What to Bring for Camping?

Updated on July 31, 2008
J.F. asks from Madison, WI
21 answers

Hi! We are going camping this weekend and I am looking for any suggestions on what to bring for food for ourselves and our children age 8 and 6. We have been camping many times before, but I am looking for something different, particularly in the way of snack foods. It doesn't have to be super healthy, but want something quick and easy and not complete junk food. We have been traveling so much recently I just don't have the energy to get into anything too complicated! Thanks for all the suggestions!

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answers from Rapid City on

We use to love Banana boats when I was young. It is an old girl scout treat.

1 banana for each.. cut a oval in the middle of the top of a banana making it look like a kyak (however you spell it) taking out just a bit of the banana inside. Stuff with mini marshmellows and chocolate chips, wrap in tin foil and put in the hot coals of the fire for a little bit, letting the marshmellows and chocolate chips melt.



answers from Rochester on

go back to the basics.... peanut butter&jelly , twinkies,ho ho's, etc.... grapes,hard boiled eggs, chex mix, tuna(and the may0), sloppy joe in the crock pot.melons(fruit you will eat),peanuts,cereal,
0 its fast food and you don't have to bring it back home!!!!! hope i was a little helpful B.

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answers from Minneapolis on

If you can get to a Fleet Farm or Gander Mountain, buy the Mountain House brand of prepared meals and dinners. Moutain House is the top of the line in easy to prepare camping food. My husband gets these for hunting trips. They are freeze dried but real truly gourmet dishes, that take literally 2 to 5 minutes to prepare. Just open the mylar pouches and add hot water, wait and serve. They're easy to store and because they're in water proof packs, pretty tough to ruin when it comes to weather.

It comes in individual meals or family size entrees. They range in price from $2 to $8. The food is surprisingly good. The meats, veggies, fruits etc. are real, not processed, imitation or soy products, and the serving sizes and variety of choices are great.

They have everything from steak and potatoes, spaghetti and meatballs to pasta primavera. They even have breakfast entress with real eggs, bacon etc. and desserts like blueberry cobbler, cheese-cake and more. If this is any consolation, my kids like them and eat them.. and they're picky.



answers from Minneapolis on

I'd suggest fruit. Fresh is good when kids are hot and thristy, and dried fruit is easy to pack and eat anywhere.
There is such a variety of fruit that it should be easy to find something each kid likes.
Good luck!



answers from Milwaukee on

One snack that I have found that's easy and the kids love is the turkey pepperoni-It comes in a paclage from hormel and everyone just loves it and its super easy.



answers from Minneapolis on

I'm sorry I don't have time to check the responses to see if this is there!
A healthy-ish snack that we like to do is to have banana boats. We wrap a banana, peel and all, in tinfoil and put it up to the campfire, let it sit right there in the wood. After a few minutes cut open through the tinfoil and peel. Then add icecream toppings, like caramel and strawberry and chocolate. It is like a banana split. The kids love it.



answers from Dubuque on

Here is my own little recipe that my family and friends love for a little snack and they go ever so well and it is different from chips, etc... They are so quick and easy to make. Enjoy!

Ranch Crackers

1 pkg Oyster Crackers
1 pkg Dry Hidden Valley Ranch dressing
Dill Weed
Garlic Powder
1 Stick Real butter
1 freezer bag

Melt butter in microwave, put 1/2 pkg of crackers in freezer bag pour 1/2 of butter over crackers and shake to coat crackers. Pour remaining crackers in fz bag and pour remaining butter over crackers and shake. Pour 1/2 ranch seasoning over crackers, sprinkle ( to your taste start off w/ a little and can always add more if need be)garlic powder and dill weed over crakers, close bag and shake. Pour over remaining ranch seasoning and sprinkle dill weed and garllic powder over crakers shake to cover crakers, eat and enjoy! No baking and take about 5 mins to make.

They go over really well w/ my family and friends!

Thanks! :)



answers from Madison on

If you can cut veggies ahead of time then toss veggie kabobs and corn on the cob on the grill is good. The kids might like putting the veggies on the stick. Or they can make fruit kabobs with precut fruit.



answers from Lincoln on

My favorite is pinwheels- tortillas with cream cheese, and other toppings to your liking (ham and cheese, turkey, pepperoni, olives, tomatoes, etc.) I suppose you could even do PB & J. Try the flavored tortillas for added color and taste. They are super easy to make and keep well. Look for recipe ideas on a website like recipezaar.com.



answers from Minneapolis on

I would suggest pepperoni on a stick over a campfire. You just put a slice of pepperoni on a stick and warm it over the campfire. Another suggestion is taking a pillsbury dinner roll, spread a little jelly or jam on it and wrap it on the end of a stick and cook it over the fire.



answers from Minneapolis on

We just got back from camping last weekend. If you have a cooler along, I recommend yogurt tubes. Throw them in the freezer before you go and they'll thaw along the way. They are easy, healthy and not messy. We also had good results with applesauce, fruit and jello cups. If you want true snack foods and a variety, you can now get all sorts of 100 calorie packs (in boxes of 12 or so) in many great snacks - cheeze its, different varieties of cookies, etc. Satisfies many differnt tastes and you don't need lots of big bags.
Have fun!



answers from Bismarck on

We recently made pizzas over the campfire and the kids loved it - use a tortilla shell for the crust, put your sauce, toppings and cheese on one half, fold it, and then wrap it in tinfoil to cook over the fire. Quick and easy with little clean up.

