When you think about camping outdoors, the last thing you usually imagine is a tasty gourmet meal, but there are ways to get close enough. Gone are the days where we have to live on stale bread and tinned food when we camp, with people now experimenting with simple ways to create gourmet meals that the whole family can enjoy.
We’ve found a few great ideas for meals and snacks you can make at your campsite with minimal effort so that you don’t have to give up on your delicious treats from home. These can either be prepared at home before you leave or whipped up at your campsite, so whichever method you prefer is best.
As always when camping, it’s essential to clean up after yourself and leave no mess behind. When you’re cooking, you can become especially attractive to local wildlife so it’s important to clean up all of your scraps and don’t share your meals with anyone but your own family.
This is a simple dish you can create with the whole family and everyone can choose their own toppings to make it even more enjoyable. You’ll need a cast iron skillet for all of your ingredients so that it’s durable enough to sit on top of the fire.
Layer the skillet with tortilla chips, cheese, beans, red pepper, green onion, bacon bits, jalapenos, olives, and anything else you love to eat your nachos with. Place the skillet on top of the fire embers and cook until the cheese has melted and all other ingredients are hot. Dish a serving into everyone’s bowls or eat straight out of the skillet, and serve with sour cream and salsa.
S'mores Cookie Sandwiches
For a spin on the traditional s’mores recipe that we all know and love, you can get creative by adding anything you like when you’re out camping. These s’mores cookie sandwiches are particularly decadent and a fun meal for everyone to get involved in.
Rather than using graham crackers for your s’mores, you substitute them with cookies. Since this has chocolate in it you can feel free to leave out the square inside, but chocolate lovers will no doubt enjoy the double chocolate hit.
Campfire Cheese Fries
For some true comfort food by the fireplace, why not make your own chili cheese fries?
This is a tin foil dinner that works perfectly when you’re camping thanks to the minimal fuss and minimal mess.
Use a small packet of frozen French fries and pour them into a tin foil boat that you’ve made, spray them with cooking oil, cover them up and pop them on the campfire BBQ or grill to cook.
Once done, open the foil back up and pour a jar of chili on them and top them with loads of jack cheese and mozzarella. Fold the foil up again and return to the heat for a little while to let the cheese melt.
When ready, you can simply eat with forks straight off the foil to save from any washing up. Feel free to top them with sour cream if you want something even more delicious.
When you’re out camping you can quickly tire of the same old breakfast foods, so why not add some French toast to the menu? Wrap a fresh loaf of bread in parchment paper and add some strawberries on top. Wrap some foil underneath to create a boat around the bread and then pour in some ready-made French toast mix.
Tighten the top of the bread up with more foil so that it’s completely covered. Next, place the bread on top of the grill and let it cook away for about 40 minutes, making sure you move it around to evenly coat and cook every slice of bread. Once completely cooked and the bread no longer soggy, remove it from the heat for 10 minutes. Open the loaf up and add sugar, syrup and more strawberries for everyone to enjoy.
When you’re relaxing at your campsite at the end of the day but not quite ready for dinner, a simple spinach dip can be the perfect snack food. With a few simple ingredients that you can keep cold, you can create a hearty snack that will keep everyone satisfied. All you need is a large loaf of bread, one cup of sour cream, a packet of frozen spinach, and a cup of Parmesan cheese. Before you leave, you can mix the cold ingredients together and keep them in a container until you’re ready to cook while camping.
Keep the mixture in a tin foil container that you’ve created, being careful to make it two layers. Cook this over the fire embers until it heats through and the cheese melts. In the meantime, grill or cook each piece of bread over the fire so it’s toasted and then you can use these to dip into the spinach dip you prepared separately.
Use Your Imagination To Create
Camping these days isn’t about rationing food and eating bland tasting staples, with people now being more creative than ever about what they make. When you plan ahead you’re able to achieve a lot, or you can bring along a few simple ingredients and do the bulk of the food preparation and cooking while you’re there.
There are no rules that state you have to have a gourmet feast for every meal while you’re camping, but it’s nice to indulge in something once in a while that tastes like it was cooked at home. These are simple recipes that everyone will enjoy and it will help to teach your children about the importance of cooking and creating their own camping meals in the future.