Nope, we’re not talking about cold cereal and boring sandwiches. You can have no-cook camping meals that are tasty, healthy and fun to eat. Here’s a list of camp food ideas you can make without a stove—or campfire!
Tips for Your Camp Kitchen
The key to cooking less while camping is to plan and prepare ahead of time. I like to have camp kitchen stocked with all of the ingredients, tools and storage that I need.
- Use large reusable silicone storage bags to label meals by days or store cold salads flat.
- Mason jars make it easy to fill up with quick, grab-and-go salads or breakfast and can be a space saver, too.
- I use collapsible silicone bowls and cups that take up less space and decrease trash.
Jump-start the day with foods that will keep you full. Doughnuts may seem like fun camp food, but you are bound to get hungry an hour later. We like to pair proteins (like boiled eggs, yogurt, beans or milk) with complex carbohydrates (like oats, whole grain breads or beans) to fuel our morning adventures.
- Yogurt Parfaits. Plain or flavored yogurt layered with chopped nuts, chia seeds, muesli or fresh fruit can make for a hearty and quick breakfast.
- Granola With Milk. If you’re running low on cold storage, opt for boxed milk.
- Boiled Egg Breakfast Sandwich. Yes, a fried egg sandwich tastes great, but so does a boiled egg sandwich. Grab a croissant and fill with premade sliced hard-boiled eggs, sliced cheese and ham.
- Overnight Oatmeal. Grab a mason jar and create a bunch of these before you leave home!
- Bean Toast Bites. The Brits have long been putting cold beans on toast. Open up a can of baked beans and serve with a piece of crusty French bread.
Whether you’re out fishing, hiking on a trail or just hanging close to camp, everyone needs to break for lunch. Serve each recipe up on its own or combine together for a memorable meal.
- Peanut Butter and Honey or Jelly Sandwiches. Here are 15 genius ways to upgrade your PB&J.
- Stacked Crackers. Pair your crackers with sliced salami and cheese or creamy peanut butter for a quick lunch bite.
- Hummus and Veggie Sticks. Store-bought hummus works, but making your own definitely is worth the effort. Try this popular Lemon Garlic Hummus recipe.
- Nutty Berry Trail Mix or Granola Trail Mix. The mix recipes make for a fun lunch add-on or snack between meals.
- Jerky. Store-bought works, but for those prefer to make their own, try this recipe for easy beef jerky.
- Sandwich Wraps. Grab a cold tortilla, spread with hummus and your favorite sandwich toppings, like shredded lettuce, cucumber slices and cold cuts.
- Tuna, Chicken or Egg Salad Sandwiches. Mayo combined with protein, like tuna or chicken, can spoil quickly, so be sure to keep these sandwiches cold until it’s lunchtime.
- Apple Peanut Butter Sandwiches. Thick slices of apples topped with creamy peanut butter and chocolate chips can be served up as a snack or a tasty treat after lunch. Here’s the recipe for our peanut butter stackers.
- Layered Fresh Fruit Salad.
- Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato Sandwiches. Cold bacon still makes for a delicious BLT!
For those who love to cook around the campfire, check out this article that’s packed with easy camp cooking ideas.
For most dinners, you can opt to make-ahead or tap into convenience foods like rotisserie chicken, salads-in-a-bag or canned foods. Our family favorites include bowls (like you’d have at Chipotle), spiralized veggie salads or pasta salads.
- Chicken Bowls. Canned beans (rinsed), shredded lettuce or cabbage, chopped tomatoes and cucumbers, shredded cheese and dressing of choice (ranch, Italian or honey mustard).
- Taco Bowls. Make taco meat ahead of time or make it meatless with canned beans. You can opt for a layered salad or let the family make their own with corn chips, guacamole, chopped tomatoes, shredded cheese, beans, olives and salsa. Top the salad off with a dressing, like a simple squeeze of lime and olive oil or stir taco seasoning into ranch dressing for a creamy topping.
- Antipasto Salad Platter. Italian cold cuts, canned artichoke hearts, quartered mushrooms, sliced cucumbers, sliced tomatoes, kidney or garbanzo beans, feta squares and sliced red onion, all topped with Italian dressing and served with crusty French bread.
- Sesame Almond Slaw. Serve this slaw recipe with cold rotisserie chicken for a super-satisfying meal.
- Make Ahead Six-Layer Salad. Add in chopped ham or serve with sandwiches to complete the dinner.
- Southwest Shredded Pork Salad. Just a handful of chips and this meal is complete.
- Ham and Potato Salad Sandwiches. Hearty and easy to pull together when you need dinner on the table fast!
- Charcuterie Board. That’s just the fancy way of saying cheese and meat board. Pre-slice your meats and cheese in advance for convenience or stick a knife on the board and let folks cut their own. Grab a box of fancy crackers or make these Cheesy Sun Crisps.
- Cold Hot Dogs and Canned 3-Bean-Salad. Sounds fancy, right? This was definitely a family favorite in our home. Yes, hot dogs are pre-cooked or smoked, so they are safe to eat cold. But, should someone in your party have a weakened immune system or be pregnant, they should skip cold hot dogs and cold cuts.
- Caprese Salad Kebabs and Rotisserie Chicken.
Find More Camp Food Inspiration
If you love to cook and are great at planning, check out our collection of easy camping recipes for some fun food-spiration before you head outdoors. You can also find all of our camping food ideas in one spot, here.
Psst! You can check out my camping adventures by following #olafthecampervan on Instagram.
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