Recipe of the Week
Camping is just one of those staple activities of childhood. Camping gives everyone in your family a chance to explore a new place and learn new skills together. And since no two camping trips are ever alike, there will always be new experiences to enjoy and new skills to master!
Preparing for your family’s food needs during a camping trip is an art unto itself. It is rare to find a master chef huddled over a campfire making a 15-ingredient souffle. Nope – camping is all about keeping meals and snacks simple, which makes camp recipes perfect for parents and kids to prepare and enjoy together!
In this post, we will take a look at “a day in the life” of camp meals and introduce recipes you and your children can plan and make beforehand and at the campsite.
A Word About Cooking While Camping
If this is your first foray into family camping, it is always a great idea to read up on what your campsite permits and what it provides. Some campsites may provide outdoor grills or fire pits for common use. Other campsites may permit use of small portable stoves.
But some campsites, and particularly those in protected areas like national forests and parks, may be much stricter about what you can bring and use while inside the park grounds. Some may not permit any kind of fuel or burning at all.
If this kind of park is where you are headed, you may need to do more preparatory work for meals before you depart and think more in terms of keeping prepared meals safe and chilled until you are ready to eat them rather than making meals at your campsite.
But for the purposes of this post, we will assume you have some ability to cook and prepare your meals at your campsite.
Packing for Campsite Meals
When preparing your ingredients, do a head count and pre-measure out the ingredients for each meal ahead of time. Put them in secure ziplock bags or secure-lock containers and label the outside with the item, amount and meal name.
NOTE: This is a GREAT activity for your kids to work on. You can do the calculations (or let your teens help with this) and then let all of your kids loose with the ziplock bags and Sharpie markers.
To make the campsite meals you will see here, you will need these ingredients:
- – Bread (gluten-free if desired).
- – De-shelled eggs with diced veggies in ziplock baggies.
- – Bananas, blueberries or portable fruit of your choice.
- – Dry ingredients for pancakes, pre-mixed at home or store-bought (put this in a sport bottle for easy transport and mixing).
- – Nut butter or nut butter substitute (soybeans, coconut) or hazelnut/mocha butter.
- – Oil or cooking spray.
- – Taco soup (stored in ziplock bags).
- – Frito chips.
- – Condiments as desired (sugar, salt, pepper, hot sauce, salsa, maple syrup, etc).
- – Marshmallows, graham crackers and chocolate squares.
- – Plenty of cooking, washing and drinking water!
You will also need these supplies:
- Ice chest and block or bagged ice.
- Aluminum foil and/or extra Ziploc baggies for storage.
- Wet wipes and sanitary gel or spray.
- Fuel (for portable burner stoves) or coal (for grills).
- Waterproof matches or flame starter.
- Long-handled tongs and long-handled spatula.
- Coat hangers or long skewers (if you plan to roast marshmallows).
- Plates and mugs.
- Paper towels.
Breakfast Recipe: “Pancakes n’ Omelet Eggs”
Nourishing, filling and easy to prep and make, it doesn’t get better than this for a campsite breakfast!
Pour the eggs and veggie mixes into the skillet. Scramble them or cook them omelet style.
Add water to the pre-mixed pancake batter and shake the sport bottle to mix. Oil the skillet and pour on the batter. Add blueberries to the batter as desired, or just use plain syrup.
Lunch Recipe: “Banana-Butter Sandwiches.”
Tasty, easy and protein-packed, these no-cook sandwiches are sure to be a hit and have you fueled up and back out for more adventures in no time!
Spread the nut or nut-alternative butter on one slice of the bread. Then add bananas. For a really fun twist, use hazelnut or mocha spread instead of your usual sandwich butter.
Slice and munch!
Dinner Recipe: “Frito Taco Pies”
Your “inner kid” will delight in these Frito pies as a dinner treat even while your outer adult delights in the minimal prep time and cleanup required at a time of day when everyone is tired and just wants to relax.
Heat the taco soup in the cooking pot. Pour a portion into soup mugs and add Fritos as a garnish. Dig in and enjoy!
P.S. If you loved these Summer Dyn-o-mite Tacos from the Pley.com blog, these can also make for an easy campsite dinner choice!
Dessert: “Gimme S’mores”
Graham crackers, marshmallows, chocolate squares. Simple, delightful, delicious.
Snack Ideas: “Think Portable”
Here, we highly recommend going with portable pre-packaged goodies like small bags of trail mix or nuts, granola or dried fruit bars, goldfish crackers, pretzels, small whole fruits, string cheese, et al.
The reason for this is because you are most likely to be away from your campsite during the day when everyone starts to feel peckish. You want to bring non-perishable snacks that won’t be affected by the heat and will stay sanitary until everyone can wipe their hands and dig in.
Don’t Forget to Snap & Save the Campsite Memories!
In decades past, it was a laborious process to take photographs, return home and develop the film and share the hard-copy prints with family and friends.
Today, it is a breeze! Just snap and save – if you have WiFi at your campsite or while traveling home, you can upload and share your camping pics then and there!