Updated: Sep 3, 2018
My husband and I love to go camping whenever we can. We used to go a ton when we were dating and first married, but since our schedules are crazy and we now have a toddler, we don't get out as often as we used to. As she’s getting older though, it is becoming more and more fun to take her out with us. When she was a baby I stressed so much about keeping her warm, safe, and occupied.
In this two part series I’m going to share some of the things we’ve learned about packing food for camping and also how to successfully camp with a toddler. You can take some of these tips out on the road for general travel and business trips as well. I use a lot of these food prep tips when traveling for business when I may only have a fridge or small stove or microwave. So without further ado, here are my tips for packing healthy camp food:
Preparation is Key
I’m sure you’ve heard it before when eating healthy and changing your habits, but preparation really is key. Make sure you have all your food chopped, peeled, seasoned, portioned, and wrapped. Make your chicken skewers ahead of time, marinade your meat, have your foil packets all wrapped and ready to go. I also like to prepare potato salad, protein salads (egg, tuna, etc.), sauces, and coleslaw ahead of time as well. For breakfast or dinner I also like to have my potatoes par-boiled ahead of time to make cooking that much faster.
We love to make a one pan breakfast. Whether a cast iron skillet over a fire or on our campstove, one pan is key for cleanup. Typically we do a scramble of potatoes, sausage, and eggs. You can also make a breakfast foil packet, an omelette, or prepare breakfast burritos ahead of time that just need heating. I also like to make pancakes that only take water to mix. Kodiak cakes or Birchbenders are perfect for this.
Anything you typically grill at home works perfectly for camping. We make chicken wings, sausages, steak, chicken, and burgers. Veggies are also perfect on the grill. To make it easy I like to have foil packets of veggies already made ahead of time. I just spray some oil on the foil, fill with veggies, top with more oil or ghee, sprinkle on seasonings, and then wrap them up. I keep them in a ziplock bag so they don’t leak or get water-logged in the cooler. Also roasting hot dogs or sausages on a stick is always fun for kids and adults alike. Also consider grilling fruit. I love to grill peaches and pineapples.
One pot meals
If you get sick of grilling, think about packing some prepared one pot meals. I shop in my freezer for leftover stew, chili, or spaghetti sauce. Just keep it simple, you don’t want to be cooking in multiple pots or have to bring lots of separate ingredients. For spaghetti I make my noddles, and then put the sauce in the same pot and mix together.
Quick convenient foods are worth it for these occasions. Here is a list of some items I love to buy for all types of trips. They are great for snacks or meals alike.
Prepared burger patties
Fruit and nut bars
Bottled cold brew coffee
Single serve nut butter packets
Make sure you sign up so you get Eat Clean Play Dirty content first!