Aug 9, 20181459 views

Share Your Camping Recipes

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Help! So I'm in need of some good recipes and meals people make when camping and backpacking. I'm already not the most skilled or creative when I'm in the kitchen at home, and it tends to just be worse when I'm on the trail (oatmeal, oatmeal and dried fruit, oatmeal...you get the idea).
I generally carry a Jetboil when I'm backpacking (and often when I'm car-camping just to heat up water for coffee), and a nice skillet and pot when I'm at campgrounds. So I have tools to at least get the job done, I just am terrible at figuring out what to do with them.
I'd love to hear about what people make when they are camping, or see pictures, or even get full recipes! Sharing creative ways to transport and pack food would be a nice bonus as well ;)
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ericbbe, LaserGuidedSock, and 15 others
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Stove-top stuffing! I add dehydrated mushrooms and some freeze dried veggies, it weighs nothing but is great comfort food on the trail. A packet of foil chicken is a nice addition as well.
-- Any Knorr rice/noodle side + 1 can of chicken -- Ramen Bomb (google it) -- cook some quinoa with taco seasoning and dehydrate (along with jalapeno, salsa, & cheese). Boil water and rehydrate in a quart freezer bag
Canned chicken (or dehydrated), minute rice, raisins, slivered almonds, curry powder. Cook it all in a pot with water or add a bullion cube. Test amounts at home, then pre-pack everything in a bag...easy after a long day of hiking/paddling.
Dehydrated ground beef, dh rice, some dh carrots, some lard, salt and spices All in a vacuum bag, just add hot water.
On campout with a large enough skillet - preferably cast iron - spatchcock chicken. cut The back out of a whole chicken, season well with salt and pepper, open the bird so you can put bone side down on the skillet and weigh it down with a goodsized rock wrapped in foil. Depending on the fire below and the outside temp, cook for about 20 minutes then turn over, reapply rock and allow to cook to done (160-165) and skin is crispy charred. You can test the leg for doneness but I usually use a quick read thermometer.
One word: cous-cous. Add varieties of seasonings, veggies, and meat as desired. Pouch-packed chicken or tuna is a great option.
Buying a dehydrator was a game changer for me. I've made a variety of 1-pot meals like spaghetti or stirfry with flat rice noodles that dehydrate and rehydrate really well. work great but it's good to cut them before dehydrating. It makes it easier to package later. Chia seed breakfast bowls are great too because you can mix a bunch of stuff (oatmeal, instant coffee, protein powder, hemp seeds, dried fruit) and these mixes work well cold soaked or cooked in hot water. In the dehydrator, I've also done mashed sweet potatoes and hummus and dried fruit (dehydrated watermelon is incredible!). For any dehydrated 1-pot meal, the trick is to cook the meal WITHOUT oil but then add oil (i.e. olive oil) before you eat it. In the hummus example, that means using any regular hummus recipe (chick peas, tahini, lemon juice, garlic, cumin, salt, etc...) but no oil. Maple syrup mixed with ginger & sea salt is another easy, high energy thing to have. I brought 500ml of this in a soft flask on a trip this year and I was glad to have it. Watch a short walkthrough of the food I brought for a 6-day backcountry trip in the Canadian Rockies: https://youtu.be/1bfktzG9x3Q?t=5m55s
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*This requires a little prep beforehand* foil packs with ground sausage(or not), potatoes, onions, carrots and seasoning. Just wrap it tight and stick it under a bed of coals.
Also cooking whole ears of corn in the fire is good .
And cooking any form of meat on a hot rock is always a crowd pleaser.
If I were having to be weight/refrigeration conscious, I pack Vigo Red Beans and Rice or any of the Good to Go camp meals.
Backpacking food should be much lighter and cook faster than car camping food. There are some delicious freeze-dried meal options, Packet Gourmet being a little more pricey than the other brands but very tasty. For car camping keep it simple and start testing at home until you feel more comfortable and get inspired. It took me a few years before I started cooking on the fire pit, including using the Dutch oven to bake bread. Having a pie iron is fantastic because you can turn a few slices of bread in a meal! You can go either savory or sweet. Our favorite camp meal is also very simple (see image). Bring a nice bread, chop tomatoes and onions (equal quantities when chopped), fry them gently in the pan until soft, add salt and pepper and serve with bread. Again, start simple and add slowly to your cooking skills. I organize my cooler with baskets and metal jars (insulate), prevents water from getting into food. For backpacking, I bring insulation bags to speed up the dehydration and keep things warm. Having a treat on the trail is important, a piece of very good cheese or dried sausage for example. Enjoy!!
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mdicarlo
Pie irons for car camping are awesome. I was 2nd runner up for best pie iron recipe with this combo: crescent roll crust, brie, fig jam and ham! Another great one is cinnamon raison bread crust and cream cheese in the middle.
