Camp cooking can be as elaborate or simple as you want it to be. If you want to prepare quick and simple but nutritious meals while you are camping, camp cooking doesn’t even have to require a fire. But if you are interested in fueling your camping trip with a feast, camp cooking can allow you to make hot, healthy foods that are as good as you can make them at home in your own kitchen.
Camp cooking does not have to be limited to sandwiches and baked potatoes wrapped in aluminum foil. Almost any cooking method you use in the kitchen can be duplicated around the campfire. For example, use a dutch oven or pit cooking to bake your food. You can also easily fry foods in a pan over a grill, or boil, braise and roast. What type of camping cookware is best for you? Camp cooking and clean-up can be easy or a hassle, it all starts with great camping equipment.
Some pots/pans come in sets that mate together or “nest” for storage and even allow you to tuck a canister of fuel inside them. This comes in handy when you’re looking to save room while camping.
Following are some camping items to take with you if you are planning on preparing some meals around the campfire. These common kitchen items will allow you to duplicate tasty meals while you are out of doors.
Salt and pepper
Other of your favorite herbs and spices
Hand-held can opener
Tongs and spatula
Paper or plastic silverware, plates and cups
If you have just a few campers and are looking for some simple camp cooking, try the easy and quick technique of tin can cooking. All you will need is a clean tin can a one gallon size can works well. Your source of heat can be a small campfire, or if wood burning is prohibited, a small buddy burner will work well, which can be found at sporting good stores or online. Place your meal in the tin can and simply heat the contents of your can over a flame. You will have a hot meal ready in minutes. This technique works great for soups, beans and tuna fish.
A more time-consuming camp cooking technique that also produces tasty meals is pit cooking. Pit cooking is great for items that can be wrapped in aluminum foil to be cooked. It is also a great camp cooking method if you are using a dutch oven or cast iron cookware. Pit cooking warms your food by heating rocks and coals that are buried in the ground. As the rocks cool off, their emitted heat cooks the food. To pit cook, first dig a hole that is about three times larger than your cookware. Line the pit with rocks and build a fire in the middle. Once the fire has burned rapidly for about an hour, push the hot coals and rocks into the center. Layer your wrapped food or covered skillets on top of the rocks and coals and place more on top. After a few hours, you will have some delicious camp food to enjoy.
Since as far back as man can remember there has always been an interest in cooking around an open fire. We can’t have this luxury in our home or else we wouldn’t have a home after the meal was done. Over time the camp out included cold meat and bread, hot dogs, or an occasional hamburger but for the most part it was sandwiches. While open fires are the perfect place to fix meals the problem was carrying everything to the camp site and then roughing it when it came to preparing everything. It took a lot of preparing ahead of time so you could be ready for camping.
Camping around an open fire can be viewed in a totally different way. It’s not so much about dragging and lugging everything but the kitchen sink to the camp site and tons of water to help you rinse and keep up with the dishes. It’s about preparing all the food in bags and having it ready so that all you need to do is get it out and cook it. Here are some helpful hints and tips to make your next camping trip a success and leaving them wanting more of your gourmet meal.
When you are done preparing the meal everything should fit neatly inside a cooler so you can tote it around without making a mess. Make sure you count the number of meals that you need to prepare for so you won’t go hungry.
- Take the usual hamburger and hot dogs and spice them up. First, realize that aluminum foil is your friend. Press out hamburger patties and wrap each individual ones in an aluminum pouch. Don’t forget to add onion, carrots, celery, and your favorite spices and seasonings. You can also replace the beef and pork with chicken. Take the average hot dog and place it in the pouch with some potatoes and beans. Season to taste and then your family can enjoy it.
- For breakfast, you want everyone to enjoy the taste of a hot breakfast before you get your day started. Precook sausage patties and eggs before you leave and place them on a biscuit that has already baked. Individually wrap each one so that they can eat what they want. Purchase or make frozen potatoes which can also be put in aluminum pouches and season to taste before adding them to the fire. Everyone can enjoy a nice hot breakfast to get everyone started on the right foot.
- Snacks are going to be in demand because your family will burn more calories when they are outside. They can’t watch television or listen to music so they will be exploring more and becoming active. You will need to provide something that will hold them over until the next meal. Snack foods such as granola bars, trail mix, crackers, and popcorn are just some of the snack foods that you can have ready. These do not require too much preparation so you will be able to purchase them or fix them up before you leave. They will last during your trip without being refrigerated.
- Drinks are another thing you may want to consider. Everyone will probably drink water but they will want something different with their meals. Take advantage of the outdoors by brewing up some sun tea. This is easy to do and tastes so good. Your family will enjoy a tall glass of ice tea with their meals.
It’s not always easy to prepare for camping but this year the meal will be more enjoyable for you and your family.