Have fun!



answers from Des Moines on

I did this the last time my husband and I went camping with some of his family (at the time, we had no kids-we have 2 now!) This is a good snack. get a big container of peanuts, a big bag of m&m's, and a large container of raisins. mix together and put into baggies, and this makes a great trail mix. Of course you can do a different combo of things, but I found that it's cheaper just to buy things individually and combine than to buy actual trail mix, and you usually get a lot more for the money!
Hope this helps!



answers from Pittsburgh on

Trail mix is always good, you can make it any way you want by adding all your children's favorite cereals and candy pieces. Also, there is a version of it that you melt chocolate and peanut butter together and toss chex cereal in that and then coat with powder sugar. For some reason when my family goes camping we seem to always end up taking Cheeze-its, chips and salsa, or those sour dough pretzels, not to mention the very traditional smores components (chocolate, gram crackers, and marshmallow). Have fun camping!!



answers from Minneapolis on

Hi J. -

We are campers ourselves and just came across a few ideas that we have loved this summer. You can google search campfire meals, too.

Pizza's - over campfire or on propane grill
Pocket Pitas
Cheese and all of your desired fixings

Stuff fixings in the pocket pita with sauce and cover with cheese. Wrap in tinfoil and heat for about 10 minutes or until cheese is melted. Tastes just like a pizza!

Tacos in a Bag - kids LOVE these
Taco meat
Cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, etc.
Doritos - individual bags

Heat up your meat (I always cook it ahead of time and just heat it up in a pan). Toss meat in the bag with all of your fixings and eat right out of the bag! We have also cooked white rice and added black beans. Yummy!!!!

I prepare as much as possible before we go - like cooking the taco meat, etc. Also, I'll make up a noodle salad ahead of time to supplement with any meal. Ham sandwiches, PBJ, Salami with Cheese and crackers, etc.

Have fun and enjoy!!!



answers from Janesville-Beloit on

If you have time; go online and look up "Camping Foods". We are big campers here and I like something different also. We do alot of the Boy Scout things, such as meal in foil and pudgy pies. Making eggs and bacon in a brown paper bag over a campfire is so much fun. We take veggies and granola or cereal bars for snacks. The library also has books with ideas for camping.

Hope this helps.




answers from Grand Rapids on

J., hard boiled eggs are good, you can eat them as is, or make egg salad sandwhiches, we would have a big breakfast, hot usually , eggs bacon etc, then a sandwhich lunch, sandwhich , chips, drink , then we would cook dinner, but always loved oreos and milk on our camping trips, we all would sit around and just eat them and dunk them and good quality family time, so just enjoy life, and have a fun trip, D. s



answers from Minneapolis on

Thinking back to a few backpacking trips. If your looking for snack food: Trail mix, jerkey, granola bars, things like that. They don't take much room and they're not too bad.

Food, prepackaged (dry-add water later) chicken noodle soup. Packaged oatmeal for breakfasts. (you can grill some spam to have on the side...it's actually really good). Raman noodles, you can also cut up grilled spam and add to that.

Of course backpacking we couldn't bring a cooler, so that's what types of food we brought.

If you're bringing a cooler you can add some fruit and vegetables, and sandwich meat, cheese, and fixings. Keep it simple for lunches and just do sandwiches..you can also premake a pasta salad or two.



answers from Minneapolis on

These are things we have done that work well.

Snacks: String cheese, cheese & crackers, granola bars, grahm crackers, trail mix, chex mix, peanut butter on bread, dried fruits, fresh fruits, veggies & dip, hard boild eggs.

Meals: Pasta (spagettie or mac & cheese), chili, hot dogs, baked beans, fruit, eggs, french toast, pancakes, sandwiches, hamburges, salads (pasta, potato, coleslaw), fajitas, bacon/sauage, soups, tuna noodle salad, instand oatmeal

Sometimes it's helpful to pre-cook things and reheat at the campsite. Chili we usually make ahead and freeze. Fajitas we precooked the chicken and cut up the veggies and then threw every thing on a griddle at the campsite.



answers from Minneapolis on

Snacks: dried fruit, chex mix, trail mix, sunflower seeds, peanuts in the shell, puppy chow....
When we get sick of the same-old hamburgers, hot dogs, and brats when camping, we bring chicken to cook on the grill/over the fire....



answers from La Crosse on

Hi J.,
As an avid camper who has raised my now teenage/almost adult children as campers since their births, I may be able to give you some advice on what we do.
We always take crackers (like triscuits), chips, string cheese, cheese whiz in the can!, veggies, fruit, etc. The trick is how you store it. I go to the dollar store and pick up various sized zip loc bags. I use the gallon one's for storing larger items but you want to use the individual smaller sizes for kids snacks. First, because you can then control the portions of snacks AND its important for each child to have their own zip loc bag for multiple reasons - you then eliminate the tug of war issues of who holds the bag, and if you are camping in a sandy area you prevent sand and other debris from getting into your snack. Personally, I don't like dirt and sand in my own snack but if the kids like that - thats their choice (lol).
Another trick I've learned is how to take things like bread and chips and not have them smashed. Easy. I have a short but long clear tote that I put all of the smashable items in including things you don't want to get wet like toilet paper and paper towels.
I do have some quick food tips too. If you buy the breakfast skillet bags at Walmart (in frozen breakfast section, about $3.50) they have potatoes, onions, sausage, etc already in the bag and then buy a box of egg beaters. Mix them together in a skillet and you have instant breakfast with real food and it takes less than ten minutes. You can also buy fajita wraps and make this into breakfast burritos. It's quick, easy, inexpensive and you don't have to cut up all the ingredients and package them.
Hope this helps!

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