My go to trail meal when I can’t afford Pack It Gourmet: 1 packet of roasted chicken ramen, 3/4 of seasoning packet 1 peanut butter single cup or big table spoon 2 tablespoons freeze dried veggies 1 packet foil chicken 1 packet sriracha
Every night beans and rice. *Instant rice *Instant refried beans ( http://a.co/d/h885lJv ) *Single slice of spam, a cheese stick, precooked bacon, whatever you have, a Taco Bell sauce packet is awesome too. Fill your cup with rice, add to pot. Fill cup with water twice, add to pot Boil rice for a few minutes, add to foil pouch with half of the beans and a little extra something if you have it (can't do too much). It should be watery. (I would save the pouch for this purpose, works great for warming your sleeping bag while waiting.) Wait a while. When you can comfortably knead the pouch to mix it up you can eat, save the pouch for the next day's meal. I ate this almost every night on the PCT last year, enough carbs and protein to keep you going and was often great to go to bed with a full warm belly.
Camp skillet butternut squash enchilladas! Requires a little prep prior. 1 butternut squash Mushrooms 1 onion Tortilla Shredded cheese Refried beans Enchilladas sauce or salsa verde
At home prep: Cut the butternut squash & cook. Smash up once fully cooked and pack into a container. Cut mushrooms & onions and carmelize. Put in same container as squash. At camp: Line skillet with aluminum foil (for less mess & spill over). Put veggies & beans into each tortilla and roll up. Place into skillet. Cover with sauce and then cheese. Cover skillet with another aluminum foil. Cook skillet over campfire until cheese is bubbling.
Whenever I make chili for the family, after supper I pop what’s left in my dehydrator overnight and put one cup full in each hiking meal bag (reusable zip lock bags that you can put boiling water in—I get mine from Dutchwaregear.com ( https://dutchwaregear.com/product/food-storage-bag/ ) but I think you can get them (shorter ones) from Pack-It-Gourmet, also)...anyway, I toss the bagged chili in the freezer and grab it out next time I go on a hiking trip. The chili tastes awesome reconstituted with a cup of boiling water. When originally making up the chili, though, be sure to remove all the grease from the meat you use, as grease and dehydration don’t play nicely together.
My FAVORITE camp meal, though, requires the little titanium rice cooker (Keith) I bought here on Mass Drop. I add jalapeño summer sausage (easy to carry in my backpack) to the rice before cooking. I use my tiny Fancee Feest alcohol stove with its simmer ring to heat the Keith Rice Cooker. Twenty minutes later, when the rice is done to perfection, it has absorbed all the spicy juices from the jalapeño summer sausage. Everyone in my family LOVES this meal!
And my favorite camp drink is to steep a Bigelow Vanilla Chai Tea bag in a mug of hot water and then, after the tea is nice and strong, stir in a package of hot chocolate mix. Best cold weather camping drink ever!
Light weight and low volume. All I chew are miles :)
One of my favorites involves a coarse wheat cracker (graham cracker), a cocoa and milk bar (chocolate), and a blackened sugar puff (marshmallow). I call it s'mores.
Faux Pho Serves 1 1 bowl Snapdragon brand instant Vietnamese Pho Soup 1 package beef flavored ramen 1/4 cup onion, diced 1/3 cup green or napa cabbage, shredded 1-2 oz. good quality beef jerky, thinly sliced 2 cups water 1 tsp vegetable oil pinch cayenne pepper (optional) 1 sprig wild watercress (optional)
Cut the fresh onion and cabbage and seal them a zippered bag. They'll keep well enough to use them on your first night. Heat the oil and saute the onion and cabbage until the onion begins to turn translucent. Add the jerky and saute another minute. Add the water and flavor packets from both soup packages and stir well. Then add one or both of the dried noodle bundles and simmer until noodles are tender, 1-2 minutes. Garnish with cayenne and watercress if available.
loremaster
I love that this is named Faux Pho.
Stick to yer Ribs Breakfast Porridge (Oatmeal all dressed up and fortified) serves three hungry campers * 1/3 cup powdered milk * 1 teaspoon kosher salt (if using finer salt, start with 1/2 teaspoon and add to taste) * 1/2 cup rolled oats * 1/2 cup steel-cut oats * 1/4 cup quinoa * 1/2 cup raisins or dried cranberries * 1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans * 1 teaspoon cinnamon * 2 tablespoons sugar (maple, brown, or white)
Put everything in a zipper bag. At camp, add 3 cups water and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes.
I've been watching Ultralight Dandy on youtube - he's got some really good recipes for the trail.
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kwillson
Hey, that's coincidental. I just registered to Massdrop this week and now seeing my channel being recommended here. Thank you. If you've got any questions please ask.
