Part of the fun of camping is being able to relax and enjoy a simpler life, which for most of us includes preparing meals.
If you are looking for some easy camp meal ideas to make camping life simpler and easier then you’ve come to the right place.
We certainly can’t cover all the camping recipes we have ever tried or used camping. But we are more than happy to give you a few recipes to make your camping experience more enjoyable.
Fast and Easy Healthy Breakfast Ideas for Camping
Experts will tell you that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I rarely eat breakfast at home. However, when camping, the fresh air and added activity leaves me waking up every morning famished.
Of course when my kids were young, breakfast for them was a must!
So, here are some quick and easy to prepare breakfasts that are perfect for camping.
Fruit and Muffins are Easy Camp Meal Ideas Kids and Adults Love
One of our children’s favorite camping breakfasts when they were growing up is a dish of fruit and a muffin washed down with instant cocoa.
You can either use fresh fruit or canned fruit. Make up your muffins in advance of your camping trip and then be ready for breakfast within minutes.
Hardy Campfire Hot Cereal
This simple and easy recipe is made ahead of time and cooked at the campground.
In a large ziplock bag mix the following ingredients for every two people in your camp.
- ½ cup quick oatmeal
- ¼ cup powdered milk
- 1/3 cup raisins or dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup walnuts and/or slivers of walnuts
- Tablespoon of brown sugar
- You can also add additional dried fruit or fresh strawberries, blueberries or other fruit once the cereal cooks.
In a pot heat 2 cups of water to boiling (2 cups per every two people). Pour in your baggie of cereal mix and stir well cooking for about 1 minute.
Then remove from heat and allow to stand for a minute or two and enjoy!
This hot cereal makes a great warm breakfast for those chilly mornings or when you have plenty of physical activity planned.
Omelets in a Bag
This is my favorite way to cook eggs while at camp since campfires are notorious for uneven heating.
We have made all different types of omelets using this method.
- 2 eggs beaten until scrambled
- Ham, cooked sausage, chicken. Bacon bits or any other meat you want included.
- Add to that other ingredients such as chopped green peppers, diced onions, mushrooms, diced broccoli, and your favorite cheese.
- Salt, pepper and other seasonings (we use a touch of garlic)
Place all ingredients into a ziplock baggie and place in boiling water for 5 to ten minutes until the eggs are completely cooked. Cut away the baggie and enjoy!
We use this egg cooking method to also make plain scrambled eggs for breakfast sandwiches.
Or simply as just scrambled eggs with toast made on the grill by buttering bread and then toasting each side.
Breakfast Sandwiches – Quick and Easy Camping Meals
Breakfast sandwiches are also an easy campsite breakfast especially if you make the biscuits ahead of time at home and bring them with you.
- 2 scrambled eggs cooked in a baggie according to the directions for the Omelets in the bag.
- Thinly sliced ham (Deli ham works great)
- Sliced Cheese
- Cut biscuits in half and place a slice of cheese on one of the halves of your biscuit
- Cook your eggs and warm ham on your grill (use aluminum foil on grill.)
- Place ham directly on the cheese (it will begin melting the cheese) and then the egg on top of the ham.
We normally cook two eggs in the same bag and then cut them in half, making a breakfast sandwich for each of us. However, some people prefer two eggs per sandwich.
Quick and Easy Camp Meal Ideas for Lunch
Our family normally makes a lunch while camping a pretty simple and easy meal, consisting mostly of sandwiches, chips and fruit and something to drink.
This is mainly because we break up into different activities and even when the entire family is camping we tend to eat lunch at different times.
For example, when we are out on the boat fishing, we normally take a sandwich with us, an apple or banana, some carrot sticks and tons of water.
Those who are feeling lazy and lay around camp reading normally make a sandwich or eat left overs from the night before.
We do try to keep some healthy foods on hand for lunches. Normally some raw vegetables and fresh fruit.
We also always pack several bottles of vegetables juice to make sure we are getting plenty of vitamins and minerals during the day.
Easy Camping Dinner Ideas
Dinner is the one time we go all out when preparing a meal for camping. We have run the gambit of everything one can imagine for dinner at camp. This includes making grilled pizza, Assorted Shish Kabobs to Roasting whole turkeys.
However, we find that simple meals are the best especially if you have young children and teens you are feeding.
Here are a few of our favorite simple family camping dinners.
1st Night Dinner Ranch Chicken and Noodles Recipe
No matter how early we arrive at our campsite, by the time we set everything up, collect firewood, and get every thing arranged no one feels much like cooking dinner.
But we are all hungry, so having this hearty made ahead dinner is perfect for our first night camping dinner.
- Noodles (we prefer angel hair pasta) enough for the entire family
- Boiled or grilled skinless chicken breast (2 normally cook 2 for 4 to 6 People)
- Chopped green peppers
- ½ chopped onion or ¼ cup chives
- Ranch dressing
Cook chicken and noodles and allow to cool.
Dice chicken, chop green peppers, and onions
In large bowl mix noodles, chicken peppers and onions
Add Ranch dressing until everything is coated and moist. Then refrigerate.
