Camping & Backpacking: Camp Cooking Tips

Editor’s Review:

In this video, a recreational kayaking instructor and outdoor adventurer shares camp cooking tips and tricks on an open fire. You may find these simple ideas helpful before you head out on your camping and backpacking trip. He discusses a few tools and equipment that you may find handy: tinfoil, spices,pots and coolers. These same concepts and ideas apply to cooking on a fire pit in the back woods.

Video Transcript:

In terms of camp cooking, you’ve made a decision to go out and spend some time in the woods. Great decision. Happy campers have happy stomachs.

So spending a lot of time to plan how we are going to cook, whether you’re going to cook on an open fire, whether you’re going to get a camp stove or something like that.

Are you bringing a cooler? If so, what’s in that cooler?

Block ice is going to last longer than cubed ice.

Do you have beverages that you want to keep cool?

One of the things that you want to do on a camping trip is keep your beverages in one cooler and your food in another cooler because you’ll be opening the beverage cooler more often.

Lots of little tricks.

Like with, if you’re cooking on an open fire, put some liquid soap on the outside of your pot. Makes it easier to clean, to get it off. Make sure that you don’t get any of that soap inside because we don’t want to clean you out.

Now, there’s a lot of different tools that you can buy to help you with your cooking.

Handy-dandy little toaster things. Kids love these. Lots of fun too.

Cast iron big pots, long-handled spatulas, good cook mitts if you’re cooking on an open fire.

So that way you can move around, touch some of these hot objects without burning yourself.

So a lot of planning.

Now, when it comes to cooking on an open fire flame is the thing that you don’t want to cook on. You want to allow time for the fire to burn down and get down to coals so it’s a nice, even temperature.

The closer to the coals, the more direct over them, the hotter the fire is going to be. So you can control how fast something’s going to cook.

Tin foil is a great campfire tool. I’ve done whole meals where you can just wrap the whole meal up in tin foil and put it down inside in the bed of coals. Whole chickens, potatoes, carrots. All kinds of great feasts can be just put inside tin foil and just left there to cook. Kind of like a crockpot almost. So tin foil is a great consideration.

Now, just because you’re in the woods doesn’t mean that your food should be bland.

One of the things I love is these cheap little Indian ‘heat ‘n eat’ kind of meals. Two bucks for about six hundred calories of great stuff.

Very easy to eat. It’s inexpensive. Easy to prepare. No big messes.

So, spend some time in your supermarket looking for things that you like that might be easy to cook.

Now, again, because you’re out in the woods doesn’t mean that things need to be bland.

Bring a spice kit along with you. Salt, peppers, the hot and spicy kinds of things. Spice it up a little bit. Don’t forget the Magic Dust, okay?

If it’s a seasoning that you like at home it’s going to be even better on an open fire.

And of course, don’t forget the snack food, okay? Lots of great snacks.

Happy times are made around a campfire by happy stomachs.

So put some work into shopping and it’s fun, it’s a great time.

Oh, look at that. Almost, almost perfect.

A lot of times you can feed you troops quickly, efficiently, with just a little bit of work.

And you’d be surprised how involved people want to get when they’re looking at the preparation of the meal.

So, happy trails. Safe eatin’.