UltralightDandy
Dude, amazing work! Love the cat, too!
My backpacking food is pretty much limited to prepackaged freeze dried meals right now :(
But for car camping, I have a little more fun with it. I got a mini webber charcoal grill earlier this summer and it's the shit. I only wish I'd gotten the travel version as it's easier to carry and more compact that what I got (Smokey Joe). But for 30 dollars for the grill and 10 for the small chimney starter, it's not bad. We've grilled burgers, sausages, corn on the cob, and peaches so far, but I know there's a lot of other good stuff that's pretty easy to grill. And these grills can just be set on a picnic table or the ground. Sometimes we'll even roll up and have a quick picnic with them. We had a "ninja barbecue" in a park that took maybe 45 minutes from parking to leaving this weekend while we waited for a ferry. And for breakfast, I have a Coleman propane stove and I'll just make normal breakfast stuff like bacon, eggs, oatmeal, etc.
PS: If you get a charcoal grill, get the damn chimney starter, it's so worth it. I always grilled with gas growing up and the first few times I tried charcoal, I used lighter fluid and it sucked. Starting the coals was annoying and took forever. And it was all really unreliable. Plus it tasted slightly like gas. I was ready to write off charcoal as old tech and give up. But the chimney starter reliably starts plenty of charcoal with nothing but a couple of newspaper pages and some chill time in camp. It requires no attention, beyond the basic attention you'd give to a burning fire to make sure it doesn't catch something. The one that is the right size for the 14 inch kettle I got only cost 10 dollars and it's small enough to fit inside the grill during transport. I also found hardwood briquettes worked better than lump charcoal for me, though lump is more natural and I like the idea of it better.
Rexar5
Bonus of carrying your own grilling gear: not relying on campground fire rings in places when there are fire bans in the area. Often you can grill with your own equipment when you can’t burn wood or charcoal in the fire ring. And I second Rexar5’s chimney starter recommendation.
Rexar5
Totally agree with the chimney starter, that was a revelation for me!
I have a ton of trail cooking information at my blog www.backcountrycuisine.net. check it out and let me know if you have any questions. I mostly do one pot meals, but you must know that it is all in the sauce you use! I mostly make my own sauces from powdered ingredients, but there are some store bought ones like curry cubes from Golden curry. If you want to get really crazy, you can bake and make some seriously amazing meals in the backcountry. I also have a youtube channel if you like that better than reading. Best of luck and again, let me know if you have any questions! -Dustin
I'm a fan of cold soaked couscous - Add a seasoning packet of your choice and make it different every time. Tuna or salmon packets are a great source of protein to add as well. I like cold coffee, so I don't mind cold soaking everything, but you can certainly do it with boiled water as well. You can also get dehydrated hummus which I think tastes pretty good.
Honestly the way I come up with anything I bring on a backpacking trip is think of what I normally enjoy cooking and ask myself "Can I dehydrate this and put it into a single bag" a lot of times the answer is yes if you're willing to search for the ingredients. If you like cold soaking, key thing is to make sure you're picking things that a dehydrated, and not just dry ingredients. wouldn't want to end up with something you'd have to soak for hours.
Lunch wise, I always pick things that I don't have to cook since usually I'm trying to get plenty of miles in for the day. Complete Cookies are amazing for the amount of calories and nutrition and they're not expensive or heavy.
If I'm car camping, I'll freeze some meat (I like cuts from a roast)/veggies and bring tinfoil. make a small package out of the foil, put in all the ingredients, seal it up, and put it directly in the fire - won't take long and all the juices will keep everything from drying out.
Zexall
I love using cous cous while backpacking. I haven't yet tried cold soaking... how long do you soak?
megin
Probably about 30 minutes. I start it before I set up camp, get everything else set, then it's pretty much done by the time I have camp set for the night. :)
Ramen bomb, so many variations, Google it. Also freezer bag cooking, basically dehydrated meals you buy or make yourself, put into freezer bag, add boiling water to bag and let soak. Cold soaking is also similar but you don't need hot water so you can ditch the stove and save a little weight. So many recipes but I think Ramen Bomb is probably the simplest and cheap :)
Thor-tron
Ditching the stove also means ditching coffee, so thats basically never happening haha.
But great suggestion with the Ramen! Not sure why I never thought of this for quick trips!
Is the word "to backpack" still used in the old sense of hiking a trail and camping in a tent?
I thought that it had been completetly co-opted by the meaning of going to Thailand on a plane and staying in a youth hostel.
I'm not sure I really see the problem with oatmeal and dried fruit every day :P
engicoder
You'd see the problem after a week, 3 meals a day.
You saying you'd want to skip Soo's for some flavorless oatmeal? hahaha
livingspeedbump
Bound. Up.