We normally serve this cold casserole with a toss salad or tomato slices for our first night’s dinner.
Campfire Beans – A Quick and Easy Camp Meal (Recipe)
When my kids were young they loved to camp thinking of it like the cowboys camping out in the old west. Therefore they felt that beans were the perfect camping dinner.
To make this hearty, but simple casserole more fun we ended up cooking the beans right in the cans.
This meal is made from canned baked beans and hot dogs and we serve it with slices of corn bread we make in advance and bring to camp with us.
- 1 can of beans per every 2 or 3 people.
- Hot dogs
- Chopped onions
Peel the labels off all bean cans and open them
Add chopped onions to taste
Cut up one or two hot dogs per can and add to baked beans
Place cans on the grill or in the coals of the campfire and heat until everything is hot stirring occasionally. (You can also cook all the beans together in a pot)
Note: When my children were teens they would each make their own can of campfire beans for both dinner and for lunch.
Boiled Dinner Recipe – One of Our Favorite Easy Camp Meal Ideas
Although the name of this dinner doesn’t sound very exciting, this hardy one pot meal is absolutely delicious and extremely simple to make.
This recipe will serve 4 to 6 people.
- 2 or 3 pound spiral ham or corned beef cut into serving size pieces ( You can cook the meat whole, but we find cutting it into serving size cuts down on cooking time and makes serving a snap.)
- 5 large potatoes peeled and cut into fairly good size chunks ( quarters or fifths)
- 6 or 8 large carrots peeled and cut into 3rds or quarters
- 3 large onions peeled and quartered
- 1 good size head of cabbage cleaned and cored
- 1 pound of frozen or fresh green beans
- Pepper and other seasonings (no salt the meat with add salt to everything else)
In a large dutch oven or stock pot place the cut pieces of ham and add enough water to cover the ham completely and sit on your grill or campfire to boil. (We also keep extra water near boiling temperature should we need it later)
Boil the ham or corned beef in the water for 30 minutes to 45 minutes and then add the rest of the ingredients and continue boiling until everything is cooked completely through (potatoes and carrots should slide from a fork)
If more water is needed to cover the ingredients then add water near or at boiling temperature)
Roasted Hot Dogs or Hot Dogs on a Stick
MalloMe Marshmallow Roasting Sticks Set of 8 Telescoping Smores Skewers & Hot Dog ForksNo camping trip would be complete without roasting a few hot dogs over the open fire.
You can either buy the hot dog/marshmallow forks made for this purpose or use sticks that you have peeled off the bark and soaked in water. (You don’t want a dry stick that can catch fire).
We normally serve roasted hot dogs with a bun, and Cole slaw or potato salad.
Grilled Shrimp and Fish with Corn on the Cob and Grilled Mushrooms Recipe
- Corn prepared ready to grill
- Extra large or Jumbo shrimp
- Fish fillets (We spend a lot of time fishing when camping and like to eat our catch. So we need to clean and fillet our fish ourselves.)
- Whole small mushrooms
- Olive oil
- Aluminum Foil
- Lemon wedges (if you choose)
- Butter flavored cooking spray
For this dinner we cover the entire top of the grill with aluminum foil as it keeps the shrimp and mushrooms from falling in between the grill wires.
- We melt butter and then brush the butter on the corn. Once the corn is buttered, we wrap it in additional aluminum foil adding a tiny bit of water before wrapping. (This allows the corn to steam while grilling making it softer and cooking it a bit faster).
- Place corn on the grill (make sure only glowing coals remain, no fire) while you prepare the rest of the food for cooking.
- Place a small amount of olive oil in a bowl and roll mushrooms in olive oil to coat them and then place on the grill.
- Spray the aluminum foil coated grill with butter flavored cooking spray and place fish and shrimp on the grill.
- While cooking, keep turning corn and then flip the fish and shrimp when half way done.
- We turn the mushrooms two or three times during the grilling process to ensure that they get heated through and cooked on all sides.
If you have someone who doesn’t like or is allergic to fish you can add hamburgers for them. Just make sure that you keep the hamburgers at the opposite side of the grill.
Camping Hobo Stew Recipe
This recipe for Hobo Stew is not the traditional recipe you will find in most cookbooks.
But it is a great way to use up all your leftovers so you don’t have to throw them out or carry them home.
There is no exact recipe for this stew as it will depend on what leftovers you have.
Here are some of the things that have ended up in our Hobo Stew.
- Ground beef
- Stray pieces of bacon
We normally cook up the ground beef, onions, celery and bacon in a frying pan and drain off the grease.
Then we place these ingredients into a dutch oven or large pot and add the potatoes, carrots and mushroom and a small bit of water and cook until the carrots and potatoes are done.
We then add mushroom soup to the entire thing, heat through and serve with bread and butter and left over biscuits.
Cooking while camping can be fun and should be part of the entire adventure and experience and hopefully these easy camp meal ideas and recipes will help to spurn your own cooking creativity on your next camping trip!