Camping Menu Ideas
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Summer is a favorite time for our family to go camping in the mountains. Here are a few of our favorite Camping Menu Ideas when cooking in the wild.
When our girls were young, we would pack up our large canvas tent, sleeping bags, propane cook stove–and other items galore and head for the Rockies.
Now that our family is grown and starting families of their own, our camping days are few. However, we are all dreaming of the day when we will pack up all of our families and caravan to the mountains for a week of camping together. If we ever manage to accomplish that, I will be sure to post about it on this blog!
A Little Camping Story
We usually eat a large breakfast when camping and then munch on snacks for lunch when we do our hiking. One year when we were camping at the Snowy Range Pass in Wyoming, we made friends with our camp host. It had been a very wet summer, and she was camping in a small popup tent. Cold. Wet. Miserable. But Smiling. We invited her to breakfast a few mornings, for which she was very appreciative.
Camping Menu Ideas: A Hearty Breakfast
While camping, breakfast and supper are our main meals, with snacks in-between, so I always make a large breakfast for everyone. Of course, there is often a rainy-day morning in the mountains when I’m not able to cook outside. On such days, we may just pour boiling water over a pouch of instant oatmeal and eat that with some hot cocoa. Here are a few of our favorite breakfast dishes.
Breakfast Burritos with salsa, juice or milk.
Country Pancakes with eggs, bacon, and juice. Sometimes I’ll even add in a side of grits.
Biscuits and Gravy with juice or milk and maybe a side of hash browns to go with this.
or French Toast with sausage links, scrambled eggs, and juice.
Packing our Lunch
For lunch, we’ll pack a few items in our backpacks like applesauce, carrots, jerky, crackers and cheese, and granola bars. And of course, water. Months before our trip, I’ll start drying jerky and fruits. And a week before the trip I’ll make a couple batches of our granola bars in different flavors.
Venison Jerky – This recipe easily compares to what you might buy at specialty shops. It’s very well seasoned and not hard to make.
Chewy Granola Bars – When our daughters were younger, we vacationed nearly every summer in the mountains. One year, I wanted to make most of the food myself. I dried fruits. Made jerky. And worked tirelessly on this granola bar recipe, wanting something that was flavorful, firm, yet chewy, and that would hold together when snacking on it.
Supper in the Campground
After a long day of hiking or sight-seeing, I like to return to camp for an easy, one-pot meal–usually soup served with leftover biscuits, cornbread, or crackers. Unlike Kansas, it’s nice and cool in the mountains, so soup tastes pretty good. Here are a few ideas:
This Country Potato Soup is a perfect choice when you want something warm and creamy. It’s easy to prepare, and so satisfying when you just want a nice bit of comfort food.
Chunky Venison Stew with Savory Southwest Biscuits – We’ve nicknamed it “Mountain Stew” because we always make Chunky Venison Stew when we go camping in the mountains. And we’re hoping to one day take a big family vacation, where we’ll make this stew together. It also works well for Cowboy gatherings. Or any family gathering, for that matter.
Don’t Forget Dessert
For dessert, we’ll get out the Coleman Oven. And just so you don’t think I’m an over-achiever as a camp cook, here is a little secret: I use canned apple pie filling and also prepare the cookie dough at home and refrigerate it in a large butter container. Then when it’s time for a little snack after supper, we’ll slice off a handful of cookies and place them in the propane oven. Easy-peasy and oh so good!
Homemade Apple Pie – This recipe has been in our family for at least four generations and has won two grand champion ribbons at our county fair.
Joan’s Chocolate Chip Cookies – Joan’s Chocolate Chip Cookies are simply delicious. I like to make the dough for this ahead of time, forming it into two rolls and refrigerating until we’re ready to pack. Then when it’s time to bake, just slice off enough pieces to fit on a small baking pan. There is just something wonderful about freshly baked warm homemade cookies in the mountains. So yummy!