Looking for great camping food ideas? Look no further than your own pantry and refrigerator. When you go camping, you are not trying to reinvent the wheel. Stick with comfort foods that you enjoy and you will be ready to make some of the tastiest food. In my opinion, food tastes much better camping than it does at home!
I have been camping since I have been in diapers and I can tell you from first hand experience that coming up with great camping food ideas is not difficult. In fact, I will argue that many people tend to eat better while camping because you become more creative when you relaxed.
Treat Yourself To These Delicious Camping Foods
- Korean BBQ
- T-bone steaks
- Chicken soup
- Chocolate cake
- Grilled salmon
- Tasty East Indian food
- Home made granola
- White cheddar cheese omelets
- Whole grain pancakes
- Grilled chicken
Inside Secrets To Camping Food Ideas
The big secrets to eating tasty foods is to duplicate what you already eat at home. You don’t have to have a separate panty and recipe book for camping. If you like pasta, take your favorite pasta and sauce with you. It’s much easier to grab things out of your own pantry than making a trip to buy specialty foods that you eat only on camping trips.
We pack a lot of favorite foods like dried apples, apricots, raisins, pasta, almonds, cashews, pumpkin seeds, etc. in plastic see through Sterilite camping containers that we buy at Walmart or Amazon. By using see-through storage bins, we always know where everything is. We even use a black Sharpie pen to label our storage bins. There is not a one-size fits all storage bin. They come in multiple sizes and shapes. We like to stack them in sets of 2 or 3. If the bins are too large, you will not be able to lift them nor find anything. I have found that the 31 quart storage bins work best for us whether we are camping in our Subaru Outback station wagon or full size Ford E150 van. We keep our bins loaded with our gear all year just in case we want to take an impromptu trip. We paid about $7 each for our see-through storage bins at Walmart. We have gone back and forth between Rubbermaid and Sterilite brands. Sterilite pack better in tight places because the corners are square.
Our family tends to eat very healthy organic foods. We really enjoy eating fresh produce and free-range beef and chicken. When we see fruit and vegetable stands, we load up for a few days. We like to make a game out of finding signs such as “Farm fresh eggs for sale”. We stop at almost everyone because locally grown eggs taste different from each farm. It really depends on the chickens diet.
Pack your condiments and seasonings. My wife packs all of our favorite seasoning and condiments in a box and keeps it ready for all of our summer camping trips. We like hot and spicy foods. However, our spice kit is very simple. She packs fresh garlic, onions, dried habanero and jalapeño peppers, and sea salt.
Now You Can Cook Like The Pros On Camping Trips
A high quality cooler like the Coleman Xtreme is paramount to eating good. It’s your portable refrigerator and will not break the bank as you can pick one up for under $50. The Xtreme will keep your food cold for nearly 5 days. If you need an extreme cooler that is marine grade and will keep ice up to 9 days, then the Engel Deep Blue cooler is worth looking at. You will spend over $300 for Engal or Yeti, but you will save more than that amount when you consider these coolers can keep ice frozen for up to 10 days!
A good quality stove like a Coleman white gas, dual fuel, or propane stove will give you as good of heat control as you have at home. I have always used Coleman stoves for car camping because they ubiquitous and replacement parts are easy to find. My favorite is the old ugly green stoves that you can find at garage sales for cheap. However, they burn white gas which is not as common as unleaded fuel. You could probably burn unleaded in the standard green model. I burned unleaded fuel in my Coleman Peak 1 stove every day for nearly 6 months and it never failed.
Coleman came to the rescue with their Muliti Fuel Stove that will burn both white gas and unleaded fuel. I bought one nearly 5 years ago and it’s a work-horse. With gasoline prices so high, it makes economic sense to use the relatively inexpensive unleaded fuel compared to $10 per gallon white gas.
3 Pieces Of Cooking Equipment That You Must Have To Make Gourmet Meals
- Stainless Steel Wok
- Cast Iron Griddle
- Stainless Steel Pressure Cooker
These 3 items are secret weapon for making gourmet meals. A wok is an amazing tool for cooking. If I had to pack only 1 item for doing most of my cooking, I would take a wok because it is so versatile. You can boil, stir fry, and bake in a wok.
Pressure cookers give you the ability to cook hard to make bean dishes. Beans take so long to cook properly. Not with a pressure cooker. Let the beans soak over night and you can make restaurant quality black and pinto beans in less than 30 minutes. No need to bring along bulky canned beans that are laden with sodium. My wife loves to make tasty East Indian food. We bring dried garbanzo beans and she makes dishes that compare to top restaraunts.
Cast iron griddles are amazing. They are virtually non-stick. Omelets made in them will taste better than anything you have been served. You can caramelize onions to serve on steaks, burritos, etc. Want pancakes that don’t stick? This is your ticket to easy meals.