The best part of summer is upon us, and the weather is absolutely perfect for a weekend at your favorite campsite. So fill your vehicle with your camping essentials, and follow these food-packing tips to make sure your weekend escape has enough food, the right kinds of food, and food that doesn’t go bad.
Packing food doesn’t have to be an ordeal.
- Don’t waste money and space in your coolers with bags of ice. Instead, freeze all of your meal ingredients, aside from the ones you’ll need for your very first meal. Meats, veggies, sauces, and juices all double as excellent ice packs and save you from weighing your cooler down.
- Leak-proof containers are a godsend. Even if you’re fairly confident that your foods won’t leak as they are, invest in a few leak-proof containers just in case. You don’t want this to be the weekend in which you open up your cooler to find that the jam leaked all over half of the bags and containers in your cooler.
- Pack your cooler with the concept of ‘last in, first out’. The last things you pack will be the first things you can access later on. This saves you from having to uproot your entire cooler just to find the condiments near the bottom, or other such packing woes.
Safety is important, especially in the woods.
- For safety’s sake, make sure raw foods are sealed well away from already-prepared or cooking-free foods. Raw meat, for example, contains a number of potentially-harmful bacteria which are burned away in the cooking process but which could be transferred easily through foods you don’t plan on heating that hot again.
- Ideally, you should bring a gallon of water per person per day that you’re camping, especially in the middle of summer. If your campsite has access to a clean water source, however, you can probably cut that in half.
Edibles aren’t the only things you need to bring.
- While some campsites have built in grills in their fire pits, others don’t, and especially if you’re roughing it, you very well may have to bring your own in order to cook any real food. Matches or a lighter are another item you can’t do without. Also, a couple of skewers for roasting hot dogs and marshmallows wouldn’t go remiss.
- You’ll also want to make sure to bring paper or reusable plates, plastic utensils, and napkins. Aluminum foil is an invaluable cooking aid, especially on the grill. Finally, a trash bag is a must, to put your unfinished food plus your paper and plastic wastes. If you bring it in, you have to take it back out!
- Remember to bring a flashlight. Double-check and then triple-check that you have at least one and ideally two or three, with batteries for each. The last thing you want to do is fumble around in the woods at night, whether that’s to get food or to find a bathroom.
These are just a few of the many packing tips out there. Overall, be prepared and make sure you have all of the camping essentials to make your trip stress-free and enjoyable for all. So pack with care, and enjoy your weekend basking in the glorious expanse of nature.