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Sep 20, 2006 01:38 AM

Camping Trip Food (with little to no cooking)

I'm on a 3 day trip in AZ this weekend and wanted to ask for ideas on what to bring. Since it's still quite warm here, spoilage is an issue. I did search some other camping threads and there were some nice recipes, but I'm not sure about how well we can keep stuff frozen/chilled. By the 3rd day, the chicken might be a litte suspect!

We can drive to the campsite, so packing weight isn't too much of an issue. I know some granola and jerky would work, but I want to kick it up a notch. For example... foil packets of Indian food (sold at specialty markets, Trader Joes, etc.) seem like an interesting idea. They can be warmed in hot water. Similarly, I've been enjoying the tuna and other fish now sold in foil packs. No need to be kept in a fridge, though I'm not sure what to do with them in the wild (I guess bring a one-time use jar of mayo) and make something.

Any other thoughts on easy-cook meal ideas? Thanks!

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  1. I forgot to add... anything in cans/jars is game as well. I'm happy to miz and match these with dry goods in a one dish pot. A can of XYZ brand chile + bag of pasta noodles, for example. Quick and easy.

    1. Fondue. You can do the prep ahead.

      1. I always do some granola and then get asceptically packaged milk or soy milk. It makes a good filling breakfast and doubles as a trail mix later on. This recipe from Alton Brown is great; easy and tasty. I vary the nuts (my fave is to replace the cashews w/ sunflower seeds - it's cheaper and the kids like it better).

        Why can't you bring an ice chest if you have a car? It can make a world of difference in the quality of food you can enjoy.

        Whoops. Just re-read your post and noticed you mentioned granola, sorry to have gone w/ the obvious.

        1. Google "scouts" "food" and you'll get plenty. Some of it is just adequate, but there are some real gems as well - and the gems are especially well suited to the camping experience (do you really want white-tablecloth food in such a non-tablecloth setting?)

          I'll get you started:

          1. I grew up going on camping trips with my mom and her friends. Car camping with good food and wine and sometimes backpacking with good food and less wine. A couple of things to try:
            Fantastic Foods hummus mix with pitas/carrots-- it's a yummy post-hike appetizer and you only need to add water

            for breakfast-- mix dried cherries, toasted walnuts, cous cous and powdered milk and sugar (not exactly sure on proportions, but I think you could eye-ball it) in individual zip-lock bags; in the morning you just need to dump the mix in a bowl or travel mug and add boiling water

            for dinner- wow, lots of choices; if you start out with ice or ice packs in a cooler I think you could keep fresh veggies for at least two days so you could try a fresh meal the first night (homemade camper's stew, steaks, pork chops), then some kind of cured sausage over the fire or on the cookstove with sauteed asparagus for the second night (or omlettes-- eggs keep a good while out of the fridge esp. if you wipe them with veggie oil)
            Fantastic Foods vegetarian sloppy joes are also good
            Or what about quesadillas (if you got adventurous I bet you could roast a red pepper over the open fire)? Cheese lasts a while.
            I also recommend Annie's mac and cheese (white cheddar) with almost anything mixed in (chunks of peppery salami, fresh tomatoes, etc.)

            I personally am not so excited about the packaged fish, but let me know if you come up with anything delish. I know a lot of hikers get into the sardines.

            And in my opinion, brandy and hot chocolate are a must, unless it's really hot out, which it probably is in AZ. Oh well.

            I love the camping! Have fun.