Campfire Cooking for Kids

Campfire Cooking for KidsWhether you head to the mountains, forest or beach, camping with your kids is a great way to spend time together and to create family memories. Once you have planned your trip and bought your camping gear, you should start thinking about what food you want to bring. Your meals should be easy to prepare, and your menu should consist of foods your kids enjoy, such as hot dogs and marshmallows. With careful planning and preparation, you and your kids will have a delightful time cooking and eating around the campfire.


Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Pots and pans
  • Campfire grill
  • Dutch oven
  • Cooking utensils (spatula, tongs, etc.)
  • Aluminum foil
  • Cups
  • Utensils
  • Plates
Step 1
Plan ahead. Before you leave on your camping trip, sit down with your kids to plan your meals. You can either brainstorm ideas together, or you can give your children a few recipes to choose from. As you create your list, keep in mind to pick meals that are both easy to make and easy to clean up.
Step 2
Pack your cooking equipment. Along with your pots and pans, you will also need to bring plates, cups, and utensils. For stationary camping, you may want to pack heavier equipment like a Dutch oven and a camping grill. If you are camping in multiple places, you should pack lightly and rely on foods you can cook in foil or on a stick.
Step 3
Get your kids involved. During your trip, try to make meal preparation a fun experience for the whole family. Younger children can help find sticks to cook hot dogs and marshmallows; and older kids can cut vegetables and meat for stews and shish-kabobs. Once each meal is over, your kids can also help by washing their dishes and utensils.
Step 4
Cook campfire breakfasts for kids. For breakfast, choose meals that take little time to prepare so you have more time to explore your surroundings. You can fry bacon in a pan, or cook eggs in a hollowed-out orange peel (see Resorces for recipes). For an even simpler breakfast, you can "toast" bread or bagels over the grill, and top them off with peanut butter.
Step 5
Cook campfire lunches for kids. Just like breakfast, try to keep lunch as simple as possible to give you more time to hike, swim and play games. Easy lunches include hamburgers, stews or soups, and hot dogs and baked beans. For side dishes, you can use fruit and trail mix.
Step 6
After a long day of activities, your family will need a hearty meal for dinner and dessert. Tin foil dinners are an easy option, and your kids can help chop the carrots and potatoes. If you have a Dutch oven, you can make chili or even a pizza. For dessert, kids love to make their own s'mores or banana boats wrapped in tin foil. (See Resources for recipes.)

Tips & Warnings

Remember to teach your kids about campfire safety. Make sure they understand to avoid playing around the fire.

Article Written By Caroline Tung Richmond

A native of Washington, D.C., Caroline Tung Richmond has worked as a freelance writer since 2007. Her articles have appeared in both print and online publications such as the "Baltimore Sun," "Highlights" and She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Brigham Young University.

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