Last year, when we started planning the meals for our family camping trip, I decided to think outside the traditional line-up of sandwiches and easy to grab foods for our lunches. I discovered that with a little bit of prep time in advance, we could eat as well outdoors while camping as we do at home. This year, I took that line of thinking and found some more great meals that were delicious in the outdoors.
I packed bags full of the makings for Nutty Raisin Oatmeal. I just added water to the pre-measured amounts of oatmeal and simmered until done. Top with brown sugar and butter just before serving.
Breakfast Potatoes are delicious alongside simple scrambled eggs and they took me almost no time to prep before the trip. I
simply roasted them and then
let them cool. Placed them in a plastic container (to avoid a ziploc
being smashed) and then refrigerated until we were packing the coolers.
When ready to use them, I simply warmed them in a large skillet with a
bit of butter until they were hot and crisped on the edges.
Helpful Tip: I broke eggs ahead of time into a freezer safe (heavy duty) ziploc bag. They kept nicely that way without any fear of broken eggshells making a mess of the cooler. I scrambled them inside the bag just before pouring them into a hot skillet on the campstove. A handful of shredded cheese to top the eggs along with the hot potatoes on the side, made for an great camping breakfast.
I made a Spicy Chinese Chicken and Vegetable Stir Fry. I let it cool, bagged the entire meal in a gallon size ziploc and then
froze it. I also made enough rice for my family to eat with it, let the
rice cool and froze it in it's own gallon size ziploc. When I was
packing the coolers, I simply placed the frozen meal into the cooler,
where it stayed almost frozen until we were ready to eat it.
To reheat it, I simply placed the meat and vegetables in a skillet on the campstove, covered it with a lid and stirred occasionally until it was warm. The rice was warmed in a small pot with a splash of water. Stirring occasionally to prevent it from sticking too much. A piping hot plate of this stir-fry beat the heck out of the traditional camping sandwiches!
Soups are an awesome camping meal that can be made in advance.This Hearty Italian Beef and Vegetable Stew was delicious in the afternoon while it was drizzling rain around us and we were cozy under our canopy. Let the soup cool completely and then freeze it flat in a gallon size
ziploc. Pack the frozen meal and when ready to eat, let it thaw enough
to break it up into a soup pot on the camp stove. Stir occasionally as it reheats.
Ranch Potato Salad, some veggies and cold chicken made a lunch that required about 3 minutes to get on the table. The potato salad kept nicely in the cooler; we had some of it on both the first day and the last day of our trip. It was great to have a meal ready at a moment's notice on the day that we arrived and were setting up camp.
As with most of our family events, snack foods are required for afternoon and late night game times. Plenty of fresh vegetables, along with Chipotle and Lime Hummus and Homemade Ranch Dip are my favorite snacks. Chips and salsa, and Sweet and Spicy Almonds are great options as well.
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ONE YEAR AGO TODAY: Chipotle Ranch Chicken Bites with Broccoli
TWO YEARS AGO TODAY: Parmesan Panko Baked Zucchini with Marinara