Camping is a great way to spend time with family and friends and get away from the rest of the world. When we unplug and move to take ourselves away from the things in life that stress us, we get an opportunity to see the world from a fresh light and find joy in the everyday again. An organized meal plan for camping makes the trip even more enjoyable.
One thing that makes people shy away from camping is fear over the process of cooking for their families without all of the conveniences of home. With a little planning, you can create amazing meals over the campfire and enjoy the same comforts of home.
How to Meal Plan for Camping
Start with a plan to keep food cold. A great way to do that is to get a cooler. Save your back with this one on wheels. Dry ice will last longer to help keep your food colder than traditional ice. When you are packing perishable foods that can be frozen like meat and cheese, freeze them before your trip so they stay cold even longer.
If you like to freezer cook you will love how easy this menu planning habit can make your camping trips. Do all of the prep work for your favorite soups, stews, and grilling dishes at home and freeze to make your camping trip easier. Preparing meals ahead of time means no clean up too!
Foil packet meals are also great for camping because the prep work can be done at home, you don’t need any cookware, and there is zero clean up required. You can find my favorite foil packet camping meals here.
Now create a menu with what you already have available. Any old notebook will work for this, or you can purchase this adorable camping meal planner. It even has space for your grocery list.
Your meal plan for camping should include three meals per day and at least two snacks. Camping often involves activities like hiking and swimming that burn a lot of calories. Protein rich snacks can help curb hunger between meals.
You don’t have to skip dessert while you are in the wilderness. Plan for that too! Frozen fruit with a cake mix on top cooked in a Dutch oven makes a delicious cobbler.
Tip: Don’t forget the condiments! Bring salt, pepper, ketchup, mustard, and any other condiments you would eat with your meals at home.
You will want to eat the meals on the menu by first using the items that will thaw and spoil the fastest.
Pantry stable goods are the easiest to pack since they don’t have to be kept cold. Replace traditional milk with boxed milk that does not need refrigeration before it is opened, and pack snacks that can last for days without refrigeration like trail mix and fresh fruits and vegetables. This is one of our faves!
Fishing for food is a great idea, but make sure you are permitted to keep the fish and have a proper license. Don’t forget to pack your fishing gear and poles!
Always have a backup plan in case fishing doesn’t go so well too. This can be as simple as some canned meals like soup or tuna fish.
Creating a meal plan for camping will ensure you have everything you need to enjoy quality, stress-free time in the great outdoors without having to leave your campsite to purchase something you forgot.
Do you have a tip or trick to meal plan for camping? I’d love to hear it! Please leave a comment below.