8 Camping Meals You'll Want to Bring Home with You

Get a little fancy with your meals in your home away from home.

There’s nothing quite like a campfire meal. For me it feels almost primal to cook beneath the stars out in the woods. I didn’t grow up camping, it wasn’t until I was 18 that I spent my first real night in a tent. I realized that camping challenged me. It brought me away from everything that was familiar and made me manage being uncomfortable. It was this stripping of the luxury that I needed in order to appreciate the efforts of a simple meal enjoyed with friends, and a night spent sleeping on fresh earth. 

Now, I have always been a budget camper. Meals weren’t something that my friends and I really focused on. So breakfast often consisted of an apple and power bar and dinner was typically a can of soup, heated up quickly and gulped down. Deep down though I was never satisfied. I love food and while you can’t expect to have a gourmet restaurant style meal ready for dinner each night, you can try to make basic ingredients feel five star! 

While, the meals below all take a little bit more time to make than heating up a can of Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup they will for certain better satisfy your hunger. They all require a minimum amount of ingredients so they are perfect for both backpacking and car camping. 


Photo by Gustavo Quiros and GQ Photography

Breakfast suggestions:

1. Campfire Breakfast Burritos 

They taste just as good as they sound. These burritos can either be made vegetarian or with meat. The total cook time is 35 minutes with 15 minutes of prep time. They can also be prepped the night before and then warmed up in the morning near last nights coals. Also great to wrap up and eat later as lunch.

What you’ll need: (Recipe makes 12)

  • Roll of aluminum foil
  • 12 flour tortillas
  • 10 eggs ( scrambled) 
  • Shredded cheddar cheese 
  • 1 bag of hash browns cooked (or left over potatoes from dinner sliced thinly)
  • 1/2 lb. of cooked sausage and/or bacon (optional) 

How to make it: 

First, cook the sausage, bacon, hash browns, and eggs. Then, lay out the tortillas and evenly place desired ingredients inside, sprinkle cheddar cheese on top. Next, roll the burrito up tight and wrap in foil. Finally, place over campfire grill to cook for 20 minutes. Enjoy! 

2. “Lumberjack" Breakfast 

This is a very hearty and filling breakfast. It’s easy, fun, and delicious. It will make you feel right at home in the forest. 

What you’ll need: (Serves 2-3 people per foil wrapping)

  • A roll of aluminum foil
  • 3 sausages or 6 strips of bacon
  • Frozen hash browns or leftover cooked potatoes
  • 2-3 eggs
  • *Optional chopped tomatoes and green onions
  • Shredded cheese of any kind 

How to make it:

Lay the sausages or bacon on a double layer of foil and spray lightly with cooking spray.

On top of the meat, add a handful of frozen hash browns or left over potatoes. 

Then crack an egg or two over the top and sprinkle with tomatoes and onions if you’d like.

If you desire more flavor, add some of your favorite spices. However, it isn’t necessary.

Wrap up packet and place on the BBQ for 15-20 minutes or until meat is cooked thoroughly. 

Finally, open it up, add shredded cheese, place back on heat until cheese is melted and then enjoy your delicious and filling breakfast with your camp buddies. 

3. Orange Peel Cinnamon Buns

These are fun, tasty, and really easy. They also allow you to put your orange peels to use. And the best part is they satisfy that breakfast sweet tooth urge in all of us. 

What you’ll need: (Each peel cooks one cinnamon roll) 

  • Roll of aluminum foil
  • Cinnamon roll in pop-tube, buy with frosting
  • Whole orange peels
  • Knife and Spoon

How to make it: 

Keep rolls in a cooler. Gather oranges and slice them in half. Scoop out the orange and leave the peel. (You can save the oranges and eat them later.) Open the rolls and place them in each orange. Top each orange peel half with it’s mate. Wrap in foil and put an X on top. Cook oranges on medium heated coals in the morning or grill if you have a fire set up. Flip upside down while cooking. Should take about 12 minutes. Remove from heat, open foil, drizzle frosting on top and dig in. 


