Camping Trip Premade Meal Ideas

Camping Trip Premade Meal Ideas
You have loaded your pack, filled your camping stove with fuel and marked the trail on the map. Now the only thing missing is the food! Sometimes, figuring out what food to bring on a camping trip can be the most overwhelming aspect of trip preparation. Here are a few easy-to-make meal options that taste good and are easy to prep before you hit the trail.


If you have a long day of hiking ahead and want to spend a minimal amount of time preparing breakfast, opt for a hot and nutrient-rich oatmeal breakfast.

Oatmeal: For two servings, prepare (at home) 1 cup of instant rolled oats in a zipper-lock bag and 1/2 cup of dried fruit (optional) in another zipper-lock bag. On the trail, add the oats and dried fruit to 2 cups of boiling water, stir and let stand for approximately 10 minutes to cool. For added sweetness, top your oatmeal with cinnamon or brown sugar. For creamier oatmeal, add 1/3 cup instant milk to each cup of boiled water.



For a fancier breakfast, try this pancake recipe, taken from Dorcas S. Miller's "Backpacker: More Backcountry Cooking." You will need a lightweight frying pan on which to fry your pancakes.

For two servings of six pancakes each, mix (at home):
1 cup unbleached white flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
2 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tbsp. oil
1/3 cup powdered milk

Put mixture in a zipper-lock bag. Pack 2 tbsp. butter in an airtight container. In a separate airtight container, add maple syrup to taste.

On the trail add 1 1/4 cup water to the pancake mixture. Grease and warm your pan with butter, drop or pour the batter onto the pan to form a 4-inch pancake and let cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until you see bubbles rising to the surface. Turn the pancake over and cook an additional 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from pan, add syrup and butter to taste and enjoy!


You have been hiking for hours and are ready for lunch, but don't want to get out and prime your stove. What do you eat? Bagels hold up surprisingly well in the backcountry, if a bit bulky. The recipe below makes for a great first lunch on the trail.

Bagels with Cream Cheese, Mixed Nuts, and Dried Fruit

For two servings, pack (at home):

2 to 4 bagels in a zipper-lock bag
2 to 4 tbsp. cream cheese in an airtight container
1/2 cup mixed nuts in a zipper-lock bag
1/2 cup dried fruit (raisins, prunes, dried cherries, and dried blueberries work well) in a zipper-lock bag

On the trail, use a knife to spread the cream cheese on the bagel, and then sprinkle the nuts and dried fruit on the cream cheese. For added zest, sprinkle a bit of paprika or chili powder on top.


At the end of a long day, almost anything can taste good. But this pesto-pasta recipe will really make your taste buds sing.

Pesto Pasta with Pine Nuts and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

For two servings, pack (at home):

6 to 8 oz. spaghetti in a zipper-lock bag
1/3 cup pesto sauce in a airtight container
1/4 cup pine nuts or almonds in a zipper-lock bag
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes in a zipper-lock back

On the trail, add the tomatoes and spaghetti to 1 1/2 cups boiling water. Cook for 4 to 6 minutes, drain excess water and stir in nuts and pesto sauce. For added protein, add 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese or diced salami.


Article Written By Susan Heller

Susan Heller is a Seattle-based freelance writer who has been writing outdoor-related articles for five years. Her work has appeared in "University Week," the "Ballard News-Tribune," and In 2004 she was named a Mary Gates Scholar, and in 2005 she received her Bachelor of Arts in Comparative History of Ideas and Comparative Religion from the University of Washington.

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