It’s time to shop and pack the food for your next camping trip. Unless you are one of those incredibly organized people who have actually compiled a list of your favorite camping foods, it might be hard to jog your memory about what it is you need to buy. Some staple foods can really help to form the foundation for any camping trip. Consider adding some of the following items to your list for your next camping adventure.
Dried fruit: There are so many different kinds of dried fruit to choose from—cherries, apricots, mangoes, pineapples, apples, bananas, and the list goes on. Dried fruit is impossible to crush, it doesn’t spoil, and it is a really delicious snack. Plus it has nutritious fiber, and you can buy low sugar dried fruit as well. You can find a kind that most kids like, and it can easily fill in for candy in a pinch.
Protein bars: Inevitably you will take an excursion on your camping trip, maybe a hike or a long drive. This is where a good protein bar comes in. It’s quick to grab, there are endless flavors and varieties, and when stomachs are growling and the coolers are back at camp, nothing fills in as well as a yummy protein bar.
GORP: That’s right, Good Old Raisins and Peanuts. Either buy a premixed trail mix in the store, or make your own. The best part about making your own is that you control the ingredients. Not a fan of peanuts? Substitute another type of nut, or scrap nuts altogether. Including some type of chocolate will make your gorp extra delectable. Consider soy nuts, pretzels, cereal, or any kind of dried fruit. Whatever you put in it, some version of gorp is a must on a camping trip.
Powdered or evaporated milk: This might sound like an odd one, but the uses of these products are limitless. Since regular milk can spoil easily, these are great substitutes. They are great in coffee and hot chocolate, on cereal or in oatmeal. Powdered milk can be put in hot drinks just like a powdered creamer, and you can buy types that are made with cream and really pretty good. Canned evaporated milk can be reconstituted with water in a 1:1 ratio, and tastes delicious.
Prepared pesto sauce: Pesto sauce, although perishable, is pretty hardy in the woods. It has fantastic versatility. Toss it with hot pasta, rice, potatoes or couscous. Scramble it with eggs or use it as a sandwich spread. A little goes a long way and it adds a nice gourmet touch to your camping trip.
Oil and/or butter: These staples are often overlooked on the shopping list, but they are indispensable on a camping trip. Use them for cooking, salads, bread spread, or dippers. They are must haves!
Sugar free drink mix: Bring some along in a variety of flavors to spice up the drink options. Save space in your cooler from bulky soda or juice cans, and bring this instead. Whatever you don’t use can be saved and used later, it has a long shelf life.
Precooked sausages: These are a real treat on a camping trip. They come in a variety of flavors and are made from different kinds of meats, or even vegetarian. They cook up fast and you don’t need to worry about raw meat. Just grab a stick and hold one over the fire until golden!
Cheese sticks: Cheese sticks are a great quick snack to have in camp. Kids and grownups alike love them, and they give you a solid hit of protein. They have a bit more staying power than regular blocks of cheese, due to the extra packaging, although they do need to be in a cooler to taste their best and resist spoiling.
Marshmallows: Okay, they’re not technically a food, but how could you go camping without them, especially if there is a child involved? Throw in some chocolate and graham crackers and you’re really all set!