10 Practical Camping Meal Ideas

Camping trips give you that feeling of freedom, fresh air and connection with nature that no other type of travel can give you, that’s why we love them!

Camping food doesn’t have to be boring and tasteless, it just takes a bit of organization and pre-planning to enjoy tasty and varied food. And to make this task easier, here I bring you a list with practical and simple ideas to take camping. 

At the end you will also find a list with very useful and practical kitchen utensils and accessories, or at least they save my life during outdoor trips.

  1. For breakfast: Homemade granola and ready-to-eat pancakes

Bringing ready-made food from home can save a lot of time, especially when you’re on vacation and don’t want to waste time cooking or carrying extra ingredients (which in the end means more weight).

For breakfast the best thing to do is to bring a good amount of homemade granola to go with yogurt or milk. Simply prepare it at home and carry it in an airtight container. It lasts up to 3 weeks in perfect conditions, here is the recipe.

Another good idea is to make a banana cake or a carrot cake and take it for breakfast or lunch. It lasts 5 to 7 days without refrigerating, just keep it in an airtight container or bag.

10 Practical Camping Meal Ideas

  1. Easy sandwiches for trekking, walks or activities

When we go camping it is very common to go for walks or activities during the day, and for that usually the most practical thing to do is to take sandwiches. The key to a good sandwich (hearty and tasty) is to put at least two ingredients (ideally three) and a sauce so that the bread and other ingredients get a little wet.

  1. Hearty” salads 

The hearty salads are my favorite alternative for camping as they can be eaten cold and also take on a trip in a tupper. 

To make them hearty I suggest making a combination of carbohydrates (rice, pasta, quinoa or couscous) and/or protein (tuna, egg, cheese, legumes and/or nuts) + vegetable mix (tomato, cucumber, corn, zucchini, carrot, spinach, etc.) The combinations are endless, you just need a little imagination!

I recommend taking canned foods such as tuna, cooked vegetables (in jars or glass jars) or corn to have alternatives when putting together your salad.

  1. Pasta: a classic that never fails

The classic pastas are a must for camping, here I give you three proven and super approved ideas that can not miss on our trips:

  • Pasta with pesto and dehydrated mushrooms or dried tomatoes.
  • Pasta with cream (or evaporated milk) with ham or bacon
  • Pasta with tomato sauce and soy meat
  1. Couscous with vegetables and egg

I love couscous because it takes only 5 minutes to prepare and you only need boiling water. To make the couscous I recommend that before adding the water you add a pinch of salt, pepper and 1 tsp of curry powder and mix it well with the dry couscous. Then add boiling water and it will be much tastier.

Tip: Always carry a set of basic spices (salt, pepper, oregano, curry and chili powder or paprika), believe me it can make the difference between a tasteless meal and a delicious meal. 

  1. Rice and beans

This simple but tasty combination has become a must in our campsites. It is a very practical preparation since it is all done in the same pot. 

Cook the rice and add the beans (cooked black or red) with their juice. If you want to give it more flavor you can add some tomato sauce, a can of tuna, some dehydrated mushrooms or dried tomatoes.

A hearty and tasty preparation, ready in 15 minutes!=

  1. Marinated meats

If you have the possibility of taking a cooler that plugs into the car, or you are only going for a couple of days to a place where it is not too hot, do not hesitate to take marinated meat or chicken.

It is an excellent alternative to accompany with white rice or mashed potatoes. Just remember to eat it for the first 3 days so it doesn’t spoil.

  1. Snacks and appetizers “between meals” or to take on outings

Don’t forget to bring snacks! They are a lifesaver when we get hungry between meals or when we go for a walk during the day and want to recharge our batteries without wasting too much time.

  • Ideas of snacks for camping: dried fruit (peanuts, almonds, walnuts, raisins), whole fruit (apple, banana, grapes), cereal bars, coconut, vegetable chips, vegetable sticks (carrot or celery), etc..
  • Ideas of appetizers for camping: crackers, olives, canned seafood, provoleta cheese, cherry tomatoes, etc..

Also, if the campsite has authorized areas to make fire… Don’t forget to take advantage of it to cook!

Always carry a grill (or grate) in case you can make a fire at the campsite. For me there is no camping without one (or several) nights of campfire and grill, always accompanied by a good red wine (just thinking about it makes me want to leave again).

  1. Choripanes

A classic for its practicality and simplicity. You just have to put the chorizos on the fire and turn them from time to time so that they brown and cook inside. Then you can serve them with bread or cut them in slices as a snack.

  1. Quesadillas 

On our last trip we came up with the idea of making delicious grilled quesadillas (on a frying pan). We put cheese, ham and mushrooms on them and they were super tasty and filling. Just keep in mind that they are made very quickly so you have to be very careful to turn them after a few minutes so that they are browned on each side and ready.

You can also take advantage of the fire to cook any of the dishes mentioned above (and thus not waste the gas of the cooker), but be careful not to burn the pots and pans, you can use some aluminum foil for this.

Prepare your camping basket with your favorite foods for you and your family and have a great camping day.


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