How to Prepare & Store Food While Camping

How to Prepare & Store Food While CampingWhether camping in a tent or camper, you're going to have to bring food along with you on the journey. Your menu can be as easy or as difficult as you desire. With all the conveniences now available for camping, preparing and storing your food should not be a problem. In fact, other than being outdoors, cooking should be no more difficult than it is inside your own kitchen at home. By storing your food correctly, it will keep for days and you won't have the local wildlife getting a free meal off of you.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Preparing Food

Things You’ll Need:
  • Camping stove
  • Grill
  • Utensils
  • Cooler
  • Frozen plastic bottles of water
  • Plastic containers
  • Aluminum foil
Step 1
Use your grill to cook any meats you bring on the trip. Grills are great to cook hot dogs, hamburgers, steaks and chicken. Cook them as you would at home. Bring your own grill with you or use a clean grill top to place over the fire pit to cook your food. Spray your grill top with a cooking spray, so your meat won't stick to it. Also, make sure your utensils are long enough to turn your food without getting burned.
Step 2
Roast your hot dogs or marshmallows over the open campfire with a stick or a hot dog cooking stick you can purchase at your local outdoors store. Place the stick through the hot dog and hold it over the fire until it's cooked through.
Step 3
Grill any vegetables as well. Place squash, potatoes, tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, green beans or corn and any other vegetable in some aluminum foil. Season them as you like and wrap the foil closed. Throw it on the grill and turn frequently.
Step 4
Use your camping stove to cook items such as coffee, bacon and eggs and pancakes. Stoves are also good to boil water for cooking or cleanup. Any type of frying pan or pot will do when cooking with a camping stove. If you'll be using pans over a campfire or on the grill, a cast iron skillet and pot is recommended.

Storing Food

How to Prepare & Store Food While Camping
Step 1
Choose a cooler that will safely accommodate your food and keep it cold. Placing frozen bottles of water inside of your cooler will keep the food and the cooler colder for a longer period of time. Freeze any meat that you won't be using the first day in camp. This will allow it to thaw inside of the cooler and cut down on the chances of it spoiling before you use it. It will also act as an ice block to keep everything inside the cooler cold.
Step 2
Store your nonperishable food items in a large plastic container that has a lid on it. This will keep your food items safe if it rains and will also keep everything together in one place. Bread and other soft items won't get smashed if they are contained in the plastic container.
Step 3
Place your cooking items such as pots, eating and cooking utensils, plates and cups in a plastic container. This way you'll have everything in one place when you need to find it. By storing them in the container, you'll keep everything clean when you go to use it again.
Step 4
Place your food storage container and cooler inside of your car when you go to sleep at night or in a place where it will be secure and away from your campsite. Critters such as raccoons and squirrels are quite resourceful and have learned how to open or chew through almost anything holding food. Never store your food inside of your tent.
Step 5
Tie your food items inside of a knapsack and hoist them up in a tree, if you are backpacking. Your goal is to keep them out of reach of any animals, such as bears, that may be attracted to your food. The animal will be back if it gets one meal out of you. Make sure to do this away from camp.

Tips & Warnings

Always properly dispose of any trash containing remnants of food.

Article Written By Joyce Starr

Joyce Starr is a professional writer from Florida and owns a landscaping company and garden center. She has published articles about camping in Florida, lawn care and gardening and writes for a local gardening newsletter. She shares her love and knowledge of the outdoors and nature through her writing.

Don't Miss a Thing!

All our latest outdoor content delivered to your inbox once a week.



We promise to keep your email address safe and secure.