How to Cook Camping Food

How to Cook Camping Food
Many people enjoy camping because of its simple, natural feel. But that doesn't mean you have to suffer with substandard food. By using just a few tricks, like substituting powdered milk and eggs for real milk and eggs, you can introduce all the comforts of home. If it can be cooked on the stove or in the oven at home, you can cook it on a stove--or in the fire--while camping.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Camping stove or campfire
  • Pots, pans or foil
  • Camping food
  • Eating utensils
Step 1
Measure the ingredients for meals before you leave the house. Package all dry ingredients together and write preparation instructions--along with how much water to add--on the bag or on a piece of paper slipped into the bag.
Step 2
Fire up your camp stove and bring the water to a boil.
Step 3
Add the dry ingredients for your chosen meal into the water and stir or, if you don't want to get a spoon dirty by stirring, put a lid on the pot and agitate until the ingredients are mixed.
Step 4
Follow the cooking instructions you left in or on the bag. In most cases, this means cooking the food until any dehydrated ingredients are reconstituted and any raw ingredients are thoroughly cooked.
Step 5
Turn off the camp stove, let the food cool enough to eat, then serve immediately.

Tips & Warnings

For fried foods like tortillas or pancakes, mix the dry ingredients with water in a separate bowl. Add a bit of oil to your frying pan, heat it on the camp stove until the oil is hot, then fry your foods in the pan.
Raw meat should be eaten right away on a camping trip unless you have the means to keep it cool at food-safe temperatures until the next meal. Cook the raw meat first so that no blood or other fluids contaminate already-cooked food. Make sure to disinfect cutting boards and knives used to cut raw meat just as you would at home.
If you have access to a campfire, you can cook almost anything just as you would at home in the oven. Just add the ingredients to a cast-iron Dutch oven and place it in the coals of the fire. You can also package meals in foil--meat, vegetables and potatoes, for example--and place these in the fire to cook.
Make sure that all hot foods stay hot and all cold foods stay cold. If you're unable to maintain foods at food-safe temperatures, they're not suitable for camping.

Article Written By Marie Mulrooney

Marie Mulrooney has written professionally since 2001. Her diverse background includes numerous outdoor pursuits, personal training and linguistics. She studied mathematics and contributes regularly to various online publications. Mulrooney's print publication credits include national magazines, poetry awards and long-lived columns about local outdoor adventures.

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