Camping Meals Made Easy
- Plan ahead. Choose simple meals that suit your favourite cooking method (camp stove, campfire). If you like to cook over the campfire be sure to have a backup plan in case of fire bans when the weather is hot and dry.
- Measure ingredients before you go and bring only the amount you need. This saves space and reduces waste.
- Package ingredients together, for example put all the dry ingredients for pancakes in one container, or chop all the vegetables for chili and pack them together.
- Make a list of all the food you want to bring and check off items as you pack them.
- Keep cold foods cold in your cooler. Add ice often!
- Pack extra snacks. Camping seems to make everyone hungry!
Camping (and eating!) at our PEI Provincial Park
It’s All About The Food
My family LOVES to camp, and we are lucky enough to live near the most beautiful PEI Provincial Park. It’s easy to escape for a weekend or just a quick overnight. Planning the meals and packing the food usually falls to me (because: mom and dietitian). Over the years I’ve come to rely on a few favourites that are easy to make and that my family all enjoy.
One of our favourites is campfire risotto. Risotto is one of those meals that sounds fancy and complicated, but really isn’t. You can make it on the camp stove but I like to use the cast iron Dutch oven and cook it over hot coals from the campfire.
It can be done in three easy steps:
- Sautee aromatic vegetables in oil. I usually use onion, celery, carrot and mushrooms (I chop everything at home and pack it in the cooler). Add arborio rice and stir until rice is coated with oil.
- Add liquid, a little at a time, and stir until it absorbs. Then add more. Keep doing this until the rice is soft. Broth is the go-to liquid, but I like to add a can of diced tomatoes as well, and a splash of wine or beer if I have it. If you run out of broth and the rice isn’t soft enough, just add water.
- Finish it off with some protein. Parmesan cheese is classic, and you can also add beans or any cooked meat or seafood. In this version I stirred in parmesan and edamame….so good.
Don’t Forget Dessert
Hot chocolate with roasted marshmallows, to be enjoyed by the campfire.
And almost the best part is that when we’re camping the kids think doing dishes at a picnic table is a novelty, so they’re happy to help while the adults enjoy the PEI sunset.