Healthy + easy camping food ideas

by Kim on July 19, 2013

Hey there! Happy Friday!

Brent and I are heading out of town later today for our annual camping trip with friends and I am SO excited. We have 20 people going, and it’s gearing up to be an EPIC weekend.

When it comes to camping, my only real grievance is food. Depending on how luxurious your camping style is (we’re tenting it this weekend), it can be really challenging to choose, transport, store, and prepare food. Especially if you’d prefer that food to not be loaded with preservatives, or if you’re interested in eating somewhat healthfully so you have enough energy to rise off your camping chair now and then.

To up the ante even further: not only am I interested in healthy camping food, I want it to be food that’s simple and quick to prepare.

In case anyone out there is in a similar boat, here are few ideas.

camping food

Main Dishes

–Chicken sausage, roasted over the fire, instead of hot dogs/brats (I love these)

–Kabobs over the fire (marinated chicken or tofu with veggies)

–Sandwiches

If you’re pre-making the sandwiches, consider using a sturdier kind of bread like French bread or day-old bread from a sandwich shop so you don’t have to worry about them getting smashed

Another camping-friendly alternative is tortilla sandwich roll-ups

If you’re feeling fancy, these caprese campfire sandwiches look incredible

Walking tacos (prepare the meat mixture in advance and pack it in a Ziplock bag)

–Foil packets, aka hobo dinners.

Pre-chop meat and veggies of choice (chicken, beef, sausage, peppers, potatoes, onions, carrots, green beans, mushrooms, etc.), place them in a double-layer of heavy duty foil, dot with butter and sprinkle with S&P, and then roast on hot coals.

For some more specific packet ideas, go here, here, and here.

Sweet potatoes baked in the coals

Pita pizzas (cooked over flame, not coals)

Taco salad

–Tuna melts

Canned tuna on crackers or pitas, melt cheese over them on the fire

–Polenta patties

Pan-cook and served with honey or maple syrup for breakfast

Sides

–Corn on the cob

–Canned beans

–Fruit (sturdier ones like apples and oranges obviously do better, but I’m pre-washing/cutting strawberries, watermelon, and pineapple for this weekend and storing them in a big tupperware)

Premade salads like…

–Chicken salad with apples and grapes

I know people worry about refrigeration, especially if mayo is involved, but in other cultures, people keep their mayo in the cupboard, so maybe we’re overreacting?

Bean salad

Italian pasta salad

Lentil salad (I’m bringing a version of this one this weekend)

Snacks

–Nuts

–Popcorn (prepopped)

–Trail mix (or these trail mix cookies)

–Cubes of cheese and grapes on a toothpick or skewer

–Dried fruit

–Veggie straws! (my fav)

There are way too many nutritious, camping-friendly snack options to name. Just find this aisle in the grocery store:

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Dessert

Cinnamon apples

Orange cinnamon rolls

–S’mores, duh

You can find even more ideas here, here, and here.

Do you camp? What level of luxury do you prefer?

As long as I have access to some kind of bathroom facilities, I’m happy.

What would you add to this list?

 

Have a great weekend!!

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Sara August 12, 2013 at 9:42 am

The Dutch oven thing is great if you have a lot of people to feed. Chili or a hearty soup are easy in those cause you just throw everything in and let it cook! If you have a portable stove then making whole grain pasta is doable, as is eggs in the morning for people who like them. We always keep a cooler stocked with cold stuffs, wrapping things in extra plastic to keep out the water as necessary. Oh and of course veggie/chicken/hamburgers! I love camping!!

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Giselle@myhealthyhappyhome July 21, 2013 at 12:14 am

I LOVE camping but haven’t gone since before we had The Love Nugget. Actually, the last time we went was just a few weeks before we found out we were pregnant. Too long! I bring the whole kitchen when we camp! Tubs of food, pots, pans, stoves, grills, sinks, we’ve got ya covered! We’re looking at planning a trip in August with The Nugget and I can’t even imagine how much stuff we’ll have! Hope you had a blast!
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Kim @ Hungry Healthy Girl July 20, 2013 at 1:45 pm

I’m with you. I can camp, but there has to be some sort of bathroom facility with a shower. Sweet potatoes on coals sound delicious and trail mix is a must! Have fun!
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Katie @ running4cupcakes July 19, 2013 at 10:36 am

We go up to the BWCA for a week every other year and my go-to lunch is pb and j tortillas. Delicious, easy to pack and carry and won’t go bad.

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Kim July 19, 2013 at 9:37 am

I don’t camp! I’ve told my husband that he and the boys are welcome to go but I’m way to hold for tent sleeping!! Not my thing!!
Have fun!
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Ashley @ My Food N Fitness Diaries July 19, 2013 at 9:11 am

I grew up like…hardcore camping. We never went to campgrounds, so no bathroom facilities! My parents liked to be secluded without a bunch of people around so we usually found some random place in the woods. I have tons of great memories camping! My stepdad did some AMAZING meals in the Dutch oven. We had breakfast burritos, blueberry cobbler, you name it, made in that thing. We also did “pudgy pies”…those things where you put two slices of bread and put whatever filling in you want, clamp it together, and put it over the fire. We did pizza ones, grilled cheese, PB&J, and even dessert ones with pie filling!
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Kim July 19, 2013 at 9:22 am

Wow, sounds so gourmet! And probably well beyond my cooking skill level. :)

That’s awesome that you grew up camping so hardcore–it’s much easier to get accustomed to more luxury than less. :) And you probably didn’t care as a kid. I *think* I want to try true camping someday–like backpacking to your location, carrying everything on your own back, and surviving bathroom-facility-free. I’ll have to learn some Dutch oven cooking skills before then!

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