Dinner suggestions: 

4. Chili Cheese Fries

Super easy, and guiltily satisfying at the end of a long day full of activity. Perfect for a high calorie, not so healthy meal to indulge in. 

What you’ll need: (Recipe serves 4. Total time 40 minutes)

  • 1 bag of frozen crinkle cut french fries
  • 1 tablespoon of butter melted
  • 4 slices of american cheese
  • 1 can of Hormel no bean chili.

How to make it:

Warm up grill or camping stove. Melt the butter and pour over frozen fries. Cook the chili. Tear off foil and make float boats. Place fries in the center and loosely fold up. Leave hole at the top for steam to escape. Cook on the grille over fire for 20-30 minutes stirring once. Remove once fries are cooked through. Top each packet with some chili and 2 slices of cheese and heat until melted in. Then dig in!

5. Grilled meat and potato foil packets.

This meal is filled with protein and wonderful flavors. An easy meal to make with friends and enjoy on a cool night. 

What you’ll need: (Recipe serves 4. Total time to make 40 minutes.)

  • Aluminum foil
  • 10-12 red potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 1 packet of dry ranch seasoning mix
  • 1 small onion
  • 6 slices of cooked bacon
  • 12 thin slices of frozen breakfast sausages cooked 
  • salt and pepper if desired
  • butter

How to make it: 

First, cook the bacon and sausage. Then chop the onion. Use 4 sheets of foil and spray with cooking spray. Place some potatoes on each sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper (optional). Then sprinkle with the ranch seasoning mix for taste. Top with the butter, chopped onion, cooked bacon and sausage. Wrap each foil packet tightly and cook of 30 minutes. Then open up and taste the goodness. 

6. Hot Dog Stew

This meal is great when you need something quick, somewhat healthy, and better than a simple can of soup. 

What you’ll need: (Recipe feeds 4-5 people and is ready in 15-20 minutes)

  • 1 can of Campbell’s Tomato soup
  • 1 can of Campbell’s Bean and Bacon soup
  • 1 can of Campbell’s Vegetable Vegetarian soup
  • 1 package of hot dogs of your choice.
  • 1 can of corn
  • 1 can of chopped tomatoes (optional)

How to make it:

In a large pot empty all of the cans of soup. Add three cans of water and the can of corn and chopped tomatoes, if desired. Bring just to a boil. Chop up hotdogs and add them to the soup.  Cook over medium heat for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then eat up!


Dessert Suggestions:

7. Banana Boats:

Fun, tasty dessert. That will satisfy your nighttime snack craving. 

What you’ll need: (Each banana serves one person. Ready in less than 10 minutes.)

  • Aluminum foil
  • Bananas
  • Marshmallows
  • Chocolate Chips
  • Extras: nuts, peanut butter, etc.

How to make it:

Open up each banana along one of the seams. Sprinkle in chocolate chips and marshmallows. Close tightly in aluminum foil. Cook over coals, or logs, or warm grill. (They are the best over coals.) They should cook for 5-7 minutes. Then open and add more toppings if you wish and enjoy. 

8. Finally, S’mores Cones

Everyone loves campfire S’mores. Instead, switch things up with this alternative way to make your favorite camping dessert.

What you’ll need: (Each cone serves 1. Ready in 10 minutes.)

  • Sugar or waffle cones
  • 1 bag of mini marshmallows
  • Bag of chocolate chips

How to make it:

Fill each cone with marshmallows and chocolate chips. Wrap in aluminum foil. Place on heated grille for 7-10 minutes. Unwrap and eat up!


Photo by Gustavo Quiros and GQ Photography

Have more camping meal ideas? Tells us by contributing to our journal. 

Remember to always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your camping adventures and be sure to brush up on any LNT principles for backcountry fires as well.

XO.

Tava 

Published: February 9, 2017

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Tava Hoag

Boston

Writer // Wanderer // Outdoor lover - Create Adventure wherever you go