Monday, September 16, 2013

5 Simple Meals for Smart Campers

When embarking on a family camping trip, one of the most overwhelming aspects is how to pack and prepare enough food to keep the kiddos happy during the adventure. Twenty-four hours of fresh air can build up a healthy appetite in little ones and adults. So here are 5 simple ideas for camping meals.

1.  Chili Night
Chili makes a great one-pot meal. You can bring a couple of cans of your favorite brand, or make your own homemade batch before the trip and pack it in a zip-lock in the cooler. Just pour the chili into a cast iron skillet over the campfire, and dinner is ready in a few minutes. This also makes a great warm meal for chilly outdoor nights.

2. Hot Dogs and Hamburgers
It wouldn’t really be camping with out a small grill. Packing a package of hot dogs and hamburgers along makes an easy and delicious camping meal when grilled over the flame. For extra fun, you can also cook hot dogs on a stick over an open flame, just like marshmallows. And if there is any chili left over from last night, you’ve got chili dogs to enjoy.

3. Bring Tin Foil
Sturdy aluminum foil is another ticket to a fun no-mess dinner. Sliced potatoes, onions bell peppers and sausages can be drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with seasoning inside a piece of tin foil. After folding the foil up, the pocket of food can be placed on the grill for twenty minutes until everything has cooked evenly. This can then be opened up and enjoyed with a fork.

These foil pockets are a great way to cook any leftovers in the cooler. And because they are folded in single size servings, each child can cook what he or she likes. At the end, just toss out the foil and wash your forks for practically no clean-up.

4. Egg Scrambles
Typically prepared over a camp stove, egg scrambles can make a delicious breakfast or dinner. Toss some onions, peppers, spinach, bacon, sausage, zucchini and whatever else is waiting in your ice chest and let them sizzle in a pan. Then whip up a few eggs and pour them on top. Hearty and yummy scrambles are packed with protein. They can be easily folded up into a warm tortilla for a burrito or simply enjoyed with a little melted cheese on top. Scrambles are another one-pan dish.

5. Sandwiches
The final smart meal for mess free camping is sandwich stuff. Packing a few deli meats, some sliced cheeses, a loaf of break, mayo and mustard is a simple way to have a meal ready for any time of day. Build a sandwich for lunch, dinner or just an afternoon snack. Sandwiches, especially peanut butter and jelly, are also easy to pack in case you will be eating a meal on the trail.

You’ve got North Face gear to properly attire the whole group, and you’ve practicing setting up tent poles. Now you know 5 quick and less mess meals to bring and should be just about ready to pack up the family sized ice chest and go.

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