Camp Cooking: Preparation Tips

Camp Cooking: Preparation Tips

Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.”
      ~ Alexander Graham Bell

Do the heavy lifting at home and enjoy your time at camp. Here’s some prep work that’ll make your next cook out at camp easier, tastier, and more successful. 

Marinate, chop, and season at home. Marinate and season meats ahead of time and place in ziplocks; vacuum sealed bags are even more effective. Sides like potatoes, and veggies can be treated similarly. You can utilize foil and either cook directly in a foil pouch or reuse it to keep things warm once they come off the grill. Not only do these steps eliminate work at camp, but all that extra time marinating is a game changer. Mason jars or Tupperware are great non-disposable options.

- Label and organize. Label prepped foods and place in your cooler in the opposite order that they’ll be used. If you’re camping for multiple days, put the meals for the last day at the bottom of the cooler and then work your way up. This ensures the food that’s in there the longest stays the coldest (cold air falls to the bottom) and you can easily find what you need right on top. 

- Minimize cleanup. These steps cut down on handling uncooked foods which cuts down on dishes (and your chances of foodborne illness). You’ll still have some dishes and cleanup to deal with. After washing, place them in a mesh laundry bag and hang to dry. This eliminates drying by hand and they’ll be ready for the next meal, or your next trip. Headed to the next spot? Grab the bag and go, it makes packing that much easier. 

 Bonus Tips:

- Use a pill organizer to store seasonings. Don't bring the full size shakers with you, and don't lose anything either. Add all your spices and seasonings to a customizable pill organizer from the drug store. Whether you have three or 30, you'll find one with all the compartments you need.

- Pre-make pancake mix and pour into a squeeze bottle, or old ketchup bottle. No measuring, mixing, and much less cleanup. Just squeeze, cook, flip, enjoy!

- Try a hobo dinner. The name might not be enticing but you'll be glad you gave it a shot. Cook your entire meal in a foil pack. Get creative with sliced sausage, potatoes, lots of cheese, seasonings, etc. Can be placed on the grill or right on the embers of your campfire. Eat it right out of the foil pouch for the easiest no prep, no clean up camp meal possible. 

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