Camping & Survival

Quick Camping Tip: Prepare Food Beforehand

Picture shows a meal being prepared over an open campfire.

It might sound pretty Type A of me, but I preplan, prepare and pre-package every meal before I go camping. Does this make me a control freak? No, it does not. It makes me smart. Preparing the weekend’s meals saves time and space.

Preparing and cleaning up after certain meals can take up to an hour. That’s an hour I would rather have sitting in an inner tube, fishing or sitting by the campfire. The best and most convenient camp foods are meals that don’t require silverware such as burgers, hot dogs or fajitas. Though hot dogs take hardly any preparation, fajitas do. Before leaving on your camping trip, chop all vegetables, shred lettuce and slice cheese. Then separate each into plastic baggies or food-grade containers. Doing this beforehand means, you get to leave the kitchen knife and cutting board behind, freeing up room in your bags. Further, it is easier to pack baggies into a cooler than many separate packages of fruits, meats and vegetables. Clean up is a cinch—there’s nothing to wash! As a bonus, you don’t have to worry about proper and safe disposal of gray water.

Another thing I like to do is portion out things such as chips, cereal and other snacks into individual plastic bags. This cuts down on bulk and waste. When someone needs something to snack on, they simply just grab his or her own baggie.

When planning meals, base them around ingredients you can use more than once. For example, ground beef and tortillas become hamburgers, tacos, breakfast burritos and a tin foil packet meal. Last night’s potatoes from the hobo packet turn into fried potatoes on the camp stove in the morning!

What is your favorite camping recipe? Share it with us in the comment section.


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Comments (3)

  1. In Nam we cooked rice w/shrimp/fish & fish sauce, made balls out of it wrapped each into banana leaves into 1 serving amounts and stuffed into bicycle inner tubes and carried them like ammo bandoliers did same with M-60 belts and carried gook rucks, wore tigers striped fatigues wore Ho Chi Min sandals, ate on the run watched Red Ball picked & chose fights. Grew hair long & wore beards. Went to rear short stays lived in jungle with tribes. The end

  2. My pre-prep favorite is boiled medium potatoes, chopped onions, chopped raw bacon (including the fat!), and raw eggs with garlic pepper and salt for spice. Pack the eggs and boiled potatoes, wrapped in newspaper that can double as fire start material, in the coffee pot to keep them from getting squashed. The baggied chopped raw onions and baggied raw chopped bacon can be packed into a cook pot with lid. A good stainless steel, thicker bottom frying pan will allow this meal to cook to perfection. It smells SO good in the morning, tastes just as wonderful, and sticks to your ribs for a day of enjoyment in the wilderness. Very little clean-up required.

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