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Meal Planning for Campers

Meal Planning for Campers

Do you struggle to figure out what to cook when you get to the campsite? Or know what you want to make but then find out you are missing an ingredient? Meal planning for your camping trips can solve these problems and make your camp cooking more enjoyable and stress free.

Choose Your Meals

I know I have difficulty in deciding what to make for dinner each night and I have to assume that others have the same struggles. Choosing your meals ahead of time can alleviate that stress. Get a notebook or a meal planning notepad which can be found in the Out of the Box Camping Summer Box and carve out 15 minutes to plan out your meals when at the campground. Pick your go to meals, ask your kids or family members for a meal they would like to have, and fill in the other meals with items you know you will have on hand from the other dinners.

I also like to choose meals where I can reuse some of the ingredients for other meals. For instance, I make hard boiled eggs and use them to make an egg salad. I can also cut them up and add them to a cobb salad or use some to make deviled eggs. I cook bacon and use it to make bacon, egg, and cheese sandwiches for breakfast. I can then use the leftover bacon to make BLT’s or turkey clubs for lunch or dinner.

The meal planner notepad found in the Camp Kitchen Box

Grocery Shopping

Once you have your meals listed, you can create a grocery list of what items you will need to make each meal. I look for the items I have on hand at home and move those into the camper and add the items I don’t have onto my grocery list. Having a set list will make your grocery shopping so much quicker and allow you to stay on budget by sticking to the items on your list.

Meal Prep

After you go grocery shopping it’s time to take the ingredients and prep what you can ahead of time to have more time to relax at the campsite. I wash and cut up fruit and vegetables prior to our trip. I also like to portion out snacks so that I don’t over eat on camping trips. I usually prepare salads ahead of time at home too. Some of my favorite recipes:

egg salad can be a great addition to your camping meal plan

Egg salad can be made ahead of time and makes a great lunch option

Camp Cooking

While you are at camp, you can make the the make the main dishes of your meals to go along with your previously prepped items. I like to have my kids help make the meals that they previously picked out for the menu. It’s nice to have an extra hand and the kids love to pitch in. Here;s some things the kids can help with:

  • Measure ingredients (use the collapsible measuring cups from the Out of the Box Camping Summer Box)
  • Stir mixtures
  • Set the table (use the Camp Casual paper plates found in the summer box. Need to re-stock? Use the promo code found in the box!
  • Put out condiments
  • Clean off the table
  • Wash dishes
picnic table place settings for camp cooking

Have the kids help out with dinner by setting the table while you finish other tasks

Meal Plan Schedule

For a weekend trip, I plan out my meals and write my grocery list on Wednesday, shop and meal prep Thursday, and on Friday I pack up the food and we are ready to head to camp Friday once my husband gets home from work Check out our Camp Cooking Pinterest Board for some great meal plan examples.

If you missed out on the Out of the Box Camping Summer Box that included the meal planner notepad, you can still make up your meal plan by using our free downloadable Meal Plan Worksheet. We always love getting new meal ideas, what is your go camping meal you will be adding to the worksheet?