilled meats and veggies into fajitas, contain scrambled eggs and cheese for a hand-held breakfast, or even secure berries and whipped cream for a fun dessert. Cones are also great for fruits, but even better, for using as a vessel for everyone’s favorite campfire treat, s’mores.
– Take turns being chef
Going on a group camping trip for several days? One great way to approach it is to have everyone be responsible for preparing at least one meal. Coordinate your ideas and leave it up to each person to bring the things they plan on making. This way, no one person has to shoulder the full responsibility for the crew and everyone gets a chance to sit back and enjoy the meal.
– Don’t forget about utensils and essentials
You definitely don’t want to forget about things to use to cook and eat your foods. There’s nothing like getting miles away from civilization to discover you don’t have tongs for grabbing food off the grill or the fire, or realizing there are no forks or spoons to try to eat chili with.
– Be eco-friendly in your cleanup
When you prepare your camping food in advance, you keep waste to a minimum. But even your best efforts can create trash. Be sure you have plenty of trash bags to dispose of your waste and then dispose of it properly before you head back to the real world.
If you’re looking for more details on the best camping food hacks, then check this link for more tips and tricks, a checklist, and plenty more to get your summer camping trip organized. There’s no need to starve or dream of gourmet food when you plan it out just right!